Due to an ongoing health crisis in the family, blogging will be 'on and off' as time and circumstances permit for the foreseeable future. I also beg your indulgence if I am slow in responding to emails. New posts will appear below this notice.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Remember the Gospel according to Judas?

Well here is a correction of the record.
AMID much publicity last year, the National Geographic Society announced that a lost 3rd-century religious text had been found, the Gospel of Judas Iscariot. The shocker: Judas didn’t betray Jesus. Instead, Jesus asked Judas, his most trusted and beloved disciple, to hand him over to be killed. Judas’s reward? Ascent to heaven and exaltation above the other disciples.

It was a great story. Unfortunately, after re-translating the society’s transcription of the Coptic text, I have found that the actual meaning is vastly different. While National Geographic’s translation supported the provocative interpretation of Judas as a hero, a more careful reading makes clear that Judas is not only no hero, he is a demon.
Read the rest here.

1 comment:

Robert said...

I read DeConick's excellent article on the Judas fiasco yesterday in the New York Times. I was particularly interested in what she said about the Dead Sea Scrolls:

"The situation reminds me of the deadlock that held scholarship back on the Dead Sea Scrolls decades ago. When manuscripts are hoarded by a few, it results in errors and monopoly interpretations that are very hard to overturn even after they are proved wrong."

From what I understand, the consequences of the Scrolls monopoly are indeed still continuing today, in a misleading exhibit taking place in a "natural history" museum in San Diego. See this article for details:

http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/did-christian-agenda-lead-biased-dead-sea-scrolls-exhibit-san-diego

Thus, I would suggest that the real question confronting us today is whether liberal Christian scholars -- by which I mean scholars of Christian faith who, like April DeConick, proceed in accordance with fundamental scientific principles rather than any religious agenda -- will part company with their Evangelical colleagues and frankly condemn what is going on with the Dead Sea Scrolls in one museum exhibit after another.