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Title: Luke The Canonical Remnant of a Marcionite Orthodoxy
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Creator: Konicki, Troy
Publisher: New College of Florida
Place of Publication: Sarasota, Fla.
Creation Date: 2011
Publication Date: 2011


Subjects / Keywords: Markcion
Synoptic Problem
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theses   ( marcgt )
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Abstract: This thesis argues for a new narrative of Marcion�s life, exposing the inaccuracies of previous narratives and setting the scene for a Marcion that changed Christian history. Historians and theologians since the second century CE have depicted this man as insignificant and deranged, but this could not be further from the truth. Marcion was intelligent, creative and effective, penning a gospel that would serve as the cornerstone of the synoptic tradition, developing a theology and church structure that held a pervasive influence over the places and times of Christianity, and, in doing so, challenging the dominant forms of the fledgling faith and forcing it to change and form a scriptural and social identity. Against the majority of voices in church history, this thesis argues with Matthias Klinghardt that Marcion�s gospel preceded canonical Luke. Further, it adds to Klinghardt�s work by maintaining that Marcion�s document surfaces as synonymous with the Q document of the synoptic problem and, thus, as the theological mentor of Luke and the textual source for his sondergut material.
Statement of Responsibility: by Troy Konicki
Thesis: Thesis (B.A.) -- New College of Florida, 2011
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The New College of Florida, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Local: Faculty Sponsor: Marks, Susan

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Source Institution: New College of Florida
Holding Location: New College of Florida
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Classification: local - S.T. 2011 K82
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Permanent Link:

Material Information

Title: Luke The Canonical Remnant of a Marcionite Orthodoxy
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Creator: Konicki, Troy
Publisher: New College of Florida
Place of Publication: Sarasota, Fla.
Creation Date: 2011
Publication Date: 2011


Subjects / Keywords: Markcion
Synoptic Problem
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation


Abstract: This thesis argues for a new narrative of Marcion�s life, exposing the inaccuracies of previous narratives and setting the scene for a Marcion that changed Christian history. Historians and theologians since the second century CE have depicted this man as insignificant and deranged, but this could not be further from the truth. Marcion was intelligent, creative and effective, penning a gospel that would serve as the cornerstone of the synoptic tradition, developing a theology and church structure that held a pervasive influence over the places and times of Christianity, and, in doing so, challenging the dominant forms of the fledgling faith and forcing it to change and form a scriptural and social identity. Against the majority of voices in church history, this thesis argues with Matthias Klinghardt that Marcion�s gospel preceded canonical Luke. Further, it adds to Klinghardt�s work by maintaining that Marcion�s document surfaces as synonymous with the Q document of the synoptic problem and, thus, as the theological mentor of Luke and the textual source for his sondergut material.
Statement of Responsibility: by Troy Konicki
Thesis: Thesis (B.A.) -- New College of Florida, 2011
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The New College of Florida, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Local: Faculty Sponsor: Marks, Susan

Record Information

Source Institution: New College of Florida
Holding Location: New College of Florida
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: local - S.T. 2011 K82
System ID: NCFE004384:00001

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Luke: The Canonical Remnant of a Marcionite Orthodoxy By Troy Konicki A Thesis Submitted to the Division of Humanities New College of Florida in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Bachelor of Arts in Religion Under the sponsorship of Dr. Susan Marks Sarasota, Florida May, 2011




Acknowledgements Heaps of thanks, bows, grovelings, head nods and shout outs to: My wife, Coral for the late night conversations a nd early morning alarms. For carrying more than your share of chores and res ponsibilities, shouldering a lot of mine. For helping straighten out my th inking countless times. For intro ducing me to rest and time well spent doing nothing. For the dozens of hours spent on state road 80. For midnight Starbucks runs to get that la st citation or idea hammered out For interest, care and love. For patience and for stability and normal amidst a lot of ambiguity and change. My family for getting me here. For the oodles of money spent throughout these four years to secure my sanity and bodily healt h, the understanding and meekness to listen to me and my fancy college education, and the obligatory love and s upport thats not so obligatory in this case Susan Marks for the edits, the next ed its and the edits after thos e. For that conversation about the difference between theology and hi story. For the gentle suggestions and the more overt instructions. For the tea and Luna bars. Mostly, though, for the humble and confident walk of scholarship that you have exemplified and taught to me and so many others. Delaney for that trip to Krispy Kream in Tampa. For reading and editing my thesis. For rides to just about every location in Sara sota. For persevering and being rugged. For reminders. For pens. For cereal and pasta. Fo r morning prayer. For the video. For Cooper and awkward pauses. For friendship. The Barnacle Bills crew for keeping it real. For putting school and college life in perspective. For always givi ng me good stories to tell. For all the good beer and talks around it. For being family. May there always be fresh bread and ice, but remember only two slices and six cubes per customer. The Jesus Club for being the greatest church Ive ever been a part of. For doubting and studying. For learning and growing. For acceptance and conviction. For unity in diversity. Jesse Carbo for the basics. For that car ride to Sa rasota. For peste a bacalao. For just the right words and unwavering support. Dave Dickman for teaching me marriage and for th at conversation where you told me Im not a heretic. The Shonteres for wisdom and vision. For listening and doing. For being there for all the students of Sarasota and Braden ton at the drop of a hat. Fo r the speeding ticket and the books. Hummus for being both healthy and delicious. ii


ContentsACKNOWLEDGEMENTS II ABSTRACT IV INTRODUCTION: IMAGE AND REALITY 1 CHAPTER ONE: MARCION VS. LUKE 16 Issues with Dating and Textual Analysis 19 1. Sources 19 2. Dating Marcion 21 3. Dating Luke 23 The Great German Debate of the 1840-50s 28 Current Debate 32 CHAPTER TWO: THE STONE THE BUILDERS REJECTED 48 Markan Priority 50 1. Order 51 2. Additions/Omissions 53 3. Date 55 Q Theory: Separating Fact From Myth 57 1. The Two-Document Hypothesis 57 2. Markan Priority Without Q Hypothesis 61 Marcions Gospel: The Solution to the Synoptic Problem 66 1. Structure 68 2. Theology 73 CONCLUSION: THE FUTURE OF MARCIONITE RESEARCH 81 BIBLIOGRAPHY 86 iii


ivAbstract LUKE: THE CANONICAL REMNANT OF A MARCIONITE ORTHODOXY Troy Konicki New College of Florida, 2011 This thesis argues for a new narrative of Marcions life, exposing the inaccuracies of previous narratives and sett ing the scene for a Marcion th at changed Christian history. Historians and theologians since the second century CE have depicted this man as insignificant and deranged, but this could not be further from the truth. Marcion was intelligent, creative and effective, penning a gos pel that would serve as the cornerstone of the synoptic tradition, developing a theology and church structure that held a pervasive influence over the places and times of Chri stianity, and, in doing so, challenging the dominant forms of the fledgling faith and forc ing it to change and fo rm a scriptural and social identity. Against the majority of voices in church history, th is thesis argues with Matthias Klinghardt that Marcions gospel pre ceded canonical Luke. Further, it adds to Klinghardts work by maintaining that Marcions document surfaces as synonymous with the Q document of the synoptic problem and, thus as the theological mentor of Luke and the textual source for hi s sondergut material. Dr. Susan Marks Division of Humanities




Introduction: Image and Reality What do we know of the American Revoluti onary War patriot, first president and figure of the United States Treasurys onedollar bill? We know he wrote treatises, enacted laws and fought in battles. We know the dates of his life and death. We even know the names of his family members and his name, George Wash ington, but of his personal life, his character and ideals, we have mostly storie s of cherry trees and wooden teeth. United States citizens and others revere this man as honest, kind and courageous and, despite the questionable accuracy of any of these claims, uphold the legends and stories. Likewise, many political activists still hold conspi racy theories of President Obamas connection to Muslim extremist sects or Bushs collusion with the 9/11 terrorists. In these cases, despite the ready availa bility of information, enemies of these men esteem and adhere to legends and myth s extravagant as those of Washington. Even more recent history shows that there is no such thing as a singular narrative of a life or event, but rather a plurality of narratives th at all have a different audience and varying amounts of truth and popularity. The phenomenon appears frequently in early Christian history. Whether it be for reverence of a saint or disreput e of a heretic, the characteri zations and historical records of these figures are many, diverse, and comp lex. This is further complicated by the fact that, unlike modern folklore and falsificati ons, the majority of these figures documents and life details are lost to fires and the like. Whereas a modern historian can read letters, financial records, and other statements by a figure like Washington, ancient historians and religious scholars do not generally ha ve this luxury. On the one hand there are 1


hagiographies and epic histor ies of heroes, saints and es teemed leaders that tell of fantastical events and unrivaled benevolence, strength and vision, while, on the other, there are heresiologies that defame the inconcei vable evil and notoriety of certain heretics and hated figures. Deconstruc ting these narratives and combining them with other historical documents yields, at best, a hazy picture and a list of hypotheses and questions. This brings us to Marcion, the arch -heretic of the Christian faith. Who is Marcion? Primary sources te ll of a man from Pontus, a wealthy and adventurous shipbuilder who moved from a small town to the big city at Rome.1 He was heavily involved in the churc h, never married but had a shor t fling with a woman before leaving Pontus. He became quite the prolif ic and paradigmatic author, composing a massive biblical commentary in addition to other works. With this description, Marcion does not seem much of an arch -heretic, but rather a stock character from a Steinbeck novel. I should add that he is the firstborn of Satan.2 That, by the aid of devils he caused manyto speak blasphemies.3 An impotent, blind and savage devil was Marcion of Pontus. In addition to his position as Sa tans firstborn, Tertullian also illuminates Marcions role as the antichrist.4 His parents should have seen this coming, perhaps, since Tertullian reminds us that Pontus is, in fact, a region of de vastation and depravity, where men eat each other and women walk with battle axes strapped to their bare 1 As will be shown, primary sources include Tertullia n, Epiphanius, Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Hippolytus, Clement of Alexandria and a few minor contributors. 2 Irenaeus, Against Heresies 3.3.4. 3 Justin, 1 Apology 26.1. 4 Tertullian, Against Marcion 3.8. 2


bosoms.5 With a rsum like this, it is not diffi cult to see how the church would expel him as a heretic, arguably the first person in Christian history to be excommunicated.6 In what follows, I argue for a different narrative of Marci ons life. Exposing the inaccuracies of previous narratives, I will set the scene for a Marcion that changed Christian history. Historians and theologians since the second century CE have depicted this man as insignificant and deranged, but th is could not be further from the truth. Marcion was intelligent, creative and effectiv e. Penning a gospel that would serve as the cornerstone of the synoptic tradition, developing a theology and church structure that held a pervasive influence over the places a nd times of Christianity, and, in doing so, challenging the dominant forms of the fledgling faith and forcing it to change and form a scriptural and social identity. Against the majority of church history, I argue with Matthias Klinghardt and his recent article, Marcion vs. Luke that Marcions gospel was the textual source behind Lukes sondergut (material specific to Luke amongst the synoptic gospels: Matthew, Mark, and Luke). I further add to Klinghardts work in maintaining that Marcions document surf aces as synonymous with the Q document of the synoptic problem and, thus, as the theologi cal mentor of Luke, his canonical disciple. First, we must examine the narratives of Marcions life and piece together a cogent frame that best explains the scant and conflicting details offered through the early sources. The aforementioned excommunication of Marcion comes much later in the story. I will start from the beginning and th is time we will go a bit more slowly. According to the scholarly consensus rega rding the primary sources, Tertullian and 5 Tertullian, Against Marcion,1.1. 6 Sebastian Moll, The Arch-Heretic Marcion (Mohr Siebeck Tubingen: 2010), 44 3


Epiphanius, Marcion was a shipbuilder from P ontus. Born around the turn of the century (100-110 CE), Marcion was raised as a Chri stian under his father, the bishop of their small Pontic town of Sinope. Marcion spen t his adolescence and early adulthood making a fortune as a shipbuilder, but ran into troubl e with the Christian community for seducing a virgin sometime in his late thirties, which led to his exile from the Pontic community. An outcast, the heretic next traveled to Ro me midway through th e reign of Antoninus Pius (around 144). He joined a congrega tion there and donated a large sum of 200,000 sesterces7 to the church, which made him quite popular. At this point the story truly begins to darken. Marcion, under the influence neo-Platoni sts in Rome, constructed a biblical commentary, which he called Antitheses. In this work, Marcion expressed his hatred of the Jews and their scriptures by showing that the Apostle Paul, in his letters, spoke of an Unknown God that differs greatly from the Jewish Creator God. He linked Jewish scriptural passages with Pauls words to show that this Jesus and his God were dramatically opposed to the Creator. Each Pau line passage served as an antithesis to its Jewish counterpart. In addition to this wo rk, Marcion also copied and fixed Lukes gospel to reflect his understanding of Pa ul. Marcion thought Paul to be the only trustworthy source for true theo logy in the lot of apostles. Thus, Marcion developed a gnostic unders tanding of the Jewish and Christian texts, thinking the Creator to be the author of the corrupt material world and its equally corrupt system of justice and the Unknown God to be the author of grace and salvation 7 Moll approximates this amount to be n ear the value of a good house in Rome, 30. 4


for the human soul.8 Marcion was mostly troubled by the paradoxical relationship between Gods justice and his grace and could not reconcil e the two under one Godhead. In this sense, justice is the law system of the creator by which he can judge humanitys sin. Grace is the divine love of humanity. Ma rcion hated the Jews and their Creator and, thus, attributed all ev il to this corrupt just ice system and its God. This shaped Marcions radical Paulinism, namely his intensification of Pauls views of th e gospel of grace and the importance of faith over and agai nst divine wrath and justice. These literary works and Marcion s distinctive theology led to his excommunication from the church at Rome. Marcion now took on the role of a heretic and began preaching his version of the gospel and, earning converts, he started churches throughout the Roman Empire. His churches had some unique elements, but generally followed the orthodox ecclesiastical structure.9 The details of these accounts date Marcions death at around 165 CE This is the narrative that has emerged from a collection of primary sources and some rough an alyses of secondary authors. Under this narrative frame, Marcion was not much more than an enthusiastic neo-platonist that had a peculiar distaste for the Jewish people and, t hus, blamed their God for the broken state of the material realm. This is not, however, the onl y narrative of Marcions life. In fact, scholars dispute each historical and theological detail of this construction fo r a number of reasons. In what follows, I will unpack several of these disputes and show how they contribute to a more unified and accurate narrative of a Marci on who both held a much more complicated 8 I place the term gnostic in quotes because not only is th e term itself troublesome, bu t, as I will show later, it is an improper label for Marcion for many reasons. 9 Tertullian, Against Marcion 4.5. 5


theological structure and had a profound imp act upon the fledgling Christian religion, its theology and structure. The first set of questions deals with the alleged dates of Marcions life and ministry. Unfortunately, we do not have set dates for Marcions birth, death or really any specific dates of his life. The be st attestations we have cente r on his arrival at Rome with vague references to his start of ministry. They come from two chief sources, Tertullian and Epiphanius who were more concerne d with discounting Marcions ideals and diminishing his authority than with preservi ng his legacy and recounting his life events. Historians have worked back from the da tes offered by these sources to hypothesize a birth date and other details, but these ar e hypotheses at best. In his recent book on Marcion, Sebastian Moll shows how Adolf von Harnack and many others have proposed many and different hypotheses regarding Marc ions birth date, move to Rome, and death.10 Examining these two main dates below, namely those offered by Epiphanius and Tertullian, I reveal a cogent hi storical frame for an earlier dating of Marcions life and, specifically, of his start of ministry. Epiphanius, a bishop of Salamis in the 4th century, writes that Marcion arrived in Rome after the death of the Roman bishop Hyginus in 142 CE11 Although this date is somewhat problematic as we do not know how long after Hyginus death Marcion arrived, it remains as the terminus post quem (earliest possible date) for Marcions arrival at Rome. The other date, provided by the 2nd century Carthaginian Tertullian (Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullianus), references the year 144 as an im portant date to the 10 Moll, 2010, 31-41. 11 Epiphanius, Panarion. 6


