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Gospel of judas

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Gospel of judas

  1. 1. The Rediscovery? • In the 1970’s a manuscript called Codex Tchacos, surfaces near El Minya, in the desert of Egypt and is the only known manuscript that includes this so- called gospel of Judas.
  2. 2. What is it? • Not the Epistle of Jude the brother of James (Jude 1) in the Bible • In 2000 the manuscript was finally sold to an Egyptian- born Greek dealer named Frieda Nussberger-Tchacos, who turned the documents over to experts at Yale University's Beinecke Library, whom she viewed as possible buyers. • In 2001 Nussburger-Tchacos determined to sell the codex to the Swiss-based Maecenas Foundation for Ancient Art. The foundation had clearly stated its goal to restore, preserve, and publish the long-hidden text and then return the original to its country of origin.
  3. 3. What is it? • The foundation entered into partnership with the National Geographic Society, which announced the ‘Gospel’ of Judas to the world after nearly 1,700 years of seclusion. • The restored original will be delivered to Cairo's Coptic Museum….
  4. 4. Why has it created such a stir? • Although perhaps 15 to 20 percent of the original document was lost, the remainder is a revelation—more than sufficient to tell the tale of Judas and Jesus as we've never heard it before. • The Gospel features dialogues between the "savior," (not named as Jesus in the surviving pages) and his disciples. Scholars believe that these conversations are meant to have occurred after Jesus' resurrection, though the text is incomplete and it is difficult to determine an accurate chronology of its events.
  5. 5. Judas a Hero? • After nearly 2,000 years, the most hated man in history is back. • Everyone remembers the story of Jesus Christ’s close friend, one of the 12 Apostles, who sold him out for 30 pieces of silver, identifying him with a kiss. Later, crazed with guilt, Judas hanged himself. He is the ultimate symbol of treachery. Stockyards call the goat that leads other animals to slaughter the Judas goat. In Germany, officials can forbid new parents from choosing the name Judas. Guides at the historic Coptic Hanging Church in Old Cairo point out one black column in the church’s white colonnades—Judas, of course. Christianity would not be the same without its traitor.
  6. 6. Judas a Hero? • The “secret account” gives us a very different Judas. In this version, he is a hero. Unlike the other disciples, he truly understands Christ’s message. In handing Jesus over to the authorities, he is doing his leader’s bidding, knowing full well the fate he will bring on himself. Jesus warns him: “You will be cursed.” • In a world that turns sin to virtue it makes sense to even turn the most famous traitor to a hero.
  7. 7. What the Early Church Said • Irenaeus of Lyons (130-202 CE) was a heresy hunter in the same caliber of Tertullian (155–230 CE) and Hippolytus (170-236 CE). He excoriated heresies in a work called Adversus Haereses (the full title of which is the "Refutation and Overthrow of Knowledge falsely so-called"). • He wrote "They declare that Judas the traitor was thoroughly acquainted with these things (divine enlightenment), and that he alone, knowing the truth as no others did, accomplished the mystery of the betrayal; by him all things, both earthly and heavenly, were thus thrown into confusion. They (the Gnostic writers) produce a fictitious history of this kind, which they style the Gospel of Judas." (1.31.1)
  8. 8. What the Early Church Said • The "Gospel of Judas" was also referred to by Origen in the year 230 in his book Stromateis, which vehemently asserted distain upon Gnosticism. (Means “mystical teachings to escape from this world through the acquisition of hidden knowledge.”)
  9. 9. What the Early Church Said • In AD 367, St. Athanasius the Apostolic, urged Christians to “cleanse the church from every defilement” and to reject “the hidden books.” • St.Paul sharply rebuked the early Christians for giving heed to seducing doctrines that could shake a person's faith. “Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ ... If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!” (Galatians 1:7-9, NIV). • St.Peter said, “But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them — bringing swift destruction on themselves. Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute.” (2 Peter 2:1-2, NIV).
