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Re: [XTalk] More on the Gospel of Judas... Oops. Maybe it was misread.

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  • Robert Griffin
    Greetings, The following ancient reference to the Gospel of Judas suggests that they got the interpretation more or less correct the first time: 1. Others
    Message 1 of 7 , Dec 4, 2006
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      Greetings,

      The following ancient reference to the Gospel of Judas suggests that
      they got the interpretation more or less correct the first time:
      "1. Others again declare that Cain derived his being from the Power
      above, and acknowledge that Esau, Korah, the Sodomites, and all such
      persons, are related to themselves. On this account, they add, they
      have been assailed by the Creator, yet no one of them has suffered
      injury. For Sophia was in the habit of carrying off that which
      belonged to her from them to herself. They declare that Judas the
      traitor was thoroughly acquainted with these things, 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 produce a fictitious history of this
      kind, which they style the Gospel of Judas."
      http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.ix.ii.xxxii.html
      Irenaeus, 'Against Heresies'

      So, if this is indeed the book referenced by Irenaeus, then Judas
      would be written up as a hero.

      Be Well,
      Bob Griffin
      PS I'm somewhat surprised that the argument between the scholars
      doesn't include the question of whether this book is the Gospel of
      Judas used by the Cainites.
    • Jeffrey B. Gibson
      ... What makes you think this isn t included? Jeffrey Gibson -- Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon) 1500 W. Pratt Blvd. Chicago, Illinois e-mail
      Message 2 of 7 , Dec 4, 2006
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        Robert Griffin wrote:

        > PS I'm somewhat surprised that the argument between the scholars
        > doesn't include the question of whether this book is the Gospel of
        > Judas used by the Cainites.
        >

        What makes you think this isn't included?

        Jeffrey Gibson
        --
        Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon)
        1500 W. Pratt Blvd.
        Chicago, Illinois
        e-mail jgibson000@...
      • Robert Griffin
        ... The CBC News story at http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2006/12/04/judas- scholars.html entirely ignores the fact that if this is indeed the Gospel of Judas
        Message 3 of 7 , Dec 5, 2006
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          --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jeffrey B. Gibson"
          <jgibson000@...> wrote:
          >
          >
          >
          > Robert Griffin wrote:
          >
          > > PS I'm somewhat surprised that the argument between the scholars
          > > doesn't include the question of whether this book is the Gospel of
          > > Judas used by the Cainites.
          > >
          >
          > What makes you think this isn't included?
          >
          > Jeffrey Gibson
          > --
          > Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon)
          > 1500 W. Pratt Blvd.
          > Chicago, Illinois
          > e-mail jgibson000@...

          The CBC News story at http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2006/12/04/judas-
          scholars.html entirely ignores the fact that if this is indeed the
          Gospel of Judas mentioned by Irenaeus, Judas is likely to be
          presented as a spiritual revolutionary and hero rather than as a
          villain or a dupe. If we have enough of the document, and if it is
          indeed the Cainite Gospel of Judas, then I would expect to find some
          clearer evidences of Cainite (or at least Gnostic) teachings.

          Nearly the whole discussion presented on the CBC page treats the
          document as if there were no connection between it and the document
          mentioned by Irenaeus. Irenaeus is fairly clear on what to expect
          from the Cainite Gospel of Judas, so discovery of an actual copy of
          the Cainite gospel shouldn't be expected to give us many surprises.
          Rather it would add depth to our knowledge about this particular
          Gnostic group.

          In some ways, it appears many people are treating this document as a
          new 'Gospel of Thomas', which it clearly is not. I would posit that
          the Gospel of Judas is no more historical (and perhaps no less
          historical) than the Drasha dYahya used/preserved by the Mandaeans.
          If someone suddenly becomes interested in the Drasha dYahya, will we
          soon be seeing debates over whether or not IT supports or rejects
          Christian tradtion?

          To redundantly reiterate--if this is the Cainite Gospel of Judas, we
          should expect, given Irenaeus' description, both a presentation of
          Gnostic doctrine and a presentation of Judas in a positive light. If
          either Judas is presented as a dupe or a villain, or if there is no
          trace of Gnostic doctrine in the document, then we most likely don't
          have the aforementioned Cainite gospel. If the presentation of Judas
          is unclear, but if there are clear evidences of Cainite teachings,
          then the secondary evidence (Cainite doctrines) would support a pro-
          Judas interpretation of the controversial sections.

