Early Church Fathers Quote on Marcion the Heretic
Martyrdom of Polycarp
He mentions this fact also, that when Marcion, after whom the Marcionites are called, met the holy Polycarp on one occasion, and said ‘Recognize us, Polycarp,’ he said in reply to Marcion, ‘Yes indeed, I recognize the firstborn of Satan.’
And there is Marcion, a man of Pontus, who is even at this day alive, and teaching his disciples to believe in some other god greater than the Creator. And he, by the aid of the devils, has caused many of every nation to speak blasphemies, and to deny that God is the maker of this universe, and to assert that some other being, greater than He, has done greater works.
And, as we said before, the devils put forward Marcion of Pontus, who is even now teaching men to deny that God is the maker of all things in heaven and on earth, and that the Christ predicted by the prophets is His Son, and preaches another god besides the Creator of all, and likewise another son. And this man many have believed, as if he alone knew the truth, and laugh at us, though they have no proof of what they say, but are carried away irrationally as lambs by a wolf, and become the prey of atheistical doctrines, and of devils. -ibid
Marcion of Pontus succeeded him, and developed his doctrine. In so doing, he advanced the most daring blasphemy against Him who is proclaimed as God by the law and the prophets, declaring Him to be the author of evils, to take delight in war, to be infirm of purpose, and even to be contrary to Himself. But Jesus being derived from that father who is above the God that made the world…was manifested in the form of a man to those who were in Judaea, abolishing the prophets and the law, and all the works of that God who made the world… Besides this, he mutilates the Gospel which is according to Luke, removing all that is written respecting the generation of the Lord, and setting aside a great deal of the teaching of the Lord, In like manner, too, he dismembered the Epistles of Paul, removing all that is said by the apostle respecting that God who made the world. Salvation will be the attainment only of those souls which had learned his doctrine.
And Polycarp himself replied to Marcion, who met him on one occasion, and said, “Dost you know me?” “I do know you, the first-born of Satan.” Such was the horror which the apostles and their disciples had against holding even verbal communication with any corrupters of the truth; as Paul also says, “A man that is an heretic, after the first and second admonition, reject; knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sins, being condemned of himself.” -ibid
With regard to those (the Marcionites) who allege that Paul alone knew the truth, and that to him the mystery was manifested by revelation, let Paul himself convict them…-ibid
The followers of Marcion, and… those who are like to these, maintain that time prophets were from another God. -ibid
On this false principle it was that Marcion actually chose to believe that He was a phantom, denying to Him the reality of a perfect body.
John… in his epistle he especially designates those as “Antichrists” who “denied that Christ was come in the flesh,” and who refused to think that Jesus was the Son of God. The one dogma Marcion maintained. -ibid
One man perverts the Scriptures with his hand, another their meaning by his exposition. For although Valentinus seems to use the entire volume, he has none the less laid violent hands on the truth only with a more cunning mind and skill than Marcion. Marcion expressly and openly used the knife, not the pen, since he made such an excision of the Scriptures as suited his own subject-matter. -ibid
Marcion has removed from his God all his severity and judicial character… A better god has been discovered, who never takes offence, is never angry, never inflicts punishment, who has prepared no fire in hell, no gnashing of teeth in the outer darkness! He is purely and simply good. He indeed forbids all delinquency, but only in word. He is in you, if you are willing to pay him homage, for the sake of appearances, that you may seem to honor God; for your fear he does not want. And so satisfied are the Marcionites with such pretences, that they have no fear of their god at all. -ibid
The flesh is not, according to Marcion, immersed in the water of the sacrament, unless it be in virginity, widowhood, or celibacy, or has purchased by divorce a title to baptism, as if even generative impotents did not all receive their flesh from nuptial union. Now, such a scheme as this must no doubt involve the proscription of marriage. -ibid
Marcionites, whom the Apostle John designated as antichrists, when they denied that Christ was come in the flesh… Now, the more firmly the antichrist Marcion had seized this assumption, the more prepared was he, of course, to reject the bodily substance of Christ. -ibid
“Be not deceived, God is not mocked.” But Marcion’s god can be mocked; for he knows not how to be angry, or how to take vengeance. Tertullian (A.D. 198) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.3 pg.438
We must now encounter the subject of marriage, which Marcion, more continent than the apostle, prohibits… Now, when Marcion wholly prohibits all carnal intercourse to the faithful (for we will say nothing about his catechumens), and when he prescribes repudiation of all engagements before marriage, whose teaching does he follow, that of Moses or of Christ? -ibid
Let Marcion know that the principle term of his creed comes from the school of Epicurus… But how remote is our faith from the artifices of this heretic, when it dreads to arouse the anger of God. -ibid