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Re: [GTh] Gnosticism

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  • Wade and April
    The proponent of this idea is Karen King and a detailed discussion of it can be found in her 2003 book . Wade ... From: Maurice Cormier
    Message 1 of 13 , Aug 1 5:53 AM
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      The proponent of this idea is Karen King and a detailed discussion of it can
      be found in her 2003 book <What is Gnosticism?>.

      Wade

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Maurice Cormier" <cobby@...>
      To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Friday, August 01, 2003 3:56 AM
      Subject: [GTh] Gnosticism


      > Greetings all !
      >
      > I am not sure if anyone out there can help me, but I am preparing a
      > short piece on "Gnosticism" and I recall reading somewhere that the word
      > or expression "gnosticism" was not popularized much before the 11th
      > century. In other words, prior to that date, what we call (Christian)
      > gnosticism at least (whatever that really means, I guess) was simply
      > considered part of "greater Christianity" in "the litterature".
      >
      > Are there any etymology experts out there who might rreassure me that
      > this is not just another bad dream I had at some point ?
      >
      > Maurice Cormier
      >
      >
      > --------------------------------------------------------------------
      > Gospel of Thomas Homepage: http://home.epix.net/~miser17/Thomas.html
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      >
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      >
      >
    • sarban
      ... From: Jacob Knee To: Sent: Wednesday, January 12, 2005 10:05 PM Subject: RE: [GTh] Gnosticism ... Perhaps
      Message 2 of 13 , Jan 12, 2005
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        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Jacob Knee" <zen20458@...>
        To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Wednesday, January 12, 2005 10:05 PM
        Subject: RE: [GTh] Gnosticism


        >
        > FWIW 'Thomist' is usually used in scholarship to describe the school of
        > thought inspired by Thomas Aquinas.
        >
        > Best wishes,
        > Jacob Knee
        > (Cam, Glos.)
        >
        Perhaps 'School of Thomas' would be better.

        IMO a work belongs to the 'School of Thomas' if it has
        significant themes shared with more than one of the
        Gospel of Thomas, Acts of Thomas and Book of Thomas
        the Contender.

        IMO themes shared between the Gospel of Thomas and
        Alexandrian Gnostic traditions but not present in either the
        Acts of Thomas or Thomas the Contender are not evidence
        for membership of the 'School of Thomas'.

        Andrew Criddle
      • Andrew Smith
        ... Would you classify the Gospel of Philip as a School of Thomas text? Andrew Andrew Smith Bardic Press http://www.bardic-press.com
        Message 3 of 13 , Jan 16, 2005
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          --- In gthomas@yahoogroups.com, "sarban" <sarban@s...> wrote:
          >
          > IMO a work belongs to the 'School of Thomas' if it has
          > significant themes shared with more than one of the
          > Gospel of Thomas, Acts of Thomas and Book of Thomas
          > the Contender.
          >
          > IMO themes shared between the Gospel of Thomas and
          > Alexandrian Gnostic traditions but not present in either the
          > Acts of Thomas or Thomas the Contender are not evidence
          > for membership of the 'School of Thomas'.
          >
          > Andrew Criddle

          Would you classify the Gospel of Philip as a 'School of Thomas' text?

          Andrew

          Andrew Smith
          Bardic Press
          http://www.bardic-press.com
        • sarban
          ... From: Andrew Smith To: Sent: Sunday, January 16, 2005 7:47 PM Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism ...
          Message 4 of 13 , Jan 16, 2005
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            ----- Original Message -----
            From: "Andrew Smith" <smithand44@...>
            To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
            Sent: Sunday, January 16, 2005 7:47 PM
            Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism


            >
            >
            > --- In gthomas@yahoogroups.com, "sarban" <sarban@s...> wrote:
            > >
            > > IMO a work belongs to the 'School of Thomas' if it has
            > > significant themes shared with more than one of the
            > > Gospel of Thomas, Acts of Thomas and Book of Thomas
            > > the Contender.
            > >
            <SNIP>

            > > Andrew Criddle
            >
            > Would you classify the Gospel of Philip as a 'School of Thomas' text?
            >
            > Andrew
            >
            > Andrew Smith
            > Bardic Press
            > http://www.bardic-press.com
            >
            It could be argued either way but I would say no.

            The parallels between the Gospel of Philip and the
            Gospel of Thomas seems as much due to the common
            influence of Valentinian ideas in both as to the presence
            of core 'School of Thomas' ideas in Philip.

            (I can give a more detailed analysis of the relation of
            the Gospels of Thomas and Philip if you like but that is
            my conclusion put briefly)

            Andrew Criddle
          • Andrew Smith
            ... of Thomas text? ... Yes, I would enjoy a more detailed answer. I m working on a book, The Gospel of Philip: Annotated and Explained for Skylight Paths.
            Message 5 of 13 , Jan 16, 2005
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              > > --- In gthomas@yahoogroups.com, "sarban" <sarban@s...> wrote:
              > > >
              > > > IMO a work belongs to the 'School of Thomas' if it has
              > > > significant themes shared with more than one of the
              > > > Gospel of Thomas, Acts of Thomas and Book of Thomas
              > > > the Contender.
              > > >
              > <SNIP>
              >
              > > > Andrew Criddle
              > >
              > > ANDREW SMITH: Would you classify the Gospel of Philip as a 'School
              of Thomas' text?

              > It could be argued either way but I would say no.
              >
              > The parallels between the Gospel of Philip and the
              > Gospel of Thomas seems as much due to the common
              > influence of Valentinian ideas in both as to the presence
              > of core 'School of Thomas' ideas in Philip.
              >
              > (I can give a more detailed analysis of the relation of
              > the Gospels of Thomas and Philip if you like but that is
              > my conclusion put briefly)
              >
              > Andrew Criddle

              Yes, I would enjoy a more detailed answer. I'm working on a book, The
              Gospel of Philip: Annotated and Explained for Skylight Paths. I'm
              wading through Martha Lee Turner's book on Philip, and she notes
              similarities between material in Thomas and Philip and between Philip
              and sections of the Acts of Thomas.

              What is Valentinian in Thomas? Much that could be called Valentinian
              might be also be Pauline I should think.

