Thursday, January 2, 2014

Why a Tip from von Harnack Convinced Me to Take Seriously the Idea that Parts of 1 Corinthians and 2 Corinthians Might Have Been Originally Fused Together

Let's look at the original reference from the Acta Archelai that started me taking seriously this phenomenon.  It appears as follows (English first and then barbarous Latin second): 

Thus, too, on the authority of an apostle, he endeavoured to establish the position that the law of Moses is the law of death, and that the law of Jesus, on the contrary, is the law of life. For he based that assertion on the passage which runs thus: “In which also may God make us able ministers of the New Testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter kills, but the spirit gives life. But if the ministration of death, engraven in letters on the stones, was made in glory, so that the children of Israel could not steadfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which glory was to be done away; how shall not the ministration of the Spirit be rather glorious? For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more does the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory. For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excels. For if that which shall be done away is glorious, much more that which remains is glorious.” (2 Corinthians 3:6 - 11) And this passage, as you are also well aware, occurs in the second Epistle to the Corinthians. Besides, he added to this another passage out of the first epistle, on which he based his affirmation that the disciples of the Old Testament were earthly and natural; and in accordance with this, that "flesh and blood could not possess the kingdom of God." (1 Corinthians 15:50) He also maintained that Paul himself spoke in his own proper person when he said: “If I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.” Further, he averred that the same apostle made this statement most obviously on the subject of the resurrection of the flesh

Et quid plura dicam? multis et variis adsertionibus huiuscemodi dogmata ab eo summo nisu atque summo studio adfirmabantur. Nam ex auctoritate apostoli Moysi legem legem esse mortis conabatur adserere; Iesu vero legem legem esse vitae, per id quod ait: In quo et idoneos nos fecit deus ministros novi testamenti non littera, sed spiritu. Littera, enim, occidit, spiritus autem vivificat. Quod si ministratio mortis in litteris formatum in lapidibus factum in gloria ita ut non possent intendere filii Istrahel in faciem Moysi propter gloriam vultus eius quae destruitur quomodo non magis ministratium Spiritus erit in gloria? Si enim ministratium damnationis gloria est multo magis abundabit ministerium iustitiae ad gloriam. Neque enim glorificatum est quod gloriusum factum est in hac parte propter eam quae supereminet gloriam; si enim quod destruitur per gloriam multo magis quod manet in gloria est." (2 Corinthians 3:1 - 7)  Sed haec quidem, sicut ipse nosti, in secunda ad Corinthios epistula. Àddit autem ex prima epistula, terrenos esse dicens discipulos veteris testamenti et animales et ideo carnem et sanguinem regnum dei possidere non posse (1 Cor. 15, 50); ipsum quoque Paulum ex propria sua persona dicebat adserere id quod ait: "Si ea quae destruxi iterum aedifico, praevarimtorem me constituo." sed et illud eundem ipsum evidentissime de carnis circumcisione dixisse; non esse Iudaeum eum qui (in manifesto est neque quae) in manifesto in carne est circumcisio neque secundum litteram legem quiequam utilitatis retinere. (Acta Arch 45).

Now there are a lot of nitpicky things I can say about the translation.  For some reason the Latin 'carnis circumcisione' has been rendered "resurrection of the flesh" in the English translation when Hegemonius (translating from the Greek which was a translation of the original Syriac) has 'circumcision.'  Why did the English translator do this?  Because he was obviously stumped by the digression. 

Nevertheless there is a clear digression.  The author here is an otherwise unknown presbyter named Diodorus from a village near Harran, Osroene where a certain Archelaus is bishop.  Diodorus is writing about some of the blasphemous things that the arch-heretic Mani is spouting.  The letter begins a second section in the Acta Archelai which focuses on the apparent Manichaean claim that the Law of Moses was antithetical to the Law of Jesus. 

Harnack noted that the material in this section seems to have something to do with the Marcionite antitheses. 