          Be Well,
          Bob Griffin
        • Jeffrey B. Gibson
          ... All this does is point out that relying on what the media says as the source of your claims for what scholars have or have not said with respect to the
          Message 4 of 7 , Dec 5, 2006
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            Robert Griffin wrote:

            > --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jeffrey B. Gibson"
            > <jgibson000@...> wrote:
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > > Robert Griffin wrote:
            > >
            > > > PS I'm somewhat surprised that the argument between the scholars
            > > > doesn't include the question of whether this book is the Gospel of
            > > > Judas used by the Cainites.
            > > >
            > >
            > > What makes you think this isn't included?
            > >
            > > Jeffrey Gibson
            > > --
            > > Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon)
            > > 1500 W. Pratt Blvd.
            > > Chicago, Illinois
            > > e-mail jgibson000@...
            >
            > The CBC News story at http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2006/12/04/judas-
            > scholars.html entirely ignores the fact that if this is indeed the
            > Gospel of Judas mentioned by Irenaeus, Judas is likely to be
            > presented as a spiritual revolutionary and hero rather than as a
            > villain or a dupe. If we have enough of the document, and if it is
            > indeed the Cainite Gospel of Judas, then I would expect to find some
            > clearer evidences of Cainite (or at least Gnostic) teachings.

            All this does is point out that relying on what the media says as the source of
            your claims for what scholars have or have not said with respect to the Gospel of
            Judas (or any other topic) is as hazardous as it is methodologically unsound.

            I suggest that before you make such global claims about what scholars have and
            have not said, you avoid relying for your claims on second hand reports of what
            they have or have not said, and instead go straight to the works of the scholars
            themselves.

            Jeffrey Gibson
            --
            Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon)
            1500 W. Pratt Blvd.
            Chicago, Illinois
            e-mail jgibson000@...
          • Robert Griffin
            ... scholars ... Gospel of ... http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2006/12/04/judas- ... is ... some ... the source of ... the Gospel of ... methodologically
            Message 5 of 7 , Dec 6, 2006
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              --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jeffrey B. Gibson"
              <jgibson000@...> wrote:
              >
              >
              >
              > Robert Griffin wrote:
              >
              > > --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jeffrey B. Gibson"
              > > <jgibson000@> wrote:
              > > >
              > > >
              > > >
              > > > Robert Griffin wrote:
              > > >
              > > > > PS I'm somewhat surprised that the argument between the
              scholars
              > > > > doesn't include the question of whether this book is the
              Gospel of
              > > > > Judas used by the Cainites.
              > > > >
              > > >
              > > > What makes you think this isn't included?
              > > >
              > > > Jeffrey Gibson
              > > > --
              > > > Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon)
              > > > 1500 W. Pratt Blvd.
              > > > Chicago, Illinois
              > > > e-mail jgibson000@
              > >
              > > The CBC News story at
              http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2006/12/04/judas-
              > > scholars.html entirely ignores the fact that if this is indeed the
              > > Gospel of Judas mentioned by Irenaeus, Judas is likely to be
              > > presented as a spiritual revolutionary and hero rather than as a
              > > villain or a dupe. If we have enough of the document, and if it
              is
              > > indeed the Cainite Gospel of Judas, then I would expect to find
              some
              > > clearer evidences of Cainite (or at least Gnostic) teachings.
              >
              > All this does is point out that relying on what the media says as
              the source of
              > your claims for what scholars have or have not said with respect to
              the Gospel of
              > Judas (or any other topic) is as hazardous as it is
              methodologically unsound.
              >
              > I suggest that before you make such global claims about what
              scholars have and
              > have not said, you avoid relying for your claims on second hand
              reports of what
              > they have or have not said, and instead go straight to the works of
              the scholars
              > themselves.
              >
              > Jeffrey Gibson
              > --
              > Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon)
              > 1500 W. Pratt Blvd.
              > Chicago, Illinois
              > e-mail jgibson000@...
              >
              Correction taken to heart. Since I don't work in the field, and am
              short on both money and time, I will ask the list community if the
              current discussion over re-assessment of the role of Judas in the
              betrayal of Jesus in the Gospel of Judas involves also a re-
              assessment of whether a) this manuscript is indeed a copy of the
              Cainite Gospel of Judas and/or b) Irenaeus et al. actually
              misunderstood the Cainite Gospel of Judas.

              My own observations are as follows:
              The three characteristic Gnostic figures in the text of the Gospel of
              Judas (Barbelos, Saklas, Ialdabaoth) are not specifically Cainite,
              and I found no occurence of the word/name 'Hysteros' (referring to
              the prime Cainite diety, according to Irenaeus, if I read him
              correctly). So, from that point of view, this work might not be the
              same that Irenaeus wrote about. On the other hand, it is clearly a
              Gnostic document, and equally clearly treats Judas in roughly the
              same manner as Thomas is treated in the Gospel of Thomas.

              Thanks for any input.

              Be Well,
              Bob Griffin
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