              Best Wishes

              Andrew smith
            • sarban
              ... From: Andrew Smith To: Sent: Monday, January 17, 2005 1:53 AM Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism ... IMO
              Message 6 of 13 , Jan 17, 2005
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                ----- Original Message -----
                From: "Andrew Smith" <smithand44@...>
                To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Monday, January 17, 2005 1:53 AM
                Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism


                >
                >
                >
                > > >
                > > > ANDREW SMITH: Would you classify the Gospel of Philip as a 'School
                > of Thomas' text?
                >
                > > It could be argued either way but I would say no.
                > >
                > > The parallels between the Gospel of Philip and the
                > > Gospel of Thomas seems as much due to the common
                > > influence of Valentinian ideas in both as to the presence
                > > of core 'School of Thomas' ideas in Philip.
                > >
                > > (I can give a more detailed analysis of the relation of
                > > the Gospels of Thomas and Philip if you like but that is
                > > my conclusion put briefly)
                > >
                > > Andrew Criddle
                >
                > Yes, I would enjoy a more detailed answer. I'm working on a book, The
                > Gospel of Philip: Annotated and Explained for Skylight Paths. I'm
                > wading through Martha Lee Turner's book on Philip, and she notes
                > similarities between material in Thomas and Philip and between Philip
                > and sections of the Acts of Thomas.
                >
                > What is Valentinian in Thomas? Much that could be called Valentinian
                > might be also be Pauline I should think.
                >
                > Best Wishes
                >
                > Andrew smith
                >
                >
                IMO there are three types of resemblance between the
                Gospel of Philip and the Gospel of Thomas and/or other
                Thomas literature.

                Firstly resemblances from interpreting reinterpreting and
                paraphrasing the same New Testament ideas and themes
                both from Paul and the Gospels. These resemblances
                amount in my mind to little more than that they are all
                fundamentally Christian works (as distinct from some Nag
                Hammadi texts which may be non-Christian works
                secondarily Christianized) and, except possibly for the Acts
                of Thomas, esoteric Christian works.

                Secondly broadly 'encratite' themes shared between Philip
                and the Thomas literature eg Thomas 22 .....Jesus said to them
                'When you make the two one and when you make the inside as
                the outside and the outside as the inside and the upper side as
                the lower side and when you make the male and the female into
                a single ome so that the male will not be male nor the female be
                female; when you make eyes in the place of an eye and a hand
                in the place of a hand and a foot in the place of a foot an image
                in the place of an image then you shall enter the kingdom' This is
                paralleld in the Acts of Thomas and in the Gospel of Philip. Philip
                reads He said 'I have come that I might make the things below
                like the things above and the things outside like the things within
                I came to unite them in that place.'

                This sort of saying often has many parallels in early extracanonical
                Christian literature, eg 2 Clement for this saying, and does not
                IMO establish a special linkage between Philip and the Thomas
                material.

                Thirdly there are some specific parallels between the Gospel of
                Thomas and the Gospel of Philip eg Thomas 84 Jesus said 'Adam
                came into being from a great power and a great wealth and he did
                not become worthy of you For if he had been worthy he would not
                have tasted death. Philip has 'The soul of Adam came into existence
                from a breath Its partner is the spirit'. and, 'Adam came into being
                from two virgins from the spirit and from the virgin earth. Because
                of this Christ was begotten from a virgin that he might set aright the
                fall which happened in the beginning.'

                Themes like this in which the creation narrative is speculatively
                reinterpreted are IMO Gnostic if not necessarily specifically
                Valentinian. The Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Philip have
                significant parallels of this nature reflecting the same Gnostic
                concerns. However this seems to be a type of resemblance found
                between Philip and the Gospel of Thomas in particular not a
                resemblance between Philip and the Thomas literature in general.

                Andrew Criddle
              • Andrew Smith
                ... Thanks for your post, Andrew. We are starting from different positions. I work with Thomas not being dependent on the canonical gospels, and think that
                Message 7 of 13 , Jan 18, 2005
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                  --- In gthomas@yahoogroups.com, "sarban" <sarban@s...> wrote:

                  > IMO there are three types of resemblance between the
                  > Gospel of Philip and the Gospel of Thomas and/or other
                  > Thomas literature.
                  >
                  > Firstly resemblances from interpreting reinterpreting and
                  > paraphrasing the same New Testament ideas and themes
                  > both from Paul and the Gospels. These resemblances
                  > amount in my mind to little more than that they are all
                  > fundamentally Christian works (as distinct from some Nag
                  > Hammadi texts which may be non-Christian works
                  > secondarily Christianized) and, except possibly for the Acts
                  > of Thomas, esoteric Christian works.
                  >

                  Thanks for your post, Andrew. We are starting from different
                  positions. I work with Thomas not being dependent on the canonical
                  gospels, and think that Thomas isn't second century gnostic. So for me
                  this category would be material that Thomas has in common with the
                  canonicals, by virtue of coming from roughly the same era of
                  Christianity, and that Philip has taken from Paul and the gospels. So
                  it might be as likely (though perhaps a bit less likely) that Philip
                  got it from Thomas as from the canonicals.

                  > Secondly broadly 'encratite' themes shared between Philip
                  > and the Thomas literature eg Thomas 22 .....Jesus said to them
                  > 'When you make the two one and when you make the inside as
                  > the outside and the outside as the inside and the upper side as
                  > the lower side and when you make the male and the female into
                  > a single ome so that the male will not be male nor the female be
                  > female; when you make eyes in the place of an eye and a hand
                  > in the place of a hand and a foot in the place of a foot an image
                  > in the place of an image then you shall enter the kingdom' This is
                  > paralleld in the Acts of Thomas and in the Gospel of Philip. Philip
                  > reads He said 'I have come that I might make the things below
                  > like the things above and the things outside like the things within
                  > I came to unite them in that place.'
                  >
                  > This sort of saying often has many parallels in early extracanonical
                  > Christian literature, eg 2 Clement for this saying, and does not
                  > IMO establish a special linkage between Philip and the Thomas
                  > material.
                  >
                  > Thirdly there are some specific parallels between the Gospel of
                  > Thomas and the Gospel of Philip eg Thomas 84 Jesus said 'Adam
                  > came into being from a great power and a great wealth and he did
                  > not become worthy of you For if he had been worthy he would not
                  > have tasted death. Philip has 'The soul of Adam came into existence
                  > from a breath Its partner is the spirit'. and, 'Adam came into being
                  > from two virgins from the spirit and from the virgin earth. Because
                  > of this Christ was begotten from a virgin that he might set aright the
                  > fall which happened in the beginning.'
                  >
                  > Themes like this in which the creation narrative is speculatively
                  > reinterpreted are IMO Gnostic if not necessarily specifically
                  > Valentinian. The Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Philip have
                  > significant parallels of this nature reflecting the same Gnostic
                  > concerns. However this seems to be a type of resemblance found
                  > between Philip and the Gospel of Thomas in particular not a
                  > resemblance between Philip and the Thomas literature in general.
                  >

                  I don't see why this is specifically gnostic. Paul also reinterprets
                  Adam, as "a type of the one who was to come" (Rom. 5:14) or in terms
                  of the first and last Adam. And for Philo Adam represents Mind. But in
                  any case I might agree that it doesn't necessitate a relationship
                  between Thomas and Philip. exegesis of Genesis abounds in early
                  Christianity in general, as well as in Philo (and the rabbinical
                  literature.)

