We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
National Geographic will air their documentary on this papyrus on April 9. The below from Bloomberg:
Gospel of Judas' Authenticated, Translated After 1,700 Years 2006-04-06 15:16 (New York)
By Samantha Zee † †† April 6 (Bloomberg) -- An ancient manuscript known as the`Gospel of Judas,'' which was lost for almost 1,700 years, has been authenticated and translated, providing a new view of the relationship between Jesus and the apostle who betrayed him. † †† The leather-bound papyrus manuscript, believed to have been copied down in Coptic probably around A.D. 300, was found in the 1970s in the desert near El Minya, Egypt. The 66-page manuscript also contains a text titled James, a Letter of Peter to Philip, and a fragment of a fourth text scholars are calling the Book of Allogenes, according to the National Geographic Society. † †† Unlike accounts in the New Testament Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, in which Judas is reviled for his traitorous act, this gospel portrays Judas as acting at Jesus's request when he hands Jesus over to authorities. The 26-page Gospel of Judas was written on 13 sheets of papyrus, both back and front. † †† The discovery of the ancient, non-biblical text, "considered by some to be the most significant of the past 60 years, enhances our knowledge of the history and theological viewpoints of the early Christian period,'' said Terry Garcia, executive vice president for Mission Programs for the National Geographic Society in a statement on its Web site. † †† The Maecenas Foundation for Ancient Art and the Waitt Institute for Historical Discovery were also part of the international effort to authenticate, conserve and translate it.
†††††The manuscript circulated among antiquities traders, moving from Egypt to Europe to the U.S. It was held in a safe-deposit box in Long Island, New York, for 16 years before being bought in 2000 by Zurich-based antiquities dealer Frieda Nussberger-Tchacos. † †† When attempts to resell the manuscript fell through, Tchacos, alarmed by the manuscript's rapidly deteriorating state, transferred it to the Maecenas Foundation for Ancient Art in Basel, Switzerland, in February 2001 for conservation and translation. † †† It was authenticated as a genuine work of ancient Christian literature through radiocarbon dating, ink and handwriting analysis and imagining techniques, Garcia said. The manuscript, now known as Codex Tchacos, will be delivered to Egypt and housed in Cairo's Coptic Museum. † †† In the text, Jesus challenges his disciples to look at him and understand what he really is, though they turn away. In a key passage, he tells Judas that "you will exceed all of them. For you will sacrifice the man that clothes me.'' † †† Pages of the papyrus manuscript, or codex, are on public display at the National Geographic headquarters in Washington.
Remember wise Gamaliel who taught that if a thing or person is from God, it will prevail. So read this and learn. And if it turns out to be a fraud or heresy, all knowledge and study expands the area of light in the world. Didn't mean to sound pedantic...But remember how cool it was reading about the Gnostic Gospels, even tho many poor fools let it weaken their Christian faith. When can I get my hands on a copy?
As a Christian and a history buff, I would love to read a translation. Sources closer (time wise) to the actual events are always valuable if you can determine their motive.
I have no opinion yet either. Christ had to die for our sins, Judas' role in it can certainly be interpreted in different ways. I always thought that the Romans got off rather lightly for their role in Christís execution. Iíve laughed openly at Italian anti-Semites claiming the Jews killed Jesus.