The First Synod of ATS: The Gospel of Thomas

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posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 03:56 PM
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Secrets

Just to be clear, the term "secret" as used here means "face-to-face communication," whether others hear about it or not, and without any implication that an effort is made to prevent others from finding out. What is restictive is that few others have, or can have, that kind of access. This meaning survives in the English word secretary. Whether a business executive's administrative assistant or a Presidential Cabinet officer, a "secretary" is somebody who has face-to-face acess to some superior principal. There is also a connotation that when a secretary speaks or writes, it is with the approval of the principal, explicit or implicit.

The claim of the Thomas prolog is that the compiler heard all these sayings personally, not that nobody else did. As the text reports, much of what Jesus says in Thomas is said in public. As we can see, much of what Jesus says in Thomas is also published elsewhere, in the canonical Gospels, not hidden away. However, not everyone had the opportunity to follow Jesus around that the author did (supposedly... that's what's being claimed).
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edit on 11-4-2013 by eight bits because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 04:30 PM
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reply to post by adjensen
 



This is a good example of how the biases that we have will affect how we view this text. For me, this is not a parallel, but rather a stark contrast.


My only bias is towards the four books... being the closest thing we have to Jesus...

Technically he did say this... but as we know certain things may have been altered when it was written...

Perhaps what was altered or added in this case was the words "these sayings" to give more weight to the book?


That is one of the fundamental contrasts between Christianity and Gnostic Christianity -- in the former, you are saved by what you do (considering that belief in Christ is an action,) while in the latter, you are saved by what you know.

I can conclusively say that Christ did not say Thomas 1.



What if what is needed to be known is Love....

IF one knows the ways of Love, how could that one not be saved?




posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 04:49 PM
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reply to post by eight bits
 


I didn't make this thread so we could come to conclusions based on someone elses study...

I called it "a synod" which denotes a gathering... This being a gathering of ATS members...

NOT the Jesus seminar people...

And besides that I personally don't agree with many of their conclusions anyways...

For example...

[44]. Jesus says: "He who has blasphemed the Father will be forgiven, and he who has blasphemed the Son will be forgiven: but he who has blasphemed the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven either on earth or in heaven."

Which was in black.... according to them Jesus did not say this....

but wait...

Mark 3

28 Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme:

29 But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation.

AND...

Matthew 12
31 Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.

32 And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.

So...

He DID say this... perhaps not verbatim, but it was said...

I think I've heard enough about your Jesus seminar... Perhaps you should make your own thread on it?

why don't you look at Thomas without comparing other peoples studies and decide for yourself?




posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 05:13 PM
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Quote "
14 Jesus said to them, "If you fast, you will bring sin upon yourselves, and if you pray, you will be condemned, and if you give to charity, you will harm your spirits."

Here's how I read this verse ..... "If you fast, you will bring sin upon yourselves .........
I take this to mean that if you fast... the knowledge of the Holy Spirit and Jesus and God the Father will have meaning in your heart, and you will never again be able to deny their Law and Love for you. You fast to become closer to God, to open a space in your mind and heart aside from worldly influences. Likewise you will be under the penalty of 'Sin'.

Likewise "if you pray, you will be condemned" that is, if you pray you accept God who you pray to, and that requires responsibilities. You can nevermore claim ignorance as a defense.

"And if you give to charity, you will harm your spirits."
Honestly, I had to think for a while to interpret this one.