                  What do you think about
                  The Lord said, "Blessed is he who is before he came into being. For he
                  who is, has been and shall be." (Philip 49 by Layton's scheme)?

                  Thomas 19a (19) Jesus said, "Blessed is he who came into being before
                  he came into being.

                  Perhaps it might fit into your second category, as, according to
                  Meyer, Irenaeus has "Fortunate [Blessed] is one who existed before
                  being human." (Apostolic Preaching 43.)

                  Apart from its name, what makes you think that the Gospel of Thomas
                  belongs to a school of Thomas? Which resemblances between GThomas and
                  the Book of Thomas, or between GThomas and the Acts of Thomas aren't
                  covered by your above categories?

                  Best Wishes

                  Andrew

                  Andrew Smith

                  Bardic Press
                • fmmccoy
                  ... From: sarban To: Sent: Monday, January 17, 2005 5:19 PM Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism (snip) ... Hi
                  Message 8 of 13 , Jan 19, 2005
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                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: "sarban" <sarban@...>
                    To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
                    Sent: Monday, January 17, 2005 5:19 PM
                    Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism

                    (snip)

                    > Secondly broadly 'encratite' themes shared between Philip
                    > and the Thomas literature eg Thomas 22 .....Jesus said to them
                    > 'When you make the two one and when you make the inside as
                    > the outside and the outside as the inside and the upper side as
                    > the lower side and when you make the male and the female into
                    > a single ome so that the male will not be male nor the female be
                    > female; when you make eyes in the place of an eye and a hand
                    > in the place of a hand and a foot in the place of a foot an image
                    > in the place of an image then you shall enter the kingdom' This is
                    > paralleld in the Acts of Thomas and in the Gospel of Philip. Philip
                    > reads He said 'I have come that I might make the things below
                    > like the things above and the things outside like the things within
                    > I came to unite them in that place.'
                    >
                    > This sort of saying often has many parallels in early extracanonical
                    > Christian literature, eg 2 Clement for this saying, and does not
                    > IMO establish a special linkage between Philip and the Thomas
                    > material.

                    Hi Andrew!

                    IMO, 22 reflects the idea that one cannot only have the body of flesh, but
                    another body as well--this being the body of the spirit.

                    In particular, it refers to the rebirth in the body of spirit: in which the
                    human being becomes, for a second time, a child. Unlike the body of flesh,
                    the body of spirit has no up or down, no inside or outside, and no male and
                    female. Therefore, in this rebirth, these twos become ones. Still, the body
                    of spirit is like the body of flesh in that it has spiritual equivalents to
                    fleshly eyes, fleshly hands, and fleshly feet. So, in this rebirth, there is
                    the fashioning of spiritual eyes in place of a fleshly eye, of a spiritual
                    hand in place of a fleshly hand, and of a spiritual foot in place of a
                    fleshly foot: in short, the fashioning of spiritual likenesses in place of
                    their fleshly likenesses. Once this rebirth is complete, then one can enter
                    the Kingdom.

                    Andrew, next, let us turn to the passage from Philip you cite, "[The Lord]
                    said, 'I came to make [the things below] like the things [above, and the
                    things] outside like those [inside. I came to unite] them in that place.'"

                    In order to understand this passage, I think it useful to, first of all,
                    closely examine the sentence which immediately precedes it. This sentence
                    reads, "The Lord [did] everything in a mystery, a baptism and a chrism, and
                    a eucharist and a redemption and a bridal chamber."

                    Outside of the phrase, "and a eucharist", this sentence appears to
                    regard the rite of baptism. So, a little later, Philip states, "Baptism
                    includes the resurrection [and the] redemption: the redemption (takes place)
                    in the bridal chamber."

                    Also, in this sentence, the phrase, "a baptism and a chrism", means
                    that one's baptism in water is also one's anointment with the Spirit. It
                    is a replication of what happened to Jesus when, while being baptized in
                    water by John, the Spirit descended upn him.

                    Indeed, according to Philip, to a large degree, the baptism rite is a
                    replication of what happened to Jesus at his baptism.

                    For example, he states, "Jesus revealed [himself at the] Jordan: it was
                    the [fulness of the kingdom] of heaven. He who [was begotten] before
                    everything was begotten anew. He [who was] once [anointed] was anointed
                    anew. He who was redeemed in turn redeemed (others)."

                    While being baptized in water, Jesus was anointed with the Spirit and born
                    again. This was his redemption. Further, by setting the pattern of being
                    anointed with the Spirit and reborn as one is baptized in waer, he redeemed
                    others in that he enabled them, in their own baptisms in water, to be
                    anointed by the Spirit and reborn.

                    Then, Philip thusly continues, "Is it permitted to utter a mystery? The
                    Father of everything united with the virgin who came down and a fire shone
                    for him on that day. He appeared in the great bridal chamber. Therefore,
                    his body came into being on that very day. It left the bridal chamber as
                    one who came into being from the bridegroom and the bride. So Jesus
                    established everything in it through these. It is fitting for each of the
                    disciples to enter into his rest."

                    The rebirth of Jesus during his baptism was his rebirth as a body, i.e., the
                    body of the spirit. It occurred within the bridal chamber. The bride and
                    bridegroom who brought about his rebirth were God and the virginal Spirit.
                    Since this set the pattern, this means that those who follow him, when they
                    are baptized in water, are reborn of God and the Spirit in the bridal
                    chamber as bodies of spirit--thereby enabling them to enter into the same
                    rest as that entered by Jesus during his baptism.

                    (Note: I'm puzzled by the phrase, "and a fire shone on him that day."
                    In the context of this passage from Philip, I suspect that this "fire" is
                    Knowledge (Gnosis), but this is but a guess. Also, maybe something more
                    tangible is meant. So, Justin (Dialogue 88:3) comments, "When Jesus went
                    down to the water, fire was kindled in the Jordan;...".)

                    To summarize: In the sentence immediately preceding the cited passage from
                    Philip, the emphasis is on the rite of baptism. According to Philip,
                    during his baptism, Jesus was anointed by the Spirit. He was also reborn as
                    a body of spirit in the bridal chamber, with the Father and Mother of his
                    rebirth being God and the Spirit. All this was his redemption.
                    Further, Jesus set the pattern in his baptism, so that his followers could,
                    when baptized in water, also be anointed with the Spirit and be reborn as
                    bodies of spirit in the bridal chamber. As a result, he who was redeemed,
                    redeemed others.