In welchem Umfange die Worte „Mani bei Hegemonius, Acta Archelai (Brief des Diodor S. 64 ff) auf Marcion zurückgehen, läßt sich nicht mehr feststellen (Köm. 4, 2 stand nicht in M.s Apostolikon): „Ex auctoritate apostoli Moysi legem legem esse mortis conabatur adserere, Iesu vero legem legem esse vitae, per id quod ait (folgt II Kor. 3, 6ff). addit autem ex prima epistula terrenos esse dicens discipulos Veteris Testamenti et animales et ideo carnem et sanguinem regnum dei possidere non posse (I Kor. 15, 50); ipsum quoque Paulum ex propria sua persona dicebat adserere id quod ait (folgt Gal. 2, 18: „Wenn ich das, was ich aufgelöst habe, wiederum baue" usw.) ... et rursum quod Abraham habet gloriam, sed non apud deum (Rom. 4, 2) .... sed et alia multa legi obtrectans inserebat, eo quod lex ipsa peccatum sit . . . et usque ad Johannem igitur aiebat lex et prophetae" (Luk. 16, 16). Sicher gehört zum größten Teil das Material den „Antithesen" an, welches sich in der Schrift eines Unbekannten aus der Secte der Patricianer (Neu-Marcioniten) findet und das Augustin in seiner Gegenschrift („Contra adversarium legis et Prophetarum") gerettet hat (s. Beilage VIII). Das meiste von dem Gebotenen ist uns nicht neu; das Neue läßt sich nicht durchweg für M. in Anspruch nehmen, doch ist es hier heranzuziehen. (p. 135)

What Harnack does here is acknowledge again the connection here with the Marcionite antitheses but more importantly to a text of Augustine which seems to follow a similar order.  The work is called  Contra adversarium legis et Prophetarum and is directed against an anonymous Marcionite or 'New Marcionite' as Harnack calls him.

Ambrosiaster furnishes the information that the followers of Patricius ('Patricians') denied the Incarnation, and forbade marriage and certain foods — points which, in Ambrosiaster' s view, pretty much summed up not only Patricianism, but Marcionitism. Augustine's biographer Possidus didn't know how to classify the treatise.   But the majority opinion of scholarship is that the treatise was directed against an anonymous Christian who held fast to a form of the religion related to Marciontism.

The text has been translated into English and I have found a limited Google reference to some individual lines of the text.  But it is Harnack who notes that in the order of one section of Augustine's rebuttal follows the order of the Acta Archelai - i.e. 1 Corinthians 15:50 and then 2 Corinthians 3:7 and surrounding material.  It is at this point that we should go back to the Latin of Diodorus's original letter:

sed haec quidem, sicut ipse nosti, in secunda ad Corinthios epistula addit autem ex prima epistula ...

But these things are indeed, as he himself you know, in the second letter to the Corinthians, he (Mani) adds, however, from the first letter

If it wasn't for the fact that the parallel argument develops in Contra adversarium legis et Prophetarum, and I forgot Harnack's original reference to this section, I might have ignored the idea that some underlying 'ancient Marcionite literary structure' might be rescued from the Catholic New Testament. 

But then I happened to have Petty's translation of De Recta in Deum Fide lying around and again remembered that there is a curious divergence in the Latin and Greek recensions in the conclusion of the text where Marinus begins to sound more and more like a Marcionite.  Indeed when I looked again at the work, we see a very similar ordering.  Adamantius and Marinus the alleged follower of Bardesan begin to argue over the famously 'antithetical' sections of 1 Corinthians 15:38 - 53 but then as a final clinch to the argument about the correct reading of the material, Adamantius cites the same section from 2 Corinthians all the way down to chapter 5.

I will leave aside my long time suspicion that the present De Recta in Deum Fide was a reworking of an original debate between Megetheus and Adamantius (something that I see reflected in Megetheus's 'popping up' throughout the treatise and Anastasius of Sinai's summary of a variant text as well as other sources).  The next question that started to race through my mind was the shape of the proposed 'antitheses' that I saw existing underneath 1 Corinthians and 2 Corinthians.  The reference in Acta Archelai makes it possible that the antithetical material in 1 Corinthians followed at the end of 2 Corinthians 3:11.  Indeed the very same thing shows up in Archelaus's written response to Diodorus.

