This morning I am revising the Book of Life. I am researching the catholic Church and its attempt to suppress the teachings of Christ, and I begin reading the Gospel of Judas. The Gospel of Judas is a “Lost Gospel.” It is a gospel actively suppressed by Church elites (Handwerk, 2006). If you are interested, you can read the English translation here.

There is a few interesting things about the Gospel, but the one I want to draw attention to here is the portrayal of “the temple.” In a passage about 1/3 of the way through,l the apostles relate a vision they had to Christ. They said…

[We have seen] a great [house with a large] altar [in it, and] twelve men—they are the priests, we would say—and a name; and a crowd of people is waiting at that altar, [until] the priests [… and receive] the offerings. [But] we kept waiting.”
[Jesus said], “What are [the priests] like?”
They [said, “Some …] two weeks; [some] sacrifice their own children, others their wives, in praise [and] humility with each other; some sleep with men; some are involved in [slaughter]; some commit a multitude of sins and deeds of lawlessness. And the men who stand [before] the altar invoke your [name], [39] and in all the deeds of their deficiency, the sacrifices are brought to completion […]

You can interpret the passage how you like; I find the above passage interesting and prophetic. To me it appears as if the apostles are having a vision of a future Church with “large alters” and priests receiving “offerings” from crowds who wait at the alter. It appears a typical description of a church, the priests who run it, and the people who attend.

Also interesting is the horrific description of the priests who run the Church. In the apostle’s vision they are horrible people. They sacrifice (perhaps metaphorically) their own children, sleep with men, engage in slaughter, and commit a “multitude of sins and deeds of lawlessness.” We know this is a true statement. From the inquisition to the burning of heretics to the pedophilia, the Church and its representatives have been involved in a multitude of “sins,” many of which have yet to be brought to yet.

Finally, it is telling, I feel, that Jesus, with his question, focuses attention on the priests themselves.  It might not have meant much to the apostles back then, but to a modern individual armed with knowledge of the nefarious activities of the Catholic Church over the centuries, this seems like a fascinating example of the prophetic power of connection and the visions these connections can sometimes produce.

References

Handwerk, Brian. “Gospel of Judas Pages Endured Long, Strange Journey.” National Geographic, news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2006/04/0406_060406_gospel.html.

Skip to toolbar