                    All this relates to the first sentence of the originally cited passage
                    from Philip, "[The Lord} said: 'I came to make [the things below] like the
                    things [above, and the things] outside like those [inside].'"

                    Here, the basic idea is that, by setting the pattern for being reborn as a
                    body of spirit (which, as is pointed out in Thomas 22, has no up or down and
                    no inside or outside) in his baptism, Jesus fulfilled a basic purpose in his
                    becoming incarnate on earth--which was to enable people to be redeemed by
                    being reborn as bodies of spirit.

                    The next and final sentence of the originally cited passage from Philip
                    reads, "I came to [unite] them in that place,"

                    This relates how, in the bridal chamber, the soul merges into, and becomes a
                    part of, the spirit: thereby enabling one to reborn there as (a body of)
                    pure spirit.

                    So, a little earlier, Philip says, "It is from water and fire that the soul
                    and the spirit came into being. It is from water and fire and light that
                    the son of the bridal chamber (came into being)." Initially, the soul and
                    the spirit are separated. However, in the bridal chamber, the soul merges
                    into, and becomes a part of, the spirit, so that which is reborn of God and
                    the Spirit in the bridal chamber as a son is a body of spirit.

                    Again, later, Philip says, "If the woman had not separated from the man, she
                    would not die with the man. His separation became the beginning of death.
                    Bcause of this Christ came to repair the separation which was from the
                    beginning and again unite the two, and to give life to those who died as a
                    result of the separation and unite them. But the woman is united to her
                    husband in the bridal chamber."

                    Adam represents the spirit and Eve the soul. As long as the soul (Eve) is
                    within the spirit (Adam) as a part of his very self, neither dies. When
                    they separate, becoming two, they become mortal. The Christ came to repair
                    this separation so that, united once again, they can live again. He did so
                    by initiating the baptism rite in which the soul is united to (i.e. merged
                    into) the spirit in the bridal chamber.

                    Ok, enough of this. Let us now turn to the question of the relationship
                    between the cited passage from Philip and Thomas thought--especially as
                    expressed in 22.

                    There certainly is a relationship between this cited passage from Philip and
                    22 in that, in both, it is stressed that the body of spirit, unlike the body
                    of flesh, has no up or down and no inside or outside.

                    On a more general level, the concept of the bridal chamber, which is present
                    in the cited passage from Philip, is also found in GThomas. Too, I think
                    the concept that eternal life comes through the soul merging into and
                    becoming a part of the spirit, which is present in the cited passage from
                    Philip, is also found in Thomas 7a, "Blessed is the lion (i.e., soul) which
                    becomes man (i.e., which becomes a part of the inner man, the spirit) when
                    consumed by (i.e., absorbed by) man (i.e., the spirit).

                    Still, one perhaps shouldn't make very much out of these similarities. They
                    are rather generic in nature

                    Further, there is a radical departure from Thomas thought in the cited
                    passage from Philip. In the cited passage from Philip, one is reborn as a
                    body of spirit in the rite of baptism. As far as I am aware, such an idea
                    is alien to Thomas thought.

                    Rather, the inspiration for this idea appears to come from Johannine
                    thought.

                    Particularly important is John 3:5-3:7, "Amen. Amen. I say to you, unless
                    someone is born of water and Spirit, he is not able to enter into the
                    Kingdom of God. The thing having been born of the flesh is (a body of)
                    flesh and the thing having been born of the Spirit is (a body of) spirit.
                    Do not marvel that, I said, it is necessary for you to be born again."

                    Here, we find this same basic idea that it is during the rite of baptism in
                    water that one is reborn as (a body of) spirit. Here, we also find Philip's
                    idea that, in this rebirth, the Spirit acts as the Mother.

                    So, while there are some similarities between the cited passage in Philip
                    and Thomas thought, the key similarity is, rather, between the cited passage
                    in Philip and Johannine thought. This is explicable under the hypothesis
                    that the author of Philip was aware of both Thomas thought and Johannine
                    thought but that, in this passage, it is Johannine thought that most
                    strongly influenced him.

                    In any event, the complex of ideas underlying it shows considerable
                    development beyond both Johannine and Thomas thought, so it appears that
                    GPhilip is of considerably later composition than either GThomas or GJohn.

                    Frank McCoy
                    1809 N. English Apt. 15
                    Maplewood, MN USA 55109
                  • Michael Grondin
                    In this note, I propose to show how the themes contained in the Gospel of Philip passage that Frank McCoy analyzes below (sorry for the length, but it s
                    Message 9 of 13 , Jan 19, 2005
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                      In this note, I propose to show how the themes contained in the Gospel of
                      Philip passage that Frank McCoy analyzes below (sorry for the length, but
                      it's necessary) are reflected in what I think is the first great "mystery"
                      of the Gospel of Thomas puzzle: the joining of "the Father" with "the
                      virgin". First, here's the passage, and what Frank has to say about it:

                      > Then, Philip thusly continues, "Is it permitted to utter a mystery? The
                      > Father of everything united with the virgin who came down and a fire shone
                      > for him on that day. He appeared in the great bridal chamber. Therefore,
                      > his body came into being on that very day. It left the bridal chamber as
                      > one who came into being from the bridegroom and the bride. So Jesus
                      > established everything in it through these. It is fitting for each of the
                      > disciples to enter into his rest."
                      >
                      > The rebirth of Jesus during his baptism was his rebirth as a body, i.e.,
                      > the
                      > body of the spirit. It occurred within the bridal chamber. The bride and
                      > bridegroom who brought about his rebirth were God and the virginal Spirit.
                      > Since this set the pattern, this means that those who follow him, when
                      > they
                      > are baptized in water, are reborn of God and the Spirit in the bridal
                      > chamber as bodies of spirit--thereby enabling them to enter into the same
                      > rest as that entered by Jesus during his baptism.
                      >
                      > (Note: I'm puzzled by the phrase, "and a fire shone on him that day."
                      > In the context of this passage from Philip, I suspect that this "fire" is
                      > Knowledge (Gnosis), but this is but a guess. Also, maybe something more
                      > tangible is meant. So, Justin (Dialogue 88:3) comments, "When Jesus went
                      > down to the water, fire was kindled in the Jordan;...".)

                      My comments:
                      The first thing to note is the connection in the ancient mind between fire
                      and light. Having no electricity in those days, fire was the only light that
                      they had (aside from that from the sun and moon). "Fire" was also a metaphor
                      (see _Thomas the Contender_) for two opposing forces within the person: the
                      "fire" of the passions versus what one might call "spiritual fire". A person
                      (specifically, the person's soul) was from birth suspended between these two
                      "fires" ("On the day you were one, you were made of the two"). The spiritual
                      fire (or light) was connected with the first day or act of creation ("Let
                      there be light"), and Jesus was thought to be bringing about a new creation,
                      so that the "light" (or fire) which descended on him at baptism corresponded
                      to the first day of that new creation.

