The Five Books Against Marcion

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The Five Books Against Marcion.

Introductory Notes.

Book I. Wherein is described the god of Marcion.

Chapter I.--Preface. Reason for a New Work

Chapter II.--Marcion, Aided by Cerdon, Teaches a Duality of Gods; How He Constructed This Heresy of an Evil and a Good God.

Chapter III.--The Unity of God. He is the Supreme Being, and There Cannot Be a Second Supreme.

Chapter IV.--Defence of the Divine Unity Against Objection No Analogy Between Human Powers and God's Sovereignty. The Objection Otherwise Untenable, for Why Stop at Two Gods?

Chapter V.--The Dual Principle Falls to the Ground; Plurality of Gods, of Whatever Number, More Consistent. Absurdity and Injury to Piety Resulting from Marcion's Duality.

Chapter VI.--Marcion Untrue to His Theory He Pretends that His Gods are Equal, But He Really Makes Them Diverse. Then, Allowing Their Divinity, Denies This Diversity.

Chapter VII.--Other Beings Besides God are in Scripture Called God This Objection Frivolous, for It is Not a Question of Names. The Divine Essence is the Thing at Issue. Heresy, in Its General Terms, Thus Far Treated.

Chapter VIII.--Specific Points. The Novelty of Marcion's God Fatal to His Pretensions God is from Everlasting, He Cannot Be in Any Wise New.

Chapter IX.--Marcion's Gnostic Pretensions Vain, for the True God is Neither Unknown Nor Uncertain The Creator, Whom He Owns to Be God, Alone Supplies an Induction, by Which to Judge of the True God.

Chapter X.--The Creator Was Known as the True God from the First by His Creation Acknowledged by the Soul and Conscience of Man Before He Was Revealed by Moses.

Chapter XI.--The Evidence for God External to Him; But the External Creation Which Yields This Evidence is Really Not Extraneous, for All Things are God's. Marcion's God, Having Nothing to Show for Himself, No God at All. Marcion's Scheme Absurdly Defective, Not Furnishing Evidence for His New God's Existence, Which Should at Least Be Able to Compete with the Full Evidence of the Creator.

Chapter XII.--Impossibility of Acknowledging God Without This External Evidence Of His Existence Marcion's Rejection of Such Evidence for His God Savours of Impudence and Malignity.

Chapter XIII.--The Marcionites Depreciate the Creation, Which, However, is a Worthy Witness of God This Worthiness Illustrated by References to the Heathen Philosophers, Who Were Apt to Invest the Several Parts of Creation with Divine Attributes.

Chapter XIV.--All Portions of Creation Attest the Excellence of the Creator, Whom Marcion Vilifies His Inconsistency Herein Exposed. Marcion's Own God Did Not Hesitate to Use the Creator's Works in Instituting His Own Religion.

Chapter XV.--The Lateness of the Revelation of Marcion's God The Question of the Place Occupied by the Rival Deities. Instead of Two Gods, Marcion Really (Although, as It Would Seem, Unconsciously) Had Nine Gods in His System.

Chapter XVI.--Marcion Assumes the Existence of Two Gods from the Antithesis Between Things Visible and Things Invisible. This Antithetical Principle in Fact Characteristic of the Works of the Creator, the One God--Maker of All Things Visible and Invisible.

Chapter XVII.--Not Enough, as the Marcionites Pretend, that the Supreme God Should Rescue Man; He Must Also Have Created Him. The Existence of God Proved by His Creation, a Prior Consideration to His Character.

Chapter XVIII.--Notwithstanding Their Conceits, the God of the Marcionites Fails in the Vouchers Both of Created Evidence and of Adequate Revelation.

Chapter XIX.--Jesus Christ, the Revealer of the Creator, Could Not Be the Same as Marcion's God, Who Was Only Made Known by the Heretic Some CXV. Years After Christ, and That, Too, on a Principle Utterly Unsuited to the Teaching of Jesus Christ, I.e., the Opposition Between the Law and the Gospels.

