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Old 04-15-2001, 07:43 PM   #1
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Question Doubting Thomas

Hi everyone.

Has anyone ever seen the movie "Stigmata"? Well, at the very end, there's a little note that says (I'm paraphrasing):

"Of all the gospels, biblical scholars agree that the Book of Thomas is the most accurate depiction of the life and teachings of Jesus."

Does anyone have any info on this? Has anyone read the Gospel of Thomas?

Also, lately I've been comming across alot of documents which say something (but never in much detail) about Dydimos Thomas being a hebrew word for "twin", and that Thomas was actually Jesus' brother. Can anyone elaborate on this?

(Note to Christians who somehow "know" that this is a bunch of bull without having to research it: I already know your opinion. Don't bother.)

Thanks alot everyone.

 
Old 04-15-2001, 08:11 PM   #2
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There's an online translation of the Gospel of Thomas at

http://home.epix.net/~miser17/johnson.html

I'll leave the rest of your questions to others better qualified.
 
Old 04-15-2001, 08:21 PM   #3
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Thanks Pantera.
 
Old 04-15-2001, 09:02 PM   #4
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">
Of all the gospels, biblical scholars agree that the Book of Thomas is the most accurate depiction of the life and teachings of Jesus.</font>
This is a pretty bold statement since it seems to imply that all biblical scholars agree without actually saying it.

Frankly, I think this is a false statement. I don't even think that all liberal scholars believe this. Regardless, biblical scholars do not all agree on this.

It would not be an "accurate depiction of the life" of Jesus anyway. It is only a list of sayings with gnostic influence. Some may be from Jesus, many are more than likely come from gnostic teaching. There is no narrative of the life of Jesus as found in the gospels.

I'll let someone else explain its purported similarity to the hypothetical Q document.

Ish
 
Old 04-16-2001, 06:21 AM   #5
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Ish:
This is a pretty bold statement since it seems to imply that all biblical scholars agree without actually saying it.

Frankly, I think this is a false statement. I don't even think that all liberal scholars believe this. Regardless, biblical scholars do not all agree on this.

It would not be an "accurate depiction of the life" of Jesus anyway. It is only a list of sayings with gnostic influence. Some may be from Jesus, many are more than likely come from gnostic teaching. There is no narrative of the life of Jesus as found in the gospels.

I'll let someone else explain its purported similarity to the hypothetical Q document.

Ish
</font>
I agree. Thomas is accepted by the more liberal scholars, and rejected by the more conservative. But even that is only a general tendency.

The Gospel of Thomas Homepage:
http://home.epix.net/~miser17/Thomas.html
Michael
 
Old 04-16-2001, 07:22 AM   #6
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Believe it or not, I'm going to have to also agree with Ish on this.

Thomas is supposed to be the first of the gospels and closer to the original Jesus cult than the synoptics, for example, but that doesn't necessarily make it the "most accurate." It just means that it's closer in form and function to the Sayings Gospel Q than to the divinity myths, but it's not without bias and cult-centric propaganda.

By the time it was written, however (I believe around 50 AD?? though some say middle of second century) the Q3 layers of Q had already been well established, so I believe Thomas is probably the fourth level of Q and the transition into anti-Semitic/pro Roman miracle/divinity stories fully imagined with the synoptics throughout the Roman-Jewish wars (this is my own speculation, mind you; others feel that Thomas and Q are independent of each other).

I've read it through Elaine Pagels,' "The Gnostic Gospels" (which is an excellent deconstruction of the Qumran and Nag Hammadi finds, by the way, and highly recommended) and although she doesn't compare it with Q, she does show how Thomas is a wisdom sayings Gospel just like Q and has little to do with Jesus' divinity (compared to the synoptic myths).

Pagels makes an excellent case that this is the primary reason it was jettisoned from the New Testament anthology. It teaches that Jesus is not so much God as Prophet speaking of the Kingdom of God amongst us, implying that no one needs anyone as an intermediary between themselves and God. It makes perfect sense, then, to get rid of it when forming the power structure of the organized cult (based on Priest to Bishop to Pope to God control hierarchy).

Regardless, it's still cult propaganda, just not so apocalyptic and "you will be judged in the fiery pits of hell" bullshit of the rest of the NT. To call it the "most accurate," though is a lot like saying the first Leni Riefenstahl movie about the Nazis depicted the "most accurate" view of the Third Reich


(edited for formatting - Koy)



[This message has been edited by Koyaanisqatsi (edited April 16, 2001).]
 
Old 04-16-2001, 09:33 AM   #7
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Thomas is the twin of Jesus, also called Jude, because Jude was faith and since faith cannot be conceived to exist without doubt Thomas must find its twin in the faith of Judaism once held by Jesus up until the betrayal of Jesus by Judas. Notice that Thomas was removed just prior to ascention because without faith also doubt canot be conceived to exist.

What I remember about the Gospel of Thomas was that it was too gnostic and would not serve well as the handbook of a shepherd. As such would it scatter the flock too easily and truly "lost sheep" harder to identify.

Amos

[This message has been edited by Amos123 (edited April 16, 2001).]
 
 

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