  10. 10. Its Content: It starts: The secret account of the revelation that Jesus spoke inThe secret account of the revelation that Jesus spoke in conversation with Judas Iscariot during a week three daysconversation with Judas Iscariot during a week three days before he celebrated Passover.before he celebrated Passover. When Jesus appeared on earth, he performed miraclesWhen Jesus appeared on earth, he performed miracles and great wonders for the salvation of humanity. Andand great wonders for the salvation of humanity. And since some [walked] in the way of righteousness whilesince some [walked] in the way of righteousness while others walked in their transgressions, the twelve disciplesothers walked in their transgressions, the twelve disciples were called.were called. He began to speak with them about theHe began to speak with them about the mysteriesmysteries beyondbeyond the world and what would take place at the end. Often hethe world and what would take place at the end. Often he did not appear to his disciples as himself, but he wasdid not appear to his disciples as himself, but he was found among them as a child.found among them as a child.
  11. 11. Its Content: Judas Singled out When Jesus observed their lack of [understanding, he said]When Jesus observed their lack of [understanding, he said] to them, “Why has this agitation led you to anger? Yourto them, “Why has this agitation led you to anger? Your god who is within you and […] [35] have provoked you togod who is within you and […] [35] have provoked you to anger [within] your souls. [Let] any one of you who isanger [within] your souls. [Let] any one of you who is [strong enough] among human beings bring out the[strong enough] among human beings bring out the perfect human and stand before my face.”perfect human and stand before my face.” They all said, “We have the strength.”They all said, “We have the strength.” But their spirits did not dare to stand before [him], except forBut their spirits did not dare to stand before [him], except for Judas Iscariot. He was able to stand before him, but heJudas Iscariot. He was able to stand before him, but he could not look him in the eyes, and he turned his facecould not look him in the eyes, and he turned his face away.away. Judas [said] to him, “I know who you are and where youJudas [said] to him, “I know who you are and where you have come from. You are from the immortal realm ofhave come from. You are from the immortal realm of BarbeloBarbelo. And I am not worthy to utter the name of the one. And I am not worthy to utter the name of the one who has sent you.”who has sent you.”
  12. 12. Its Content: Judas Singled out Knowing that Judas was reflecting upon something that was exalted, Jesus said to him, “Step away from the others and I shall tell you the mysteries of the kingdom. It is possible for you to reach it, but you will grieve a great deal. [36] For someone else will replace you, in order that the twelve [disciples] may again come to completion with their god.” Judas said to him, “When will you tell me these things, and [when] will the great day of light dawn for the generation?” But when he said this, Jesus left him.
  13. 13. Its teachings • After reading the "Gospel of Judas", one will be introduced to new titles and deities not commonly referenced today. However, they were known in that first century among the Syrian-Egyptic Gnostics such as the Sethians, Thomasines, Valentinians and Basilideans. • An example passage reads "His name was Nebro, which means ‘rebel’; others call him Yaldabaoth. Another angel, Saklas (means "foolish one"), also came from the cloud." The Yaldabaoth, a 'serpent with a lion's head'. This figure is commonly known as the Demiurge, after the figure in Plato's "Timaeus". This imperfect divine is taught as the one who created the universe. • The author claims that God, the Father of Jesus is Barbelo. “Barbelo”, in Gnostic writings is the first emanation from the divine essence and mother of all Aeons. These figures have largely to do with the origin of the universe, and they are commonly found in Gnostic treatises from Nag Hammadi.
  14. 14. Its teachings • The Gospel of Judas states that Jesus told Judas "You shall be cursed for generations." It then adds to this conversation that Jesus had told Judas "you will come to rule over them," and that "You will exceed all of them. For you will sacrifice the man that clothes me." • The Gospel of Judas not only asserts that the actions of Judas were necessary, but that Judas was acting on the orders of Jesus himself. It is no longer a pride-driven rebellion against God's divine purpose, but Judas' actions are venerated as most profound in keeping with God's will. • Gnostic writings will often exonerate orthodox villains as the hero or heroines to be revered. Jesus purportly said in another passage "Look, you have been told everything. Lift up your eyes and look at the cloud and the light within it and the stars surrounding it. The star that leads the way is your star."