I guess one could say that by giving charity, you will condemn yourself to the need to continue as much as possible as you now know doing otherwise would be considered covetousness ....... or ....holding back from the Holy Spirit.
Each entity as we understand them.... God, Jesus and The Holy Spirit have certain attributes, yet are all one.
And once known, one can only deny or accept and make the choice to be 'Spiritual, or to be worldly' Spiritual will store your treasures (reward) in Heaven, and to ignore, you will be ignoring the 'Greatest Commandment' given by Jesus, and that was "to love your brother as yourself"
And being 'honest' again, I'm not comfortable with the Gospel's of Thomas......fully. I have been delving into the Apocrypha's in recent times. I'm of the notion that the 'New Testament' is for the 'masses' and are simple understandings. The other works for those wishing a deeper understanding and whether history or sacred, it's up to one's own interpretation. The Holy Spirit will illuminate it if it is for you to know the advanced meanings in relationship to the Old & New Testament Bible we all know.
edit on 11-4-2013 by Plotus because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 05:17 PM
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reply to post by Akragon
 



IF one knows the ways of Love, how could that one not be saved?

But that isn't what Thomas 1 says.


He DID say this... perhaps not verbatim, but it was said...

As I said, the Jeebus Seminar (sorry EB, can't help myself, lol,) probably has that passage in black in the canonical Gospels, as well. They aren't Gnostics, they're (mostly) extremely liberal "Christians", who, like the Historical Jesus crowd of the 19th Century, don't believe that Jesus did anything supernatural, so they're probably chucking that passage based on the miraculous basis of it. No miracles, no reason to warn people not to misrepresent who's doing the miracles.
edit on 11-4-2013 by adjensen because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 05:27 PM
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reply to post by adjensen
 



But that isn't what Thomas 1 says.


I think it was in the Judas thread where you said, "unfortunately the Gnosis wasn't ever written down"...

I believe it was... The "gnosis" is the knowledge of Love... In which all the law and the prophets hang on...


Unfortunately, I've actually found a lack of love in many gnostic writings...

The basis of Thomas 1 is that people should understand what HE said to have eternal life... This is the same thing that is said in the biblical gospels... but this particular text points directly to itself, which was probably "inserted" to give more weight to the texts.

And like I've said, I was thoroughly unimpressed with the results of that so called "Jesus seminar"... its almost as if they haven't actually read the gospels...

edit on 11-4-2013 by Akragon because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by Akragon
I believe it was... The "gnosis" is the knowledge of Love...

No, the Gnosis was the secret passwords that you needed to have in order to get past the Archons. If you didn't have them when you died, the Archons would prevent you from returning to the Pleroma.



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 05:39 PM
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Originally posted by adjensen

Originally posted by Akragon
I believe it was... The "gnosis" is the knowledge of Love...

No, the Gnosis was the secret passwords that you needed to have in order to get past the Archons. If you didn't have them when you died, the Archons would prevent you from returning to the Pleroma.


That sounds familiar, what text is that from?

I've found that many things that are believed about "gnostics" have been propaganda... for instance the idea that Jesus wasn't flesh and blood, and left no footprints... I've never found a single text that says that...

Another one of my favorites is that "gnostics deny the resurrection... which isn't true... they believe in both resurrection and reincarnation...




posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 05:54 PM
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Originally posted by Akragon

Originally posted by adjensen

Originally posted by Akragon
I believe it was... The "gnosis" is the knowledge of Love...

No, the Gnosis was the secret passwords that you needed to have in order to get past the Archons. If you didn't have them when you died, the Archons would prevent you from returning to the Pleroma.


That sounds familiar, what text is that from?

It's not a quote, but the concept is portrayed in The Apocalypse of Paul, among other texts.


I've found that many things that are believed about "gnostics" have been propaganda... for instance the idea that Jesus wasn't flesh and blood, and left no footprints... I've never found a single text that says that...

Another one of my favorites is that "gnostics deny the resurrection... which isn't true... they believe in both resurrection and reincarnation...

You might want to have a look at the Second Treatise of the Great Seth.



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 06:27 PM
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Akragon


I didn't make this thread so we could come to conclusions based on someone elses study...

I called it "a synod" which denotes a gathering... This being a gathering of ATS members...

NOT the Jesus seminar people...


If you have a problem with how I have participated in your thread, then summon a moderator. Until I receive staff instruction otherwise, I will post my opinions about Thomas as I hold them, whether or not the opinions are shared by professional scholars. If I am aware that my opinions are shared by some professionals, then I shall feel free to name names.

