The Gnostic & Apocryphal Studies Collection assembles titles dealing with Christian apocryphal literature, particularly those texts associated with the Gnostic tradition. Such a multifaceted issue demands a variety of focal points, and this collection offers just that. With scholarly thoroughness, the authors included examine everything from Manichaean Christology to the Gospels of Thomas and Mary.
In the first few centuries after the death of Christ, a tradition that came to be known as Gnosticism produced a number of texts that defy modern conventional understanding of the life of Christ and the apostles. These legends and gospels integrated philosophies from Greek, Persian, Egyptian, and other sources with the Christian narratives. Many of the tenets and beliefs presented in these works were later seen as incongruent with Christ’s teachings and Christianity’s history. Subsequently, they were deemed heretical. Though never canonized and thought lost, discoveries of the past two centuries (especially the Nag Hammadi Library) have brought many of these apocryphal works to light.
Compelling in their own day, these texts continue to hold sway over contemporary imaginations. Best-sellers like The Da Vinci Code and Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas, as well as the recent buzz surrounding the reconstruction of the gospel of Judas are but three examples of Gnostic apocryphal literature’s lasting popularity.
Given their contemporary relevance, it is critical for the Christian to understand these ancient texts and evaluate their place within Christianity’s history. With the Gnostic & Apocryphal Studies Collection, you’ll have information you need to evaluate these texts.