Marcionites (Marcions followers) in regards to their progenitors life. Tertullian arrived at this date saying, They put 115 and 6 m onths between Christ and Marcion, which is more or less the period of tim e from Tiberius to Antoninus.12 First, it might seem odd to modern eyes to draw the conclusion of 144 when 115 years and 6 months are put between Jesus and Marcion, because we are used to dating Jesus at around 0-5 CE. Thus, one might estimate the date to be more like 115-120. But, from a Marcionite perspective, one that does not acknowledge the human natu re of the Christ, Jesus did not enter the world in that time but in 29 CE.13 This is where Marcions gospel story begins. Secondly, this date is vague in that it does not reference a particular event or place in Marcions life. Thus, theories have emerged to account for it. Moll shows that Harnack a nd others have taken Tertullians date to be the founding of Marcions first church, but Moll does not buy this theory.14 He argues that, just as the date for Christ is his entrance into Galilee, so Marcions date marks his entrance into Rome. Moll thinks that Rome ma rks an incredible moment of significance in the Pontics life, as is no doubt witnesse d in the available sour ces. Thus he equates Tertullians account with Epiphanius, since both mark the mid-140s CE as his entrance into Rome and this seems a viable argument. The issue comes when Moll argues that th e date 144 CE proves Marcions birth to be around 110 CE.15 Moll does so by first assuming that Marcion began his ministry in Rome, as the Tertullians traditional narrative suggests. Then he logi cally argues that we cannot expect a man in his 50-60s to start and lead a dramatic ministry effort as Marcion 12 Tertullian, Against Marcion 1.19. 13Tertullian, Against Marcion 1.24. 14 Moll, 2010, 34. 15 Moll, 2010, 26. 7


did. In other words, if one proposes Marcions birth to be before 100 CE and then places the start of his ministry at Rome in the late 140s CE, then one would have to assume an aged man to have the vigor and vision of a 20-something, psychologically speaking.16 Thus, whereas I agree with Molls logic, I do not see his reason fo r equating Tertullians date of 144 CE with Marcions genesis of ministry. Why could the Pontic not have started writing and teaching before his arrival at Rome? Moll is correct in that this is exactly th e narrative as Tertullian presents it. The problem is that there is an entire second tradition that assumes Marcion began writing and teaching his ideas long before Rome (and before 144 CE), which Moll acknowledges but ultimately discredits. This traditio n includes figures like Pseudo-Tertullian, Epiphanius, and Filastrius who claim to receiv e their information from Hippolytus, a late 2nd century CE Roman theologian contemporar y to Tertullian. Moll decides that these accounts are not credible since they were im properly redacted from Hippolytus by these later authors and, thus, do not represent the actual history.17 Likwise, Moll diminishes the testimony of Clement of Alexandria and ot hers, who he claims can be interpreted differently. Finally, Moll dismisses what has been the chief evidence for Marcions preRoman activity, Justin Martyrs first Apology. Justin writes: And there is Marcion, a man of Pontus, who is even at this day alive, and teaching his disciples to believe in some other god greater than the Creator. And he, by the aid of the de vils, has caused ma ny of every nation to speak blasphemies, and to deny that God is the maker of this universe, 16 And Moll does use psychological statistics to back up his theory. Moll, 2010, 31.17 Moll, 2010, 36. 8


and to assert that some other being, greater than He, has done greater works.18 The issue is not that Justin c ites a certain date or place for Marcions teaching, but that he is writing around 150 CE. So by 150, a man of C aesarea can say that Marcion has caused many of every nation to speak blasphemies. Moll contests this date and says that Justin must have written the document in 153-154 CE and further argues that the date truly does not pose a problem to his theory of Marcions ministry beginning in Rome at 144 CE. He states, Even if we dated the Apology as early as 150 CE, there would still have been at least five years for Marcions doctrine to spread successfull y, which is more than enough for a doctrine which obviously appealed to the people19 He also thinks that Justin had reason to exaggerate since he wanted to inst ill an awareness and a sense of fear in the orthodox Christians. There are two major issues with Molls m ove here. First, Moll contradicts himself since he argues quite extensively later in his work that Marcions message was not wellreceived by the majority of people. He specifi cally states that the nature of Marcions claims would have made his message particul arly irrelevant and offensive to Jews and pagans, while only those within the or thodox establishment would have had any interest.20 We are not dealing with a Christianized Rome yet, but a state still dominated by a mixture of popular pagan culture and Jewish sects. So, Moll himself seems to argue that the movement was not rapidly successful Secondly, regardless of how appealing the message was, there is no logi cal reason to believe that su ch a massive organization and proliferation of such a system could have occu rred in this time, such that Justin could 18 Justin, 1 Apology 1.26. 19 Moll, 2010, 39. 20 Moll, 2010, 128-129. 9


give this description, exaggerated as it may ha ve been. Jesus himself was not able to gain such momentum. Justins testimony, then, along with many later authors, confirms that it is both reasonable and accurate to assume a markedly early pre-Roman Marcionite ministry. The dating structure presented above is pr ecisely the one this thesis works with. Under the assumption of a pre-Roman ministr y, I agree with Harnack and others that Marcion could not have been born much later than 85 CE and further agree that he exercised his ministry while in Pontus. Bart Ehrman and others further confirm the date by lending a theological interpretation to Hippolytus claim that Marcion seduced a virgin.21 They interpret the virgin to be the ch urch and the seduction to be a matter of false doctrine that would taint the purity of the faith. In seducing a virgin, then, Marcion harmed the innocent church with his heresy a nd this he did while in Pontus. Many signs, then, seem to point towards an earlier date. So, what does it mean to say that Marci on began his ministry before moving to Rome? The concept of ministry in Marcio ns case has to do with publishing his Antitheses and Gospel and with Marcions spreading of his doctrines. It would be plausible to put those two even ts in either order, namely to position Marcion as writing before or after the advent of his teachi ng. However, since the sources associate his ministerial duties with the publishing of his wo rk, it is most apt to assume that Marcion wrote his documents and then used them in teaching and starting churches. As I will later show, the earlier dating bear s heavily on the gospel of Luke and Marcions supposed 21 Bart Ehrman, Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew (Oxford: Oxford University Press 2003), 104. 10


redaction and editing of the text. An earlier Marcion means an earlier appearance as an author, which means a gospel text that may have preceded and influenced Lukes. Likewise, the common theological frame assumed by the tradition of translation and interpretation of Marcions sources is misguided. Certainly his opponents meant him harm and, thus, may have advanced certain ideas and attributed certain traits to the Pontic that were less than accurate. But, the scholarly tradition has one-upped these men by confusing their claims and positioning Marci on as a gnostic, anti-Jewish second-century Protestant. Marcion had neo-pl atonist elements, he struggle d with the concepts of good and evil and he blamed the Jewish Creator for this evil, but that doe s not mean he fits neatly into these modern categories. Rather than refuting each of the falsehoods and delving into a literature review of each inaccuracy on the part of modern scholar ship, I instead present here a simple form of Marcions positive theology based upon Tertullians account.22 Having been influenced by neo-Platonism and so-called Gnostics, like Valenti nus, Marcion devalued the material world and, in fact, came to view it as the source of evil. He saw that bodily elements and forces of nature, carnal lusts and human actions bring about an endless and seemingly incurable cycle of evil. Reading th e Jewish Scriptures, Marcion saw that the author of the material world was none other than the Creator God of the Jews. Marcion found proof of this hypothesis in a statement uttered by this God, It is I who create 22 For a good literature review see Moll 2010. He expose s the inaccuracies of Harnack and others that have shaped the tradition of Marcionite theological interp retation, although I prefer Harnacks dates in some cases as I indicate above. 11


evil.23 Thus, Marcion decided that this God was the author of evil and, as such, could not be reconciled with the God that Jesus and Paul spoke of in the Christian texts.24 He further saw that this God created the Law by which he could condemn his creation to death.25 This is where many later historia ns have taken Marcion to be a 2nd century Luther in arguing for Protestant th eological ideals of justice and grace, whereas the sources do not really point to these kinds of distinctions. Rath er, Marcion separated the evil of the material world and its Creat or from the good of the Jesus figure and his God. These details position Marcions though t as more in line with contemporaneous debates over the problem of evil that formed around the formation of docetic christology (Jesus was fully divine and not at all human). Tertullian portrays Marcions theology in precisely the same way.26 In this system, Jesus represented the Unknown God that was to come and save human souls from the evil Creator. For Marcion, Jesus did not exist as a human being sent by the Creator to die for humankind. Marcion held a docetic christology in that he viewed Jesus as purely spirit and not at all infected by the tarn ish of flesh and material existence.27 Jesus came as the messenger of the Unknown God to announce th e coming kingdom in which the Creator and its creation would be overthrown by the w holly spiritual God. Thus, Marcion did not hate the Jews, but the Creator, and he was not so much caught up in the justice/grace debate of later centuries but rather the good/evil debate of his time. Likewise, Marcion did not dismiss the Jewish Sc riptures, but, as Moll argues, was downright obsessed with 23 Isa. 45.7; cited by Tertullian, Against Marcion 1.2. 24 Tertullian, Against Marcion 2.9. 25 Tertullian, Against Marcion 2.18. 26 Tertullian, Against Marcion 1.2. 27 Tertullian, Against Marcion 3.2. 12


the Old Testament and its God.28 Marcion established a dua listic theology in which there were two main forces, one of good and one of evil, and he used this theology to construct his texts and his biblical canon.29 This all had an immense impact upon the de veloping Christian sect. It is hard to trace the exact effects since much of Christian identity was forming in the time around Marcions life and, thus, distinguishing his influence from the plethora of influences would be impossible. However, there is consid erable proof that links Marcion to both the development of a Christian canon and the theolo gical attachment of Christianity to the Jewish religion. Marcions ca non as established in his Antitheses was composed of 11 books, which he considered to be an authoritative list for his church.30 It is unclear whether Marcion understood this collection as a canon, per say, but it is quite clear that his grouping as such stands as the first of its kind. Thus, we can conclude that later authors, who obviously knew Marcions works through the many polemics of his opponents, would have used Marcions con cept of canon in their dealings with authoritative texts. The second point that of Marcions influen ce on Christianitys connection to Judaism is more of a theo ry than anything else. As Moll shows, the Christian understanding of Judaism and th e Old Testament was greatly questioned and change in the latter half of the second century.31 This being the case, it would seem justifiable to assume a connection between the churchs desire to steer clear of Marcionism and their efforts to bridge Christ ianity with Judaism. These are just two of 28 Moll, 2010, 69. 29 Although the idea has been disputed by figures like John Barton, Marcion Revisited many believe, including Harnack, Tyson, and Moll, that Marcion wa s the first to establish a bi-parte collection of authoritative Christian and Jewish texts. This incl uded 10 letters of Paul and Marcions Gospel. 30 Tertullian, Against Marcion 1.19. 31 Moll, 2010, 135. 13


the ways in which Marcion can be said to ha ve influenced the church, though his liturgy and other parts of his theology may have equa lly made their way into Christian history. Assuming an earlier dating of Marcions ministry and an even earlier date of his textual composition, sometime in the 110s CE, this thesis firs t advances the position that Marcions gospel text was prior to the gospel of Luke. Thus, Marcion did not copy and edit Lukes gospel as is purported by the primary sources, but rather he provided the main body of the text that would come to be canoni cal Luke. Marcions gospel, as we have it through the sources of Epiphanius Panarion and Tertullians Against Marcion is textually identical to the majority of L uke 4-24. This is why historians have not questioned the claims of Tertullian and others that Marcion copied Lukes text, assuming a late date of Marcions text and an early date of Lukes. Chapter 1 will, however, reveal that a later date for the gospel of Luke, some time in the 120s, is just as viable as an earlier date and makes more sense of Lukes connection to Acts. Thus, we can safely hypothesize Marcions influence over the gospel of Luke. This is the argument recently advanced by Klinghardt in Marcion vs. Luke and it will inform the body of this thesis. In addition to supporting Klinghardts thesis, I wi ll offer strong critique of the theses of some primary opponents to the theory and draw previously unmade connections amongst the history of Marcion-Luke scholarship. As I indicated above, my thesis does not stop with its support of Klinghardt, but also claims a thematic and textual similarity of Marcions gospel with the hypothetical Q document, the source behind much of the material of the synoptic gospels. Chapter 2, following the assumption that Marcion was prior to Luke, will question Marcions involvement in the Synoptic Problem. By an alyzing the arguments of modern Q theory 14


and its opponents, we will find a strong case for Marcions direct influence over the synoptic tradition. Like chapter 1, this chapter ow es the heart of its thesis to the work of Klinghardt .32 By contributing to and further subs tantiating his claims, the chapter will navigate a network of comparisons between Q theory and Marcion and show that Marcions gospel both fits the textual and theological terms of Q and that Marcions gospel serves as a more tangible and explai nable source for synoptic theories of intertextual relationships. Whereas Klinghardts thesis examines the structure of Marcions text as an answer to many of the textual debates between Q theorists and their opponents, I argue that Marcions gospel is the Q documen t and that its theological influence in the synoptic tradition explains many of the issues presented by synoptic scholars. Marcions docetic views had a profound e ffect on the synoptic edifice and, most specifically on Luke. Likewise, he influenced the formation of Christian identity as many authors have shown. Without Marcion and hi s gospel text, the composition of Luke and of a Christian Scriptural canon, Christianitys historical c onnection to Judaism, and the religions elevation of the apostles and a postolic succession may not have developed in quite the same way or at all. Marcion play ed a key role in the shaping of Christian identity, not least in his textual influence over the gospel of Luke. Having taken a brief exploration into Marcions biography, we can now begin to properly place the Pontic and his gospel text within Christian history. To begin, we will explore many current and past theories regard ing the textual history of Marcions gospel and arrive at the conclusion that his text came before canonical Luke and, in fact, 32 Matthias Klinghardt, The Marcionite Gospel and the Synoptic Problem, Novum Testamentum vol. 1 (2008) 7. 15


influenced its author heavily. We shall be i nvestigating, then, the truly orthodox nature of Marcions heresy and its ca nonical connection in Luke. Chapter One: Marcion vs. LukeIt was so easy, prior to th e work of F.C. Baur and his contemporaries, to follow the romanticized traditional view of the emergence of the four-fold gospel; Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Sure there are minor differences in tone and details, but the harmony of an initial read-thr ough resonates beautifu lly with a desire to see things as complete, pure and unbroken. Nevertheless, as Baur prods, how could this be? The canon could not have evolved in a vacuum. A lthough the Christian na rrative exists as a flourishing orthodoxy in late second-fourth centuries CE te xts like Eusebius Ecclesiastical History are these descriptions indicativ e of the centuries of Christian history before or even of the time in whic h they were written? These are the questions that invite the kind of dialogue and debate that occurred in Germany in the 1840-50s, the kind of discussion that has continued over the dating and contextualiz ation of Marcion of Pontus gospel as it relates to the canonical gospel of Luke. As mentioned in the Introduction, Marcion of Pontus, a member of the church at Rome in the early 2nd century, published two decisive works: Antitheses and The Gospel. These works were traditionally thought to ha ve been produced in opposition to previously published proto-orthodox texts, those texts that supported the views of the movement that would eventually form Christianity. It was thought that Marcion composed the Antitheses to combat orthodox Christianitys move towards Judaism and The Gospel as a heretical version of Lukes text. Howeve r, the true textual history seems more 16