As to verse 44, I agree with the seminar, and disagree with you. The Thomas verse depicts Jesus plainly announcing a Trinitarian doctrine, with himself as the second person. This is completely absent from the canonical version. The point of his speech in the canonical pericope is to avoid being killed by his Jewish audience, not to incite them to stone him, as they would, at the suggestion that any man could be blasphemed.

I also dispute whether, even stripped of the anachronistic and culturally inappropriate Trinitarian framework, the verse's teaching of an "unforgivable sin" fairly represents Jesus' actual meaning. Christians differ about that meaning in the context of the canonical pericope; surely an agnostic ought to be allowed to question one of the possible interpretations being hard-sold here.

As you will recall, the significance of black is something that "represents the perspective or content of a later or different tradition." Verse 44, then is coded in accordance with my opinion of its lack of fidelity to plausible statements of Jesus.

It is interesting to discuss that a true saying of Jesus could be stripped of context (a ministry of repentance), new material added, and some original words retained and reworked, so that you have a "mixed" result - Jesus probably used similar words to say something else.

That's the sort of thing that happens in discussion. Lucky us, we're on a discussion board. And until you get a moderator to stop me, I'm going to discuss things like that here, and when I do, I will cite whatever on-topic scholarly support and commentary it pleases me to cite.



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 06:31 PM
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reply to post by adjensen
 



You might want to have a look at the Second Treatise of the Great Seth.



That is a 3rd century text which is very dark like the Apocalypse books... Personally im not fond of any apocalyptic books or revelation.

You'll find a lot of contradictions in that text as well... First Sophia is a whore, and at the end... "But I alone am the friend of Sophia. I have been in the bosom of the father from the beginning"

I still didn't see any references to either of those points... Though sometimes you have to read these things over a few times... There is a second century text that confirms the belief in the resurrection in gnostic circles...


What, then, is the resurrection? It is always the disclosure of those who have risen. For if you remember reading in the Gospel that Elijah appeared and Moses with him, do not think the resurrection is an illusion. It is no illusion, but it is truth! Indeed, it is more fitting to say the world is an illusion, rather than the resurrection which has come into being through our Lord the Savior, Jesus Christ.


gnosis.org...

edit on 11-4-2013 by Akragon because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 06:39 PM
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reply to post by eight bits
 



If you have a problem with how I have participated in your thread, then summon a moderator. Until I receive staff instruction otherwise, I will post my opinions about Thomas as I hold them, whether or not the opinions are shared by professional scholars. If I am aware that my opinions are shared by some professionals, then I shall feel free to name names.


I here by retract my statement... You are free to use whatever information you wish... At least you give an explanation...




I agree with the seminar, and disagree with you. The Thomas verse depicts Jesus plainly announcing a Trinitarian doctrine, with himself as the second person. This is completely absent from the canonical version.


Interesting...

And I agree the trinity isn't biblical... but how do you explain this?

18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:


You're essentially saying Jesus didn't say what is written in the biblical gospels...

edit on 11-4-2013 by Akragon because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 06:56 PM
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In my opinion the Gospel of Thomas most likely was a Gnostic creation, made sometime after the writings of the Synoptic Gospels. Because of this I believe that any attempt to discern the true nature of Jesus and his teachings from this gospel, which really is not a gospel at all, will only serve to misconstrue these teachings even more. But, a study from a scientific point of view, or a literary point of view, will serve to answer certain questions. In this regard, much of the work has already been done by qualified academics and scientists, true scholars who have greater resources, experience, and knowledge on this and related subjects. So by all means pursue your venture, but I would not expect that anything will be found beyond what has already been proposed in modern scholarship. Not only that, but there are multiple ideas that have been proposed to explain different quotes in this book, as well as the book itself, although most scholars seem to stick to the mainstream view that this was a Gnostic creation, and that Jesus was not a member of a Gnostic community. That is what should be argued in my opinion.