Chapter XX.--Marcion, Justifying His Antithesis Between the Law and the Gospel by the Contention of St. Paul with St. Peter, Shown to Have Mistaken St. Paul's Position and Argument. Marcion's Doctrine Confuted Out of St. Paul's Teaching, Which Agrees Wholly with the Creator's Decrees.

Chapter XXI.--St. Paul Preached No New God, When He Announced the Repeal of Some of God's Ancient Ordinances. Never Any Hesitation About Belief in the Creator, as the God Whom Christ Revealed, Until Marcion's Heresy.

Chapter XXII.--God's Attribute of Goodness Considered as Natural; The God of Marcion Found Wanting Herein. It Came Not to Man's Rescue When First Wanted.

Chapter XXIII.--God's Attribute of Goodness Considered as Rational Marcion's God Defective Here Also; His Goodness Irrational and Misapplied.

Chapter XXIV.--The Goodness of Marcion's God Only Imperfectly Manifested; It Saves But Few, and the Souls Merely of These. Marcion's Contempt of the Body Absurd.

Chapter XXV.--God is Not a Being of Simple Goodness; Other Attributes Belong to Him. Marcion Shows Inconsistency in the Portraiture of His Simply Good and Emotionless God.

Chapter XXVI.--In the Attribute of Justice, Marcion's God is Hopelessly Weak and Ungodlike He Dislikes Evil, But Does Not Punish Its Perpetration.

Chapter XXVII.--Dangerous Effects to Religion and Morality of the Doctrine of So Weak a God.

Chapter XXVIII.--This Perverse Doctrine Deprives Baptism of All Its Grace If Marcion Be Right, the Sacrament Would Confer No Remission of Sins, No Regeneration, No Gift of the Spirit.

Chapter XXIX.--Marcion Forbids Marriage. Tertullian Eloquently Defends It as Holy, and Carefully Discriminates Between Marcion's Doctrine and His Own Montanism.

Book II. Wherein Tertullian shows that the creator, or demiurge, whom Marcion calumniated, is the true and good God.

Chapter I.--The Methods of Marcion's Argument Incorrect and Absurd. The Proper Course of the Argument.

Chapter II.--The True Doctrine of God the Creator The Heretics Pretended to a Knowledge of the Divine Being, Opposed to and Subversive of Revelation. God's Nature and Ways Past Human Discovery. Adam's Heresy.

Chapter III.--God Known by His Works His Goodness Shown in His Creative Energy; But Everlasting in Its Nature; Inherent in God, Previous to All Exhibition of It. The First Stage of This Goodness Prior to Man.

Chapter IV.--The Next Stage Occurs in the Creation of Man by the Eternal Word Spiritual as Well as Physical Gifts to Man. The Blessings of Man's Free-Will.

Chapter V.--Marcion's Cavils Considered. His Objection Refuted, i.e., Man's Fall Showed Failure in God. The Perfection of Man's Being Lay in His Liberty, Which God Purposely Bestowed on Him. The Fall Imputable to Man's Own Choice.

Chapter VI.--This Liberty Vindicated in Respect of Its Original Creation; Suitable Also for Exhibiting the Goodness and the Purpose of God. Reward and Punishment Impossible If Man Were Good or Evil Through Necessity and Not Choice.

Chapter VII.--If God Had Anyhow Checked Man's Liberty, Marcion Would Have Been Ready with Another and Opposite Cavil. Man's Fall Foreseen by God. Provision Made for It Remedially and Consistently with His Truth and Goodness.

Chapter VIII.--Man, Endued with Liberty, Superior to the Angels, Overcomes Even the Angel Which Lured Him to His Fall, When Repentant and Resuming Obedience to God.

Chapter IX.--Another Cavil Answered, I.e., the Fall Imputable to God, Because Man's Soul is a Portion of the Spiritual Essence of the Creator. The Divine Afflatus Not in Fault in the Sin of Man, But the Human Will Which Was Additional to It.

Chapter X.--Another Cavil Met, i.e., the Devil Who Instigated Man to Sin Himself the Creature of God Nay, the Primeval Cherub Only Was God's Work. The Devilish Nature Superadded by Wilfulness. In Man's Recovery the Devil is Vanquished in a Conflict on His Own Ground.