                      Now think for a moment about the career of Jesus. According to the gospels,
                      his mission begins with his baptism by John. He then gathers some followers,
                      and this group proceeds to travel about the countryside. Presumably, then,
                      this itinerant life-style began with J's baptism, when the spirit of God
                      (the light/fire) descended upon him. So we have three interconnected themes
                      here: "fire", creation of a new world, and itinerancy.

                      Now think of line 280 of GTh: "Jesus said 'Become intinerant'" (or so I will
                      translate it here). It's the only one-line block of text in GTh. It's a
                      "single one" and a "little one". In fact, as far as I can see, every other
                      saying in Thomas is composed of several parts. This saying is unique in that
                      respect. The line number is also suggestive: 28 is, and was known to be, the
                      second "perfect number" (the first being 6). The line contains 24 letters,
                      which will become more important below, but for the time being, I note that
                      the very last statement in the Gospel of Philip (which I'm convinced
                      constitutes in part a commentary on puzzle-features of Thomas): "The [new
                      world] is hidden not in darkness and night, but rather, is being hidden in a
                      perfect day with (or and) holy light." My suggestion here is that line 280
                      of GTh is that "perfect day".

                      If at this point the reader is unconvinced about the importance of line 280,
                      I now wish to show how it can be connected up with two other lines in a sort
                      of "marriage". (Since the number one represented maleness in antiquity and
                      the number two femaleness, a textual "marriage" would be a joining of a
                      single line complete in itself with a two-line set containing a complete
                      thought.) In this "marriage", "light" or "fire" descends upon "Jesus"
                      (i.e., the one who calls out for others to live a life of itinerancy) so
                      that, in effect, line 280 is both "the bridegroom" and "the lampstand" (as
                      well as several other things).

                      The "female" I have in mind to "marry" line 280 is lines 69-70. The main
                      bulk of those two lines says that "This heaven will pass away and she who is
                      above her will pass away.", but it also contains the tail-end of a saying
                      that begins on line 66. Readers of my previous messages may recall that I've
                      claimed that lines 66-67 are part of the textual framing for "the world", in
                      that 66-67 say "I have cast fire upon the world, and behold! - I watch over
                      him." Admittedly, there is a single word ( which I'll translate
                      "until-he-burns" for now) that is supposedly part of saying #10 (lines
                      66-67), but that word is clearly detachable from the saying. That is, lines
                      66-67 make perfect sense without it. (One may also note that that word is
                      composed of 10 letters, and that the name 'IS' on the same line with it -
                      line 69 - is the 10th occurrence of 'IS' in the text.) I conclude from this
                      that the entirety of the two lines 69-70 are the "female" which is to be
                      joined with "the bridegroom", and that the word "until-he-burns" is the
                      "light" or "fire" which this "female" is going to set on "the lampstand"
                      (line 280), so that "everyone who comes in and goes out will see by his
                      light".

                      The suggested resulting structure is this:

                      (line 280) JS(42) said "Become itinerant
                      (line 69) until-he-burns. JS(10) said "This heaven will pass-
                      (line 70) away, and she who is above here will pass away."

                      Now what is not apparent from the English is that the root-word at the end
                      of line 280 (PARAGE) is the VERY SAME word that's at the end of line 70. The
                      Coptic reader would of course have noticed that, although it isn't apparent
                      from an English translation, unless line 280 is translated as "Come into
                      being as you pass away" - which is a possible translation, though rarely
                      given (Schoedel is one who has it so). That is part of the reason why the
                      "female" two-liner (69-70) must be seen as the "bride" of the male or
                      "single one" at line 280. She carries with her a "light" to put on "the
                      lampstand" (line 280), with the result that the entire "world" is alit by
                      the "fire" that line 66 says that Jesus has cast onto "the world". It's a
                      new world, and the first act of its creation is the same as the original act
                      of creation: "Let there be light". Until this first act of re-creation is
                      performed by the initiate working on the puzzle, he's working in darkness.

                      Now for some further textual evidence. First, internal: the word 'JERO'
                      that's translated as 'burn' above occurs - in a different form - one other
                      time in Thomas. It's in saying #33, in parte:

                      "No one lights (JERE) a lamp (or candle) and puts him under an ear*, not
                      does he put it in a hidden place; rather, he puts it upon the lampstand, so
                      that everyone who goes in and comes out may look upon his light."

                      (*Note on "ear": this appears to be a scribal mistake. I think it can be
                      demonstrated that it is not, but the explanation isn't relevant to what I'm
                      discussing in this note.)

                      Now I'd like to turn to the Apocryphon of John for a moment. I assume that
                      it - like the Gospel of Philip - was written after the Gospel of Thomas, so
                      that the authors of these surrounding texts were aware of, and were in part
                      commenting on, the Gospel of Thomas *as a puzzle*. That this is so is
                      suggested by the story of the creation of the world in AoJ. It begins with
                      "the monad" (which may have been equated with line 280 in GTh) - alone and
                      perfect (i.e., on a line by itself, with a line number a multiple of the
                      perfect number 28). The first act of his creation is to "find" Barbelo - a
                      female figure "whose light shines like his light". How so? For one, the same
                      word (PARAGE) occurs in both the male and female components mentioned above.
                      For another, line number 280 is a multiple of 70. The two of them thus form
                      a syzygy of male and female - the first syzygy or act of creation of the new
                      world, wherein the "unbegotten" line 280 begets itself (by separating itself
                      off from its "family" in the surrounding text and entering "the bridal
                      chamber") and is "baptized" by the "fire" carried to it by "the bride"
                      (remembering, however, that "fire" is a two-edged sword).

                      But enough for now, I think. The reader's mind no doubt boggles at all this,
                      but I'm convinced that until we (like the original initiates) "repent" and
                      stop being "drunk on [the] words" (as Thomas was before Jesus talked to him
                      in Th13), we will not be able to "discover the meaning of these words" -
                      i.e., the additional level of meaning that the Coptic redactor(s) had in
                      mind - and will thus never know the actual nature of the Coptic Thomas.
                      Solving _that_ problem is the "spiritual fire" that has driven me personally
                      for about 17 years now, and I think it's the same "fire" that was intended
                      to be invoked in the Thomas initiates by this "bubbling spring I've measured
                      out". No one can see it, however, unless he/she looks at it the way the
                      original readers did - in Coptic, and in precisely that syntactical form
                      exhibited by the manuscript.

