Does 1 Cor 2:7 in Marcion mention the demiurge?

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Giuseppe
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Does 1 Cor 2:7 in Marcion mention the demiurge?

Post by Giuseppe » Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:49 pm

Ephesians 3:9
...and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things.

τοῦ μυστηρίου τοῦ ἀποκεκρυμμένου ἀπὸ τῶν αἰώνων ἐν τῷ θεῷ τῷ τὰ πάντα κτίσαντι
Marcion read:

...and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden from God, who created all things.

So the sense is clear in a marcionite reading: the demiurge didn't know the mystery.

Now, I would like to question the marcionite reading of the my preferred verses of all the NT, 1 Corinthians 2:6-8:
6 We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7 No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. 8 None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

We are said (surely Stuart may confirm) that Marcion had these verses precisely how they stand now. But what if also there the God who is mentioned is not the Good God but the creator god? In particular, was really a marcionite thing to say the fact that the Good God revealed a hidden mystery (etc etc) for sake of the Christians only now? In other terms, is the predestination a Marcionite thing? My suspicion is that the predestination is more a feature of the creator god, who 'planned' the salvation [=possession of a better knowledge] of some people just when he created the his world.

So a speculative reconstruction may be the following:

6 We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7 No, we declare wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden from God before time began. 8 None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.


6 σοφίαν δὲ λαλοῦμεν ἐν τοῖς τελείοις, σοφίαν δὲ οὐ τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου οὐδὲ τῶν ἀρχόντων τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου τῶν καταργουμένων·
7 ἀλλὰ λαλοῦμεν σοφίαν ἐν μυστηρίῳ, τὴν ἀποκεκρυμμένην τῷ θεῷ πρὸ τῶν αἰώνων·
8 ἣν οὐδεὶς τῶν ἀρχόντων τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου ἔγνωκεν, εἰ γὰρ ἔγνωσαν, οὐκ ἂν τὸν κύριον τῆς δόξης ἐσταύρωσαν.


So now the Good God's wisdom is opposed directly to the demiurge's wisdom and his rulers. The sense is the same of original Ephesians 3:9: even before the creation of the his world, the demiurge didn't know the wisdom of the Good God, and so also the his rulers.
Nihil enim in speciem fallacius est quam prava religio. -Liv. xxxix. 16.

Stuart
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Re: Does 1 Cor 2:7 in Marcion mention the demiurge?

Post by Stuart » Tue Aug 14, 2018 9:57 pm

The verse probably stood as written. My notes on the reconstruction below, with words fully attested in dark blue for clarity

2:6 σοφίαν δὲ λαλοῦμεν ἐν τοῖς τελείοις, [1]
But wisdom we speak among the perfected,

σοφίαν δὲ οὐ τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου οὐδὲ τῶν ἀρχόντων τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου τῶν καταργουμένων· [2]
but wisdom not of this age nor the rulers of this age, those (who are) being annulled

2:7 ἀλλὰ λαλοῦμεν θεοῦ σοφίαν ἐν μυστηρίῳ, τὴν ἀποκεκρυμμένην,
but we speak God’s wisdom in mystery, that was hidden,

ἣν προώρισεν ὁ θεὸς πρὸ τῶν αἰώνων εἰς δόξαν ἡμῶν, [3]
which God preordained before the ages for our glory;

2:8 ἣν οὐδεὶς τῶν ἀρχόντων τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου ἔγνωκεν·
which none of the rulers of this age had known,

εἰ γὰρ ἔγνωσαν, οὐκ ἂν τὸν κύριον τῆς δόξης ἐσταύρωσαν. [4]
for if they had knew, they would not have crucified the lord of glory.