Chapter XI.--If, After Man's Sin, God Exercised His Attribute of Justice and Judgment, This Was Compatible with His Goodness, and Enhances the True Idea of the Perfection of God's Character.

Chapter XII.--The Attributes of Goodness and Justice Should Not Be Separated They are Compatible in the True God. The Function of Justice in the Divine Being Described.

Chapter XIII.--Further Description of the Divine Justice; Since the Fall of Man It Has Regulated the Divine Goodness. God's Claims on Our Love and Our Fear Reconciled.

Chapter XIV.--Evil of Two Kinds, Penal and Criminal It is Not of the Latter Sort that God is the Author, But Only of the Former, Which are Penal, and Included in His Justice.

Chapter XV.--The Severity of God Compatible with Reason and Justice When Inflicted, Not Meant to Be Arbitrary, But Remedial.

Chapter XVI.--To the Severity of God There Belong Accessory Qualities, Compatible with Justice. If Human Passions are Predicated of God, They Must Not Be Measured on the Scale of Human Imperfection.

Chapter XVII.--Trace God's Government in History and in His Precepts, and You Will Find It Full of His Goodness.

Chapter XVIII.--Some of God's Laws Defended as Good, Which the Marcionites Impeached, Such as the Lex Talionis. Useful Purposes in a Social and Moral Point of View of This, and Sundry Other Enactments.

Chapter XIX.--The Minute Prescriptions of the Law Meant to Keep the People Dependent on God The Prophets Sent by God in Pursuance of His Goodness. Many Beautiful Passages from Them Quoted in Illustration of This Attribute.

Chapter XX.--The Marcionites Charged God with Having Instigated the Hebrews to Spoil the Egyptians Defence of the Divine Dispensation in that Matter.

Chapter XXI.--The Law of the Sabbath-Day Explained. The Eight Days' Procession Around Jericho. The Gathering of Sticks a Violation.

Chapter XXII.--The Brazen Serpent and the Golden Cherubim Were Not Violations of the Second Commandment Their Meaning.

Chapter XXIII.--God's Purposes in Election and Rejection of the Same Men, Such as King Saul, Explained, in Answer to the Marcionite Cavil.

Chapter XXIV.--Instances of God's Repentance, and Notably in the Case of the Ninevites, Accounted for and Vindicated.

Chapter XXV.--God's Dealings with Adam at the Fall, and with Cain After His Crime, Admirably Explained and Defended.

Chapter XXVI.--The Oath of God: Its Meaning. Moses, When Deprecating God's Wrath Against Israel, a Type of Christ.

Chapter XXVII.--Other Objections Considered God's Condescension in the Incarnation. Nothing Derogatory to the Divine Being in This Economy. The Divine Majesty Worthily Sustained by the Almighty Father, Never Visible to Man. Perverseness of the Marcionite Cavils.

Chapter XXVIII.--The Tables Turned Upon Marcion, by Contrasts, in Favour of the True God.

Chapter XXIX.--Marcion's Own Antitheses, If Only the Title and Object of the Work Be Excepted, Afford Proofs of the Consistent Attributes of the True God.

Book III. Wherein Christ is shown to be the Son of God, Who created the world

Chapter I.--Introductory;

Chapter II.--Why Christ's Coming Should Be Previously Announced.

Chapter III.--Miracles Alone, Without Prophecy, an Insufficient Evidence of Christ's Mission.

Chapter IV.--Marcion's Christ Not the Subject of Prophecy The Absurd Consequences of This Theory of the Heretic.

Chapter V.--Sundry Features of the Prophetic Style: Principles of Its Interpretation.

Chapter VI.--Community in Certain Points of Marcionite and Jewish Error Prophecies of Christ's Rejection Examined.

Chapter VII.--Prophecy Sets Forth Two Different Conditions of Christ, One Lowly, the Other Majestic. This Fact Points to Two Advents of Christ.

Chapter VIII.--Absurdity of Marcion's Docetic Opinions; Reality of Christ's Incarnation.

