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Gospel of Thomas not Gnostic???

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  • ErnstStrohregenmantelrad
    Can we be sure that the Gospel According Thomas (GTh) is a Gnostic document? Many people seem to have the notion that GTh = Gnostics. I think that kind of the
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 5, 2002
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      Can we be sure that the Gospel According Thomas
      (GTh) is a Gnostic document? Many people seem to have
      the notion that GTh = Gnostics. I think that kind of
      the line of thinking is premature. I am of the
      opinion that GTh is no more of Gnostic writings then the
      Johannine Prologue or some Pauline Epistles. <br><br>We all
      assume that the GTh is a Gnostic writing because it was
      found amongst the Nag Hammadi Codex. In Nag Hammadi,
      there are writings that showed the definite �Gnostic�
      theology such as the Gospel of Truth. However, one must
      keep in mind that the codex includes non-Gnostic
      writings such as Plato�s Republic.<br><br>Of course, the
      version that came down to us is under the redaction of
      �Gnostic� scribes but I would say the core of the GTh is a
      writing of (for the lack of better term now) �esoteric�
      adaptionalists. This is based upon saying 12 where James is
      mentioned. In addition, the writing mentions no passion or
      resurrection of Christ thus they played no significance. In
      comparing with other writing founded in Hag Hammadi
      (excluding Plato and Hermetic text, of course) and other
      Gnostic writings such as Pistis Sophia the GTh has no
      elaborate Christological speculation as soteriology. The
      GTh is more of wisdom saying, which parallels Jewish
      wisdom books such as Proverbs.<br><br>Because of its
      esoteric nature, the GTh was later easily adopted by
      Gnostics of the 2nd century such as Valentinius. However,
      if we take this view then we are opening the can of
      worms about definition of Gnosticism. Are �esoteric�
      adaptionalists a Gnostic, pre-, or proto-Gnostic? <br><br>I
      would like to bring these discussions on the table. Any
      comments, criticism, or counter opinion is greatly
      appreciated.
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