                      Michael Grondin
                      Mt. Clemens, MI
                    • Michael Grondin
                      An addendum to my previous note under this thread: I failed to mention the connection with #114. There, in the last statement of the text, we read that any
                      Message 10 of 13 , Jan 19, 2005
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                        An addendum to my previous note under this thread:

                        I failed to mention the connection with #114. There, in the last statement
                        of the text, we read that "any woman making herself male will go into the
                        kingdom of the heavens." But how does a textual "female" (i.e., two
                        consecutive lines containing a complete thought) make herself "male"? Well,
                        what JS says about Mariam in #114 is that "I will lead her, in order to make
                        her male." This must, then, be at least one of the ways that a textual
                        female can be "made male", i.e., by attaching that "female" to a one-line
                        "male" such as line 280 - particularly a one-liner with the name 'IS' in it.
                        The result of such a "marriage" is a three-line set - which is thus neither
                        male (one line) nor female (two lines).

                        But ... such a "marriage" must be "made in heaven", so to speak. It must be
                        a case of "what God (i.e., the author) has joined together". In modern
                        terms, the female has to be a "soul-mate" of the male. They "lock
                        together" - not just in one way, but in several (which is good for the
                        puzzle-solver, because it eliminates moves based on speculation or false
                        leads). Note that bachelor 280 and bachelorette 69-70 are "soul mates" in
                        that they contain the same word (PARAGE) - and in the same place (the last
                        word of each). And these lines are the ONLY PLACE in the text where this
                        word occurs. Let's call that "locking feature #1". Now the second feature
                        that locks them together is their respective line-numbers (280 being a
                        multiple of 70.) Yet a third feature that locks them together is one I
                        failed to mention previously: their letter-counts. I did say that line 280
                        had 24 letters (thus constituting a "perfect day", since - as it's become
                        evident to me - each line represents one day, and each letter one hour).
                        What I failed to say is that lines 69-70 contain 56 letters, so that not
                        only does our happily married couple have 24+56 = 80 letters (= 70 in
                        themseves, plus the 10-letter word 'until-he-lights'), but also the number
                        of letters in bachelorette 69-70 is a multiple of 28 - just like the
                        line-number of bachelor 280.

                        I've lost count, but I think that makes 5 or so syntactical (and thus
                        absolutely firm and definite) "locking features". In addition, there seems
                        to be a thematic locking feature: I'm reminded of "where the beginning is,
                        there the end will be". If the "beginning" is Jesus' call to itinerancy in
                        line 280, then "the end" that joins to it seems to reflect a
                        pseudo-eschatological vision of two heavens "passing away". (Note also that
                        the apparent "father" of the female 69-70 contains the 9th occurrence of
                        'IS', and that "the ennead" - i.e., the number 9 [theta, in the Greek number
                        system] had a number of relevant connotations in ancient number-mystical
                        thought. Among other things, as associated with pregnancy, it represented
                        both a "beginning" and an "end".)

                        Relative to this last point, what would that 10-letter word
                        ('until-he-lights') have represented to the authors and readers of the
                        Coptic Thomas? Is our blushing bride already with child (presumably via the
                        Holy Spirit)? Or does it represent a dowry from her father (saying 10, JS9),
                        such as would be required of brides in the culture of the authors of the
                        text? Or both? (Her "father" is, after all, apparently the guy who's
                        watching over the world). At this point, I'm unsure. It seems that the
                        "light" needs to be on "the lampstand" (280?), but yet it doesn't fit
                        particularly smoothly with it. And it's suspicious that the married couple
                        have a nice round figure between them (70 letters) *without* that extra
                        word, so that IF the word was removed, they'd still be a heavenly couple in
                        themselves.

                        One more thing: I've presented quite a lot of detailed information relative
                        to my puzzle theory - both lately and back in November 2002. That - plus
                        what I hope is a reputation for factual accuracy and depth of analysis -
                        should be enough for the intelligent reader to reach some judgement as to
                        whether the evidence so far adduced in favor of the theory is sufficient to
                        indicate its plausibility - in spite of its prima facie implausibility. I've
                        given some thought to continuing this discussion in a more restricted
                        atmosphere - perhaps a working-group to concentrate on the puzzle theory
                        exclusively. Such a working-group would be separate from GThomas, and would
                        be composed of folks (whether academics or not) who want to _actively_
                        contribute to the solution of the Thomas puzzle (no lurkers would be
                        allowed, except highly-qualified academicians of my choosing). At this
                        point, I'd like to test the waters. If there's anyone reading this who would
                        be interested in joining such a group, please let me know offlist ASAP. The
                        response will pretty much determine whether the time is right to go ahead
                        with it.

                        Michael Grondin
                        Mt. Clemens, MI
                      • fmmccoy
                        ... From: Tom Saunders To: Sent: Wednesday, January 19, 2005 4:28 PM Subject: [GTh] Gnosticism ... It is from
                        Message 11 of 13 , Jan 21, 2005
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                          ----- Original Message -----
                          From: "Tom Saunders" <tom@...>
                          To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
                          Sent: Wednesday, January 19, 2005 4:28 PM
                          Subject: [GTh] Gnosticism


                          > "It is from water and fire that the soul and the spirit came into being.
                          It is from water and fire and light that the son of the bridal chamber (came
                          into being). The fire is the chrism, the light is the fire. I am not
                          referring to that fire which has no form, but to the other fire whose form
                          is white, which is bright and beautiful, and which gives beauty." (GPhil)
                          >
                          > I think what light, chrism, and fire represent are what can be thought of
                          as Gnosis, or bonding with the Spirit, (Holy Spirit). There is a difference
                          between spirit, and Spirit in the process. Spirit represents the Pleromic
                          figure or idea of God, and 'spirit' represents the soul, or the realization
                          of the soul as spirit, which can be seen as a concentration of energy. Both
                          Spirit and spirit, are concentrations of energy which can be united.
                          >

                          Hi Tom!

                          That's an interesting interpretation of this passage from Philip. I am a
                          mite uneasy over the use of the term "concentrations of energy". I don't
                          think that Philip would have used that phraseology, nor espoused the modern
                          physical theory concepts upon which it is based. Still, the basic idea
                          you present that the Spirit and spirit can in some meaningful sense be
                          united does sound like something Philip would endorse.

                          I interpret this passage from a quite different angle. Not necessarily a
                          better angle--just one markedly different from your own.

                          Let us begin with the last sentence of the passage from Philip,. "I am not
                          referring to that fire which has no form, but to the other fire whose form
                          is white, which is bright and beautiful, and which gives beauty."

                          I interpret this "fire" to be, as in Acts 2:3, the Spirit.