Chapter IX.--Refutation of Marcion's Objections Derived from the Cases of the Angels, and the Pre-Incarnate Manifestations of the Son of God.

Chapter X.--The Truly Incarnate State More Worthy of God Than Marcion's Fantastic Flesh.

Chapter XI.--Christ Was Truly Born; Marcion's Absurd Cavil in Defence of a Putative Nativity.

Chapter XII.--Isaiah's Prophecy of Emmanuel. Christ Entitled to that Name.

Chapter XIII.--Isaiah's Prophecies Considered The Virginity of Christ's Mother a Sign. Other Prophecies Also Signs. Metaphorical Sense of Proper Names in Sundry Passages of the Prophets.

Chapter XIV.--Figurative Style of Certain Messianic Prophecies in the Psalms Military Metaphors Applied to Christ.

Chapter XV.--The Title Christ Suitable as a Name of the Creator's Son, But Unsuited to Marcion's Christ.

Chapter XVI.--The Sacred Name Jesus Most Suited to the Christ of the Creator. Joshua a Type of Him.

Chapter XVII.--Prophecies in Isaiah and the Psalms Respecting Christ's Humiliation.

Chapter XVIII. --Types of the Death of Christ Isaac; Joseph; Jacob Against Simeon and Levi; Moses Praying Against Amalek; The Brazen Serpent.

Chapter XIX.--Prophecies of the Death of Christ.

Chapter XX. --The Subsequent Influence of Christ's Death in the World Predicted The Sure Mercies of David. What These are.

Chapter XXI.--The Call of the Gentiles Under the Influence of the Gospel Foretold.

Chapter XXII.--The Success of the Apostles, and Their Sufferings in the Cause of the Gospel, Foretold.

Chapter XXIII.--The Dispersion of the Jews, and Their Desolate Condition for Rejecting Christ, Foretold.

Chapter XXV.--Christ's Millennial and Heavenly Glory in Company with His Saints.

Book IV. In Which Tertullian Pursues His Argument. Jesus is the Christ of the Creator.


Chapter I.--Examination of the Antitheses of Marcion, Bringing Them to the Test of Marcion's Own Gospel. Certain True Antitheses in the Dispensations of the Old and the New Testaments. These Variations Quite Compatible with One and the Same God, Who Ordered Them.

Chapter II.--St. Luke's Gospel, Selected by Marcion as His Authority, and Mutilated by Him. The Other Gospels Equally Authoritative. Marcion's Terms of Discussion, However, Accepted, and Grappled with on the Footing of St. Luke's Gospel Alone.

Chapter III. --Marcion Insinuated the Untrustworthiness of Certain Apostles Whom St. Paul Rebuked The Rebuke Shows that It Cannot Be Regarded as Derogating from Their Authority. The Apostolic Gospels Perfectly Authentic.

Chapter IV.--Each Side Claims to Possess the True Gospel Antiquity the Criterion of Truth in Such a Matter. Marcion's Pretensions as an Amender of the Gospel.

Chapter V.--By the Rule of Antiquity, the Catholic Gospels are Found to Be True, Including the Real St. Luke's. Marcion's Only a Mutilated Edition. The Heretic's Weakness and Inconsistency in Ignoring the Other Gospels.

Chapter VI.--Marcion's Object in Adulterating the Gospel No Difference Between the Christ of the Creator and the Christ of the Gospel. No Rival Christ Admissible. The Connection of the True Christ with the Dispensation of the Old Testament Asserted.

Chapter VII.--Marcion Rejected the Preceding Portion of St. Luke's Gospel Therefore This Review Opens with an Examination of the Case of the Evil Spirit in the Synagogue of Capernaum. He Whom the Demon Acknowledged Was the Creator's Christ.

Chapter VIII.--Other Proofs from the Same Chapter, that Jesus, Who Preached at Nazareth, and Was Acknowledged by Certain Demons as Christ the Son of God, Was the Creator's Christ. As Occasion Offers, the Docetic Errors of Marcion are Exposed.

