This is an indepth look into what the gospel of thomas is and when it was written. The secret gospel of thomas kindle edition by pagels, elaine. These are the secret words, which the living jesus spoke, and didymus judas thomas wrote down. The gospel of thomas the following is a fresh translation, made from the coptic text published by messrs. Jan 02, 2020 the gospel of thomas very clearly tries to maintain an air of secrecy in its words. The gospel of thomass 114 sayings of jesus biblical. This book was used as a study book for a tuesday morning discussion group. Why the gospel of thomas isnt in the bible jesus is not. Gospel of thomas offers the reader jesus secret teachings about the kingdom of god here, as in luke 17. Elaine pagelss gnostic gospels, which won the national book critics circle award and the. Pagels the gospel of thomas does not tell the story about the life and death of jesus, but offers the. The secret gospel of thomas random house, 2003, pagels describes how early church leaders supressed another interpretation of jesus messageone found in the ancient documents pagels first popularized in her 1979 book, the gnostic gospels, winner of the national book award and the national book critics circle award. Gospel of thomas lambdin translation the nag hammadi.
Sect, the naassenes,5 held the serpent hebrew nahash in honour because he defied the ban which the demiurge had placed on the impartation of knowledge this reinterpretation of the. Thomas reveals how the reader can use each verse in this scripture as a source of daily contemplation and spiritual growth, while exploring the secrets of resurrection and ascension, the true role of st. Thomas consists of a collection of 114 sayings of jesus, that are supposed to be a secret revelation the lord gave to the apostle thomas. Either way, thomas seems to preserve earlier traditions about jesus than the new testament. A lost, secret vision of jesus earl richard loyola university yamauchi lecture october 17, 1993 the recent discovery and current interest in the gospel of thomas have elicited considerable popular and scholarly attention, a phenomenon which shows no indication of coming to an end. As the preamble indicates, these are secret sayings, and are intended to be esoteric in nature. The gospel according to thomas also known as codex ii was found in egypt in 1945. The gospel of thomas also known as the coptic gospel of thomas is a noncanonical sayings gospel. The question remains if jesus is not merely a metaphor of the logos, the conscience or the inner voice, and if the personification jesus has been used merely as a vehicle to carry the message. His birth and death dates are unknown, but his feast day is celebrated july 3. The words of the teacher of righteousness, some people call him jesus, are probably best and least distorted preserved in the gospel of thomas. The collected sayings of the gospel of thomas are designated by its author as the secret sayings which the living jesus spoke. The secret gospel of thomas, elaine pagelss fascinating exploration of how and why the new testament acquired its present form.
In 367, the bishop of alexandria in egypt, athanasius, one of the great fathers of the church, wrote to the monasteries and said, i know there are a lot of secret, illegitimate books that you. The gospel of thomas elucidation of the secret words. Lacking any narrative whatsoever, its 114 sayings are difficult to understand. The gospel of thomas the suppressed secret teaching of jesus.
The secret book of john, also called the apocryphon of john or the secret revelation of john, is a secondcentury sethian gnostic christian text of secret teachings. As opposed to the gospel of john, which asserted that jesus was an eternally existing aspect of god who came to earth to save humankind, the secret gospel of thomas agrees that jesus was in some sense divine, but says that a streak of divinity can be found. The coptic gnostic library project was funded by unesco, the national endowment for the humanities, and other institutions. Original translation of this text was prepared by members of the coptic gnostic library project of the institute for antiquity and christianity, claremont graduate school. A commentary on jesus sayings as recorded by the apostle thomas light spirit press cedar crest, new mexico of the by. The book is mostly concerned with explaining why early christians like irenaeus suppressed gospels such as the gospel of thomas. Thomas is considered gnostic in origin and viewpoint by many fundamental christians, and is possibly the reason why the book was kept from the original canon of the holy bible if the text was even known by early christian followers at all. The very interesting thing is that the book contains direct citations of jesus christ in 114 verses. Thomas was born a jew and was called to be one of the twelve apostles.