  15. 15. Who are the Gnostics • The Gospel of Judas is typical of many Gnostic writings, with its notions that: – Salvation comes through the knowledge of one's divine origin, – Salvation is exclusive and offered only to the elite, – Majority of Christians are caught in error and serving the wrong God, – Physical existence is a deities fouled mistake and needs to be transcended, – Jesus was a teacher of esoteric truths that bear almost no resemblance to anything a first-century Jewish prophet would have taught.
  16. 16. Who are the Gnostics • The Gnostics prized their secret knowledge, and taught a profound dualism between the material and spiritual worlds. • They understood the material world, including the entire cosmos, to be a trap for the spiritual world. • In essence, the Gnostics sought to escape the material world and to enter the spirit world.
  17. 17. Gnostic Teachings • The Apophatic (means “negative”) Theology mode of thinking about God is found throughout Gnosticism, Vendantic Hinduism, Platonic and Aristotelian theology. Irenaeus alleged that a large number of Gnostic groups, were semi-maltheists believing that the god of the Old Testament was evil, and a quite different and much lesser being to the deity that had created the universe, and who was responsible for sending Jesus. • Many Gnostic groups worshipped as heroes all the Biblical figures which had sought to discover knowledge or challenge Yahweh's authority, while demonizing those who would have been seen as heroes in a more orthodox interpretation.
  18. 18. Gnostic Teachings • Such is the reversal role that we see Mary Magdalene as harlot turned choice companion of Christ in the "Gospel of Mary." Gnostics notoriously flip the canvas of good and evil in keeping with the understanding of their theology. For example, in Gnostic stories of creation the world and humankind are created by a vile god. But the good serpent comes to reveal knowledge to people so they can escape the evil creation. • Dan Brown borrows this Gnostic Idea to make his Millions
  19. 19. The Attack on Christianity • The Gospel of Judas claimed, [Judas [said] to him, “I know who you are and where you have come from. You are from the immortal realm of Barbelo. And I am not worthy to utter the name of the one who has sent you.”] • In fact, the name “Barbelo” is no where in the Bible. Moreover, it is well know that the name of God revealed to Moses in the Book of Exodus is “Yahweh”. God further said to Moses, ‘You are to tell the Israelites, “Yahweh, the God of your ancestors, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is my name for all time, and thus I am to be invoked for all generations to come.” (Exodus 3:15, NJB).
  20. 20. The Attack on Christianity • The Lord Jesus Christ is begotten from the eternal heavenly Father, not from “Barbelo” as claimed. Christ is the ruler over Israel, “whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.” (Micah 5:2, NIV).
  21. 21. What the Modern Church Says • Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, condemned the credibility of the gospel during his 2006 Easter address, saying, "This is a demonstrably late text which simply parallels a large number of quite well- known works from the more eccentric fringes of the early century Church." He went on to suggest that the book's publicity derives from an insatiable desire for conspiracy theories. "We are instantly fascinated by the suggestion of conspiracies and cover-ups; this has become so much the stuff of our imagination these days that it is only natural, it seems, to expect it when we turn to ancient texts, especially biblical texts."
  22. 22. What the Modern Church Says • Pope Benedict XVI of Rome responded on April 13, 2006 "The Vatican, grants the recently surfaced Judas' Gospel no credit with regards to its apocryphal claims that Judas betrayed Jesus in compliance with the latter's own requests.”
  23. 23. Sources • Article by Fr. Abraam D.Sleman – Refuting the Gospel of Judas http://copticchurch.net/topics/current_issues/R • http://www.eternalpath.com/gospelofjudas.htm

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