We read in the section that follows that Archelaus follows the same pattern of citing 2 Corinthians first and then other material from the 'antithetical section' in 1 Corinthians 15:

I shall speak now with the utmost brevity of the veil of Moses and the ministration of death. For I do not think that these things at least can introduce very much to the disparagement of the law. The text in question, then, proceeds thus: “But if the ministration of death, engraven in letters on the stones, was made in glory, so that the children of Israel could not steadfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which glory was to be done away; ” and so on. Well, this passage at any rate acknowledges the existence of a glory on the countenance of Moses, and that surely is a fact favourable to our position. And even although it is to be done away. and although there is a veil in the reading of the same, that does not annoy me or disturb me, provided there be glory in it still. Neither is it the case, that whatever is to be done away is reduced thereby under all manner of circumstances to a condition of dishonour. For when the Scripture speaks of glory, it shows us also that it had cognizance of differences in glory. Thus it says: “There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differs from another star in glory.” Although, then, the sun has a greater glory than the moon, it does not follow that the moon is thereby reduced to a condition of dishonour. And even thus, too, although my Lord Jesus Christ excels Moses in glory, as the lord excels the servant, it does not follow from this that the glory of Moses is to be scorned. For in this way, too, we are able to satisfy our hearers, as the nature of the word itself carries the conviction with it in that we affirm what we allege on the authority of the Scriptures themselves, or verily make the proof of our statements all the clearer also by illustrations taken from them. Thus, although a person kindles a lamp in the night-time, after the sun has once risen he has no further need of the paltry light of his lamp, on account of that effulgence of the sun which sends forth its rays all the world over; and yet, for all that, the man does not throw his lamp contemptuously away, as if it were something absolutely antagonistic to the sun; but rather, when he has once found out its use, he will keep it with all the greater carefulness. Precisely in this way, then, the law of Moses served as a sort of guardian to the people, like the tamp, until the true Sun, who is our Saviour, should arise, even as the apostle also says to us: “And Christ shall give you light.” We must look, however, to what is said further on: “Their minds were blinded: for until this day remains the same veil in the reading of the Old Testament; it is untaken away, because it is done away in Christ. For even unto this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart. Nevertheless, when it shall turn to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away. Now the Lord is that Spirit.” What, then, is meant by this? Is Moses present with us even unto this day? Is it the case that he has never slept, that he has never gone to his rest, that he has never departed this life? How is it that this phrase “unto this day” is used here? Well, only mark the veil, which is placed, where he says it is placed, on their hearts in their reading. This, therefore, is the word of censure upon the children of Israel, because they read Moses and yet do not understand him, and refuse to turn to the Lord; for it is He that was prophesied of by Moses as about to come. (ibid 48)

One can argue of course that Archelaus is just imitating or following the pattern established by Mania and Diodorus's original response to it.  In this sense the ordering here adds nothing to the discussion.

The fact however that  Contra adversarium legis et Prophetarum has 1 Corinthians 15:50 first and then the material from 2 Corinthians chapter 3 may point to an alternative suggestion that must be considered - perhaps the argument in De Recta in Deum Fide at least and some of our other sources are merely reflecting the order of the canon - i.e. material from the end of 1 Corinthians followed by another citation from the beginning of the next letter, 2 Corinthians.  This seems to be the situation in Tertullian's Adversus Marcionem Book Five where the discussion allegedly follows the order of the Marcionite canon.  We read (ignoring the chapter headings which were clearly added later):