The most important is that they go against all vested interests, knock over all holy houses and invalidate all things man consider to be true. This phrase probably indicates an uncircumcised child a jewish boy was to be circumcised on the eighth day, otherwise a child of the sabbath of the week of creation compare genesis 2. The gospel of thomas is a gnostic gospel, espousing a gnostic viewpoint of christianity. This is an extensive and scholarly but still very readable study of the text and the cultural milieu that both influenced, and in turn was influenced by, the apocryphon iohannis. Moreover the first saying states, whoever discovers the. Part of a library of materials dealing with gnosis and gnosticism, both ancient and modern. This secret sayings gospel does not tell the story of jesus life, but rather is a list of over 100 of his sayings, some of which are familiar to readers of the new testament. Generally, gnostics hold that salvation of the soul comes from a quasiintuitive. The gospel according to thomas is an ancient collection of sayings attributed to jesus and thought to be recorded by his brother judas, the twin thomas means twin in aramaic.
Pagels then shows how the gospel of john was used by bishop irenaeus of lyon and others to define orthodoxy during the second and third centuries. It was discovered near nag hammadi, egypt, in december 1945 among a group of books known as the nag hammadi library. The gospel of thomas its meaning, secrets, and power. The interesting thing was that although those groups. The secret gospel of mark is described as a second more spiritual version of the gospel of mark composed by the evangelist himself. Lacking any narrative whatsoever, its 114 sayings are difficult to understand by 1977, when the 12 bound volumes comprising the nag hammadi library were first published in english, scholars were referring to their 52 texts as gnostic. The gospel of thomas in multiple translations, along with a vast collection of material about the thomas tradition. In some circles, there is the misunderstanding that there are hidden gospels and hidden books of the bible which some large, nebulous organization left out of the bible because it challenged. A complete version in coptic an egyptian language derived from the greek alphabet was found at nag hammadi, egypt in 1945. Use features like bookmarks, note taking and highlighting while reading beyond belief. The reasons for throwing out some scripture over others is examined in some detail in this book, however, the main reason was to ensure the church had a unifying doctrine that would bring the many christian sects at the time under one authority, creating the catholic or universal church.
The gospel of thomas, the gospel of philip, and the gospel of truth, found in the nag hammadi library, present various mystic gnostic ideas as if coming from jesus. Some of these sayings repeat the words of christ from the canonical gospel accounts. The introduction, discussion questions, suggestions for further reading, and author biography that follow are designed to enhance your groups discussion of beyond belief. Gospel of st thomas jesus secret teachings public group. The gospel of thomas collection translations and resources. Both the gospel of thomas and the gospel of john are interpreting jesus after the other gospels. In december of 1945, an egyptian farmer near nag hammadi unearthed in his field more than fifty ancient christian books, written in the coptic ancient egyptian language. The prologue begins, these are the secret sayings that the living jesus spoke. The gospel of thomas for awakening 2 secret practices.
This site includes the entire hammadi library, as well as a large collection of other primary gnostic scriptures and documents. Why is the gospel of saint thomas kept secret answers. The gospel of thomas the suppressed secret teaching of. Primary sources gospel of thomas from jesus to christ. It describes jesus appearing and giving secret knowledge to john the apostle. Why isnt the gospel of thomas in the new testament. Portions of greek versions of the text were found at oxyrhynchus, egypt in the late 1800s. Thomas, in contrast, shares with other supposed secret teachings a belief that jesus is not god but, rather, is a teacher who seeks to uncover the divine light in all human beings. There are two reasons why the teachings were secret. The movie stigmata has obviously taken the fact that the vatican has denied authenticity to the gospel of thomas and twisted that fact to try and discredit the roman catholic church. Thomas reveals that mankind can and should restore their identities to the image of god now, and see the kingdom of god on earth now.
Download it once and read it on your kindle device, pc, phones or tablets. Included are translations of the short and long version of the text based on the waldsein and wisse edition, an indepth analysis. The secret gospel of mark a letter attributed to clement of alexandria. Mary magdalene in the oral tradition of sophian gnosticism. The gospel of thomas is extant in three greek fragments and one coptic manuscript. The text of the gospel of thomas from the scholars version translation published in the complete gospels prologue these are the secret sayings that the living jesus spoke and didymos judas thomas recorded. The apocryphon of john collection the gnostic society. The gospel of thomas makes no qualms about its gnostic leanings with all its emphasis on learning the secrets of jesus. That secret business itself ought to be a red flag.