                          Next, let us turn to the second and third sentences of the cited passage
                          from Philip, "It is from water and fire and light that the son of the bridal
                          chamber (came into being). The fire is the chrism, the light is the fire."

                          Here, the reference is to the rite of baptism. As the person is dipped into
                          water, the "fire (i.e., the Spirit)" descends upon the person, just as she
                          did during the baptism of Jesus, thereby anointing this person. The son of
                          the bridal chamber who comes into being is this person reborn as (a body of)
                          spirit.

                          "The light is the fire". That is to say, besides being a type of fire, the
                          Spirit is also a type of light.

                          As this light, she acts as the clothing for the naked newborn son of the
                          bridal chamber (i.e., the person reborn as (a body of) spirit. As Philip
                          states a little later, "The powers do not see those who are clothed in
                          perfect light, and consequently are not able to detain them. One will
                          clothe himself in this light sacramentally in the union."

                          Compare another statement made earlier by Philip, "What is it? His flesh is
                          the word and his blood is the Holy Spirit. He who has received these has
                          food and he has drink and clothing." He who has received these has food,
                          i.e., the word--his "flesh". He who has received these has drink and
                          clothing, i.e., the Spirit: which is, as a drink, his "blood" , and which
                          is, as clothing, the garment of perfect light.

                          So, in the second and third sentences, I suggest, we are dealing with
                          Philip's understanding of what happens during the rite of baptism. When the
                          person is dipped in the water, the Spirit descends upon this person and the
                          person is reborn as (a body of) spirit. Further, she then acts as clothes
                          for the naked newborn body of spirit, becoming, for it, a garment of perfect
                          light.

                          This last point perhaps indicates that those being baptized in the Philip
                          community did so naked and were clothed in white garments immediately after
                          being baptized--so as to outwardly symbolize what was happening internally
                          to them. But, I'm just guessing on this.

                          Next, let us turn to its first sentence, "It is from water and fire that the
                          soul and the spirit came into being."

                          This is a very mysterious sentence, and I'm very uncertain as to how to
                          intepret it.

                          At the present moment, I am inclined towards the admittedly speculative
                          hypothesis that it is based on a novel interpretation of Genesis 1:1-2, "In
                          the beginning God created the heaven and the earth....And the Spirit of God
                          moved upon the face of the waters."

                          What I suggest is that Philip interpreted "heaven" to be "spirit" and
                          "earth" to be "soul". Further, he understood, God created them in the sense
                          of having them be created by the fire (i.e., the Spirit) as she moved over
                          the water. So, he concluded, the spirit and the soul were engendered by the
                          fire (i.e., the Spirit) as it moved over the waters--thereby enabling him,
                          in the first sentence of the cited passage, to declare that the spirit and
                          the soul came into being through fire and water.

                          Compare L.A. i (21), where Philo comments, "By His own supremely manifest
                          and far-shining Logos (Word) God makes both of them, both the original of
                          the mind, which in symbolic language he calls 'heaven,' and the original of
                          sense-perception, to which figure he gave the name of 'earth.'"

                          Here, we have a manner of interpretation rather akin to that postulated for
                          Philip, but with "heaven" symbolizing "mind" rather than "spirit" and with
                          "earth" symbolizing "sense-perception" rather than "soul". Philo identifies
                          the agent through which God created them as being the Logos. Philip,
                          however, identifies this agent as being the Spirit who moved over the
                          waters.

                          But, like I say, this is all pretty speculative. Do any of you out there
                          have any ideas on how to interpret this first sentence?

                          Frank McCoy
                          1809 N. English Apt. 15
                          Maplewood, MN USA 55109
                        • sarban
                          ... From: Andrew Smith To: Sent: Wednesday, January 19, 2005 6:26 AM Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism
                          Message 12 of 13 , Jan 21, 2005
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                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: "Andrew Smith" <smithand44@...>
                            To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
                            Sent: Wednesday, January 19, 2005 6:26 AM
                            Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism



                            <SNIP>
                            >
                            > Thanks for your post, Andrew. We are starting from different
                            > positions. I work with Thomas not being dependent on the canonical
                            > gospels, and think that Thomas isn't second century gnostic. So for me
                            > this category would be material that Thomas has in common with the
                            > canonicals, by virtue of coming from roughly the same era of
                            > Christianity, and that Philip has taken from Paul and the gospels. So
                            > it might be as likely (though perhaps a bit less likely) that Philip
                            > got it from Thomas as from the canonicals.

                            IMHO this does not really affect my main point which is that
                            themes shared between Thomas Philip and the NT do not
                            establish a particularly close relationship between Thomas and
                            Philip.
                            >
                            <SNIP>

                            > I don't see why this is specifically gnostic. Paul also reinterprets
                            > Adam, as "a type of the one who was to come" (Rom. 5:14) or in terms
                            > of the first and last Adam. And for Philo Adam represents Mind. But in
                            > any case I might agree that it doesn't necessitate a relationship
                            > between Thomas and Philip. exegesis of Genesis abounds in early
                            > Christianity in general, as well as in Philo (and the rabbinical
                            > literature.)
                            >
                            I agree that the common ground between Thomas and Philip
                            may be Philo. My point is that the Gospel of Thomas and
                            Philip share an interest in 'Philonic' type Gnostic or Proto-
                            Gnostic themes which is not IMO characteristic of the Thomas
                            literature as a whole.

                            (Just to clarify. I'm not primarily concerned here with the
                            question of whether or not the Gospel of Philip made
                            direct limited use of the Gospel of Thomas. I regard this
                            as plausible but not proven. However, I'm primarily
                            concerned here with resemblance or likeness in a way that
                            is at least formally independent of questions of direct
                            descent. Phenetic rather than cladistic classification if you
                            like)

                            > What do you think about
                            > The Lord said, "Blessed is he who is before he came into being. For he
                            > who is, has been and shall be." (Philip 49 by Layton's scheme)?
                            >
                            > Thomas 19a (19) Jesus said, "Blessed is he who came into being before
                            > he came into being.
                            >
                            > Perhaps it might fit into your second category, as, according to
                            > Meyer, Irenaeus has "Fortunate [Blessed] is one who existed before
                            > being human." (Apostolic Preaching 43.)
                            >
                            There is IIUC a similar reference in Lactantius
                            Divine Institutes 4:8

                            I'm afraid I wimped out of including this in my
                            previous post because I found myself unable to
                            decide which category to put it in. I could make an
                            arguable case for all three categories.


                            > Apart from its name, what makes you think that the Gospel of Thomas
                            > belongs to a school of Thomas? Which resemblances between GThomas and
                            > the Book of Thomas, or between GThomas and the Acts of Thomas aren't
                            > covered by your above categories?
                            >
                            Rather close and specific parallels IMO include

                            Gospel of Thomas 7
                            Jesus said Blessed is the lion which the man will eat and
                            the lion will become man and cursed is the man whom the
                            lion will eat and the lion will become man.