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 07:04 PM
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Originally posted by Akragon
I still didn't see any references to either of those points... Though sometimes you have to read these things over a few times... There is a second century that confirms the belief in the resurrection in gnostic circles...

It's buried in there, but:


I did not die in reality but in appearance, lest I be put to shame by them because these are my kinsfolk. I removed the shame from me and I did not become fainthearted in the face of what happened to me at their hands. I was about to succumb to fear, and I (suffered) according to their sight and thought, in order that they may never find any word to speak about them. For my death, which they think happened, (happened) to them in their error and blindness, since they nailed their man unto their death.

Jesus tricked the Romans into crucifying Simon of Cyrene, not him.

The problem that some of the Gnostics had with Jesus and the resurrection was that they were dualists, who found the spirit divine and the material body corrupt. So you have two problems -- what's the Bringer of Gnosis doing with a body, and what's with all this talk about returning freed spirits to material form? For some of them, they took a page from another heresy, Docetism, and said that Jesus didn't have a material form, he just seemed to. However, in The Treatise on the Resurrection, we can see an anti-Docetist argument being made, though couched in a view that says that everything is an illusion, so don't sweat the whole "you're going to be resurrected" thing.

In other words, lots of people had lots of different perspectives, and that's not even getting into the non-Christian Gnostics (never mind the fake ones from modern times.)

edit on 11-4-2013 by adjensen because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 07:21 PM
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reply to post by adjensen
 



However, in The Treatise on the Resurrection, we can see an anti-Docetist argument being made, though couched in a view that says that everything is an illusion, so don't sweat the whole "you're going to be resurrected" thing.


I seem to see a positive view on the resurrection... Not really meaning "don't sweat it", but rather Know that you will be resurrected... and practice what you know...


But what am I telling you now? Those who are living shall die. How do they live in an illusion? The rich have become poor, and the kings have been overthrown. Everything is prone to change. The world is an illusion! - lest, indeed, I rail at things to excess!

But the resurrection does not have this aforesaid character, for it is the truth which stands firm. It is the revelation of what is, and the transformation of things, and a transition into newness. For imperishability descends upon the perishable; the light flows down upon the darkness, swallowing it up; and the Pleroma fills up the deficiency. These are the symbols and the images of the resurrection. He it is who makes the good.

Therefore, do not think in part, O Rheginos, nor live in conformity with this flesh for the sake of unanimity, but flee from the divisions and the fetters, and already you have the resurrection. For if he who will die knows about himself that he will die - even if he spends many years in this life, he is brought to this - why not consider yourself as risen and (already) brought to this? If you have the resurrection but continue as if you are to die - and yet that one knows that he has died - why, then, do I ignore your lack of exercise? It is fitting for each one to practice in a number of ways, and he shall be released from this Element that he may not fall into error but shall himself receive again what at first was.



edit on 11-4-2013 by Akragon because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 08:25 PM
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Originally posted by Joecroft
The objection that is often raised, by those who reject the Gospel of Thomas, is that Jesus taught nothing in secret.





Originally posted by adjensen
Actually, no.


Actually, Yes!

Here’s just one example…



One argument for precluding the gospel of Thomas from the Bible is found in the overt "secretness" attributed to these 114 sayings by the work itself. Nowhere in Scripture is God's Word given “in secret" but is given for all to read and understand. The gospel of Thomas very clearly tries to maintain an air of secrecy in its words.


Source




Originally posted by adjensen
The objection raised on that basis is not that Jesus didn't teach anything in secret, because he did, but whether he taught the means of salvation in secret.
If he did, then the answers are not in the Bible, and are not available to anyone who cannot obtain them from a Gnostic guru. Which, 1800 years on, is everyone, because the real Gnosis couldn't be written down and the last person who supposedly knew it died a very long time ago.


Well, there were 2 forms of salvation, according to the Christian Gnostics.

