The Gospel of Judas
In the run up to the year 2012, several previously hidden ancient manuscripts will be brought to light. These will be authoritative in challenging fundamentalist superstitions about Christian origins. The manuscripts will be made available to scholars beyond the reach of religious interference.
One of these documents, The Gospel of Judas, was published by the Maecenas Foundation for Ancient Art (Basel, Switzerland) in partnership with the National Geographic Society (Washington, USA) on Maundy Thursday 13th April 2006. On Sunday 9th April 2006, the National Geographic TV channel ran a special two-hour documentary on the manuscript.
The 31-page Coptic document was originally discovered near Beni Masar in Egypt in the 1970s. It is thought to be a translation of a Greek original source written by an early Christian group sometime before 180 AD.
The Gospel of Judas presents Judas in a positive light, identifying him as Jesus of Nazareth’s favourite disciple and depicting his betrayal as the fulfilment of a divine mission to enable the crucifixion - and thus the foundation of Christianity - to take place. In this it is consistent with the original Gnostic Christian view before the idea was suppressed by revisionist Churchianity and stigmatised as heretical.
Professor Bart Ehrman (Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina) suggests that: “This gospel has a completely different understanding of God, the world, Christ, salvation, human existence—not to mention of Judas himself—than came to be embodied in the Christian creeds and canon."
The links below outline the emerging story of The Gospel of Judas.
National Geographic Society (Washington, USA)
Announcement about the Gospel of Judas – 28.02.06
Gospel of Judas? Expert is a Doubting Thomas
Article by Richard Ostling (Associated Press, New York) – 03.03.06
Revelations and betrayal
Article by Jill Rowbotham in The Australian (Sydney) - 30.03.06
Lost Gospel Revealed; Says Jesus Asked Judas to Betray Him
Article by Stefan Lovgren in National Geographic News (Washington, USA) – 06.04.06
Judas helped Jesus save mankind
BBC (London) article - 07.04.06
Is it really the Gospel truth?
Article by Damian Thompson in the Daily Telegraph (London) – 08.04.06
How the Gospel of Judas Emerged
Article by Barry Meier and John Noble Wilford in the New York Times – 13.04.06
The Gospel of Judas – links and resources
Gnostic Christianity and the Myth of Sophia
An essay by Bette Stockbauer
Why is church so serious?
A new scripture shortly to be published
Da Vinci's Magdalene
Index of blog contents
Spirituality websites worth watching