Paul-Louis Couchoud, by the way, gets several nods in W. O. Walker’s Interpolations in the Pauline Letters (so, more than once, does Hermann Detering) — See the GoogleBooks–Interpolations in the Pauline Letters. From there do a word search in the left margin search-box for “Couchoud” and see the full list of references in that work. (I only mention this for the benefit of anyone who may have run across Dr James McGrath’s or any other scholar’s ignorant scoffing of Couchoud in response to posts in this series. Some scholars can address figures the views of one like Couchoud with the dignified civility expected of public intellectuals.)
Couchoud only skims the surface of conclusions from his more detailed publication, La Première Edition de St. Paul (Premiers Ecrits du Christianisme, 1930). Hermann Detering has posted an online version of this work on his site. So what is outlined here are conclusions, not arguments.
In a footnote in The Creation of Christ Couchoud lists what he believes are the “touch-ups” (editings) an editor (Clement of Rome?) has made in the original letter to the Galatians:
Galatians 1:18-24 (Paul visits the Jerusalem apostles after three years)
Galatians 2:6-9 (the gospel of the uncircumcision to Paul and that of the circumcision to Peter)
Galatians 3:6-9 (the faithful are children of Abraham)
Galatians 4:27-30 (Isaac represents the children of promise, the bondwoman Hagar and her son are cast out)
In the touched-up Epistle to the Galatians the proud recital Paul makes of his communications with the Jerusalem Apostles becomes overloaded. To give an air of accuracy, Paul is made to visit Jerusalem three years after his conversion, instead of the short and vague delay mentioned in Acts. His opposition to the Apostles is obscured, and, on the other hand, the scene of their reconciliation is emphasized. [See La Première Edition de St. Paul (in English)]
Further on a discreet reference to the first chapters of St. Luke is inserted.
Then in the phrase “God sent forth his Son that he might redeem them which were under the Law” (Gal. iv. 4) the editor slips in “born of a woman, born under the Law.”
Marcion would scarcely dare refer now to his Epistle where the Law was so ingeniously termed “our tutor unto Christ” (Gal. iii. 24).
Abraham appears once again with the Christians as his sole legitimate seed. The Jews of the day deserved their servitude; they had to be cast out, for “cast out the handmaid and her son, for the son of the handmaid shall not inherit with the son of the freewoman.” Nothing so severe on the Jews had been written by a Christian who pretended to be a disciple of the Bible. (pp. 303-304, my formatting)
What a time! Once your powerful enemy slipped in a few extra verses and disseminated your authoritative scriptures for you how could you compete against the accusations that it was you who had mutilated them?
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