Chapter IX.--Out of St. Luke's Fifth Chapter are Found Proofs of Christ's Belonging to the Creator, E.g. In the Call of Fishermen to the Apostolic Office, and in the Cleansing of the Leper. Christ Compared with the Prophet Elisha.

Chapter X.--Further Proofs of the Same Truth in the Same Chapter, from the Healing of the Paralytic, and from the Designation Son of Man Which Jesus Gives Himself. Tertullian Sustains His Argument by Several Quotations from the Prophets.

Chapter XI.--The Call of Levi the Publican Christ in Relation to the Baptist. Christ as the Bridegroom. The Parable of the Old Wine and the New. Arguments Connecting Christ with the Creator.

Chapter XII.--Christ's Authority Over the Sabbath As Its Lord He Recalled It from Pharisaic Neglect to the Original Purpose of Its Institution by the Creator the Case of the Disciples Who Plucked the Ears of Corn on the Sabbath. The Withered Hand Healed on the Sabbath.

Chapter XIII.--Christ's Connection with the Creator Shown Many Quotations Out of the Old Testament Prophetically Bear on Certain Events of the Life of Jesus--Such as His Ascent to Praying on the Mountain; His Selection of Twelve Apostles; His Changing Simon's Name to Peter, and Gentiles from Tyre and Sidon Resorting to Him.

Chapter XIV.--Christ's Sermon on the Mount In Manner and Contents It So Resembles the Creator's Dispensational Words and Deeds. It Suggests Therefore the Conclusion that Jesus is the Creator's Christ. The Beatitudes.

Chapter XV.--Sermon on the Mount Continued Its Woes in Strict Agreement with the Creator's Disposition. Many Quotations Out of the Old Testament in Proof of This.

Chapter XVI.--The Precept of Loving One's Enemies It is as Much Taught in the Creator's Scriptures of the Old Testament as in Christ's Sermon. The Lex Talionis of Moses Admirably Explained in Consistency with the Kindness and Love Which Jesus Christ Came to Proclaim and Enforce in Behalf of the Creator. Sundry Precepts of Charity Explained.

Chapter XVII.--Concerning Loans Prohibition of Usury and the Usurious Spirit. The Law Preparatory to the Gospel in Its Provisions; So in the Present Instance. On Reprisals. Christ's Teaching Throughout Proves Him to Be Sent by the Creator.

Chapter XVIII.--Concerning the Centurion's Faith The Raising of the Widow's Son. John Baptist, and His Message to Christ; And the Woman Who Was a Sinner. Proofs Extracted from All of the Relation of Christ to the Creator.

Chapter XIX.--The Rich Women of Piety Who Followed Jesus Christ's Teaching by Parables The Marcionite Cavil Derived from Christ's Remark, When Told of His Mother and His Brethren. Explanation of Christ's Apparent Rejection Them.

Chapter XX.--Comparison of Christ's Power Over Winds and Waves with Moses' Command of the Waters of the Red Sea and the Jordan. Christ's Power Over Unclean Spirits. The Case of the Legion. The Cure of the Issue of Blood. The Mosaic Uncleanness on This Point Explained.

Chapter XXI.--Christ's Connection with the Creator Shown from Several Incidents in the Old Testament, Compared with St. Luke's Narrative of the Mission of the Disciples. The Feeding of the Multitude. The Confession of St. Peter. Being Ashamed of Christ. This Shame is Only Possible of the True Christ. Marcionite Pretensions Absurd.

Chapter XXII.--The Same Conclusion Supported by the Transfiguration Marcion Inconsistent in Associating with Christ in Glory Two Such Eminent Servants of the Creator as Moses and Elijah. St. Peter's Ignorance Accounted for on Montanist Principle.

Chapter XXIII.--Impossible that Marcion's Christ Should Reprove the Faithless Generation Such Loving Consideration for Infants as the True Christ Was Apt to Shew, Also Impossible for the Other. On the Three Different Characters Confronted and Instructed by Christ in Samaria.