complicated. As Bart Ehrman argues, the te rm orthodox, and its counterpart heresy, are misleading as they s uggest a solidarity of right belief and practice that simply did not exist in the time of these authors.33 Instead, diversified groups vied for power, hoping to name their sect as the true Orthodoxy. Marc ion was founder and member of one of these sects. His texts, in turn, may have been original rather than reactionary. Marcions texts and thoughts, then, may be the foundation for the gospel of Luke and for much of the formation of Christian orthodoxy, rather than the bi-products of a heretics refusal of these doctrines and texts. Unlike his proto-orthodox contemporaries, Marcion conceived of God as twofold, in that he posited the existe nce of a Creator god, who formed everything material, and an Unknown God (the God of Jesus), whose purpos e it was to oppose the Creator and free human beings from material existence into an afterlife of bliss in the spiritual realm.34 Thus, Marcion developed a type of docetic theology, in which he viewed the material world (earth, flesh, animals) as evil and inferior to the noumenal (spiritual) world, which the greater God sent Jesus to introduce. Marc ion, likewise, viewed Jesus as only divine and saw all things materially associated with his divinity as false. Eternal spirituality over temporal materiality; this is the key to unde rstanding Marcions particular theology. This theology molded Marcions texts in unique ways. For the purposes of this thesis, I will only be analyzing Marcions gospel text, leaving his Antitheses yet to be explored and interpreted. Under the assumption that Marcion was simply a redactor of Lukes gos pel text, historians have not taken much 33 For a discussion of the terms orthodoxy and heresy, turn to Bart Ehrman, Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and th e Faiths We Never Knew (Oxford 2003). 34 Ehrman, 2003, 104-106. 17


interest in the historical significance of Ma rcion or his texts. If Marcion followed Luke, then the authority and viabil ity of Lukes text and the proto-orthodox group remains intact. Marcion was neither origin al nor correct, but rather he tried to subvert the truths in Lukes text and failed. Recently, however, some scholars have argued that Marcions not-so-orthodox gospel may have actually pred ated and influenced canonical Luke and, thus, these issues of dating and interpreta tion have evolved into a complicated and contentious debate. If Luke did indeed read and redact Marci ons text, then the portrait of Marcion as redactor and he retic and Luke as prior a nd orthodox is misleading and, ultimately, false. This is the stance that I will be defending in this thesis. Through close textual analysis, I show that, because of the dramatic appearance of Marcions specific brand of theology in the canonical gospel of Luke, he not only preceded Luke in writing his gospel, but also provided the theological foundation for Lukes views. First, in this chapter, I will explore and recount the hist ory of debate that has led to my current hypothesis. I will address the i ssues: the variables in play, the obstacles, and the ramifications of the various hypothe ses. With both the Marcionite and Lukan gospels comes a particular set of challenges that make interpreta tion and dating difficult and problematic. Additionally, I must show the plausibility of a late date for Luke in order for Marcions textual priority to stand. Next, I will dive straight into the German debate of the 1840-50s, examining the hypotheses that emerged. The final step will be to take up the current debate, prompted by Ma tthias Klinghardts ar ticle, Marcion vs. Luke, in 2006 and continued by Joseph Ty son, Christopher Hays and others. Although all the myriad publications on this topic provide interesting hypotheses, I find Klinghardts thesis to be most compelling as his assertion of Marcio nite priority makes 18


sense of textual discrepancies within Luke and provides an alternative position to the assumption of a hypothetical source called Q, a theory that has dominated discussion of the synoptic gospels. Issues with Dating and Textual Analysis The topic of this discussion is priority : Which document, Lukes or Marcions, came first and to what extent can one be said to affect the other? Priority operates in two important ways: as it pertains to the physical dating of the text and as it pertains to the ideological originality and influence of the text. I will elucidate both aspects of priority in this thesis, showing how they impact the variables in quest ion, in very important and different ways. Ultimately, however, the two wi ll be connected, in that the date and the ideals should correspond in proving one texts priority or else there is a problem. For example, if an early date is hypothesized, but the ideological evidence contradicts its priority, then the date will have to be rewo rked. Whatever the case, authorial intentions, audience, and any interpretations exist as dependent variables in the dating of these texts, so the issue of priori ty is no small factor. 1. Sources The first set of issues revolves around available sources that re late the gospels of Luke and Marcion. Unfortunately, the only ev idence modern eyes have of even the existence of a man named Marcion from Pontus unfolds in polemical treatises against 19


him. Modern historians receive biographical ma terial and literary an alysis from the likes of Tertullian and Irenaeus ra ther than a more unbiased s ource or even from Marcion himself. These authors are called polemicists because of their part icular bent towards expelling false doctrine by way of oppositional letters. Epiphanius, Tertullian, Justin Martyr, and Irenaeus are the ma jor sources that historians rely upon for details regarding Marcions life and texts. Marcions literary documents did not surviv e nor did his alleged letters to both his followers and his local church nor any responses he may have had to such great criticism. Instead, we only have claims like Tertullians, saying of Marcion and his birthplace, The bodies of their dead parents, they cu t up with sheep and devour at feasts nothing, however, in Pontus is so barbarous and sad as the fact that Marcion was born there. 35 The five volume text, Against Marcion from which this quote comes, remains as the greatest source available for Marcion. This m eans not only that any work in Marcionite documents relies on guess work since there are neither dates nor authorial identifications, but also that historians must navigate through the glaring biases of these patristic authors; their tendencies towards exaggeration and defa mation rather than pur e fact and history. David Williams has thoughtfully laid out many of the problems that arise when dealing with these secondary representations of Marcion: 1) the different languages of witnesses like Tertullian and Ep iphanius, 2) the varied and in consistent representations of Marcions life and works, 3) the differing citations of Marcions words by using both direct quotations and simple allusions with no indication of which correctly appropriates 35 Tertullian, Against Marcion, 1.1. 20


Marcions words, 4) and the possibility of later additions to Marcions text.36 All of these are specifically textual considerations, but th ey lead to questions regarding authorship, intended audience and purpose. Can Epipha nius accusation that Marcion seduced a virgin be taken seriously? 37 Should historians interpret these types of sayings as metaphors or facts? How much of polemical literary analysis is representative of Marcions texts and how much is hyperbol e or utter falsehood? Although issues of authorship in historical documents should never be taken for granted, this case is particularly caustic and s hould be treated carefully. 2. Dating Marcion Meanwhile, dating Marcions texts pres ents an even greater problem. As mentioned in the first chapter, many times a date can be taken from di rect assertions like Tertullians date of 144. However, as also mentioned, these dates are generally vague and inconclusive. Thus, even the best evidence poi nts to a list of h ypotheses. Another way historians date a document is by searching for historical tells. If the author mentions great devastation in a partic ular region, then scholars can date the text with some accuracy to a time after a war or change in power. Or if the author accounts a particular ruler, then dates around his reign can su ffice as strong hypotheses. Since no primary documents for Marcion exist, these tel ls cannot be confirmed directly. 36 David Williams, Reconsidering Marcions Gospel, Journal of Biblical Literature 108 (1989), 477-96. 37 Epiphanius, Against Heresies 42.2. 21


According to Tertullians reading, Marcion does mention tragic events that may guide us to a date near the First Revolt in 70 CE. However, consider ing that Tertullian writes sometime in the early third century, da ting tells like this are questionable. Is it Marcions own experience and biases or that of his secondary source being represented in the text? In fact, the earliest ev idence we have of Marcion is notuntil midway through the second century in Justin Martyrs first Apology. Allusions to and an alyses of Marcions texts do not appear until a couple decades la ter. When did Justin first encounter Marcions texts? Did it take long for Marcion and/or his text s to gain an audience or was he immediately received? There is a gr eat distance between Marcions literary publications and the secondary authorship th at critiques him, which complicates the picture of Marcions life and works. Because of their antagonism to Marcions views, the polemical authors already had great reason to misrepresent Marcion, but what of the accidental associations and errors due to the distance these author s had from the original Marcion and his documents? How much of the Ma rcionism that these figures criticize reflected the man Marcion and how much was just subsequent formations and alternative expressions of his theology by his followers? If, as Justin claims in the early 150s, his views had reached such a great audience, then it seems safe to say that additions a nd reductions may have been made to his texts and theology along the way. To be clear, I am not suggesting that the Marcion that these au thors account is not Marcion of Pontus, although some have. Instead, I am questioning the extent to which we equate the later, secondary re presentations of Marcion with the man himself. Perhaps Marcion wrote a clear original text, but this was perverted by extremist followers and/or 22


his proto-orthodox opponents. This may e xplain the instances of Marcionite inconsistencies that authors like Tyson and Klinghardt have recently illuminated instances where Marcion contra dicts his own beliefs by incl uding material that supports the views of his opponents rather than his own. For example, Marcions inclusion of Luke 24.39 is peculiar, Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bone, as you see I have.38 There we see Jesus revealing himself post-Resurrection, which seems to cont radict Marcions docet ic views that posit Jesus as only divine and, as such, incapable of physical death. A non-dead Christ cannot rise from the dead. With scant documenta tion, these concerns cannot be completely settled, but they still must be considered in evaluating Marcion and his alleged literature. 3. Dating Luke As will be shown below, historians generally assume an intermediate date (80-90 CE) for Luke, both because of its relationship to Acts and because of the appearance of Lukan elements in late first century CE doc uments. This date is also offered because historians want to project Luke as an early te xt in relation to other gospels and, thus, they argue for the closest reasonable date to th e 70 CE Revolt, since explicit war details appear in Luke. In addition to concerns disc ussed below, this logi c regarding the dating of Luke is flawed in that it equates Lukan elements with a finished canonical Luke. In other words, allusions to verses and such ma y refer to a type of Luke document, but it does not necessitate the presence of canonical Luke as we now have it. 38 Luke 24:39. 23


Although canonical texts appear as finished and solidified documents, written by one author at one time for one audience, the existence of multiple (thousands, actually) manuscripts, of the gospels, muddies this pict ure. Among these myriad texts exist several differing accounts, missing words and verses additions and reductions. One famous example is Mark 16, where, in most Bibles, footnotes and page breaks tell of an added later fragment of twelve verses. Likewi se, textual discrepancies among the Lukan manuscripts, with dates across several centuries, have caused many, likewise, to discredit the unity of canonical Luke. Certain portions of chapters 1, 2, 4, and 24 are seen as possible additions to an earlier text. A Luke absent of thes e sections would have no birth narrative and no resurrection. It would, instead, start with Jesus and John the Baptist and end with Jesus death. a. Proto Luke If later Christians did cha nge Lukes original text or Luke himself added to a previous gospel, then there are now two se parate and distinctive documents to study. Historians have questioned the differences between these two documents, namely a proto-Luke, one prior to any changes, and a final canonical Luke. They cannot absolutely assert the existence of a prior ve rsion of Luke, but their analyses of intertextual issues between the diffe rent manuscripts show a great possibility for this case. Differences and dissonance between the docum ents of canonical Luke and this alleged proto-Luke may tell of a redactor with an agenda to change the or iginal document in order to address concurrent issues and concerns. 24


One can certainly see the benefits of this kind of redaction to a proto-orthodox leader like Tertullian if he found the text to have Marcionite elements or, worse, to be Marcions document itself. This latter appr oach has been the one recently championed by Klinghardt. As I will show, he sees this prot o-Luke document as a part of Lukan textual history and as nothing less th an Marcions own gospel. Ma rcions gospel, like this alleged proto-Luke, has no birth narrativ e and ends suddenly with Jesus death. b. Acts The other detail of Luke, which bears on th e Luke vs. Marcion struggle, is its link to the book of Acts. In his book, Marcion and Luke-Acts Tyson has recently explicated issues in the dating of Acts and its effect on the dating of Luke.39 His work responds to countless dialogues on the subjec t throughout the historical st udy of Christianity. Among other historical references in Josephus a nd patristic writers that testify to Lukes authorship of Acts, the author of Acts reveal s himself as Luke and alludes to his previous work in the gospel of Luke.40 Although there has been some dispute as to the tendency to assume their joint production and simultaneou s publication, historians generally agree that Luke and Acts are linked and were produced around the same time. Binding the documents together, then, thr ee sets of dates have been proposed. First, there are those that argue for the same early date (60-70 CE) based upon Acts complete lack of reference to the First Revolt of 70 CE. Adolf von Harnack argued the 39 Joseph Tyson, Marcion and Luke-Acts: A Defining Struggle (University of South Carolina 2006). 40 Acts 1.1. 25


case from this vantage point.41 Others, like Colin Hermer, ha ve argued for an early date of Acts based upon Lukes omission of Pauls death, which occurred in the mid-60s CE.42 The second group argues for an intermediate date and this has been the dominate view of recent Luke-Acts scholarship. Am ong others, Joseph Fitzmyer has recently argued for this date saying, Many NT interpreters use the date A.D. 80-85 for the composition of Luke-Acts, and there is no good reason to oppose that date, even if there is no real proof of it.43 This commonsensical approach really only has one piece of evidence in that it assumes the date to be after 70 CE since Lukes gospel, published at the same time as Acts, mentions the dest ruction of Jerusalem in detail (Luke 19.4144/21.20-24). As Tyson argues, however, these two sets of dates do not account for secondary sources influence on Acts. Tyson, specifically, argues for a later date of Acts (100-150) because of certain events discussed in Acts and because of the apparent influence of Pauls letters and Josephus history.44 First, Tyson reveals that the only solid evidence historians have are references to Acts in external sources lik e Ignatius and Clement. These sources do not crop up until the second half of the second century.45 After reciting the arguments of those that determine the document to be defi nitively post-70 because of the First Revolt evidence in Luke, Tyson moves the date fu rther back by connecting Acts to Josephus Antiquities of the Jews. He argues that Acts is clear ly dependent upon Josephus history of the First Revolt from this text and, therefor e, Acts must be dated to at least a few years 41 Adolf von Harnack, The Acts of the Apostles (New York: G.P. Putnams, 1909), 293. 42 Colin Hermer, The Book of Acts and of the Synoptic Gospels (New York: J.R. Putnams, 1911), 384. 43 Joseph Fitzmyer, The Acts of the Apostles: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary Anchor Bible Dictionary 31 (New York: Doubleday, 1998), 54. 44 Tyson, 2008, 23. 45 Tyson, 2008, 10. 26


after the Antiquities publication in 93 CE.46 Tysons final positive argument for a late date is Acts thematic connection to Galatians. He first argues for a somewhat late date of Galatians by citing historical ev idence for the date of 115-130 CE.47 He next reveals that Galatians and Acts share common emphasis on themes of law as a yoke and importance of faith and shows that these th emes are specifically and uniquely related between these two texts.48 Thus, Tyson convincingly argues for a late date of Acts based upon external citations, Josephus history and Pa uls thematic inten tions in Galatians. This late date supposes an equally late date of canonical Luke. Andrew Gregory, in his recent work on L uke, has persuasively argued for a date of Luke similar to Tysons date for Acts.49 Gregory argues that the earliest sources available for Luke are not until the middl e of the second centu ry with Justins 1 Apology and Irenaeus Against Heresies .50 Against other arguments, Gregory thinks that these are the only substantial pieces of evidence concer ning a date for Luke and posits 120-130 as a plausible date. Thus, a late date for L uke seems quite plausible when these three arguments are viewed together: the existence of a proto-Luke document, a late date for Acts, and an equally late date attested in the sources for Luke. Th eories that find Lukan elements earlier than Gregorys date can be seen as further evidence for the presence of a proto-Luke document. Canonical Luke came sometime before the middle of the second century and, as such, trailed Marcions own publication. Questions still remain as to the 46 Tyson, 2008, 14. 47 Tyson, 2008, 16. 48 Tyson, 2008, 19. 49 Andrew Gregory, The Reception of Luke and Acts in the Period before Irenaeus: Looking for Luke in the Second Century, Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neunen Testament 2.169 (Tubingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2003). 50 Gregory, 2003, 190. 27


nature of Marcions originality, but it seems vi able at this point to dismiss both the false assumptions of a late Marcion and of an early canonical Luke. These are the issues that were taken up in the German Debate of the 1840-50s, the same issues that dominate the current de bate amongst Klinghardt a nd his critics. They have shaped the way historians date and inte rpret the texts of Marc ion and Luke and the way these same historians subsequently view early Christianity. This debate over priority has done far more than inspire hypotheses about Luke and Marcions textual relationship. It has challenged the valid ity of our perceptions rega rding orthodoxy and scriptural canon. Whatever conclusions these scholars r each, the collective scholarly understanding of Christianity has been transformed through this debate. The German Debate, as I have named it, shows the first signs of this shift from the traditional conception of Christian scripture and dogma in that all of the views that emerge point to a drastically different image of canonical Luke. The Great German Debate of the 1840 50s Beginning in the 1840-50s, German historia ns struggled to settle the priority issue by citing passages in Marcions gospel an d Luke that identified their respective dates and attested to their use of each other. 51 Unlike the work of more modern scholarship in using external sources and the like, these historians primarily focused on a literary-critical approach to textual criticism. The major players in this debate were 51 It is a bit misleading for me to use the word beginning here, since issues of Marcionism and MarcionLuke debate had been addressed in preceding centuries of scholarship. However, this particular debate overturned many of the previously held notions and began a revolution of seeing the gospel of Luke as related to Marcion of Pontus. 28


