Marcionite Christian Church
F.A.Q.


Any discussion of the Marcionites should start with the understanding that apart from their belief in The Very First Bible (this first Holy Bible was used by many of the first Christians, not just the Marcionites), their exact dogma and doctrine is largely unknown.

Marcion's books titled, 'Antithesis,' outlined why the deity worshipped by the Hebrews (the people who persecuted and murdered Christ and his Apostles) is not the same as our Christian God as revealed by Jesus. All of the books were hunted down and destroyed by his enemies - the same enemies we now have to rely on for insight into his beliefs (as stated by others who never met him). For an extremely deep theological academic dive into early Christianity and the role played by Marcion, we recommend this book. That said, let us now explore some common questions and misconceptions about the church... 

  • What do we know about their daily life and customs? - The Marcionites were 'pescoterians' in that their main diet consisted largely of fish, vegetables, dairy and fruit. They fasted on Saturdays and worshipped on Sundays twice - a brief Service of the Word at dawn and a regular Mass at the end of the day followed by a shared meal. The Marcionites strictly adhered to the teachings and instructions for daily life as taught by Paul the Apostle in his original epistles.
  • Why did they have only one gospel? - When The Very First Bible was created in 144 A.D. there was only The Gospel of the Lord - the revelation given directly to Paul the Apostle by Jesus that he preached throughout the known world. "But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ." (Galatians 1:8-9) 
  • What about Matthew, Mark, Luke and John? - In that they were written and published well after (and some using unknown authors) the first Christian bible they have no bearing on our faith. Although many biblical scholars and theologians now speculate they are simply edited and judaized versions of The Gospel of the Lord created to form a confusing (and imaginary) tapestry between the Hebrew bible (Old Testament) and Christianity. Paul warned us of such possibilities: "As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed." (Galatians 1:9)
  • Were they Gnostics or heretics? - No. There is no 'secret knowledge' involved in the Marcionite Christian Church. Our beliefs are available for anyone to read in The Very First Bible. Even under secular definitions, the Marcionites are not considered to be Gnostics as we see in the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article on Marcion:  “It was no mere school for the learned, disclosed no mysteries for the privileged, but sought to lay the foundation of the Christian community on the pure gospel, the authentic institutes of Christ. The pure gospel, however, Marcion found to be everywhere more or less corrupted and mutilated in the Christian circles of his time. His undertaking thus resolved itself into a reformation of Christendom. This reformation was to deliver Christendom from false Jewish doctrines by restoring the Pauline conception of the gospel, Paul being, according to Marcion, the only apostle who had rightly understood the new message of salvation as delivered by Christ. In Marcion's own view, therefore, the founding of his church—to which he was first driven by opposition—amounts to a reformation of Christendom through a return to the gospel of Christ and to Paul; nothing was to be accepted beyond that. This of itself shows that it is a mistake to reckon Marcion among the Gnostics.” Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (3rd ed.) also puts the question of Marcionite association with Gnosticism to rest with, "it is clear that he would have had little sympathy with their mythological speculations." (p. 1034).
  • As for the heresy charge, the Catholic Church didn't exist until hundreds of years after the Marcionites formed theirs. Also, many writers, like Tertullian, were hired to smear the Marcionites but what does St. Joseph tell us about Tertullian? "As to Tertullian, I have nothing else to say except that he was not a man of the church." We agree with our Catholic brothers on this point fully.
  • Were they anti-Hindu, 'anti-Semitic,' anti-Islam or anti-Buddha, etc...? - No. Nor are any such views reflected in The Very First Bible. And just as other religions don't put our Christian scriptures in their religious books we don't include theirs in ours. Although we pray that they turn to Christ and are saved we have no interest in their alien religious dogma or deities.
  • Have changes been made to the bible used by the Marcionites since it was created in 144 A.D.? - No. It remains unchanged and has always consisted of The Gospel of the Lord and the original Galatians, 1st and 2nd Corinthians, Romans, 1st and 2nd Thessalonians, Laodiceans, Colossians, Philemon and Philippians. One gospel and ten books. By contrast, the 'modern bible' contains four gospels and 73 books added over the course of hundreds of years.

Do the Marcionites reject the Hebrew bible (Old Testament) and its deity?

Yes. The Hebrew bible (Old Testament) and the carnal deity portrayed within it, is antithetical to the words and teachings of Jesus Christ - the proof is self-evident. It represents an alien culture and religion diametrically opposed to the God revealed to us through Jesus Christ and The Gospel of the Lord.

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