Such will be the change in the flesh—but flesh raised up again. Else if there is going to be no flesh, how shall it be clothed upon with incorrup- tion and immortality? So then, made into something else by that change, it will obtain the kingdom of God, being no longer flesh and blood, but the body which God will have given to it. And so the apostle rightly says, Flesh and blood shall not obtain the kingdom of God, for he ascribes that to the change which ensues upon the resurrection. So if then will be brought to pass the word which is written in the Creator's scriptures, O death, where is thy victory, or, thy striving? O death where is thy sting?—and this is a word of the Creator, spoken by the prophete—the fact itself, the kingdom, will belong to him whose word will come to pass in the kingdom. Nor are his thanks for having enabled us to gain the victory—over death, he means—addressed to any other god than the God from whom he has accepted that word of exultation over death, that word of triumph.

If through the fault of men led astray the word 'god' has become a common noun, in that in the world both speech and belief are of gods in the plural, yet Blessed be the God of our Lord Jesus Christ will be understood to refer to none other than the Creator, who has both blessed all things—you have it in Genesisa—and is blessed by all things—you have it in Daniel. Likewise, if 'father' is a possible description of a god with no offspring, the Creator has a far better right to it; yet even so, Father of mercies has to be the same one who is described as tender-hearted and pitiful and abundant in mercy. You have it in Jonah,c along with that actual instance of the mercy he showed to the Ninevites when they besought him. He is ready to be moved by the tears of Hezekiah,d ready also to forgive Naboth's blood to Ahab the husband of Jezebel when he asks for pardon,e ready at once to forgive David's sin when he confesses it,f preferring in fact a sinner's repentance to his deaths—and all this because of his disposition to mercy. If Marcion's god has either done or said anything of this sort, I shall acknowledge him as a father of mercies. But if Marcion attaches this title to him only from the time he was revealed, as though he has been the father of mercies only since he undertook to deliver the human race—well, since the time they allege he was revealed we too deny his existence. He cannot therefore attach any attribute to one whom he only brings into evidence while he attaches some attribute to him. Only if his existence were previously acknowledged could attributes be attached to him. That which is alleged as an attribute is an accident, and accidents are preceded by evidence of the object to which they occur,—and especially so when someone else is already in possession of that which is being ascribed to him of whose existence there has been no previous evidence. There will be the more cause for denying his existence, the more that which is adduced as proof of his existence is the property of one already shown to exist. So also the New Testament will belong to none other than him who made that promise: even if the letter is not his, yet the Spirit is: herein lies the newness. Indeed he who had engraved the letter upon tables of stone is the same who also proclaimed, in reference to the Spirit

It would seem that here too there is what could be argued to be a similar transition from the 'antithetical' section in 1 Corinthians to the same material linked together from 2 Corinthians chapter 3 in Mani's aninomian argument. 

Of course the major difference here of course is that Tertullian clearly recognizes the first and second letter of Corinthian as distinct letters.  After all, his discussion of all the important letters begins with a curious pattern of making reference to the greeting and diving into a later section of the epistle.  To this end, the example of Adversus Marcionem Book Five seems to indicate a potential 'false positive' insofar as we have an early author who makes reference to the two sections of interest to us in a context which clearly precludes the possibility that he is making reference to an older Marcionite antitheses which joined both epistles.  Or does it?

For if we were to have just stopped at this point in Tertullian's discussion of 2 Corinthians we would miss a sudden 'turning back' to the antithetical section of 1 Corinthians - this time ostensibly during a discussion of the material in our canonical Second Epistle to the Corinthians. Unlike other Church Fathers who follow a more natural "line by line" discussion of the Pauline Epistles, Tertullian's refutation of the Marcionite interpretation of a set of commonly held letters jumps over entire sections of material and seems to focus in meticulous fashion on particular sections in which the Marcionites apparently took great interest. 

This doesn't mean however that Tertullian ignored sections found in the Catholic recension but ignored in the Marcionite version.  This is what makes determining the shape of the Marcionite canon so difficult from Tertullian alone.  He seems to know how the Marcionites read the letters of Paul in certain sections, but not others.  Indeed there are a few places where a large omission of material is duly noted but at the same time he passes in silence the sudden ending of the same Roman epistle noted in Origen.

