Thursday, November 20, 2014

58. the gospel of Marcion had a harmonized variant of Matthew 5:3

Ephraim quotes ' Blessed are the meek in their spirit ' : this is an inaccurate combination of Matt, v 5 and Matt, v 3, but neither element of the quotation is represented in the Lucan Beatitudes, accepted by Marcion. [Charles W Mitchell, S. Ephraim's Prose Refutations of Mani, Marcion, and Bardaisan p. cxix]
from David Inglis, Tertullian then intersperses quotes from Isa 61 and 65 with vv. 6:21-22 (emphasis added): "Blessed are they that hunger, for they shall be filled." [6:21a] "Blessed are they that weep, for they shall laugh." [6:21b] As in v. 6:20b Tertullian uses the 3rd person rather than Lk’s 1st person, and he also omits “now” after both “hunger” and “weep,” but again Tertullian does not suggest that Marcion had changed any text. The parallel verses in both Mt and Thomas also have similar differences: Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. [Mt 5:3] Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. [Mk 5:4] and again "Tertullian believes that the usual translation of “hoi ptōchoi” as “the poor,” does not correctly identify the people whom Jesus is blessing, and according to him, the meaning is: “Blessed are the beggars, for theirs is the kingdom of God.” It is not completely clear what source Tertullian is quoting here, as he uses the 3rd person (the beggars, for theirs is …) as we see in Mt 5:3, while having “kingdom of God,” as in Lk. This makes it unlikely that he is quoting directly from either Mt or Lk."

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