                            Thomas the Contender
                            These bodies which are visible eat similar creatures. Therefore
                            the bodies change. But that which changes will be destroyed
                            and perish. From now on it has no hope of life for that body is
                            a beast. Therefore as the body of beasts perishes so will these
                            bodies perish also.

                            Gospel of Thomas 13
                            Jesus said to his disciples Make comparisons tell me whom
                            I am like.........Thomas said to him Master my mouth is
                            completely unable to say whom you are like. Jesus said to him
                            I am not your master for you have drunk you have become
                            drunk from the bubbling spring which I have dug. And he took
                            him aside and spoke three words to him.......... Thomas said to
                            them If I speak one of the words which he said to me you will
                            take up stones and throw them at me And fire will come from
                            the stones and consume you

                            Acts of Thomas
                            And he (Thomas) began to say O Jesus hidden mystery that is
                            revealed to us. You are the one who has revealed many
                            mysteries to us who took me apart from all my companions and
                            spoke three words to me with which I am consumed and which
                            I am unable to utter to others.

                            Andrew Criddle
                          • Andrew Smith
                            ... I suppose not, but the NT is quite big and Thomas is quite little. ... You mean whether Thomas and Philip come from the same sort of people with the same
                            Message 13 of 13 , Jan 21, 2005
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                              --- In gthomas@yahoogroups.com, "sarban" <sarban@s...> wrote:
                              >
                              > ----- Original Message -----
                              > From: "Andrew Smith" <smithand44@y...>
                              > To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
                              > Sent: Wednesday, January 19, 2005 6:26 AM
                              > Subject: Re: [GTh] Gnosticism
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > <SNIP>
                              > >
                              > > Thanks for your post, Andrew. We are starting from different
                              > > positions. I work with Thomas not being dependent on the canonical
                              > > gospels, and think that Thomas isn't second century gnostic. So for me
                              > > this category would be material that Thomas has in common with the
                              > > canonicals, by virtue of coming from roughly the same era of
                              > > Christianity, and that Philip has taken from Paul and the gospels. So
                              > > it might be as likely (though perhaps a bit less likely) that Philip
                              > > got it from Thomas as from the canonicals.
                              >
                              > IMHO this does not really affect my main point which is that
                              > themes shared between Thomas Philip and the NT do not
                              > establish a particularly close relationship between Thomas and
                              > Philip.

                              I suppose not, but the NT is quite big and Thomas is quite little.

                              > >
                              > <SNIP>
                              >
                              > > I don't see why this is specifically gnostic. Paul also reinterprets
                              > > Adam, as "a type of the one who was to come" (Rom. 5:14) or in terms
                              > > of the first and last Adam. And for Philo Adam represents Mind. But in
                              > > any case I might agree that it doesn't necessitate a relationship
                              > > between Thomas and Philip. exegesis of Genesis abounds in early
                              > > Christianity in general, as well as in Philo (and the rabbinical
                              > > literature.)
                              > >
                              > I agree that the common ground between Thomas and Philip
                              > may be Philo. My point is that the Gospel of Thomas and
                              > Philip share an interest in 'Philonic' type Gnostic or Proto-
                              > Gnostic themes which is not IMO characteristic of the Thomas
                              > literature as a whole.
                              >
                              > (Just to clarify. I'm not primarily concerned here with the
                              > question of whether or not the Gospel of Philip made
                              > direct limited use of the Gospel of Thomas. I regard this
                              > as plausible but not proven. However, I'm primarily
                              > concerned here with resemblance or likeness in a way that
                              > is at least formally independent of questions of direct
                              > descent. Phenetic rather than cladistic classification if you
                              > like)

                              You mean whether Thomas and Philip come from the same sort of people
                              with the same sort of interests, possibly in the same geographical area?

                              >
                              > > What do you think about
                              > > The Lord said, "Blessed is he who is before he came into being. For he
                              > > who is, has been and shall be." (Philip 49 by Layton's scheme)?
                              > >
                              > > Thomas 19a (19) Jesus said, "Blessed is he who came into being before
                              > > he came into being.
                              > >
                              > > Perhaps it might fit into your second category, as, according to
                              > > Meyer, Irenaeus has "Fortunate [Blessed] is one who existed before
                              > > being human." (Apostolic Preaching 43.)
                              > >
                              > There is IIUC a similar reference in Lactantius
                              > Divine Institutes 4:8
                              >
                              > I'm afraid I wimped out of including this in my
                              > previous post because I found myself unable to
                              > decide which category to put it in. I could make an
                              > arguable case for all three categories.
                              >
                              >
                              > > Apart from its name, what makes you think that the Gospel of Thomas
                              > > belongs to a school of Thomas? Which resemblances between GThomas and
                              > > the Book of Thomas, or between GThomas and the Acts of Thomas aren't
                              > > covered by your above categories?
                              > >
                              > Rather close and specific parallels IMO include
                              >
                              > Gospel of Thomas 7
                              > Jesus said Blessed is the lion which the man will eat and
                              > the lion will become man and cursed is the man whom the
                              > lion will eat and the lion will become man.
                              >
                              > Thomas the Contender
                              > These bodies which are visible eat similar creatures. Therefore
                              > the bodies change. But that which changes will be destroyed
                              > and perish. From now on it has no hope of life for that body is
                              > a beast. Therefore as the body of beasts perishes so will these
                              > bodies perish also.

                              As Steve Davies pointed out, eating things and having them digested or
                              transformed in some way is a strong interest in Thomas. Nut the above
                              doesn't have any strong resemblance to 7.
                              >
                              > Gospel of Thomas 13
                              > Jesus said to his disciples Make comparisons tell me whom
                              > I am like.........Thomas said to him Master my mouth is
                              > completely unable to say whom you are like. Jesus said to him
                              > I am not your master for you have drunk you have become
                              > drunk from the bubbling spring which I have dug. And he took
                              > him aside and spoke three words to him.......... Thomas said to
                              > them If I speak one of the words which he said to me you will
                              > take up stones and throw them at me And fire will come from
                              > the stones and consume you
                              >
                              > Acts of Thomas
                              > And he (Thomas) began to say O Jesus hidden mystery that is
                              > revealed to us. You are the one who has revealed many
                              > mysteries to us who took me apart from all my companions and
                              > spoke three words to me with which I am consumed and which
                              > I am unable to utter to others.

                              This one is great, and a good example of a paraphrase that obviously
                              comes from Thomas

                              Best Wishes

                              Andrew Smith
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