Chapter XXIV.--On the Mission of the Seventy Disciples, and Christ's Charge to Them Precedents Drawn from the Old Testament. Absurdity of Supposing that Marcion's Christ Could Have Given the Power of Treading on Serpents and Scorpions.

Chapter XXV.--Christ Thanks the Father for Revealing to Babes What He Had Concealed from the Wise This Concealment Judiciously Effected by the Creator. Other Points in St. Luke's Chap. X. Shown to Be Only Possible to the Creator's Christ.

Chapter XXVI.--From St. Luke's Eleventh Chapter Other Evidence that Christ Comes from the Creator The Lord's Prayer and Other Words of Christ. The Dumb Spirit and Christ's Discourse on Occasion of the Expulsion. The Exclamation of the Woman in the Crowd.

Chapter XXVII.--Christ's Reprehension of the Pharisees Seeking a Sign His Censure of Their Love of Outward Show Rather Than Inward Holiness. Scripture Abounds with Admonitions of a Similar Purport. Proofs of His Mission from the Creator.

Chapter XXVIII.--Examples from the Old Testament, Balaam, Moses, and Hezekiah, to Show How Completely the Instruction and Conduct of Christ Are in Keeping with the Will and Purpose of the Creator.

Chapter XXIX.--Parallels from the Prophets to Illustrate Christ's Teaching in the Rest of This Chapter of St. Luke. The Sterner Attributes of Christ, in His Judicial Capacity, Show Him to Have Come from the Creator. Incidental Rebukes of Marcion's Doctrine of Celibacy, and of His Altering of the Text of the Gospel.

Chapter XXX.--Parables of the Mustard-Seed, and of the Leaven Transition to the Solemn Exclusion Which Will Ensue When the Master of the House Has Shut the Door. This Judicial Exclusion Will Be Administered by Christ, Who is Shown Thereby to Possess the Attribute of the Creator.

Chapter XXXI.--Christ's Advice to Invite the Poor in Accordance with Isaiah The Parable of the Great Supper a Pictorial Sketch of the Creator's Own Dispensations of Mercy and Grace. The Rejections of the Invitation Paralleled by Quotations from the Old Testament. Marcion's Christ Could Not Fulfil the Conditions Indicated in This Parable. The Absurdity of the Marcionite Interpretation.

Chapter XXXII.--A Sort of Sorites, as the Logicians Call It, to Show that the Parables of the Lost Sheep and the Lost Drachma Have No Suitable Application to the Christ of Marcion.

Chapter XXXIII.--The Marcionite Interpretation of God and Mammon Refuted The Prophets Justify Christ's Admonition Against Covetousness and Pride. John Baptist the Link Between the Old and the New Dispensations of the Creator. So Said Christ--But So Also Had Isaiah Said Long Before. One Only God, the Creator, by His Own Will Changed the Dispensations. No New God Had a Hand in the Change.

Chapter XXXIV.--Moses, Allowing Divorce, and Christ Prohibiting It, Explained John Baptist and Herod. Marcion's Attempt to Discover an Antithesis in the Parable of the Rich Man and the Poor Man in Hades Confuted. The Creator's Appointment Manifested in Both States.

Chapter XXXV.--The Judicial Severity of Christ and the Tenderness of the Creator, Asserted in Contradiction to Marcion. The Cure of the Ten Lepers. Old Testament Analogies. The Kingdom of God Within You; This Teaching Similar to that of Moses. Christ, the Stone Rejected by the Builders. Indications of Severity in the Coming of Christ. Proofs that He is Not the Impassible Being Marcion Imagined.

Chapter XXXVI.--The Parables of the Importunate Widow, and of the Pharisee and the Publican Christ's Answer to the Rich Ruler, the Cure of the Blind Man. His Salutation--Son of David. All Proofs of Christ's Relation to the Creator, Marcion's Antithesis Between David and Christ Confuted.

Chapter XXXVII.--Christ and Zacchæus The Salvation of the Body as Denied by Marcion. The Parable of the Ten Servants Entrusted with Ten Pounds. Christ a Judge, Who is to Administer the Will of the Austere Man, I.e. The Creator.


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