German scholars, F.C. Baur, Albrecht Ritsch el, Adolf Hilgenfeld, and Gustav Volkmar. Though several other scholars weighed in, the prolific work of these particular men developed the 3 pillar hypothese s that have carried into curre nt debate: Baurs view of Ur-Lukas, Hilgenfelds view of the inter-depe ndence of Luke and Marcion, and the Volkmar-Ritschel view of essentially Lukan priority. These view s were not as distinctive as the historians originally expected. Instead, what began as positive statements, quickly digressed into possible hypothe ses in light of the overwhe lming amount of unanswerable questions and doubts. Although th e desire may have been to prove one gospels absolute priority over another, what emerged was mo re of a continuum of views that proved a dialogical relationship between the texts. Traditionally, according to patristic sources, Marcion followed Luke and edited the gospel to form his own version. These authors argue that Marcion removed the portions he disagreed with and added text where necessary in order that the gospel might best explain his own theologi cal understanding. However, this view couldnt account for the textual problems that these historians encountered. Firing the first shot in 1846, Albrecht Ritschel argued that Marcions gospel proceeded Luke and that Luke, subsequently, redacted from Marcion to form his text. Dieter Roth, in his 2008 article Marcions Gospel and Luke, shows that Since he considered the verdicts of Tertullian and Epiphanius concerning the relationship between Marcions Gospel and Luke to be historically worthless, Ritsch el sought to evaluate the re lationship between the attested elements of Marcions text and Luke based upon a criterion of connection.52 So, 52 Dieter Roth, Marcions Gospel and Luke: Th e History of Research in Current Debate, Journal of Biblical Literature 127.3 (2008), 515. 29


Ritschel argued for Lukan additions to an incomplete Marcionite text, rather than Marcionite excisions from a complete canonical Luke. This, being the exact opposite view to th at of the whole of Christian history preceding him, was indeed an incredibly courageous and controversial statement. As such, Adolf Hilgenfeld and others retorted with the opposite claim of absolute Lukan priority, showing that Marcionite excisions to the Lukes gospel were far more likely. As Roth reveals, the debate then exploded with several historians we ighing in and slowly whittling away the rough edges of the issues while shortening the gap between opposing sides. Through the production of several dialog ical pieces spanning the first half of the decade, three distinctive view s remained: that of F.C. Baur, Adolf Hilgenfeld and the joint view of Gustav Volkmar and Albrecht Ritschel. Recent debates have returned to these views in interesting ways but have reworked them considerably. Unfortunately, there has been a bit of anachronism on the part of the recent historical analysis, as ma ny have taken for granted the similarity of these views and/or marginalized their comple xity. Thus, some have made the mistake of coalescing the three into one formidable trad ition, which, as Roth explains, simply did not exist. Rather, three simila r yet distinctive views devel oped on the continuum of both Marcionite and Lukan priority. The first view, espoused by F.C. Baur is that Marcion and Luke both depended on an earlier document, which he calls Ur-Lukas Though not Baurs original thesis, he constructs this st ance upon the suspicion that Luke existed in an earlier, non-canonical form that contained starkly different characteristics from the later Luke that would be placed in canon lists. Part icularly telling to Ba ur was the dramatic shift between the Lukan prologue (chapter 1-2) and the appearance of John the Baptist in 30


chapter 3, which hints at a later addition. Also key for Baurs thesis was his distrust of Lukan order in chapter 4 of the canonical text. Luke cites Jesus as returning from Capernaum to meet at a temple in Nazareth, where he is nearly thrown off a cliff for his teachings (Luke 4.14-30). This narrative is immediately followed (chronologically) by a vignette describing a visit to Capernaum, wher e Jesus drives a demon out of a man (Luke 4.30-36). For Baur, this inconsistency, namely the mention of events in Capernaum in Luke 4.23 referring to a later event that had not yet occurred, further proves that Luke was reworked in response to Marcion.53 This is the first historical circumstance in which, as discussed in the issues above, a historia n posits the existence of a separate document from canonical Luke, a proto-Luke. Baurs assertion of a proto-Luke document seems to have had a great influence over his contemporaries and may actually be th e cause for the modern tendency to group the theories. The second view, argued by Hilgen feld, held that Marcion redacted from a proto-Luke directly and that Luke was late r changed in response to the spread of Marcionism. The view is attractive because it admits a previous version of Luke, which explains where Marcion rece ived all of his particular ly Lukan (non-Mark and nonMatthew) history and sayings material,54 and a later set of add itions, which explains the strange prologue and other non-Lukan material throughout. The search here is for truly Lukan passages in Lukes gospel, a corpus from which to judge Lukes theological convictions. 53 As cited by Joseph Tyson, 2006, 83. 54 Sayings material simply refers to the dialogues and sermons of Jesus. 31


Current historians have taken this idea of specifically Lukan material to suggest that all three Synoptic gospels have their own Sondergut, literally special material in German. Although the synoptics sh are many passages, there are unique elements in each text. From this, they have developed several theories of inter-textual influence, most famous of which is the Q theory. I will spec ifically address these issues later and will show how they directly affect the Marcion-Luke debate. The third view of Volkmar and Ritschel, holds to a more traditionalist interpretation, such that Marcion redacted directly from a document that almost completely resembled canonical Luke. This view accounts for the existence of both Marcionite additions and excisions to this proto-Luke document as well as minor additions to a later canonical Luke. Although th ey address the possibili ty of a proto-Luke, Volkmar and Ritschel seem to be arguing for a return to the traditionalist view in the wake of hypotheses that di srupted the norms. All of these views, though, propound the existence of a proto-Luke and, in varying degrees, Marcions and Lukes dependence upon each others texts. Current Debate Although there were several interlocutors between the 1840-50s debacle and the current debate, they have been minor in th eir contributions to the dominant issues. As such, the views of Harnack, John Knox, and othe rs will be respectfully omitted from this 32


discussion.55 Current historians, no doubt, owe much of their scholarship to the labors of these interlocutors, but the more recent revolutionary claims of Klinghardt, the considerations of Tyson, and the objections of Hays to Klinghardts thesis, will serve as the main subject matter for the remainder of this chapter. In 2006, Klinghardt published Marcion vs. L uke in response to the overall lack of forward-moving scholarship on the issue of Marcion-Luke priority since the great debate of the 1850s. Prior to this article, there were soft hypotheses in which historians reiterated some of the conclusions of the 184050s debate with slightly more fervor and certainty. However, Klinghardt, in asserting a view similar to the original position of Albrecht Ritschel (the position of his init ial article in 1846), effectively changed the tempo of the discussion. 56 Declaring Marcionite prior ity, Klinghardt combined the scholarship of his predecessors to argue that Luke owed a sign ificant majority of his text and ideals to Marcions gospel. He has argued that Marcion did not edit Lukes gospel, but rather created his own orig inal text. According to this view, there was a proto-Luke document, namely the gospel of Marcion, a nd this document was directly used by the author of canonical Luke. 55 While acknowledging their efforts in keeping the debate alive with helpful heuristics like Harnacks reconstruction of Marcions gospel and Knoxs statisti cal analyses comparing the verses in the texts of Marcion and Luke, I ultimately omit their theses from this work. 56 I need to preface this analysis of Klinghardt by ad mitting that I do not have access to the original article, Markion vs. Lukas, since it is not available in English. However, Klinghardt offers a brief synopsis of his views in his 2008 article, The Marcionite Gospel an d the Synoptic Problem: A New Suggestion, in which he goes point-by-point through his overall theses. I also have access to Klingh ardts article through Christopher Hays article, Marcion vs. Luke: A Response to the Pladoyer of Matthias Klinghardt, as he outlines several of the scholars arguments in quotes and allusions and disputes them directly. In this way, I approach Klinghardt much like we a ll approach Marcion, through the eyes of his polemical opponent. These combined with email correspondence I have had with Dr. Klinghardt, have allowed me to gain great insight into his views. 33


Klinghardts first concern is with the continuing assumption that Tertullian and other polemical sources were absolutely clear and accurate in positioning Marcion as redactor of Luke. This idea has formed debate around small textual similarities and differences between the polemical reconstruc tions of Marcions text and the current version of canonical Luke, from which va rious scholars have argued one documents originality over the other. As Klinghardt s hows, however, Tertullians final remarks on Marcion are that he, in inventing his own gospel, made drastic changes and later retracted them from the final text so that he woul d appear as orthodox and, thus, have his document accepted by the proto-orthodox group.57 I am sorry for you, Marcioneven in your own gospel, Christ Jesus is mine.58 So, Tertullian wants his readership to believe that Marcion had this grand agenda and, yet, ended up publishing a document inconsistent with his theology? It seems as though Tertullian views Marcions text as fairly compliant with proto-orthodox ideals, despite his accusations of the man himself. Klinghardt argues that Tertullian may have pur posefully misrepresented Marcions text in many of these instances to show that Marcion had no consistency or logic to his system. This being the case, he reasons that instead of arguing over small textual quibbles over grammatical and syntactical differences from the reconstructions of Tertullian and Epiphanius, which may have been altered by the proto-orthodox afte r Marcions writing, ideological issues and overall themes should fo rm the substance of the priority debate. In illuminating the truly fragmented picture we have of Marcions text, Klinghardt vies for a different approach to the deba te, one that considers major is sues and differences between 57 Tertuallian, Against Marcion 4.43.7 as cited by Matthias Klinghardt in The Marcionite Gospel and the Synoptic Problem Novum Testamentum vol. 1, (2008) 7. 58 Tertullian, Against Marcion 34


the texts rather than one that tries to argue priority on a verse-by-verse basis. He begins by looking at the plausibility of Marcions role as redactor. Klinghardt has a hard time with the current portrait of Marcion as redactor. He concludes that If Marcion alte red Luke for theological reasons, he must have done so very poorly.59 The only plausible explanation if we insist on Lukan priority is that Marcion was an extremely poor and unintellig ent editor. Not only did his text have remnants of an opposite theology to his ow n, but it omitted an incredible amount of material that would only benefit his case. If Luke and Acts existed as two consecutive volumes, as I discussed above, then Marcions co mplete lack of any Acts material attests to an equally poor redaction on his part under the assumption of his redacting from Luke. For example, Acts 10.9-17, where Peter envisions clean and unclean animals and is told to then go and preach to a gentile family, w ould seem to fit rather well with Marcions emphasis on the equality of the souls of all men, on Gentile-friendly Christianity in particular. Why, then, would Marcion exclud e it in a redaction of Lukes documents? With these details, Klinghardt reaches what he believes to be the strongest case against Lukan priority. 60 I showed how Marcion, if redacting Luke could have used Acts, but what of any other documents. As Klinghardt reveals, under this hypothesis of Lukan priority, Marcion did not use anything outside of Luke, since the only passages that appear in Marcions text are either Lukan or part icularly his own (they do not ap pear elsewhere). We have to assume that Marcion used only Luke, complete ly disregarding all other sources. So, if 59 Klinghardt, 2008, 7. 60 Klinghardt, 2008, 8. 35


Lukan priority is assumed, then we have to accept that Marcion sele cted one text, edited it considerably and yet kept many sections inconsistent with his theology. Biblical scholars agree that Luke, on the other hand, like every other hist orian used several sources in compiling his text. This sounds a lot more reasonable. In fact, it is what Marcion himself argues. Marcions charge ag ainst his opponents was that they took his text, added in many falsifications about Judaisms connection to Ch ristianity, and then published canonical Luke.61 Is all this talk of Marci on as redactor starting to sound implausible? Klinghardt thinks so, yet he adds to these issues by pointing to textual issues within Luke and Marcion that make the theory even less credible. Klinghardts next argument as ks if the textual discrepa ncies in the gospels make more sense as Lukan additions or Marcionite reductions. Is it mo re likely, Klinghardt asks, that Marcion would omit a passage like the tail end of Luke 3.1, Herod tetrarch of Galilee, his brother Philip tetrarch of Itur ea and Traconitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene, which has no dissent with Marcioni te theology or that Luke would add this passage for clarifications sake ? Several of these editorial differences appear throughout the texts and, similarly, many of them make more sense as a Lukan addition than as a Marcionite reduction. If Marci on did have an agenda, it was certainly a theological one and historical material woul d not offend him and cause him to omit a section of text. Other instances, by contrast, seem to support the proto-orthodox theo logical agenda in significant ways, instances in which the transition from verse to verse seems unnatural and grammatically odd, as if a c hunk were pasted into the doc ument. Lukan additions to a prior Marcionite gospel make sense of these differences. 61 Tertullian, Against Marcion 4.4.1. 36


Klinghardt, in asserting the priority of Marcions document, reveals three important considerations to consider in th is exploration into the relationship between Luke and Marcion: 1) the intelligence and fo cus of Marcion of Pont us, a man with a clear and calculated vision, 2) the biases and age ndas of Marcions polemical sources and how they influence both the Luke and Marcion documents, and 3) the complete lack of the kind of authoritative character we anachroni stically assign to documents like Luke and concurrent theologies, which would have had far less of an influence in the time of Marcions writing. Just because Marcions views do not match those held by the collective church centuries later, does not mean he was expelled as a heretic in the time of his text. Marcion was a leading member of the Roma n church at the center of Christianity and yet his views fa iled to appear on their heretic radar until years after his initial publications. This being the case, it becomes much more believable that an orthodox character like the author of Luke would have used Marcions document in creating his gospel. Certainly he may have found some portions objectionable, but he would not have viewed the entire gospel as an unsalvageable work of unorthodox heresy. With these considerations in mind, Klinghard t asserts that Marci ons gospel preceded Lukes and acted as a sort of proto-Luke text. In 2008, Hays wrote a response article to Klinghardt in which he dismantled many of Klinghardts hypotheses.62 Although making several valid points, Hays objections generally come to one verse or example. Ag ainst Klinghardts majo r ideological issues, Hays responded by finding a fragment or two to refute his thesis. While possibly helping 62 Christopher Hays, Marcion vs. Luke: A Response to the Pladoyer of Matthias Klinghardt (Walter de Gruyter 2008) 217. 37


to temper Klinghardts strong claims, Hays critique falls short of dismissing the possibility of Marcionite priority. Hays disagrees with Klinghardts claim concerning the plausibility of Marcions redactional system. As discussed above, Klinghardt disagrees with Lukan priority because it would assume that Marcion chos e one text, canonical Luke, and added very little original material to it; using no othe r sources and only making minor corrections. Hays strongly attacks Klinghardts position, sayi ng that the author can not possibly hold that Marcions texts are completely without additions. 63 He argues that Marcion made several large additions and, in fact, completely rewrote large parts of the Pauline epistles. First, from an interpretational standpoint, I argue that Hays has hyperbolized Klinghardts original thesis to say all where Klinghardt says many. Hays depicts Klinghardt as arguing for a closed system with no additions whereas Klinghardt actually says, not to speak of, any substantial additions .64 Secondly, Hays only reveals a few short examples, which even he admits to be infre quent and insignificant. Thus, Hays neither correctly critiques Klinghardt on this point nor provides enough evidence to support his point. Hays next shows that Marcionite ex cisions are more probable than Lukan additions. Klinghardt argued the opposite, show ing how allusions to Jewish history in Luke 4.25-27, a genealogy in 3.23-38, an allusion to Jesus fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah in 4.18-19, a resurrection account in 24.39, and other instances of dispute, show clear reasons for Lukan additions to Marcions text. Hays refutes these claims and states 63 Hays, 2008, 217. 64 Klinghardt, 2008, 8. 38


