Subject: All about Marcion
Date: Wed, 14 Jan 1998 00:18:23 +0000
To: "Hebraic Heritage Newsgroup"<>


From:          Solomon
To:            <>
Subject:      All about Marcion

                                 Facts About Marcion

 Marcion was born around 100 C.E. (A.D.) at Sinope, a seaport located on the
Black Sea coast of Asia Minor. His father was a leader in the church of
Sinope. Marcion grew up in a Christian home, but it was most probably not
the same type of Christianity known today. It appears that Marcion remained
in fellowship with the church as long as he lived in Asia Minor. Many think
that he shared his thoughts with leading churchmen of that region, such as
Polycarp of Smyrna and Papias of Hierapolis. Sometime after 138 C.E., during
the time of Antoninus Pius, Marcion traveled to Rome, the imperial city.
When he arrived in Rome he made a generous contribution to the church.
Tradition says that he was a ship owner and very wealthy. He became very
active in the church and began to develop and teach his own theology. We do
not know if he originated this or if he simply taught the Christianity of
his home area. The Roman church leadership was so disturbed by his doctrine
that they not only actively rejected it, but even refunded his contribution.
However, their reaction didn't end Marcion's influence.

As a devoted Christian, Marcion made his way to Rome
(c.140) and attached himself to the church there. He associated with the
Syrian Gnostic, Cerdo, who was in Rome, and developed unorthodox views that
brought him into conflict with the Roman church. Marcion was excommunicated
(c.144), but his beliefs continued to gain wider and wider acceptance.

The main thesis of Marcion's system
was that the gospel of Yeshua (Yeshua) is entirely a gospel of love to the
exclusion of the Mosaic Law. He believed that the original gospel of Yeshua
(Yeshua) had been corrupted by Judaizing tendencies among the earliest
disciples and that the Old Testament had no validity for Christians (let me
remind you that this is the Bible Yeshua (Yeshua) used). According to
Marcion, only Saint Paul had correctly understood the original teaching of
Yeshua (Yeshua) . Marcion's distinction between the Old Testament G-d of
law and Paul's G-d of love has led to his being called a Gnostic.

                                   Marcion's Belief System

 He regarded Paul as the only faithful apostle of Christ. In fact, he
maintained that the original apostles corrupted Yeshua' (Yeshua) teachings
by mixing it with legalism. This is the same message often preached in the
churches today when we hear "Replacement Theology" or that we are no longer
under the Law (Torah-teaching of G-d) but under grace alone. I challenge you
to reconcile that statement with Yeshua (Yeshua) in Matt. 5:17 and following
where he states that the Law will never pass away until heaven and earth
pass away.

Marcion rejected the Jewish Bible completely, and it is that "replacement
theology" that can be found in the majority of Christian churches today. I
find it rather amazing that shortly after the first century the Gentile
church in
Rome rejected "anti-Semitism and anti-Judaism" but would
espouse it within another century! Marcion distinguished the God of the Old
Testament from the God of the New Testament and the Gospels. Marcion, being
influenced by Persian dualism (two forces in the universe, one good and one
bad, who are constantly fighting it out for supremacy) believed that these
two individual deities, each within its own independent existence. First,
was the Creator God who created the material universe. This was the
God of Israel, which was a totally different God from the Father spoken of
in the
Gospel of Christ. The Father God was the good and merciful God and
the God of Israel and the Old Testament was the bad God.

Marcion's understanding followed the same line as that of the Gnostic
schools. They taught that the God who made the material world was an
inferior deity. He was inferior in both status and morality alike. The
superior deity or the supreme God was pure spirit. This idea is reflected in
doctrines which teach that flesh is evil and spirit is good.

After being rejected by the church leadership in Rome, Marcion withdrew from
the Roman church and established a church of his own. His church survived
for several generations. A unique aspect of his church was that it
maintained its membership solely through conversion. Celibacy was obligatory
for every member. Another interesting teaching of his was that there would
be no discrimination against female members in matters of privilege or

                                    Marcion's Anti-Semitism

 Marcion's new scriptures included no part of the Old Testament (Jewish
Bible) and were written in Greek. For Marcion the Old Testament had passed
away and was replaced by his "New Testament." Have you heard this same thing
preached in your churches before?  For Marcion, the church was to replace
the synagogue, grace was to replace the
Law (Torah), pagan holidays were to replace the Holy Days of the Lord as
found in Lev. 23, spiritual Israel was to replace physical Israel, and the
church was Israel's replacement and was now to receive all that had been
promised to Israel. This is replacement theology at its best.