Thursday, November 20, 2014

54. the Marcionite and Adamantius debate the meaning of the gospel 'Antitheses' in De Recta in Deum Fide

Adamantius: It is evident then that Marcus wants things to exist that are opposed to what has been commanded.
[MK:] But to commit adultery is opposed to the command, "You shall not commit adultery" murder opposes "You shall not murder" and in the same way stealing is against the command not to steal. Presumably then the rest of the commandments have been abrogated.
[AD:] But how could it be that Christ abrogated the Law? Let Marcus explained, please. For in the Law it stands written you shall not commit adultery you shall not bear false witness. Let him say then which one of these Christ abrogated? Whom does He order to commit adultery - he indeed who had actually rejected the more lustful look as unchastity? Whom did He command to kill - he who directed not to resist the evil man? Whom did the Saviour teach to steal in order that He might oppose the Lawmaker? These commands of the Saviour are not new but are from the Law and the prophets. The Saviour asserts "But I say to you not to resist evil" while the Old Scripture says "Say to those who hate and detest you, 'You are our brethren'" (Isa 66.5 LXX)
[MK:] When the Law again said, "do not steal," the Saviour said "Sell your possessions and give to the poor."
[AD:] But giving to the poor is not new teaching for it was commanded in the Old Testament "Do not refrain from doing good to the needy one whenever you hand can help." The Saviour's 'Love your enemies" is not new, but required in the Prophets: "If your enemy be hungry get him to eat: if he thirst give him to drink." But why must we prolong the discussion? It is at least clear that although the Saviour came to fulfil the Law, Marcus' people assert that he came to destroy it! It is like your party's audacity — to reverse (90) this statement, just as you have tampered with others! However, let the Apostle come forward to reprove your dishonesty.
MK. The Saviour clearly says, "A new commandment I give to you"(Jn 13:34 Petty's note Intriguingly Marcus again quotes from a gospel outside of Marcion's Luke as he does further on cf. the next note) The new one is not the same as the old, for the Saviour says again, "New wine they put into new wineskins, and both are preserved" The new commandment is not the complement of the old one, for the Saviour says again, "Nobody puts a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment" (Matt 9:16) Neither Christ nor the Apostle is the complement of the Law.
AD. Observe as judge noble Eutropius how my opponent hunting after words takes in a wrong sense instructions so clearly laid down! Please request the Gospel to be read, and it will be revealed what new commandment the Saviour enjoined.
EUTR: Let it be read!
AD. I will read: "A new commandment" he says "I give to you that you love one another as the Father has loved you" (cf. Jn 13:34 different than main recension)
EUTR. It is plain that He designated Love as a new commandment.
AD. Yet the new command is no stranger to the old one previously existing.
MK. The old command of the Law belongs to the Creator God, but the new one comes from the Good God, for He says "Nobody puts unshrunk cloth on an old garment"
AD. How can the new cloth possibly be foreign to the old garment when it is one and the same substance (ousia cf. Arianism) natural to sheep from which woolen are made? But even the art of working in wool had to do with one and the same thing, for it makes both the old and the new. But then even wine is from the same vine that produces both the old and the new. Yet so that I may the more clearly establish the fact that the Saviour did not enjoin anything unheard of before when He said, "A new commandment I give unto you: That you love another" let me read what is written in the Law "You shall love the Lord God with your whole mind and secondly "Your neighbor as yourself."
MK: How it then that the Apostle says "If anyone is in Christ he is a new creature the old things have passed away. Behold all things have become new?"
AD. Please show Marcus what new creature He created; what new heaven or earth, and what new human being. Surely you realize that old things renewed are called 'new' although the same substance still exists? E
UTR. The new things are not different from the old ones in material or kind. The case is like that of a man who should want to remodel one of his vessels that has become old. Using his skill anew, he made out of a piece of material different from that of the old. So what you thought to offer, Marcus, as fresh, new proof, will be found written in the Law, and to assert that there is a God previously unknown who lays down decrees previously unknown is inconceivable.
AD. Paul will demonstrate to you very clearly that love is the fulfilling of the Law. With your permission, I now read the passage referring to this: for "You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal' and if there be any other commandment it is comprised of this word: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself" Love works no evil to one's neighbor. Love therefore is the fulfillment of the Law. (Rom 13.9 - 10 with slight variation from the main recension)
MK. The word 'comprised' shows that the former law has been annulled.
EUTR. I have listened to the Apostle speaking of the fulfillment of the Law. If what is lacking is made up what is already there is not different from what is supplied but is united with it and the completed whole will not be different from what was there before.
AD: The Saviour will more clearly convince you of this in the Gospel. Someone came to him and asked "Good Teacher what shall I do to inherit eternal life? And Jesus said, 'Why do you call me good? None is Good except One - God." And he said "I know the commandments, (ὁδὲ ἔφη· τὰς ἐντολὰς οἶδα) "Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness. Honor your father and mother." And he said " All these things I have kept from my youth." When Jesus heard this he said to him "One thing you lack: Sell everything you have and give to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven." EUTR. See Marcus! All the audience is astounded at your incredible proofs! He who came as you said to annul the Law and to lay down decrees previously unknown, stated, "You will still lack one thing so that you may receive treasure in heaven?" Therefore the "one thing" is quite clearly revealed as a 'fulfilling' of the others. The Apostle is in complete agreement with this statement when he sets forth "one thing" as the fulfilling of many, that is Love. [ibid p. 95 - 98]

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