that Marcion would not have necessarily disa greed with the Jewish lines of text and, further, that it is more likely that Marc ion supported them because of their hostility towards the Jewish people. I disagree. First, Marcion was not nece ssarily hostile to the Jews, as many historians have argued.65 Although Marcions hatred of the material world and the Creator god is commonly conflated with anti-Judaism, this is not necessarily the case. Secondly, these passages confirm Elijah and Elisha as holy prophets. Marcion would have disagreed, since he did not view the Jewish prophets as writing about Jesus, but rather a material messiah that would restore th eir earthly prominence. Thirdly, Marcions docetic theology was completely inc onsistent with a resurrection narrative and with the saying, A spirit does not have bones, as you see I have.66 Hays also neglects to mention the commonly cited problem of Jesus travels to Capernaum, as alluded to above. This all culminates in Hays thesis that A slightly sloppy redactor posses more plausibility than a brilliant one.67 I find this thesis untenable on two accounts. 1) Under this assumption, Marcion was not slightly sloppy but rath er completely inept. If Marcion redacted from Luke, used no other so urces, and yet contradict ed the very tenets of his own theological framework, then he wa s far more than sloppy. 2) To attribute more conceivability to a sloppy redactor, as Hays does, discounts the intricacy of Marcions agenda and views. A brilliant redactor, name ly the proto-orthodox writers, is at least as likely in this case. Klinghardt provides several strong reas ons to support the hypothesis of a calculated and detailed set of changes to Marcions origin al text. As Klinghardt has 65 Judith Leiu, ed. Edward Kessler and Neil Wenborn, Marcion, A Dictionary of Jewish-Christian Relations (Cambridge 2005), 284.66 Luke 24.39. 67 Hays, 2008, 228. 39


relayed to me, although Hays objections are worthwhile, what is at stake here are not the minor problems mentioned by Ch ris, but the overall picture.68 Hays minor concerns, whether or not they are complete ly soluble, do not carry enough weight to dismiss the hypothesis of Marci ons direct influence on Luke and on the formation of the biblical canon. But Klinghard t has another opponent in th e student of Knox, Jospeph Tyson, and his work that mediates between the positions of Marcionite and Lukan Priority. Writing in the same year as Klinghardt, Tyson published his book Marcion and Luke-Acts in response to both the work of his own teacher, Knox, and the issues of the greater debate. It is not fair to call him Klinghardt s opponent, though, since Tyson does not directly respond to Klingha rdts later published article bu t to previous work. Still, Tysons arguments present a case quite different from Klinghardt s and, thus, will be analyzed in comparison to Klinghardts work. Tyson was convinced that Marcion, because of his particular inte rpretation of Pauls theology, chose one gospel and edited it in accordance with his own beliefs. He says,If Marcion understood the word evangellion (a word often found in Pauls letters) in two senses, as signifying not only the message Paul preached but also a book that containe d the message, he would regard that book as having authority equal to that of Pauls letters.69 In other words, Marcion followed what he believed to be Pauls conviction, that of one gospel and chose Luke as that text. However, as Tyson shows, the picture of Luke in the second century may have been quite different than the canonical version. 68 Klinghardt, email replyOctober 5, 2010 69 Tyson, 2006, 38. 40


In an attempt to construc t a foundation on which to hypot hesize about the nature of Marcions version of Luke, Tyson re-adapt ed the work of Knox and developed a series of 4 charts to analyze the relationship between canonical Luke and Marcions text (Tables 1-4 below). The criteria was three-fold in that Tyson outlined passages that had a Marcionite equivalent, passages that had none at all, and pa ssages that were uncertain.70 He measured these against two variables: the Lukan Sondergut (passages specific to canonical Luke) and Synoptic Parallels (passage s present in Luke that had appeared in the other synoptic gospels). The question, th en, is where did Marcion concentrate his material? The first two tables below, one that analyzes ve rses and one that counts the words in those verses, show that approximately 72% of Marcionite passages in Luke also appear in other synoptic gospels where as only 41% of that material appears solely in Lukes Sondergut. This second number changes drastically when the data is changed to only examine the material of Luke 3-23 in tables 3 and 4. These tables show that the synoptic parallels relationship to Marcion remains at about the same whereas now around 60% of Lukes sondergut material mirrors Marcion. It is important to keep in mind that this data analyzes the relationship between the canonical gospel of Luke and Marcions text as relayed by his pr oto-orthodox opponents. Because we have no access to what may have been a Proto-Luke, we can only deal with the canonical gospel. 70 Tyson, 2006, 86. 41


A. Passages that seem to have a Marcionite equivalent. 42


B. Passages known to have no Marcionite equivalent. C. Passages that are uncertain. Interpreting these first two tables, Tyson shows that th ere are only three possible hypotheses: 1) that Marcion had a complete copy of canonical L uke as it stands today and omitted significant sections of the Lukan Sonde rgut material, 2) that Marcion had a copy of a gospel similar to canonical Luke and om itted particularly the Sondergut material because he found it offensive or 3) that Ma rcion did not know of many of the narrative segments of canonical Luke and therefore did not omit as much as we think. Tyson immediately shows that the first theory is untenable, since a Marcion that chose a particular gospel of all th ose available would not in th e same breath omit everything particular to it. Likewise, he shows that the second theory is hard to swallow because, while some of the alleged omissions make sense with Marcions theology, many do not. However, Tyson argues, the third theory makes sense of these alle ged omissions, since it posits that they are not Marcionite omissions at all, but rather they are later additions (by the proto-orthodox) to a prot o-Luke document that would later become the canonical Luke.71 Accepting this theory, Tyson moves to lay out the probable character of this proto-Luke document and its subsequent influe nce. He concludes the section with a final set of charts that analyze onl y what he identifies as probable proto-Luke, Luke 3-23. In this analysis Tyson finds that much more of Marcions text lines up with proto-Luke than with canonical Luke, 60% as opposed to 41%. This being found, Tyson argues that 71 Tyson, 2006, 89. 43


Whatever text lies behind the Gospel of Ma rcion and canonical Luke, it almost certainly did not contain the birth narratives or the preface, and it probably had only a trace of the resurrection account that now appears in canonical Luke.72 He further argues for a possible three-step process by which these documents came about: the composition of a Proto-Luke text, Marcions co mposition of his own gospel in view of the previous text, and the final composition of canonical Luke in view of both of these documents. Therefore, Tyson asserts a proto-Luke whic h closely matches Marcions document and most adequately solves the textual issues between the gospels. While I find Tysons work to be helpfu l in laying out the textual concerns so neatly, his overall argument is misleading in attributing too much of an agenda both to Marcion and to an audience that potentially included Luke himself. In arguing that Marcion absolutely allied himself with one te xt, Tyson assumes that he either had no knowledge or no concern for other documents that may have been present. This is initially a problematic hypothesis because it asse rts that Marcion acted in a way that, as I argued above, no other author compiling a hi storical or theologi cal document would have. Although Marcion may have had convict ions regarding Paulin e theology, this does not presume his sole use of one text. Tysons data (indirectly) confir ms this in showing the close alliance of Marcions text with Synoptic Parallels. Another hypothesis that could arise from the data Tyson presents is that Marcion used th e synoptic gospels of Mark and Matthew, which most historians place chronologically prior to the gospel of Luke. This would make sense of the 72% of Marcions Lukan material that shows up in 72 Tyson, 2006, 119. 44


these other synoptic gospels. In fact, it may even suggest something of the nature of Klinghardts thesis that Marc ions gospel preceded Luke. Marcions priority to Luke makes sense of this data in a way Tysons theory cannot. Marcions document is the proto-Luke text that Ty son is trying to find. Rather than proto-Luke just being canonical Luke mi nus a couple chapters, it was a separate text with a separate author and ag enda. Marcion created the text, uniquely, to fit his ideals. When Luke redacted, he did so fully, by adding and excising words, sentences and narrative segments from throughout the story, not just by tacking a chapter on to the beginning and end of the text. Tyson sees this conclusion as illogical as we can deduce from his analysis of Albrecht Ritschel. He sa ys it (Ritschels orig inal stance in 1846 of Marcionite priority) would re quire us to believe somethi ng that is highly improbable, namely that a proto-orthodox aut hor would base his work on a wr iting that he regarded as heretical.73 However, as we have seen, positioning Marcions document as heretical may be anachronistic, since the defining lines of heresy and orthodoxy had not yet been drawn. By viewing Marcions document as firs t, as Klinghardt does, many of the textual concerns in Tysons thesis are resolved and Luke can be better viewed in its true form, as a redaction from Marcions gospel, the prot o-Luke source. That Luke redacted from Marcion and accepted much of his material as fit for his document, while reworking the material in important ways, seems a tenable thesis. Therefore, I join Klinghardt in dismissing the necessity of Lukan priority a nd asserting Marcions gospel as both prior to Luke and used by the author. 73 Tyson, 2006, 85. 45


I add to Klinghardts work here by both defending his thesis against criticism and by showing that the dates of Lukes and Marc ions gospel publications line up with his thesis of Marcionite priority. With thes e arguments in place, I have now laid the foundation upon which this thesis rests. The early disputes of th e 1840-50s, the current debate and all of the textual a nd historical issues that bear on this discussion of priority introduce the truly relevant issue: Marcions relationship to the development of the synoptic gospel tradition and his particular theological infl uence over Luke. I hope that I have shown the complexity of these issues a nd the subsequent viabili ty of many variables and hypotheses, while elucidating Klinghardt s thesis and its particular and premier accuracy in depicting the rela tionship between Lukes and Marcions respective gospels. The next step will be to carry Klinghardts thesis into the Synoptic Problem, showing how the presence of Marcions gospel changes the way in which we view the biblical canon and the theological positi on of the author of Luke. 46




Chapter Two: The Stone the Builders Rejected It has long been known that the first th ree gospels of the New Testament canon bear great resemblance to one another, sh aring vast amounts of material and themes. Thus, the name synoptic, literally meaning s een together in Gree k, has emerged, which unifies the gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke as distinctive from the gospel according to John. Since this grouping, scholars have be gun searching for the source(s) of this gospel tradition in an effort to understand the theology and cultural practices behind the authorship and community of the documents. They found th at all three gospels share most of the material in Mark s text, but have continued to debate the origin of the remaining events and sayings .74 This is the Synoptic Problem. It is a histor ical-literary debate, but it has become much more. The assumption of a closed system, in which the synoptic authors only read and used each others texts, soon gave way to hypothe ses of outside, extra-biblical sources. In fact, what began as whispers in dark corners, has become the crowned solution to the Synoptic Problem: Q. Q (abbreviation of quelle ), which translates as source in German, is the theory that the shared material of Matthew and Luke that did not originate from Mark came by way of another document, a text lost to the fires and sands of history. Although there have been a few competing theories, the foremost of which argues for Lukes dependence on Matthew and Mark, scholars continua lly return to and reify the validity of Q. This chapter aims to name this mysteri ous Q source, rather than continuing the cycle of postulating about its community and textua l format. By investig ating the theological 74 Events and Sayings function as technical terms here. Events are the portions of the gospel texts that consist of miracles and other happenings of the narrative. Sayings materials consist of parables and teachings given by Jesus. Pericopae ( pericope singular) refer to narrative segments, like a saying or an event. 48


and historical underpinnings of the alleged Q document, I reveal that the stone the builders of Biblical history rejected, namely Marcions gospel, is th e cornerstone of the Synoptic tradition. The nature of this project is such that I must start with the exterior and work my way towards uncovering Marcions gospel a nd its foundational natu re in defining and constructing the synoptic gospel tradition. In this way, it is less like constructing a building and more like digging through ruins. Initially, well encount er the outer walls and I will show how Markan Priority hol ds the structure together. Although many automatically assume that Marks gospel was first, this assumption betrays the actual multiplicity of theories in existence even to this day. As such, I need to lay out a few important reasons for the dating and show w hy these are more credible than the Two Gospel Hypothesis and others like it. Next, well move to the interior and discover the whitewashed walls and mistaken artifacts that have become the Q theory. Well see how the Two Document hypothesis, although valid, has given way to brash fact-making, lessthan-academic musing and oversimplification and we will look to the critiques offered by Mark Goodacre and his predecessors. In the fina l stages of this dig, we will uncover what I hold to be the cornerstone of the Synoptic ed ifice, Marcions gospel. In order to prove its authenticity, I will compare it to the familiar images of Q theory. Following the 2008 thesis of Matthias Klinghardts, The Marcionite Gospel and the Synoptic Problem75, I will show that Marcions stone is an exact match for the missing Q document; in shape, weight, even down to the small crevices and shades of iridescence along its surface. Marcions gospel does not only fit the literary and historical criteria being that its date 75 Klinghardt, 2008. 49


and material correspond to that of Q, but also it offers an explanation for the distinctive social and theological nature of the document. Markan Priority First impressions of Mark may be e nough to convince many modern readers, those who have access to the fourfold gospel can on, of its priority. The account is short. Very short. The author quickly introduces the reader to Jesus through a few short prophetic verses and words spoken by his forerunner, John. No birth narrative, no anecdotes about childhood or young adulthood, not even a reasonable explanation for Jesus theological relation to God. The reader meets Jesus at the baptism and is quickly tossed into a series of miracles and parabl es. Not long into the narrative, Jesus begins predicting his betrayal and death and, in a breath of two chapte rs (of our current text), he is crucified and buried. Then, in accordance with the earlie st manuscripts, the narrative ends suddenly. Not only does the account leave any read er with questions and concerns, but, when read alongside the other canonical gospels, the text emer ges as the least detailed and complete. The other gospels are longer and more comprehensive, providing full explanations for Jesus life and more definitive versions of many of Marks sayings and other pericopae. These initi al perceptions may be enough to encourage a reader to understand the validity of the Markan prio rity assumption, but other arguments may equally appeal to this kind of intuition. 50


Of other hypotheses, there is only one that truly retains any kind of following to date. The Two-Gospel Hypothesis, as popular ized by the work of Johann Griesbach in the 19th century, states that Mark was actually the last written gospe l of the synoptics. William Farmer has been the strongest current proponent of the theory publishing a definitive volume, The Synoptic Problem in which he deals with the hypothesis extensively.76 In brief, he argues that early patristic evidence from Clement of Alexandria, the order of Marks text, and the character of Ma rks authorship all point to the conclusion that Mark must have relied upon both Luke and Matthew.77 Against the common sense Markan Priority argument I st ated in the previous paragraph, Farmer argues that Mark shows a distinctive characte r in writing a shortene d compendium of his two gospel predecessors. Neither side can prove priority or posterity from these simple means. However, there are additional Markan Priority proofs, three of which I will discuss here: Order, Add itions/Omissions, and Date. 1. Order In analyzing the argument from order firs t, I present the leas t convincing piece of theoretical evidence, which will be followed w ith increasingly more substantial material. Goodacre argues that comparative textual analys is showcases Mark as the medial term of the synoptics in dictating th e order of pericopae throughout.78 In other words, TripleTradition material (the portions that appear across all three gospels) mostly follows the 76 William Farmer, The Synoptic Problem (Mercer Univers ity Press 1981). 77 Farmer, The Case for the Two Gospel Hypothesis, in Rethinking the Synoptic Problem (Ed. David Black and David Beck; Michigan: Baker Academic 2001). 78 Mark Goodacre, The Case Against Q (Pennsylvania: Trinity Press International 2002), 22. 51


order established in Mark. There are no defi nitive pericopae in the synoptics in which Matthew and Luke agree in order against Mark. Farmer argues the point from a different angle. He states that when Matthew, Mark, and Luke do not all three agree in order; as has been pointed out, either Matthew and Mark will agree in order or L uke and Mark will agree in order.79 Otherwise, Mark trusts the order of Matthew and Luke, when they agree. Farmer interprets this phenomenon as an obvious case for Markan Po sterity, since it al legedly shows Mark choosing to side with either Matthew or Luke when they differed on the order of a pericope. John Kloppenborg, in critiquing the Tw o Gospel Hypothesis, argues that this kind of zig-zag order in wh ich Mark chooses which order to follow in a seemingly implausible fashion does not stand as an argument.80 Further, Marks trust of the gospels Double Tradition (Matthew and Mark agreement) order does not explain places where he omits material common in Matthew and Luke (Matt. 3.7-10/Luke 3.7-9; Matt. 11.20-24/Luke 10.13-15). Both sides have reason s for asserting a particular authors order and, thus, the argument essentially results in a standstill. Thus, Goodacre thoughtfully encourages scholars to move past this point of tension towards other forms of evidence.81. 79 Farmer, 2001, 114. 80 John Kloppenborg, Q the Earliest Gospel (Westminster: John Knox Press 2008), 22. 81 Goodacre, 2002, 23. 52


