Church History Forum: Non canonical " scriptures."
Non canonical scriptures. QUESTION from Dean on July 8, 2002 Peace, Why was the so called Gospel of Thomas not included with the Canon of Scripture? Except for the odd reference (keeping in mind that there are many not clearly understood or contradictory elements in the accepted gospel narrative) it seems for the most part a sister text to the hypothetical Q documents and or are quotes or paraphrases/ variants of accepted gospel texts. Am I missing something? Thanks for any light on this subject. God bless, Dean.
ANSWER by Q & A Staff on July 15, 2002 Dear Dean,
The apocryphal Gospel of Thomas is a Gnostic writing containing 114 purported sayings of Jesus, originally written in Greek. Parts of the original Greek text were found early on in the 20th century, at Oxyrhynchus, Egypt, though they were not identified as parts of the Gospel of Thomas until the Nag Hammadi documents were discovered in 1945.
The document is a Gnostic writing, which can be seen from the oopening verse:
These are the secret sayings which the living Jesus spoke and which Didymos Judas Thomas wrote down. The form of the work is also at odds with the accepted Gospels. There is a list of 114 sayings, with no stories, no accounts by the writer, and no explanation of what was said. In the early Church, Origen and Eusebius list the Gospel of Thomas as non-canonical, Origen listing it with heretical works, while Eusebius regarded it as apocryphal.Philip of Side in 430 also summarises that this work was universally rejected by the early Church.
For more information on the early heresy of Gnosticism, please see the article Catholic Encyclopedia: Gnosticism.
God bless, .
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