If we return to where we left off in 2 Corinthians he commences his real analysis at the very same section which starts the reference in the Acta Archelai (2 Corinthians 3:6) and proceeds to chapter 5.  Yet at this very point, strangely, Tertullian does the very same thing that we heard Mani do in the Acta Archelai - he connects the argument of 2 Corinthians back to the antitheses in 1 Corinthians.  We read at the very end of this section:

So again when he says that after our earthly house has been dissolved we have an eternal home, not made with hands, in heaven, he does not mean that the home made by the Creator's hand perishes for ever by dissolution after death. That this discussion is intended to assuage the fear of death and the grief due to that dissolution, is even more evident from what follows, when he adds that in this tabernacle of an earthly body we groan, desiring to be clothed upon with that which is from heaven, seeing that when unclothed we shall not be found naked; that is, we shall have given to us again that of which we have been unclothed, the body. And again, For we that are in this tabernacle of the body do groan, because we are burdened, not wishing to be unclothed but to be clothed upon. Here he has expressed clearly a matter he touched upon in his first epistle: And the dead shall rise again incorruptible—those already dead—and we shall be changed—we who while in the flesh shall have been found so by God. For they too will rise again incorruptible, receiving back their body, receiving it entire, so as from henceforth to be incorruptible: and these because it is the last moment of time, and because of their merits due to the harassments of antichrist, will be granted a bypassing of death, though changed, being not so much divested of the body as clothed upon with that which is from heaven. So if these latter are over their body to put on that heavenly , evidently the dead too will receive back their body, that over it they also may put on incorruption from heaven: because it is of them that he says, For this corruptible must put on incorruption and this mortal must put on immortality. The one part are clothed with it after they have received back the body: the other part are clothed upon with it, because they have al- ways kept their body. And so it was not without reason that he said, Not wishing to be divested of the body but to be clothed upon, which means, wishing not to experience death but to be anticipated by life, that this mortal may be swallowed up by life when rescued from death by virtue of the overclothing of that changed condition. [adv Marc. 5.12] 

If this were the only example of this pattern of connecting 2 Corinthians 5:4 with 1 Corinthians 15:50 - 53 one could perhaps write it off as another coincidence.  However as we will show momentarily there is a well established pattern of connecting the two sections quite explicitly both within the writings of Tertullian and beyond. Yet before we go there we should take note of another curious thing which can't escape our notice. 

The Second Letter to the Corinthians is a very long letter with thirteen chapters in total.  Tertullian's commentary on the epistle takes up two chapters in Adversus Marcionem, which is further divided into twenty five sections of text total (16 in chapter 11, 9 in chapter 12).  The sudden 'switch' back to the material in the antitheses of 1 Corinthians happens in Adv Marc 5.12.2 and continues until 5.12.4 where Tertullian seamlessly blends 1 Corinthians 15:50 - 53 with 2 Corinthians 5:4 - 6.  The language has long been noted to be strikingly similar in these two sections - so similar in fact that in De Recta in Deum Fide Marinus gives a reading which Petty can't decide which letter to the Corinthians it belongs.  

The point of course is here is that if we assume that the 'integrated' section between the two letters in Tertullian's commentary ends with 2 Corinthians 5:6 "so long as we are in the flesh, we are absent from the Lord" that leaves Tertullian with only five short sections to cover the more than eight and a half chapters remaining chapters of the epistle.  That means that four fifths of the 2 Corinthians section was devoted to the material before 2 Corinthians 5:6 and a mere one fifth of the commentary to cover almost sixty percent of the epistle!