2. Additions/Omissions The next argument seeks to understand th e alleged omissions/additions within the synoptic gospels. This is the exact line of debate used in the previ ous chapter to discuss the textual relationship between Marcion and Lukes gospels. The ge neral question asks, did Mark make significant omissions or did Matthew and Luke add material and why? To explore this issue I use two examples fr om Goodacres work, the omission of The Lords Prayer pericope (Matt. 6.9-15/Luke 11.1-4) and addition of The Blind Man of Bethsaida (Mark 8.22-26) pericope.82 If Mark followed and redacted from Matth ew and/or Lukes texts, then he omitted not only the Sermon on the Mount and the Birt h Narrative, but also the Lords Prayer. The question, then, is why? What would ha ve motivated Mark to eliminate these stories? Although neo-Griesbach ians (Markan Posteritists) have tried to support the theory of Markan omissions in these areas by piecing together theological and narrative reasons, the evidence seems to contradict the theory.83 Our Father in heaven, hallowed be y our name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptati on but deliver us from evil (the evil one).84 Not only does this prayer ha ve enough importance to appear identically in Luke and Matthew, but it beco mes one of the founding creeds of the early Christian movement. So, why would the author of Mark omit it? The answer is he would not. In fact, the author displays theological consent to all of the ideas presented in this 82 Goodacre, 2002 30-33. 83 Farmer, 2001, 111-112. 84 Matt. 6.9-13. 53


prayer. As Goodacre shows, Marks text ad dresses God as Father, speaks of the kingdom, of forgiveness, and warns against temptations85. All of these instances confirm Marks theological reasons for including this text and, yet the author does not. Further, Goodacre argues for equally persuasive evidence in the alleged additions. To look at additions in Mark is to explore the Markan Sondergut the material that only occurs in the gospel of Mark. The primary sondergut texts in Mark are two healing accounts in which Jesus uses spit and earwax to cure two men, one blind and the other deaf and mute. Under the Markan Po sterity hypothesis, we assume that, of everything Mark could add, he adds a couple miracles involving spit and a short addition of a man running around naked.86 The Blind Man of Bethsaida is most interesting. He (Jesus) took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the mans eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, Do you see anything? He looke d up and said, I see people; they look like trees walking around. Once more Jesus put his hands on the mans eyes. Then his eyes were opene d, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly.87 Not only does this story display an uncharacteristic use of sa liva (a technique not used in the other synoptics), but also it shows Jesus as incapable of healing initially. It takes two attempts for Jesus to heal the blind man. Why, then, would Mark have any reason to add this story to the synoptic edifice? The bigger question, as stated by W.D. Davies and Dale Allison, is, Can one seriously envision someone rewr iting Matthew and Luke so as to omit the miraculous birth of Jesus, the sermon on the mount, and the 85 Mark 14.36 ; Mark 1.14; Mark 11.25 ; Mark 14.38. 86 Mark 14.51-52 87 Mark 8.22-25. 54


resurrection appearances, while, on th e other hand, adding the tale of the naked young man, a healing miracle in which Jesus had trouble healing, and a remark that Jesus family thought him mad.88 Rather than postulate a Mark that adds in significant material a nd excludes large chunks of important text, I argue, with many others, that these instan ces of redaction point most logically to Markan Priority. 3. Date As mentioned in chapter 1, one of the primary ways by which historians date texts is by searching for narrative tells. The other three perspectives I have presented in this chapter follow the redaction-critical approach to dating a nd contextualization. They aim to determine the likelihood of a particular au thors redactional work in editing a previous source and forming a new one. They ask questions like: Is it more likely that Luke copied this idea from Mark or the other way around? By contrast, the literary-critical approach views each text individually, apart from the influences of the other documents. It explores the narrative framework of a particular text. The most definitive example of this kind of proof deals with the events around the Jewish Wars of the late first century C.E. Although there were ongoing battles th roughout the Roman Empire, tensions came to a head in Jerusalem in 70 C.E. Th e First Revolt, beginning in 66 C.E. saw the destruction of the Temple at Jerusalem, th e burning of the holy city and a large death 88 Davies and Allison, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Gospel According to Saint Matthew (Edinburgh 1988), 1:109. 55


toll.89 These events are recounted as predictions by Jesus in the gospe ls of Matthew and Luke. Jerusalem! Jerusalem behold your house is forsaken.90 Whether or not these texts are meant as predictions, the material is not present in Mark.91 In fact, other instances in Matthew and Luke refer to the emperor sending troops and burning the Jewish city.92 Why would Mark not speak to such tragic events? The answer and the case for the argument from date is that Mark must have written at a time before these events transpired and, accordingly, that Matthew and Luke must have been written after the events. Not only does this argument show a logical reason for Markan Priority, but it also exposes the illogical nature of Markan Posterity. Proponents of Markan Priority have stated other cases of dating tells, but this particular example shows that a later Mark would be a Mark that read Matthew and Luke, lived through the destruction of Jerusa lem and, yet, neglected to in clude any material regarding the events. This not only seems unlikely, but, compounded with th e other evidence, it solidifies the case for Markan Priority. Writing a short narrative with few details, Mark pioneered the gospel tradition and set a template by which Matthew and Luke might expand upon his text and compile it w ith further details and accounts. 89 Stephen Harris, Understanding the Bible (New York: 2010), 285-86. 90 Matt 23.37-39/Luke 13.34-35. 91 The lack of a Markan account of these predictions does not nullify the possibility of their being said. In fact, Jesus may have made such claims and Mark didnt think it necessary to include them in detail beyond a simple statement in Mark 13 .19-20. The lack of material does, however, attest to the fact that Mark didnt see much importance in the sayings themselves, wh ere as Matthew and Luke who lived through the tragedies would have found it far more pertinent. In other words, it may have been an interpretive choice on the part of each other to include/exclude the material.92 Matt 22.4-8/Luke 14.15-24 & Luke 21.23-24, as presented in Goodacre, 2002, 26. 56


Q Theory: Separating Fact From Myth At base level, Q is a theory of pe rsuasive probability. There are no supposed documents, little evidence of a community or theology for the text, and no reasons for the synoptic authors to have used the source othe r than a lack of othe r literature and oral history. However, the probability is quite good since something has to account for the 4,500 words shared by Matthew and Luke that ar e not found in Mark. Oral tradition and folklore cannot account for the technical agreement in vocabulary and grammatical structure and, thus, the words must have come from a shared literary source.93 So, it is either the case that Matthew and Luke read each others documents or that Q theory is correct in assuming an outside sour ce, the Two Document Hypothesis. 1. The Two Document Hypothesis The Two Document Hypothesis (henceforth referred to by 2DH) has been argued for centuries and, as such, has countless volumes and articles dedicated to bolstering its credibility.94 In fact, a committee within the Society of Biblical Literature was formed in the early 1990s called The Inte rnational Q Project. Thus, like Markan Priority, much of the details regarding the 2DH are familiar to scholars in the field. Nonetheless, John Kloppenborg has devoted a recent book to re iterating the case for the hypothesis, Q the 93 Though a classicist or linguist may argue for the strength of an oral culture around the time of the gospels composition, the parallelisms in sentence stru cture, participial usage and intricacies like the movable nu cannot be accounted for by oral tradition. Th is fact is strengthened by recognition of the loose base of Greek sentence structure, which would not/could not have been perfectly kept orally. 94 Although there is some dispute, Friedrich Schleier macher, who wrote in the early 1800s, seems to be a feasible figure for the progenitor of the 2DH. Craig Blomberg, The Synoptic Problem, in Rethinking the Synoptic Problem, 2001, 24. 57


Earliest Gospel, and I will explore his thesis here. The core of the argument aims to prove that Matthew and Luke redacted Mark independently, proving the need for another source to account for their mass of double trad ition material and, fu rther, that Matthew and Luke redacted independently from the Q source. Ultimately, the argument relies on 4 solid pieces of evidence involvi ng references to double and triple tradition pericopae in the synoptic. These 4 are: 1) That Matthew a nd Lukes triple tradition sequence within Markan pericopae never agrees positively against Mark, 2) that Matthew and Lukes triple tradition ordering of Markan pericop ae units never agrees ag ainst Mark, 3) that Matthew and Luke generally place Q pericop ae in different places throughout the text and 4) that Matthew and Luke follow the sa me order of Q pericopae when Mark is absent. Luke and Matthew rarely agree positiv ely in pericopae sequence against Mark. Kloppenborg and those in the 2DH camp use this evidence to show not only that Mark dictated the order for these specific pericopae, but also that Matthew and Luke must have been independent of each other since they vary so much in the ways they change Marks order.95 In other words, had the authors been l iterarily dependent, one would expect there to be more agreement in their modificatio ns of the Markan text. The text that Kloppenborg uses to defend this thesis is Jesu s healing of Simon s (Peters) mother-inlaw (Mark 1.29-31/Matt. 8.14-15/Luke 4.38-39) Although Matthew and Luke at times relay similar details and though they agree negatively in excluding some of the order within a given pericope, the authors never agree positively in order against Mark. 95 Kloppenborg, 2008, 5-7. 58


The second point deals with the creativ ity of Matthew and Luke in relocating Markan pericopae outside of his overall narrativ e order. This point differs from the first in that it examines the ordering of pericopa e themselves rather than ordering details within a given pericope. The authors once agai n show independent use of Mark in their lack of agreement in re-locating Markan events and sayings. For example, all three synoptics agree in relating Th e Healing of the Leper peri cope (Mark 1.40-45/Matt. 8.14/Luke 5.12-16) but Matthew departs from Luke and Marks agreement of placing the triple tradition Healing of th e Paralytic pericope (Mark 2.1 -12/Luke 5.17-26/Matt. 9.1-8) next and jumps into the triple tradition st ory of Jesus healing Simons mother-in-law discussed above. Matthew reloca tes the Healing of the Paralytic section to the Legion Demon-Possession pericope (Mark 5.1-20/Ma tt. 8.28-34/Luke 8.26-39). This type of different relocation is common in the synoptic traditi on and it shows that Matthew and Luke redacted from Mark independently. The 2DH makes sense of the textual independence found in these past two exampl es, namely of pericopae structure and ordering, in positing a second source, Q. Now, if Matthew and Luke only differed in order regarding Mark, then one might postulate theological or lite rary reasons for the phenomenon and some do, but the gospel authors further differ in their re daction of Q material and this is the third point. The most obvious and definitive case is the section ge nerically titled Sermon on the Mount/Plain. I say generically because the title is far too si mple to describe the complex nature of this double tradition pericope that Matthew and Luke share. This is ex actly the issue at stake. Whereas Matthew presents the pericopae in an unchained melody of sayings, Luke intersperses the Healing of the Multitudes (Mark 3.712/Luke 6.17-19/Matt. 12.15-21), 59


The Centurians Servant (Luke 7.1-10/Matt. 8.5-13) and several other Lukan sondergut, double-tradition, and triple-tradition material. Furthermore, as Kloppenborg argues, the two authors place the Beatitudes in different locations within the Markan order (Matt. 5.3-12/Luke 6.20-23).96 These three theses are further solidified by the final point, that Matthew and Luke share approximately 40% of Qs order when the Markan pericopae are excluded from the sequence.97 In other words, lining Matthew and Luke side-by-side and removing Mark shows that the Q materials order within the pericopae is followed ra ther closely by both. Matthew and Luke, though not agreeing against Mark in pericopae sequence, do agree rather often otherwise. Why do these observa tions about Q material bolster the 2DH? They show that, just as in Markan pericopa e, Matthew and Luke share a great amount of verbal and sequential agreement with their source and, yet, littl e agreement in the placement of the various pericopae. This prove s both that Matthew and Luke treated their sources similarly in trusting their material, while acting independently in arranging the pericopae within their own narrative. This phenomenon is as commonsensical as it is true, since one would expect independent authors to use the same material in different ways, exhibiting both reliance and creativity. As convincing as the case for Q may be, it has more recently a ppeared to become a matter of fact rather than theory. In blurring the lines be tween historical document and hypothesis, 2DH proponents have overstep ped their bounds and diminished their credibility. Because of its success and its attr action, Q has ceased to be a theory at all.98 96 Kloppenborg, 2008, 16. 97 Kloppenborg, 2008, 18-20. 98 In fact, when introduced to Q, I thought it to be another ancient gospel text. 60


Dozens of translations, glosses, and histor ies have emerged to analyze the document. Socio-historical volumes have attempted to identify and incorporate a Q community into Christian history. Feminist, gnostic, paga n perspectives, and more have had their shot at claiming Q. These recent theories a nd publications out of the 2DH camp have not only angered those who dissent with Q, but ha ve hindered the progress of the theory and thwarted the solving and fi xing of the synoptic problem. 2. Markan Prio rity Without Q Hypothesis This kind of Q frenzy is certainly part of what has inspired the urgency and sincerity of the Markan Priority Without Q Hypothesis (henceforth referred to by MwQH). Austin Farrer, the first to solidify th e MwQH, promises, Once rid of Q, we are rid of a progeny of nameless chimeras.99 As relieving as it would be to dispense with Q, the thesis offered by the MwQH does not st and as sturdily as Goodacre and his predecessors claim and, thus, it has been re latively unacknowledged by any substantial majority. It is important to explore some of the strong arguments of the MwQH as stated in Goodacres recent book, The Case Against Q, here, and to show how Q theorists have responded to the challenge. Goodacre first criticizes the 2DHs use of Mark-Q overlaps. These are instances in which both Mark and Q preserve a perico pe, but do so differently. In other words, Matthew and Luke do actually agree positively against Mark. Goodacre shows how past 99 Austin Farrer, On Di spensing With Q, in Studies in the Gospels: Essays in Memory of R.H. Lightfooot (ed. D.E. Nineham; Oxford: Blackwell, 1955), 86. 61


Q proponents have used this evidence to account for the places where Luke and Matthew do agree against Markan order. In other words, that Matthew and Luke do not agree positively against Mark, except when they do, a nd that is because they are following the hypothetical Q document. Since this seems lik e a loophole to get out of contradicting a cornerstone of the 2DH that argues most persuasively for Matthew-Luke literary independence, Goodacre is righ t to criticize the idea. He s hows that Matthew and Luke do, in fact, agree against Mark.100 Further, he argues, Lukes ignorance of Matthean additions to Mark in the non-Mark-Q overlap s should be expected since Mark had been around longer and had gained more acceptance than Matthew.101 Kloppenborg provides logical reasons for the Mark-Q overlaps argument. He states that, it is hardly surprising that tw o independent tellings of the Jesus tradition (Mark and Q) should sometimes narra te the same events or sayings.102 Obviously Q theory has to assume a Q source and, thus, Goodacres accusation of a circular argument is hardly corrective but rather po int of fact. Also, Q versions (Matthew-Mark agreement) of the Markan pericopae almost always include longer sayings additions than their Markan counterparts and thus should be treated primar ily as redactions from Q instead of as Matthean and Lukan interdepende nce. Just as Matthew and Luke often agree in reconstructing the details and sequences of Markan material, so they should equally be expected to do so in the case of Q. Paul Fost er, in his article Is it Possible to Dispense With Q?, also argues that Goodacre has little ground for assuming Lukes preference of 100 Goodacre, 2002, 49-54. 101 Goodacre, 2002, 51. 102 Kloppenborg, 2008, 34. 62


sources or even his knowledge of their respective dates.103 Thus, although helpful in exposing the multi-leveled nature of Matthew and Lukes agreement or disagreement with Mark, arguing that it is not who lly true to say that the authors never agree against Mark, Goodacres critique does not show a case for the MwQH, but rather a case against the 2DH. The core of Goodacres critique of the 2DH lies in his mistrust of the argument regarding the order of Luke. 2DH advocates state that Lukan reliance on Matthew is unsubstantiated by the fact that Luke con tinually takes non-Markan Matthean material from Markan contexts and places them elsewhere in his narrative. Kloppenborg and others have called this th e hypothesis of a madman, bl undering through the synoptic tradition and forming a text w ithout reason or method. Goodacre is quite critical of this, saying, the argument from order depends on misstatements of the evidence, a dubious value judgment, and failures in both the application of redact ion criticism and the appreciation of Lukes literary ability or narrative agenda.104 As both Kloppenborg and Foster argue, however, Goodacre does little to address the heart of th e issue. He spends chapters defending Lukes narr ative preference in choosing ma terial, the 2DHs lack of variety in displaying examples of the phenomenon, and his undervalued creative intelligence. However, none of these observati ons change the fact that Lukes use of Matthew simply to subvert his entire order a nd recreate all his addi tions or ignore them entirely, seems implausible. 103 Paul Foster, Is it Possible to Dispense With Q?, Novum Testamentum XLV, 4, (2003) 318. 104 Goodacre, 2002, 61. 63


