The Secret Gospel of Thomas

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photoIn 367 AD, a directive from the newly organized Catholic Church listed 27 books that would go on to form the New Testament. All other so-called "apocryphal" or "gnostic" accounts of the life and teachings of Jesus were to be destroyed. But some were secretly preserved, buried in the soil of upper Egypt. They were discovered in 1945, and among them, a strikingly different account, which was dubbed the Gospel of Thomas. The Church had considered it a heresy for most of two millennia.

Renowned biblical scholar Elaine Pagels has spent much of her distinguished career digging into the account of Jesus and his teaching left by the apostle Thomas, and comparing it with the Bible's New Testament Gospels. The accounts, she says, are different.

Click the "Listen" link to hear scholar Elaine Pagels discuss the Gospel of Thomas, and how it speaks to nearly 2,000 years of orthodox Christian thought and tradition.


Elaine Pagels, professor of religion at Princeton University and author of "Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas"

This program aired on October 20, 2003.


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