L.A. Muratori (1672-1750) het ‘n fragment in Latyn ontdek uit die 7de of 8ste eeu in die Klooster van Columbanus in Bobbio. Dit bevat ‘n katalogus van die Nuwe Testamentiese geskrifte met notas daaroor. Hy het dit in 1740 gepubliseer en dit is na hom vernoem as die Canon Muratori. Al is die fragment nie volledig nie, bevat dit waardevolle inligting oor die geskrifte wat as gesaghebbend erken was.
Dit blyk dat die teks uit die Weste kom en in die laat 2de eeu opgestel is, moontlik ongeveer 170 n.C. as gevolg van die verwysing na Pius I, die biskop van Rome (142-157). Die Latynse weergawe slaan terug na ‘n oorspronklike Griekse manuskrip.
Dit erken dievolgende geskrifte:
- Evangelies: Mattheus, Markus, Lukas, and Johannes. Die fragment begin met verwysing na die derde (Lukas) en gaan aan na die vierde (Johannes), dus is die aanname dat die eerste en tweede verwys na Mattheus en Markus.
- Die Handelinge van die Apostels
- Briewe van Paulus aan gemeentes : Korintiërs (2), Efesiërs, Filippense, Kolossense, Galasiërs, Thessalonisense (2), Romeine
- Briewe van Paulus aan individue: Filemon, Titus, Timotheus (2)
- Algemene Briewe: Judas, Johannes (2) – alhoewel daar ‘n verwysing is na 1 Johannes, is ons is nie seker na watter een van die ander twee briewe ook verwys word nie.
- Wysheid van Salomo(!) – dit is nie in die finale kanon opgeneem nie.
- Openbaring aan Johannes
- Openbaring aan Petrus(!) – problematies en is nie opgeneem in die finale kanon nie.
- Die Pastor van Hermas – beskou as goed maar is nie bedoel om te lees in die kerk nie
Die volgende dokumente is dus uitgesluit uit hierdie lys:
- Petrus (2)
- Brief van Johannes – nie seker of dit 2 of 3 Johannes is nie.
Dan word daar ook verwys na ‘n paar geskrifte wat geheel verwerp is as vervalsings in die naam van Paulus om die saak van Marcion te bevorder.
Hier is dan die teks vertaal in Engels as verwysing:1
. . . at which nevertheless he was present, and so he placed [them in his narrative]. (2) The third book of the Gospel is that according to Luke. (3) Luke, the well-known physician, after the ascension of Christ, (4-5) when Paul had taken with him as one zealous for the law, (6) composed it in his own name, according to [the general] belief. Yet he himself had not (7) seen the Lord in the flesh; and therefore, as he was able to ascertain events, (8) so indeed he begins to tell the story from the birth of John. (9) The fourth of the Gospels is that of John, [one] of the disciples. (10) To his fellow disciples and bishops, who had been urging him [to write], (11) he said, ‘Fast with me from today to three days, and what (12) will be revealed to each one (13) let us tell it to one another.’ In the same night it was revealed (14) to Andrew, [one] of the apostles, (15-16) that John should write down all things in his own name while all of them should review it. And so, though various (17) elements may be taught in the individual books of the Gospels, (18) nevertheless this makes no difference to the faith (19) of believers, since by the one sovereign Spirit all things (20) have been declared in all [the Gospels]: concerning the (21) nativity, concerning the passion, concerning the resurrection, (22) concerning life with his disciples, (23) and concerning his twofold coming; (24) the first in lowliness when he was despised, which has taken place, (25) the second glorious in royal power, (26) which is still in the future. What (27) marvel is it then, if John so consistently (28) mentions these particular points also in his Epistles, (29) saying about himself, ‘What we have seen with our eyes (30) and heard with our ears and our hands (31) have handled, these things we have written to you? (32) For in this way he professes [himself] to be not only an eye-witness and hearer, (33) but also a writer of all the marvelous deeds of the Lord, in their order. (34) Moreover, the acts of all the apostles (35) were written in one book. For ‘most excellent Theophilus’ Luke compiled (36) the individual events that took place in his presence — (37) as he plainly shows by omitting the martyrdom of Peter (38) as well as the departure of Paul from the city [of Rome] (39) when he journeyed to Spain. As for the Epistles of (40-1) Paul, they themselves make clear to those desiring to understand, which ones [they are], from what place, or for what reason they were sent. (42) First of all, to the Corinthians, prohibiting their heretical schisms; (43) next, to the Galatians, against circumcision; (44-6) then to the Romans he wrote at length, explaining the order (or, plan) of the Scriptures, and also that Christ is their principle (or, main theme). It is necessary (47) for us to discuss these one by one, since the blessed (48) apostle Paul himself, following the example of his predecessor (49-50) John, writes by name to only seven churches in the following sequence: To the Corinthians (51) first, to the Ephesians second, to the Philippians third, (52) to the Colossians fourth, to the Galatians fifth, (53) to the Thessalonians sixth, to the Romans (54-5) seventh. It is true that he writes once more to the Corinthians and to the Thessalonians for the sake of admonition, (56-7) yet it is clearly recognizable that there is one Church spread throughout the whole extent of the earth. For John also in the (58) Apocalypse, though he writes to seven churches, (59-60) nevertheless speaks to all. [Paul also wrote] out of affection and love one to Philemon, one to Titus, and two to Timothy; and these are held sacred (62-3) in the esteem of the Church catholic for the regulation of ecclesiastical discipline. There is current also [an epistle] to (64) the Laodiceans, [and] another to the Alexandrians, [both] forged in Paul’s (65) name to [further] the heresy of Marcion, and several others (66) which cannot be received into the catholic Church (67)— for it is not fitting that gall be mixed with honey. (68) Moreover, the epistle of Jude and two of the above-mentioned (or, bearing the name of) John are counted (or, used) in the catholic [Church]; and [the book of] Wisdom, (70) written by the friends of Solomon in his honour. (71) We receive only the apocalypses of John and Peter, (72) though some of us are not willing that the latter be read in church. (73) But Hermas wrote the Shepherd (74) very recently, in our times, in the city of Rome, (75) while bishop Pius, his brother, was occupying the [episcopal] chair (76) of the church of the city of Rome. (77) And therefore it ought indeed to be read; but (78) it cannot be read publicly to the people in church either among (79) the Prophets, whose number is complete, or among (80) the Apostles, for it is after [their] time. (81) But we accept nothing whatever of Arsinous or Valentinus or Miltiades, (82) who also composed (83) a new book of psalms for Marcion, (84-5) together with Basilides, the Asian founder of the Cataphrygians . . .
1. Die engelse vertaling van Bruce M. Metzger by http://www.bible-researcher.com/muratorian.html.