In the penultimate chap ter of Goodacres book, he re iterates what has been identified as the most critical strike to the 2DH, namely the minor agreements between Matthew and Luke. As Goodacre states, if Matthew and Luke redacted Mark independently of one another, which is the essential premise of the Q theory, then we should not expect to see the number and quali ty of minor agreemen ts between Matthew and Luke against Mark that in fact we do see.105 The issue is confusing, because, on one hand, grammatical agreement should be expect ed if they are redacting from the same source, Q. The key here, though, as with the ar gument from Mark-Q ove rlaps, is that the two authors agree against their source, Mark. In other word s, they redacted their sources in exactly the same way against the construction of those sources. Goodacre presents three examples of minor agreement in the double tradition, Matthew and Luke. The first two are hardly wo rth mentioning as they quibble over one or two words: the double tradition choice of the word later ( ) in Matt 22.27/Luke 20.32 and the insertion of the words behold ( ) and upon a bed (u o ) in Matt. 9.2/Luke 5.18. However, the third and only other example aside from agreements in use of articles is found in the triple trad ition of Jesus being struck and spat upon by Pharisees. Goodacre illustrates this example with a simple chart that I have copied below106: 105 Goodacre, 2002, 152.106 Goodacre, 2002, 158. 64


As is shown, the agreement occurs quite signi ficantly in the form of a question asked by the Pharisees, Who is it that struck you? Again, the agreement in Greek syntax is remarkable being that Greek ha s no specified order. This combined with the fact that the two authors agree against their source marks a key point for Goodacres case. In fact, the only rebuttals to this argument have been weak, in that they assume textual corruption or unreliability. They say that our modern transl ation of the Greek is quite a late one and that the text may have been changed a nd the gospels rendered more similar. 107 Again, we are faced with a difficult case since neither side seems to provide strong evidence to support their theories. Goodacres often-cite d examples are few and small and the 2DH proponents response to the minor agreements is equally weak. Goodacre is clearly unimpressed with the 2DHs methodology and carefree attitude, and rightly so. He remains str ongest when deconstructing Q rhetoric and 107 Foster, 2003, 326. 65


research, but his evidential points about Qs arguments do not provide enough sway to convincingly posit the MwQH Goodacre hardly gives any positive evidence for Matthew and Lukes dependence under the MwQH, but ra ther negative arguments against Q. The theory remains ultimately reactionary and inconclusive, while offering some strong criticism of 2DH scholars work and forcing them to continue the work of reifying the 2DH rather than the downward slope of nonf actual musing. Thus, si nce we cannot find a reasonable alternative, we are left with no other choice than the hypothetical Q. Or are we? Marcions Gospel: The Solution to the Synoptic Problem The greatest tragedy of modern Q theory is not this prideful fact-making or tendency towards less-than-academic explorations ; rather it is that th ese efforts and the constant concern with jostling to maintain top theory position in the synoptic problem have deadened the desire and search for the document itself, for actual evidence that may render answers and explanations for the issu es. The energy that has been placed in writing commentaries and defenses c ould have been spent discovering the quelle the source(s) behind the synoptic tradition.108 This chapter and entire th esis are a step in that direction. Marcions gospel, shown in the last chapter to be prior to Luke, provides a likely cornerstone for the synoptic tradition. 108 At one point, a camp of Q theorists maintained th at The Gospel of Thomas accounted for the double tradition material of Matthew and Luke, but this theo ry has since been shown untenable. Kloppenborg has summarized the details of the theory and its resolution in chapter 4 of his Q the Earliest Gospel, 2008, 98121. 66


Klinghardt picks up where Goodacre has le ft us, namely in the standstill of theories, from which we are forced to accept the greater probability of the 2DH and its hypothetical Q. He says, Whereas Goodacre s criticism of the 2DH is convincing, his attempt to understand Luke as directly dependant on Matthew is not 109 The solution he provides is as unexpected as it is novel. He suggests we consider Marcions gospel as a main source in the synoptic tradition.110 This conclusion is unexpected because, until recently, scholars generally agreed upon Marcions posterity to Luke. They followed the position advanced by Tertullian that Marcion redacted from Luke to form his own heretical gospel. In light of Klinghardt s recent scholarship, though, the position of Marcionite Priority, as adva nced by Albrecht Ritschel in the 1850s, stands as a more plausible understanding of the textual relationship betw een the two gospels. Thus, Klinghardt shows that a Luke who relied heavily upon Marcions gospel text, escapes many of the issues of the synoptic problem th at have been stated above. I support this thesis and further conclude that Marcion s gospel resembles the hypothetical Q text and, thus, stands as the source of the synoptic tradition rather than simply a source in the mix. Klinghardts article works with five of the specific disagr eements between the 2DH and the MwQH and reveals how Lukes reliance upon Marcion bridges many of the gaps between the theories and provides a framework in which both work together. Although I will not go into detail here, he effectively recreates a historical moment in which Luke used Marcion as his primary source (hence Lukes unique order and exclusion of material), while using Matth ew at some points (hence Lukes minor agreements with Matthew and the Mark-Q overlaps in which Matthew and Luke agree 109 Klinghardt, 2008, 4. 110 Klinghardt, 2008, 5. 67


against Mark). Expanding upon Klinghardts thes is of Marcion as Lukes source, I will show how the hypothetical nature of the Q document directly lines up with Marcions text and, further, how Marcion provides more concrete reasons for these characterizations. Like Klinghardt, I argue that the originality of Marcion provides answers for many of the issues in the s ynoptic problem, but unlike Klinghardt, I see Marcion as the actual embodiment of the hypothetical Q document. Marcions gospel = Q. Looked at this way, Q theory has argued for Marcion all along; a sayings source that bears the same relative order as Luke, focu ses on the divinity of Jesus, supports a Gentile-friendly Christianity, and takes a Cynic perspective on moral living while maintaining an awareness and foreboding about the importance of the apocalyptic age to come. 1. Structure I have defined Q as a document that acc ounts for the double tradition material in Matthew and Luke not present in Mar k. This results in an equation like: (Matthew + Luke) Mark = Q Although 2DH may have started with this type of simple algorithm, the tradition has evolved and created a more complex system, or filter, for determining Qs material. The equation above illustrates what scholars have called, minimal Q. In other words, the narrative fragments rendered from the equa tion were most likely contained in the Q document. Kloppenborg and others have next proposed what are called Q omissions. 68


Just as Matthew and Luke omitted parts of Mark, so the gospel writers probably omitted at least 5-10% of Qs material.111 Equally important are the alleged Q additions, which account for the instances where Luke and Ma tthew disregarded their sources and added an oral anecdote or a piece of their own evidence. These additions/omissions are most prominent when Matthew and Luke differ grea tly in their recording of a double tradition pericope or record a completely novel event or saying. Q theorists argue that one author stuck to the longer/shorter na rrative of Q and the other diverted from it. Moreover, Kloppenborg has identified four sp ecific criteria for determin ing if a certain pericope belongs in Q: ) the saying in question is a component of texts already assigned to Q; 2) when it accords stylistically with other Q texts; 3) where there is no reason to suspect that Matthew or Luke has created the saying; 4) and when good reasons can be adduced why the other evangelist omitted it.112 Using these criteria, The International Q Project has compiled and published a recent 266 verse volume of the gospel in English.113 I will use this text and the related commentaries as the most current source for Q and, thus, will treat the reconstruction as a doc ument (as do the Q theorists). a. Lukan Order Q follows a Lukan narrative order. This is why the most recent constructions of the gospel have used Lukan ve rsification to iden tify the various pericopae. Although Q theorists are hesitant to claim it explic itly, most operate on the assumption that Q 111 Kloppenborg, 2008, 45. 112 Kloppenborg, 2008, 46. 113 James Robinson, Paul Hoffmann, and John Kloppenborg, The Sayings Gospel Q in Greek and English with Parallels from the Gospels of Mark and Thomas (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2002). Hereafter quoted as Q. 69


generally agrees with Luke in order and material more ofte n than Matthew. In fact, as will be shown most clearly in chapter 3, Q had an incredible theological and structural effect on Luke. Likewise, Marcions gospel is quoted by Tertullian and modern day scholars using Lukan versification. If my argu ment in chapter 1 stands, and Marcions text is prior to Lukes, then Marcion constructed the order and content of what would be expanded to be the gospel of Luke. b. No Stable, Nor Virgin, Nor Three Magi Structurally speaking, the most striking f eature of the gospel is its complete lack of a birth narrative for Jesus. Much like Mar k, the story opens with Jesus as an adult and makes no mention of genealogy, birthplace or childhood. The phenomenon stands all the more impressively when compared with Q s alleged gospel descendents, Matthew and Luke, and their detailed account s of Jesus birth. This edi ting decision seems to have more to do with the theorists desire to keep the tenets of Q theory alive, namely it is supposed theology and Q community, and less to do with a realistic e xplanation. If Luke and Matthew edited Q independently, from where did they receive a nearly identical birth narrative? More importantly, w hy did Q omit this material? Marcions gospel, too, has no birth narrativ e. As Tertullian accounts, the gospel opens with a date of Jesus adult ministry, In the fifteenth year of Tiberius Caesar114 Marcion, unlike Q, has a plausible reason for omitting such a large and important narrative selection. Not only was Marcion a docetist, which again means he divorced 114 Tertullian, Against Marcion 4.7. 70


Jesus body from his spirit and saw him as a di vine phantom, but he also saw the Jewish religion as following the evil Creator of the material world. Not that Marcion hated the Jews, per say, but that he wanted no connect ion between their prie stly/prophetic lineage and the Christ of the Unknown God come to oppose the Creator. Thus, a birth narrative that places Jesus in direct line with the re vered king David, as the prophesied messiah of the Jewish people does not fit at all with Marc ions theological and historical convictions. Now, although this does not solve the probl em stated above, namely of the missing source behind the double tradition birth narrative in Matthew and Luke, it does present a strong reason for its absence in Marcion. That being said, Marcion do es provide us with an inkling if we take his accusations to be correct, that the leaders of the church had corrupted and Judaized many of the Ch ristian documents, including his own.115 If this were the case and, if the documents had been doctored, then it seems plausible to say that the birth narrative was inserted by those interested in thwarting Marcions influence and setting the record of Jesus Jewish identity straight. Eith er way, Marcion shares this distinctive lack of birt h story with theorists constructions of Q. c. A Sayings Source Since its early days of development, Q has been dubbed the Sayings Gospel. Initially this went with th e theory that Q consisted primarily of the double tradition material from the formula above; the portions sh ared but absent in Ma rk. This traditional view, however, has been overturned and much ha s been added and removed from that lot. 115 Tertullian, Against Marcion 4.4. 71


Q theorists are beginning to frame Q in mo re traditional, gospel-esque ways and are slowly moving from the Gospel of Thomas, sayings source genre. Kloppenborg, in particular, wants to permit the existence of certain narrative details and healing events as long as they can be explained theoretica lly as a part of Qs communal identity.116 The term, sayings source, then, does not really desc ribe the emerging character of the source. Thus, it would be more accurate to call Q a gospel that focuses on sayings material and contains less overa ll narrative frame than the othe rs, rather than continue to hold to the hypothetical nature of a sayings source. It should not then be surprising that an actual document like Marcions has more than just sayings. Unlike the theoretical document, Q, Marcions text seems more realistic in that it not only has a narrativ e frame around the sayings, but also accounts for several more of the healings found in th e double tradition of Matthew and Luke (7.1117/13.10-17/14.1-6/17.11-19).117 Nonetheless, Marcions document still contains numerically less miracle material and more sayings material than its synoptic counterparts. Again, this lines up with a di stinctively Marcionite theology since it supports his duality of evil materiality and good spirituality. One would expect Marcions Jesus to focus more on aphorisms and teachings and, further, to only use miracles as a means to recognition of his authority and importa nce. It is also interesting to note that Marcion makes even more sense of the omi ssion of Marks two sondergut miracles by Matthew and Luke (Mark 7.33-36/8.22-26). Reading Marcion, the synoptic authors would have found it untenable for Jesus to us e his own saliva in healing or to show 116 Kloppenborg, 2008, 69-72. 117 Marcions text as it appears in the writings of Tertullian and Epiphanius has been translated and edited by James Hill. Thus, quotes of Ma rcions gospel are taken from, Hill, The Gospel of the Lord (AMS Press 1978). 72


difficulty in completing a miracle. The Marcionite Christ was dominant over the lesser, evil creation and its Creator and would not have used bodily means to effect miracles. 2. Theology Q theorists have made great endeavors to explain the variety of material in the Q document and to connect this character to a communal identity. As Burton Mack explains, biblical scholars always as sume a community behind their texts.118 This being the case, they have tried to account for the fact that Q exhibits clear dualisms between advancing peace and common good and expecting the eminent destruction of all things, and between following certain moral tenets a nd abolishing social cu stom and religious law. Mack and others respond to these seemingly paradoxical notions by assuming different stages of the Q community, from its initial stages of community and peace to its later dissentions and overall rejection that led to hate ful and apocalyptic foreboding.119 Kloppenborg, too, argues that these extremities a ll fit within a proper construction of the Q community and its tenets. He says, Q allows us to see Christian origins in new perspectives, to draw new connections, to see historical developments in a different light.120 As we will see, Marcion shows these sa me characteristics and, yet, his stem from a very explicit and logi cal theology rather than from thoughtful musings about a separatist strand of culture or a community that underwent rapid and somewhat contradictory changes in thought. 118 Burton Mack, The Lost Gospel (New York:1993), 41. 119 Mack, 1993, 45. 120 Kloppenborg, 2008, 64. 73


a. A Gentile Christian Gospel To call a gospel Gentile-Christian or Jewish-Christian is to acknowledge the nature of its geography, the audien ce of its claims and the specif ic relation of Jesus to the Jewish people. Matthew, for instance is noted as specifically Jewish because of Jesus focus on the Law (Matthew 5.17/5.27-30/6.16-17 /17.24-27 and more), his delineation of Jews above Gentiles (Matthew 7.6/15.26), a nd his general parable framework that features particularly Jewish narratives. Kloppe nborg argues that Q is also a Jewish gospel in that it centers on Judea, its cities, offici als and people, whereas Lukes Jesus spends a significant amount of time in Gentile locations.121 The problem with this theory is that it only identifies a surface element of the issue. Ye s, the geographical set ting is particularly Jewish, but the events and sayings that occu r in these arenas do not reveal a Jewish character of the gospel. In f act, it is in these Jewish cities where Jesus experiences the most antagonism and it is from these cities that he flees to the desert to give the majority of his teachings and healings. I do not want to misrepresent Kloppenbor gs point, since he argues purely from a location perspective, that Q presents us with a rural, Galilean Jewish gospel122 Thus, I am not refuting his analysis, but rather expanding upon it to ques tion the actual nature of Qs supposed Jewish character. It is not in the locations of Capernaum, Nazareth and Chorazin that Jesus encounters his greatest enemies (3.7-9/7.31-35/11.14-20 and more), but in the desert, outs ide the cities, in the mountaintops and the fields where Jesus does 121 Kloppenborg, 2008, 65-69. 122 Kloppenborg, 2008, 69. 74


most of his teaching and healing (6.20-49/9.57-60/10.2-12/11.2-4 and more). Further, Jesus woes are specifically targeted ag ainst Jerusalem, Chorazin, Bethsaida, and Capernaum (10.13-15/13.34-35). Thus, Kloppenborg seems right in assuming Qs distinctive geographical charac ter and its shaping of the narrative, but this points to a very Gentile-friendly gospel, a gospel target ed against the Jewish locations and their leaders. Being a complete gospel, Marcions text shows this effect in spades as it seems every encounter with a public, Jewish lo cation results in anim osity (4.16-30/7.36-50), while nearly every substantial record of hea lings and teachings occur outside the walls of these cities (4.40-44/5.1-11/5.16-38/6.17-49/9.10-17/ 9.37-45). The material given in the Sermons on the Mount and Plain, both outside the city of Naza reth, are arguably the most distinctive of Jesus moral aphorisms, wher eas Jesus synagogue interactions end in verbal and physical assault against Jesus. One particular event occurs just after the opening of Marcions gospel: And he said to them, "Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, 'Physician, heal yourself; what we have heard you did at Caper'na-um, do here also in your own country.'" A nd he said, Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his own count ry. But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Eli'jah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, wh en there came a great famine over all the land; and Eli'jah was sent to none of them but only to Zar'ephath, in the land of Sidon, a woman who was a widow. And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Eli'sha; and none of them was cleansed, but only Na'aman the Syrian." When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. And they rose up and put him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. But passing through the midst of them he went away.123 123 Marcion, Gospel of the Lord 4.23-30. 75