Spurred on by personal tragedy and new scholarship from an international group of researchers, pagels returns to her investigation of the secret gospel of thomas, and breathes new life into writings once thought heretical. The story of the storytellers the gospel of thomas. Some of the sayings from the gospel of thomas are very much like. Sep 16, 2006 the gnostic gospel informs the reader that it contains the secret words of jesus written down by twin judas thomas, which, when their interpretation is known, grant immortality. Pagelss writing style, i was somewhat disappointed in the lack of analysis of the gospel of thomas. The gospel of thomas was written in 340 in coptic, but the foundations are earlier oral traditions. In the preparation of this versi the following six translations have been consulted, in addition to to published by messrs. Secret gospel of mary this gospel of mary is composed of selected sayings attributed to st. He lived before the formal establishment of the catholic church but is recognized as the patron saint of architects.
Some scholars suggest that this gospel was collected from new testament sayings, while others believe it springs from a completely independent author because many of the quotations are not in the new testament at all. It is uncertain the number of lines that constitute the works of thomas. The name derives from smiths translation of the phrase mystikon euangelion. The second recommended book is karen kings the secret revelation of john. I did not find, except for chapter 2, that there was even much discussion of the secret gospel of thomas. The author describes this having occurred after jesus. The secret revelation contained in this unusual video cannot be found anywhere else including the internet except in this special video. On the one hand, these sayings are inspired by the anointed bride and, on the other hand, they are drawn from the gnostic legends of an oral tradition that has existed a long time. The gospel of thomas very clearly tries to maintain an air of secrecy in its words.
While its subtitle is the secret gospel of thomas and the text of the complete gospel of thomas is printed in the back, we found it to be more of a history of the development of the early christian church. Although it is not possible to attribute the gospel of thomas to any particular sect, it is clearly gnostic in nature. The gospel of thomas is unlike any other gospel text and has been an enigma ever since its discovery within the nag hammadi library in 1945. Jan 01, 2003 while i enjoyed beyond belief, both the content and dr. Gospel of thomas lambdin translation the nag hammadi library. The gospel of thomas is simply a heretical forgery, much the same as the gospel of judas, the gospel of mary, and the gospel of philip. Mary magdalene in the early church, and other mystical and magical teachings. Random house patterson, stephen j robinson, james m bethge, hansgebhard 1998. The gospel of thomas is widely available at most bookstores and is included in the jesus seminars work the five gospels. The title and cover seem to suggest, however, that this is books raison detre. Gospel of st thomas jesus secret teachings has 2,548 members. The gospel of thomas is simply a heretical forgery, much the same as the gospel of judas, the gospel of mary, and the gospel. Among them was the book now known as the gospel of thomas. The gospel of thomas opens with a statement claiming that it is secret words of jesus that apparently thomas was the only one to hear.
Pagels presents decent analysis of the gnostic movement, and places the gospel of john within the gnostic context, yet fails to deliver much on the gospel of thomas. Nov 27, 2015 the secret revelation contained in this unusual video cannot be found anywhere else including the internet except in this special video. The gospel presents the secret sayings that the living jesus spoke, and there is. Marvin meyer writes of the words a little child seven days old in the gospel of thomas. Since it was known to the church father irenaeus, it must have been written before around 180 ce. Aug 03, 2018 this is an indepth look into what the gospel of thomas is and when it was written.
The site includes the gnostic library, with the complete nag hammadi library and a large collection of. The following is a fresh translation, made from the coptic text published by messrs. Welcome to the video enriched ebook edition of the gospel of thomas with easy to play video scenes of all the sayings of jesus integrated within the text. The recently discovered gospel of judas is also counted among the gnostic gospels. A lot of space is taken up discussing the gospel of john, supposedly as a comparison, but when the gnostic gospels are discussed pagels discusses just about every gnostic gospel except thomas. Download the gospel of thomas download the free pdf. The secret of gnosis is that when you know yourself at that level you will also come to know god, because you will discover that the divine is within you.226 1284 1452 1113 491 171 1556 1471 1179 673 373 241 689 540 1547 238 824 506 1440 699 1016 194 18 423 1343 304 1018 937 1055 504 1005 221