The Gnostics knew of, and were not opposed too etc… what the standard orthodoxy taught, regarding salvation. Essentially the Gnostics knew what the standard version of salvation entailed, but they also held meetings in secret, where they practiced a higher form of salvation.




Originally posted by adjensen
Christianity -- salvation for anyone who wants it
Gnosticism -- salvation only for those who convince someone who has the Gnosis to reveal it


Incorrect…

Christianity -- Salvation for everyone

(Christian) Gnosticism – knew and accepted, the standard Christian version of salvation, and also taught a different, higher form of salvation…


- JC



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 08:47 PM
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I wonder when anyone will actually try to find out what is going on with this Salvation fixation.

Indeed accepting something that you are told is God into your heart does have a chemical reaction in the body, since the recipient is already in lack, and feels the need to be saved by something.

However, this can be reproduced by MANY other means, and often with far superior results and feeling.

It is just a watered down semi-path to a feeling that is "better than what was before".. but in the end is still a trap towards nothing.

The brain is a powerful thing, and all religions have realizations and ways to trick the people who are advanced and need a spiritual path, into believing they have actually found something.

Unfortunately they have found yet another that only gives them hints, and short-lived good feelings, this is why the same things are bashed into the brains so often, so that they feel comfort in the brainwashing.

Luckily for me, I have always realized that something is wrong with all of this, and it starts with this Bible itself.

None of it in any form makes any sense when broken down, save for some insights into other dimensions... but the first mistake PERIOD is too believe that a God would write a book so useless, so meaningless as to its own greater reaches.

Rejecting the teachings was just as liberating as people who claim Christ in there lives, funny stuff, but even MORE SO NOW... as I am on a path far beyond what any Christians can even dream of, much less think of being ALLOWED too for fear of punishments dreamed up for them.

Getting to the bottom of what has gone on in this galaxy is the only real way to find out and put a stop to the various nonsenses going on, that I may say , are NOT from the "Creator", is paramount, and is in the process of being completed... and the so-called "saved ones" will only be saved from seeing REALITY.



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 10:21 PM
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Originally posted by Joecroft
Well, there were 2 forms of salvation, according to the Christian Gnostics.

The Gnostics knew of, and were not opposed too etc… what the standard orthodoxy taught, regarding salvation. Essentially the Gnostics knew what the standard version of salvation entailed, but they also held meetings in secret, where they practiced a higher form of salvation.

Well, sort of, but not quite.

The Gnostic Christians sorted people into three categories.
  1. Gnostics, who knew the Gnosis, and would ascend to the highest realm of God, upon death
  2. Ordinary Christians, as well as Gnostics who didn't know the Gnosis, who would be "kicked to the curb" by the Archons and be reincarnated to give it another go
  3. Everyone else, who would be obliterated upon death


(Christian) Gnosticism – knew and accepted, the standard Christian version of salvation, and also taught a different, higher form of salvation…

That is not correct -- they did not accept "the standard Christian version of salvation", which is one life, one death and everlasting life with Christ in heaven for those who are saved. Rather, they figured that if you didn't get past the Archons, you were tossed back to Earth for another try at getting it right, and if you failed to, at least, accept Christ, that was the end of it.

Not quite the same thing -- the Mormons, while still ridiculously wrong, got it a lot closer.

edit on 11-4-2013 by adjensen because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2013 @ 11:05 PM
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reply to post by Akragon
 


Still waiting for any meaningful discussion of The Book of Thomas; TICK TOCK. (or is that the point). The last (114) of the book states: Simon Peter said to them, "Let Mary leave us, for women are not worthy of life." Jesus said, "I myself shall lead her in order to make her male, so that she too may become a living spirit resembling you males. For every woman who will make herself male will enter the kingdom of heaven." What is this a joke; I can see in now on the Colbert Report (breaking news, Jesus secretly a Masogynist and caves to false self chosen apostle/disciple peer pressure; unfortunately his TRUE peers crucified him).
edit on 11-4-2013 by vethumanbeing because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 12 2013 @ 12:22 AM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 





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