Sources:
[1] AM 5.6.1 Igitur per haec omnia ostendit cuius dei sapientiam loquatur inter perfectos
[2] Epiphanius P 42.134 τῶν ἀρχόντων τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου τῶν καταργουμένων
[3] AM 5.6.2 sed de significantiis obumbrata, in quibus sapientia dei delitescebat, inter perfectos narranda suo in tempore, proposita vero in proposito dei ante saecula
[4] AM 5.6.6 Sed quia subicit de gloria nostra, quod eam nemo ex principibus huius aevi scierit, ceterum si scissent nunquam dominum gloriae crucifixissent, argumentatur haereticus quod principes huius aevi dominum, alterius scilicet dei Christum, cruci confixerint, ut et hoc in ipsum recidat creatorem. Tertullian reads οὐδέποτε "never" for οὐκ "not" with Ephrem OL:KDI Vg (Clabeaux suspects a pious scribe)

God is the High God, father of Christ. When it is not, then a qualifier is used, such as "God of this Age" or "ruler of the earth" or "prince of the heavens" or some such. Verse 2:10-11 make it clear God here is the father of Jesus, and there is no problem for the Marcionite reader. I concluded that 1 Corinthians 2:1-8, 10-16 stood as written. Only verse 2:9 was added later by the Catholic editor.

The rulers of the age would have been understood, by Gnostics and Marcionites, to have been under the control of the Demiurge. But a Catholic would read the same passage and see the rulers of the earth as being under Satan, not the Creator. Verse 2:9 gives the justification for YHWH to have hidden the mystery before Jesus came (i.e., to sort the good from the wicked), which the writer of 1 Corinthians sees.

Note: this passage and others in Paul which speak of a hidden mystery, seem to be at odds with Marcionite theology. They are more aligned with the thought in John 8:58 and John 1:1, where Christ was in the world from the beginning, and not coming into the world new and unannounced as is the Marcionite (hence the 4th Gospel presents John the Baptist as predicting Jesus yet not being of the Jewish God himself). This passage is an example of why I am convinced the Marcionite version of the Pauline collection is no more Marcionite than the Catholic collection is Catholic. Rather it was a collection of tracts from various writers with various theologies; albeit the Marcionite version almost exclusively from sects (Monastic groups IMO) which we associate strictly with Gnostic type heretics, hence they were acceptable enough for the Marcionites to use. Or as they say about horseshoes and hand grenades, close enough will do.

This point about diversity in the collection, and the use of exegesis to make it usable for your theology was no different then as it is now. People who try to discredit the Marcionite version by claiming it is not Marcionite enough are working under several unstated fallacies about composition, and have great difficulty grasping the subtleties the data tells us.

I think you are working under some of those same assumptions, trying to change the wording of the passage to be more Marcionite, when it may well have come from a similar but different theology more akin to that of the the Gospel of John's first edition. A Marcionite could have used that material to make his sects claims, just as a Valentinian could or Johannine. We see this in Nag Hammadi where some Gnostic monks of an unknown sect kept a variety of books from many different sects, some of which must have been written by authors with much different views. But it was close enough. The same is true with our bible today. It came from many sects, but our Catholic based sects all find it suitable. It doesn't matter if 1 Corinthians doesn't completely line up with Marcionite opinion anymore than John not fully lining up with Valentinian or Matthew with Catholic. It was good enough and revered enough to be useful.You don't have to change everything into a single sect as author for all of it.
Last edited by Stuart on Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:10 am, edited 7 times in total.
“’That was excellently observed’, say I, when I read a passage in an author, where his opinion agrees with mine. When we differ, there I pronounce him to be mistaken.” - Jonathan Swift

Giuseppe
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Re: Does 1 Cor 2:7 in Marcion mention the demiurge?

Post by Giuseppe » Wed Aug 15, 2018 5:10 am

At any case, Stuart, in the your view, would you dare to bet that the original author of this passage was, if not marcionite, at least a Gnostic (about the his conception of the God as different from the creator), as more probable than an author who identified God with the creator ?
Nihil enim in speciem fallacius est quam prava religio. -Liv. xxxix. 16.

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