Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Judas - a book Review.

Rarely does a book cause me to question it, but this one does. I had a hard time finishing it and had to re-read several times this book. Basically the Author goes over the collection of gospel writings and legends about Judas Iscariot. He even gives about the Gospel of Judas. (Gnostic heresy)

It gives some insight of why some may have thought Judas more of a saint than a sinner and that he might of been a fictional figure. This book isn't for the faint of heart or those new to the faith. There are tons of books out there - other "Gospels" which aren't really so.


Canon originally meant "a straight rod" or a "measuring stick."

1. Authorship - A book had to be written by an apostle or a close associate of an apostle. For example, Mark was not an apostle, but was a close associate of the Apostle Peter.
2. Nature of the Book - Does the message of the book agree with the content of divine revelation in the Old Testament? Does the book reflect the character of the person and work of Jesus Christ and agree with the existing apostolic writing?
3. Universality - Is the book being read and practiced in the churches throughout the Body of Christ? This criterion addresses the degree to which the people of God recognize and accept the authority of the book under consideration.

4. Inspiration - The word inspiration literally means "God-breathed." Does the book have a spiritual character that agree with the Holy Spirit who indwells all believers?

THREE MAJOR REASONS FOR THE OFFICIAL RECOGNITION OF THE CANON

1. The spread of false doctrine - The very existence of the church was seriously threatened by gnosticism.
2. The development of false writings - A major motivation for the canon was pseudepigrapha, false writings. These came out of a desire to know more about the childhood of Jesus
and to have more information about New Testament personalities.

3. Persecution - In A.D. 303, the Edict of Diocletian declared that all Christian books must be destroyed. This forced the Church to determine what books to keep.

I was always told to be informed and updated on books and articles that you might not necessarily agree with but would help enhance in why you believe in what you believe. I had read the book, The Last Temptation of Christ and this is my first attempt of reading an gnostic text and so forth. Judas gives some interesting insight but the author's premise and motives seem to want to wander from what the biblical account is.

My suggestion: Interesting academic reading, but scholarly it is not.

Read the Word. God's Word before any Gnostic text or other so called "Lost" texts.

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