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Overview

The Gospel of Judas by Rodolphe Kasser

For 1,600 years its message lay hidden. When the bound papyrus pages of this lost gospel finally reached scholars who could unlock its meaning, they were astounded. Here was a gospel that had not been seen since the early days of Christianity, and which few experts had even thought existed–a gospel told from the perspective of Judas Iscariot, history’s ultimate traitor. And far from being a villain, the Judas that emerges in its pages is a hero.

In this radical reinterpretation, Jesus asks Judas to betray him. In contrast to the New Testament Gospels, Judas Iscariot is presented as a role model for all those who wish to be disciples of Jesus. He is the one apostle who truly understands Jesus.

This volume is the first publication of the remarkable gospel since it was condemned as heresy by early Church leaders, most notably by St. Irenaeus, in 180. Hidden away in a cavern in Middle Egypt, the codex (or book) containing the gospel was discovered by farmers in the 1970s. In the intervening years the papyrus codex was bought and sold by antiquities traders, hidden away, and carried across three continents, all the while suffering damage that reduced much of it to fragments. In 2001, it finally found its way into the hands of a team of experts who would painstakingly reassemble and restore it.

The Gospel of Judas has been translated from its original Coptic in clear prose, and is accompanied by commentary that explains its fascinating history in the context of the early Church, offering a whole new way of understanding the message of Jesus Christ.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781426200489
Publisher: National Geographic Society
Publication date: 06/17/2008
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 666,878
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.58(d)

About the Author

Rodolphe Kasser, Ph.D., a professor emeritus on the Faculty of Arts at the University of Geneva, is one of the world’s leading Coptologists. He has organized the restoration and prepared the editio princeps of Codex Tchacos, containing the Gospel of Judas and three other Coptic Gnostic texts.

Marvin Meyer, Ph.D., Griset Professor of Bible and Christian Studies at Chapman University and Director of the Chapman University Albert Schweitzer Institute, is one of the foremost scholars on Gnosticism, the Nag Hammadi Library and texts about Jesus outside the New Testament.

Gregor Wurst, Ph.D., is professor of Ecclesiastical History and Patristics at the University of Augsburg, Germany.

Bart D. Ehrman, Ph.D., is the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Religious Studies, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and an expert on early Christianity.

What People are Saying About This

Bart D. Ehrman

(The Gospel of Judas) is one of the greatest historical discoveries of the twentieth century. It rivals the finding of the Dead Sea Scrolls or the Gnostic Gospels of Nag Hammadi.
—Bart D. Ehrman, author of Lost Christianities

Elaine Pagels

The discovery of the Gospel of Judas is astonishing.

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Gospel of Judas 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
M_L_Gooch_SPHR More than 1 year ago
This book was a Christmas present from my wife in 2006. I have read it twice and refer back to it on occasion. As a fan of Ehrman and Meyer, I was delighted to see both embedded in this singular work. While as a conservative believer, I often find myself at odds with both writers, I really enjoy their intellectual approach to critical thinking and the resulting theories. I wish I was a smidgeon as knowledgeable as these two. This book is akin to reading a tome where Hannibal Lecter turns out to be an undercover officer for the FBI. Quite a different turn of events. The Gospel of Judas is of the same ilk. While the traditional Judas is the betrayer of Jesus, this Judas is in on the inside loop from the beginning. And while this disturbs many, a close reading of the canonical NT reveals to me the same story. I have since early days, considered Judas's role as one of necessity and pre-formed prior to the arrest. Many today dismiss the so-called Gnostic gospels as being a small fringe in the early church. Before we denote this fringe title to them we must bear in mind that a large percentage of modern archeological finds are of the Gnostic theme. Thereby it is quite possible they were more wide-spread than the Orthodox Church would have us believe. This is not to say they are right or wrong. It is just another one of those messy facts that we should include in our thinking. Additional excellent reading is: Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why (Plus), The First Paul: Reclaiming the Radical Visionary Behind the Church's Conservative Icon, Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don't Know About Them), Dethroning Jesus: Exposing Popular Culture's Quest to Unseat the Biblical Christ, God's Problem: How the Bible Fails to Answer Our Most Important Question--Why We Suffer Greater Than You Think: A Theologian Answers the Atheists About God. I hope you find this review helpful. Michael L. Gooch
AMP More than 1 year ago
You must take time to read it to absorb the information. Really enjoyed the comments and essays from the scholars. Loved it
csmith8354 More than 1 year ago
Just ordered it. so no opinion to give yet. Want to get under a zealots skin pick up and read "The Passover Plot" if you can get a copy. For what it's worth I am a Roman Catholic. I also hav e"The book of Mormon" in my home and in my college years read "The Indian Bible." I'm not even going to try and spell that. In short we are one, human with heart and soul. Our beliefs are ours and none stand outs amonst the others.
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Regis_White More than 1 year ago
"The Gospel of Judas" is a thoroughly engaging work, assembled with obvious care, and lavished with much additional information besides the "gospel," itself. It would be beneficial for anyone reading this book to have at least a passing familiarity with the concepts of Gnostic Christianity, as I imagine that the title, alone, might be enough to cause some people to turn away in an angry huff. Primarily, this is a reference work, in my opinion. As a student of Gnosticism, I approach this book in much the same way as I approach the Nag Hammadi library or the Dead Sea Scrolls. It has no particular "agenda," is not looking to "convert" anyone to a certain way of thinking. It is not, in other words, a religious work. It simply presents the facts as they appear, following the extensive research that went into the production of this book. As is the case with *all* gospels, canonical or not, odds are almost certain that the historical "Judas" (if such a figure existed at all) was not the actual author of this work; it does offer a unique perspective on how early Gnostics would have "processed" the "Jesus Story" to fit their particular world-view. If you're interested in learning about other points of view regarding early Christianity, or are simply a student of "alternate religions," you should quite enjoy "The Gospel of Judas."