Lost Gospel – Fact or Fiction?
Here we go again… Another “Lost Gospel” that gets more media attention than those already “found” in the New Testament for the last two millennia. The National Geographic Society has funded and promoted the recent discovery of what has come to be known as The Lost Gospel of Judas. This was but one part of a codex that contained many different writings from varying ideologies.
Lost Gospel – The Gospel of Judas
The first thing to do with any so-called “Lost Gospel” is read it for yourself. If you can make it through The Lost Gospel of Judas, you’ll agree that it is hard to believe anything it has to say.
In its sparse seven pages, it vacillates between Judas being the 12th and 13th Disciple. It says that Christ appeared in other forms, and left to go to other, non-human “generations.”
It says that Christ came “from the immortal realm of Barbelo” and that He was the reincarnation of Seth (not Adam & Eve’s third son, but rather Set, the Egyptian god of evil, whom the Greeks called “Seth”). It says that Christ did not die for our sins or to save us, but rather that He in essence committed assisted suicide in order to free His spirit, which was apparently trapped in His body. It says that we are guided by stars, and that there is no God, but rather some benign cloud that gave birth to “God”—an angel named Self-Generated—and other angels and beings not mentioned anywhere else in Scripture, but that are common in Gnosticism.
In short, this Lost Gospel is not to be taken at all seriously. This should have been laughed out of consideration, but instead is being touted on the National Geographic website, on television, and in two books as some great revelation. I love this Lost Gospel, because it shows us clearly the garbage that was cast aside and not allowed to become part of our Bible. This sort of junk is what was cast aside by early Church leaders, and discarded by events such as the Nicene Convention and the Ecumenical Counsels.
Lost Gospel – Fake Gospel of Gnosticism
Books like this “Gospel of Judas” were the result of Alexandrians (like Arius of Alexandria, whose claims that Jesus was not God were the grounds for the Nicene Convention and the subsequent Nicene Creed). Around 100 A.D., a group of Alexandrians were upset by the rapid and inexplicable spread of Christianity throughout the known world. They decided to destroy Christianity by flooding the “market”—as it were—with fake “Gospels” that twisted and distorted Christianity into nothingness. They were Gnostics, who believed in mysticism and cosmology.
Their attempts failed, because God is strong. He is powerful enough to give us His word, and to keep it intact, complete, and holy. His Word says, “By this gospel you are saved…. Otherwise, you have believed in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:2). The Bible promises that “all Scripture is God-breathed” (2 Timothy 3:16a), and further warns us against adding or subtracting from them (see Revelation 22:18-19). However, the Bible also tells us to “Test everything. Hold on to the good” (1 Thessalonians 5:21). “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1).
Lost Gospel – Judas Fails the Test
Quite clearly, from even a cursory reading, this “Lost Gospel of Judas” fails the test. It is not good, it is not well-written, and it doesn’t quote, cite, or refer to any other Scripture. It in fact contradicts all Scripture, and doesn’t agree with anything in the Bible. It is plainly and unabashedly a Gnostic text designed to promote Gnosticism by twisting the real events of the Bible into its distorted world view.
This “Lost Gospel” is a work of fiction, possibly written as a failed attempt to discredit early Christianity, possibly written merely as a fictional investigation into Judas’ last days by someone who knew about Christianity but didn’t believe it. Either way, it is nothing but Gnostic fiction. And really bad fiction, at that.