Thomas, Gospel of

Thomas, Gospel of,

a collection of sayings, composed originally in Greek, attributed to the "living" (i.e., resurrected) Jesus. Some of the sayings were previously known from papyri discovered at Oxyrhynchus and published in the late 19th cent. The sayings are similar to those of Jesus in the canonical Gospels. It is possible that the Gospel of Thomas is as early as the New Testament Gospels; more likely, the work is based on the sayings of Jesus preserved in the Gospels and edited from a gnostic point of view. The Gospel of Thomas is more encratite (antimarriage) and ascetic in tone than most gnostic works. See also Nag HammadiNag Hammadi
, a town in Egypt near the ancient town of Chenoboskion, where, in 1945, a large cache of gnostic texts in the Coptic language was discovered. The Nag Hammadi manuscripts, dating from the 4th cent. A.D.
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See J. M. Robinson, The Nag Hammadi Library in English (1988).

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