Thomas and the Gospel of Thomas

One can find Thomas mentioned in the Gospels of the New Testament. There is also a tradition that Thomas traveled to Syria and India after the death of Jesus teaching what he himself had experienced. Parts of Greek versions of the Gospel of Thomas were found in Oxyrhynchus Egypt around one hundred years ago. These can be dated to about 130 CE or somewhat before. A complete version in Coptic was found in Nag Hammadi Egypt in 1945. That version can be dated to about 340 CE The Coptic version is a translation of the Greek version. Scholars are divided when to date the Gospel of Thomas. Some date it earlier than any of the other Gospels written, while some say it contains early parts mixed with later parts – the completed version dating at the latest around 130 CE.

The Thomasines were a sect of followers of Jesus. Not much is known of the original group, though there are a variety of writings that derive from various Thomasine schools. The theology of the Gospel of Thomas has been classified as “proto-gnostic” in that it contains seeds of the later Gnostic teachings. Gnosis is implied, as well as a type of recognition of the Divine hidden in all things. This Modern Thomasine School of Thought honors these writings with the Gospel of Thomas, and the Hymn of the Pearl taking a place of prominance, and fully claims our heritage with the wide variety of Gnostic expressions found in the Nag Hammadi Scriptures. However, we are not a reconstructionist group. We are a fully modern expression of the Thomasine School of thought coupled with the way of Bhakti (divine love) found in many Indian Satsangs and Sufi Orders.

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