Thursday, October 25, 2012

Marcion and Aquila [Part Five]

The following extract comes from Sebastian Moll's book about Marcion which I have previously noted is insipid, not worth reading and develops from the mind of a two-dimensional thinker.  Nevertheless as my grandmother once noted, you can learn something from anyone - even someone incapable or original or penetrating insight.  In this case it might be important to take note of why most students of Marcionitism don't always accept our proposed thesis:

Several scholars have proposed a connection between Marcion and his contemporary and countryman Aquila, a translator of the Jewish Scriptures into Greek. It is true that comparing these two men "we find an almost identical preference for the literal and historical interpretation of the Old Testament which is in marked contrast to the prevailing exegesis alike of Hellenistic Judaism and the catholic Christianity of the time." Although a connection between the two men cannot be excluded, it is certainly not necessary in order to explain Marcion's attitude. It goes without saying that Marcion did not read the Old Testament with the eyes of an orthodox Jew, as any Jew would have been appalled to see his God described the way Marcion did. But if this is the case, the whole idea of dependence becomes dubious. As with Marcion's relation to the Apostle Paul, it seems questionable to assume that one man took over substantial ideas from the other when both came to the most different results possible: Aquila turned to orthodox Judaism, Marcion became a radical Christian dualist. Besides all this, we might reasonably ask whether understanding a text literally, which would presumably be the first instinct of any reader, is really something so extraordinary that one has to be influenced by a particular exegetical movement to come up with the idea. [The Arch-Heretic Marcion p. 79]

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