These examples illustrate th e deeper meaning behind the geography depicted in Q and, further, in Marcions gospel. They both accord in representing public Judea as a place of evil and antagonism to the message of Jesus. Bu t, what of Jesus specific interactions with the Jewish people? As mentioned above the Jesus of Q did not get along with the Jewish authorities. It is hard to truly captu re the intensity of animosity between Jesus and the positioned figureheads of the Jewish religion.124 On the one hand, there are the Pharisees who continually try to humiliate Jesus and plot his demise and on the other there is Jesus subverting all of their values and revealing th eir corruption. Jesus says of these officials, Woe for you, Pharisees, for you tithe mint and ill and cumin and give up justice and mercy and faithfulnessyou purify the outside of the cup and dish, but the inside is full of plunder and dissipation.125 Some of the sayings directly attack the Pharisees, as with the case above, but many are simply against the crowds of Jewish adherents (7.33-34/11.47-51/13.34-35). In one particularly stinging example, Jesus, after healing a Roman centurions slave, said I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith.126 Here Jesus simultaneously admonishes Israel and uplifts the faith of a Gentile. Again, Marcion follows this pattern as well. The Jewish people reject the Christ (4.2829/5.21/5.30/6.11/13.10-17/15.2/22.1-4) and the Christ stands against the people (7.28/7.36-50/9.45/9.54-56/11.37-44). 124 I word this sentence carefully, because, as many have pointed out, the Pharisees were not historically the priestLY class in Judea at this time. They were an ascetic branch of Judaism that held little official authority. Regardless, though, they are positioned as the leaders of the synagogues in the synoptic narratives and so I will operate under that assumption here. 125 Kloppenborg, Q, 2008, 11.41-44. 126 Kloppenborg, Q, 2008, 7.9. 76


Thus, the two gospels, Q and Marcion, bot h share a specifically Gentile-friendly character. Kloppenborg and Mack both have explanations for the phenomenon of a seemingly anti-Jewish Christ in Q. Mack argues that this represents Q2, the portions of Q that came out of its communitys reje ction and discrimination. He says, the apocalyptic imagination served only one purpos e for the people of Q, and that was to guarantee the threat of judgment that they wanted to bring down upon people who had frustrated their mission.127 In other words, the Q comm unity experienced antagonism and retaliated by positioning Jesus as against their opponents. This is one possibility. The other, as proposed by Kloppenborg, is that Q was written to follow Deuteronomistic theology.128 Following his notion of Q as a Jewish gospel, he argues that Q was written to look like a prophetic Jewish text with its cycle of prophetic proclamation, peoples rejection, and divine punishmen t. Thus, the first theory ar gues that the Q community went through a series of changes and record ed them all as a gospe l and the second that the community wanted to connect itself literar ily with the prophetic genre of its Jewish opponents. Both imply a dualism that takes quite a stretch to accept in a fledgling, ascetic community of the first century. Again, Marcion seems to make perfect sens e of this dualism, especially when the material is filled in and shown to be nearly 4 times the length of Q. Marcion argues for the existence of two gods, one that creates and one that redeems the souls of those subjected to creation. That be ing said, Marcions Jesus shoul d be expected to love and teach the Jewish people while hating their practices and rituals directed towards the Creator. Further, Marcions theo logy lends itself to a particularly apocalyptic nature as 127 Mack, 1993, 134. 128 Kloppenborg, 2008, 76-79. 77


Jesus sole message is redemption of the spiritual and the coming destruction of the material. The Unknown God has sent Jesus to usher in the Kingdom, a new mentality, a new hope and to proclaim the ultimate defeat of the Creator god and its creation. In addition to the Marcionite Christs specifi c rejection of ties to Judaism (20.41-44), he further aims to introduce the hidden message of the Unknown God, like leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened,129 to do away with the Creator. b. Social Revolution Scholars most recognize Q for its aphorisms on social and individual life. The sayings are both odd and bold. As Mack argues, they make a comprehensive set of sage observations and unorthodox instructions. Th ey delight in critical comment upon the everyday world and they reco mmend unconventional behavior.130 Kloppenborg similarly argues that Q calls for a retreat from the public life of the city to a more rural, simple life of unity, poverty, and a care-free attitude.131 Q instructs its listeners in reciprocity, saying, to the one who asks of you, give; and from the one who borrows, do not ask back what is yours.132 More famously, Q says, and the way you want people to treat you, that is how you treat them.133 This first lesson of reciprocity is followed by lessons against anxiety and fear. Qs Jesus sa ys, consider the ravens: They neither sow 129 Marcion, Gospel of The Lord 13.20-21. 130 Mack, 1993, 110. 131 Kloppenborg, 2008, 89-96. 132 Kloppenborg, Sayings Gospel, 2008, 6.30. 133 Kloppenborg, Sayings Gospel 2008, 6.31. 78


nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet God feeds them.134 The final important theme in these aphorisms is of povert y. Jesus says, blessed are you po or, for Gods reign is for you.135 Likewise, do not treasure for yourselv es treasures on earth, where moth and gnawing deface and where robbers dig through and rob.136 For Mack, these discourses all follow a pattern of life known as Cynicism. He says, Cynics were known for begging, voluntary poverty, renunciation of needs, severance of family ties, fearless and carefree attitudes, and troublesome public behavior.137 Mack goes on to show how Q truly fits all of these categories. Both these authors, again, seem to provide details of the Q community and show some correlations, but neither gives a satisfying reason for these odd behaviors and ideals. Marcion, with his devaluation of the mate rial would, clearly affirms all of these attributes. Marcion, like Q, has countless di scourses on the invalidity of the material, whether it be family, soci al status, or wealth ( 9.38-42/9.57-62/12.4-5/12.29-34/12.5153/14.26-33/16.13/17.33). Unlike Q, however, these discourses are readily explained by the inherent evil of the physical world. Marcions Jesus even denies his own mother138 and says, in another place, Do you think that I have come to give peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division; for henceforth in one house there will be five divided, three against two and two against three.139 Marcions Jesus wants no association with the material and, thus, admonishes his followers to leave everything, abandon all wealth and 134 Kloppenborg, Q, 2008, 12.24. 135 Kloppenborg, Q, 2008, 6.20. 136 Kloppenborg, Q, 2008, 12.33-34. 137 Mack, 1993, 115. 138 Marcion, Gospel of the Lord 11.27-28. 139 Marcion, Gospel of the Lord 12.51-53. 79


family, shed the oppressive effects of the ma terial world. Once again, this fits directly with Marcions specific theology. It would seem that there is no longer any need to cling to the hypothetical Q document and its equally hypothetical theories Marcions gospel not only preceded Lukes, but it also became Lukes main source for biographical and theological information. Whether or not Luke used Matt hew, many of the concerns about Q theory are quelled by the simple recognition of a Marc ionite presence in the Synoptic tradition. Further, the hypothetical nature of Q has b een shown to have its factual identity in Marcions gospel; the questions answered and the reasons provided. It only remains now to look again at Luke. Now that we have the proper lens through whic h to view its textual history, perhaps we can uncover its Marcionite heritage th rough an examination of its Sondergut material. 80


Conclusion: The Future of Marcionite ResearchIn the months of developing this thesis and working each argument, I have consistently come back to the question of application. If scholars have overlooked Marcion and have diminished the true impact of his gospel and if the Pontics text actually stood as the cornerstone of the synoptic tradition, then what effect does this have on synoptic studies and Christian hi story? It seems that this th esis, at base level, argues for a touch of heresy in the portrait of orthodoxy. Thus, we must stop holding to a singular narrative of Christian identity and em brace the plurality, the spectrum of beliefs and practices that have formed the still diverse system that exists today. In addition to a broadened perspective of Christianity, this thesis allows a different lens through which to view the gospels. Although many have said it and though the fact is obvious to those that have devoted their lives to gospel scholarship, the fact that these texts represent vastly differing theo logies and portraits of the historical Jesus has still been overlooked. The pericopae that were chosen, the way they were placed within the greater narrative, th e accounting of specific details all point to different authors with different ideals and agendas. In fact the grouping of the synoptic gospels may be misleading as it conveys a sense of unity and singularity where none truly exists. If we accept Klinghardts thesis of Ma rcionite priority to Luke and we hypothesize that Marcions gospe l has a place in the Synoptic tradition by providing a source behind Matthew and Lukes double tr adition material, we can then move to investigate Luke as a product of Marcions text. Luke displays a particular character in the sondergut material and this charac ter comes from a textual and theological 81


relationship with Marcion and hi s gospel. First, Luke appears as a Gentile-gospel in that it both criticizes the Jewish leaders and re ligious system and c ontains stock Gentile characters throughout. Secondly, women dominate the gospel narrative in ways that they do not elsewhere with a greater number of fe male-centered healings, parables and other events. And, finally, the Lukan Jesus not only devalues wealth and status, but he specifically targets the wealthy and their ignorance through several sondergut teachings and parables. These themes are most reflected in the specific sonde rgut pericopae: Good Samaritan, Mary and Martha, and Rich Fool They elucidate th e connection between Marcion and Luke by revealing the definitive character of Lukes Jesus, a figure that devalues material goods, social status, and religious affiliation and, inversely, esteems poverty, humility, and spiritual universality. Th is is, likewise, the overall Lukan portrait espoused by a majority of synoptic scholars.140 Matthew and Mark portray a critical attitude towards Je sus relationship with the Jewish people by addressing the hypocrisy of the religious leaders and the need for repentance amongst all Jews, especially with the introduction of Matthews woes (Matt. 11.20-24/23.15-39). The evangelists al so address the rigidity of the laws and practices in the Jewish religion and their l ack of faith. For instance, Matthew includes the pericope of Jesus healing the centurions slave, claiming, not even in Israel have I found such faith. (Matt. 8.5-10) Nevertheless, Luke adds depth and intensity to the ideals of Gentile equality and Jewish condemnation by includi ng the active participation of Samaritans, which is particularly evident in his Good Samaritan parable. 140 Eric Franklin, Luke, The Oxford Bible Commentary: The Gospels Ed. John Muddiman and John Barton (Oxford: Oxford University Press 2010), 134-139. 82


Lukes inclusion of the Samaritan people in these pericopae shows his particular theological agenda in bridging the gap betw een Jews and Gentiles and ushering in the Kingdom of God that includes both. The Good Samaritan pericope (Luke10.29-37) makes this point clear in that the religious leaders are shamed by the Samaritans faith and kindness. Here the Samaritan is us ed as the object lesson for kindness and inclusiveness, two attributes the Lukan Jesus advocates. Several articles have recently addressed the social and political ramificati ons of Lukes Good Samaritan pericope and future analyses of the various authors ar guments would only strengthen the case for Marcions influence over Luke.141 Likewise, Luke portrays a critical attit ude toward both the wealthy and those who impose gender binaries as limiting factors. Both of these emphases directly relate to Marcions own convictions concerning the devaluation of the material world and its categories and attachments. The parable of the Rich Fool (Luke 12.13-21) exposes the weakness of a rich mans reasoning and planni ng, revealing the wort hlessness of worldly wealth. Among others, Thomas Stegman has shown the social implicatio ns of this parable and its cognates in the gospel of Luke.142 As for the gender construction in Luke, the pericope of Mary and Mart ha (Luke 10.38-42) highlights ge nder by recording Jesus interaction with two sisters w ho invite him into their home. One sister talks with Jesus while the other works and Jesus ends up exhorti ng Martha, the working sister, to rest and listen to his words. Mary Dangelo and others have argued for variou s interpretations of 141 See Michel Gourgues, The Priest, The Levite, and the Samaritan Revisited: A Critical Note on Luke 10:31-35, Journal of Biblical Literature Vol. 117.4 (1998), Bruce Longenecker, The Story of the Samaritan and the Inkeeper (Luke 10:3035): A Study in Character Rehabilitation, Biblical Interpretation, vol. 17.4 (2009), and Michael Knowles, What was the Victim Wearing? Literary, Economic, and Social Contexts for the Parable of the Good Samaritan, Biblical Interpretation, Vol. 12.2 (2004). 142 Thomas Stegman, Reading Luke 12:13-34 as an Elaboration of a Chreia: How Hermogenes of Tarsus Sheds Light on Lukes Gospel, Novum Testamentum 49 (2007). 83


this pericope and other instances of female ag ency in the gospel of Luke, but all seem to agree that Luke presents many unique cases of female action whereas other gospels are silent on this matter.143 Ultimately, there seems to be a viable case for an equalized role of women in the gospel, a genderl ess view of discipleship rather than the more patriarchal narratives of Matthew and Mark. Revealing Lukes direct connection to Marcion, shows that he was influenced by a very different set of theological issues th an Mark or the others. Luke had to wrestle with Marcions text to salvage what he t hought to be accurate and true, while framing it in such a way as to preserve things like Jesus humanity. Thus, this th esis also argues for a very distinctive Luke amongs t the other gospels. Future research might look more at this argument for a Marcionite character in canonical Luke, following the examples outlined here. Positioning Luke as the canonical remn ant of a Marcionite orthodoxy, I have argued that Luke followed Marcion, redacted his text, and produced a gospel narrative that reflected Marcions theological concerns A future study would also look to the other gospels, Matthew and John, which came after Marcion and see what ways they were influenced by the Pontic. It will also be necessary for Marcions gospel text to be connected to the oral culture of his time to s ee what influences outside his theology led to the production of his sayings material and its predominate presence in the gospel. Finally, though there has been some work done, more careful attention must be given to Marcions connection to Cerdo and others who may have influenced his theology. 143 Mary Dangelo, Women in Luke-Acts, Journal of Biblical Literature, vol. 109.3 (1990). 84


Because of Marcions lack of importance in bi blical scholarship, these issues have been overlooked, but these can no longer stand with the evidence pr esented in this thesis. Marcion of Pontus was more than a shipbuilder and more than a wealthy merchant. He was more than a writer and a Roman citizen. Marcion was more than a heretic. The man acknowledged with these title s does not in any way compare with the true, deeper portrait of Marc ion and these short-sighted depictions have done a great injustice both to the man himself and to Christ ian history. This thesis has taken as its task to right that wrong and restor e truth and scholarly interest in Marcion and his gospel. Marcion of Pontus was a founding member of Christian orthodoxy. He wrote the text that served as Lukes main source in his canonical gospel and he began a movement of churches around Rome that la sted for centuries and has ha d impact up to this day. This narrative of Marcion, if accepted, could gui de modern historians to a greater understanding of Christian iden tity past and present. 85


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