Indeed the section that follows the commentary on chapter 5 is quite uncharacteristic for Tertullian.  Instead of focusing on a line by line study of a particular section he instead haphazardly throws in a few 'highlights' from the remaining epistle which still seems strangely focused on 1 Corinthians 15:50.  We read:

When also he (Paul) enjoins us "to cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of flesh and blood" (2 Cor 7:1) since this substance enters not the kingdom of Gods when, again, he "espouses the church as a chaste virgin to Christ," (2 Cor 11:2) a spouse to a spouse in very deed, an image cannot be combined and compared with what is opposed to the real nature the thing (with which it is compared). when he designates "false apostles, deceitful workers transforming themselves" into likenesses of himself, (2 Cor 11:13) of course by their hypocrisy, he charges them with the guilt of disorderly conversation, rather than of false doctrine. 

The point of course is that the last fifth of the commentary on 2 Corinthians bears all the sign of a haphazard attempt to 'correct' an earlier treatise which knew 1 and 2 Corinthians to have been fused into one text.  

The opening words of Adversus Marcionem makes it absolutely explicit that our present edition is the fourth in a series of rewrites - one of which involved an apostate whose falsifications Tertullian twice corrected.  Indeed perhaps the clearest sign of this original conclusion is the fact that the opening words of the very next section - the ones dealing with the longest and perhaps most important Pauline epistle begin perplexingly with the words Quanto opusculum profligatur ...  The sense is clearly that the work is nearing an end when in fact it is only a little over the halfway point (twelve chapters complete of twenty one total).  

Indeed Tertullian himself acknowledges that a stylistic change is about to accompany the treatment of the remaining seven epistles.  He adds to the last statement "breviter iam retractanda sunt quae rursus occurrunt, quaedam vero tramittenda, quae saepius occurrerunt."  The point of course is that the author is admitting a marked change of style and substance.  Three full chapters are devoted to Galatians, five to 1 Corinthians, one and a half to the first four chapters and a bit from 2 Corinthians, and then only two paltry chapters for the longest letter of the canon (Romans) and a few lines for the rest.  

The sense is clearly that our present Adversus Marcionem is a many times reworked version of a lost anti-Marcionite treatise that recognized the integration of 1 and 2 Corinthians.  The fact that so many of Tertullian's other treatises follow the same pattern of linking 2 Corinthians 5:4 and the end of the antithetical section in 1 Corinthians leads me to suspect that the second epistle originally formed the beginning of 1 Corinthians 15:38 - 53.  The connection happens so often it is difficult to ignore the evidence: 

 It is the transformation these shall undergo which he explains to the Corinthians, when he writes: “We shall all indeed rise again (though we shall not all undergo the transformation) in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump”—for none shall experience this change but those only who shall be found in the flesh. “And the dead,” he says, “shall be raised, and we shall be changed.” Now, after a careful consideration of this appointed order, you will be able to adjust what follows to the preceding sense. For when he adds, “This corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality,” this will assuredly be that house from heaven, with which we so earnestly desire to be clothed upon, whilst groaning in this our present body,—meaning, of course, over this flesh in which we shall be surprised at last; because he says that we are burdened whilst in this tabernacle, which we do not wish indeed to be stripped of, but rather to be in it clothed over, in such a way that mortality may be swallowed up of life, that is, by putting on over us whilst we are transformed that vestiture which is from heaven. [De Resurr 42]

Tertullian goes on to treat the remainder of 2 Corinthians in some detail just as in a later section of the same treatise, after going line by line through 1 Corinthians 15:42 - 47 the Church Father notes that the heretics 'insert' 2 Corinthians 5:4 into the discussion of these antitheses:

Then, again, questions very often are suggested by occasional and isolated terms, just as much as they are by connected sentences. Thus, because of the apostle’s expression, “that mortality may be swallowed up of life”  —in reference to the flesh—they wrest the word swallowed up into the sense of the actual destruction of the flesh; as if we might not speak of ourselves as swallowing bile, or swallowing grief, meaning that we conceal and hide it, and keep it within ourselves. The truth is, when it is written, “This mortal must put on immortality,”  it is explained in what sense it is that “mortality is swallowed up of life”—even whilst, clothed with immortality, it is hidden and concealed, and contained within it, not as consumed, and destroyed, and lost. But death, you will say in reply to me, at this rate, must be safe, even when it has been swallowed up. Well, then, I ask you to distinguish words which are similar in form according to their proper meanings. Death is one thing, and mortality is another. It is one thing for death to be swallowed up, and another thing for mortality to be swallowed up. Death is incapable of immortality, but not so mortality. Besides, as it is written that “this mortal must put on immortality,” how is this possible when it is swallowed up of life? But how is it swallowed up of life, (in the sense of destroyed by it) when it is actually received, and restored, and included in it? For the rest, it is only just and right that death should be swallowed up in utter destruction, since it does itself devour with this same intent. Death, says the apostle, has devoured by exercising its strength, and therefore has been itself devoured in the struggle “swallowed up in victory.”  “O death, where is thy sting? O death, where is thy victory?” Therefore life, too, as the great antagonist of death, will in the struggle swallow up for salvation what death, in its struggle, had swallowed up for destruction. [ibid 54]

The discussion that develops here in De Resurrectione Carnis and in other of Tertullian's treatises like Tertullian De cultu feminarum and De Carne Christi are so complex that they don't allow for the idea that the author just happened to 'throw in' a saying on the same theme from a text he knew was wholly separate.  The sense is clearly that the heretics integrated 2 Corinthians into the antithetical section of 1 Corinthians 15.

Moreover it is worth noting that we can begin to note specific parallels with the 'followers of Origen' and the Marcionites - most notable because Origen's patron Ambrose is identified as a 'former' Marcionite.  The same pattern appears throughout Origen's writings and moreover in the contemporary response against it.  Methodius is referenced combating Origen's interpretation of the two sections in the following fragment:

so when this perishable life shall be dissolved, we shall have the habitation which is before the resurrection— that is, our souls shall he with God, until we shall receive the new house which is prepared for us, and which shall never fall. Whence also "we groan," "not for that we would be unclothed," as to the body, "but clothed upon" (2 Cor 5:4) by it in the other life. For the "house in heaven," with which we desire to be "clothed," is immortality; with which, when we are clothed, every weakness and mortality will be entirely "swallowed up" in it, being consumed by endless life. "For we walk by faith, not by sight; " (2 Cor 5:7) that is, for we still go forward by faith, viewing the things which are beyond with a darkened understanding, and not clearly, so that we may see these things, and enjoy them, and be in them. "Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither does corruption inherit incorruption." (1 Cor 15:50) By flesh, he did not mean flesh itself, but the irrational impulse towards the lascivious pleasures of the soul. And therefore when he says, "Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God," he adds the explanation, "Neither does corruption inherit incorruption." Now corruption is not the thing which is corrupted, but the thing which corrupts. For when death prevails the body sinks into corruption; but when life still remains in it, it stands uncorrupted. Therefore, since the flesh is the boundary between corruption and incorruption, not being either corruption or incorruption, it was vanquished by corruption on account of pleasure, although it was the work and the possession of incorruption. Therefore it became subject to corruption. When, then, it had been overcome by corruption, and was given over to death for chastisement, He did not leave it to be vanquished and given over as an inheritance to corruption; but again conquering death by the resurrection, He restored it to incorruption, that corruption might not inherit incorruption, but incorruption that which is corruptible. And therefore the apostle answers, "This corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal immortality." (1 Cor 15:53) But the corruptible and mortal putting on incorruption and immortality, what else is this, but that which is sown in corruption rising in incorruption? (1 Cor 15:42) For, "as we have borne the image of the earthly, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly." For the "image of the earthly" which we have borne refers to the saying, "Dust you are, and unto dust you shall return." And the "image of the heavenly is the resurrection from the dead and incorruption."

The suggestion seems to be that many of our existing treatises 'against the heretics' developed from a milieu which may have known a specific form of 'to the Corinthians' which not only fused together the beginning and end of the first and second letter respectively but which also represented the original Marcionite antitheses. 

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