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Reading Judas
Cover of Reading Judas
Reading Judas
The Gospel of Judas and the Shaping of Christianity
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The unveiling of the long-lost Gospel of Judas has stirred controversy not just among biblical scholars and those interested in the gospels that were excluded from the New Testament but among all those brought up on the story of Judas as the ultimate betrayer. Now two leading experts on the Gnostic gospels tackle the important questions posed by this exciting discovery. The answers lead deep into the agonizing disputes and exultant visions of God that ultimately came to shape Christianity.
Working from Karen King's brilliant new translation of the fragmentary gospel, Elaine Pagels and King give us the context we need for considering its meaning. The Gospel of Judas, along with other newly discovered writings, restores the vibrant and tumultuous picture of early Christianity, a time of intense reflection, experimentation, and struggle involving every fundamental issue of human life.
READING JUDAS raises compelling issues––about the nature of God, the meaning of Jesus's death, the suffering of martyrs, and much else––issues as important today as they were nineteen centuries ago.
The unveiling of the long-lost Gospel of Judas has stirred controversy not just among biblical scholars and those interested in the gospels that were excluded from the New Testament but among all those brought up on the story of Judas as the ultimate betrayer. Now two leading experts on the Gnostic gospels tackle the important questions posed by this exciting discovery. The answers lead deep into the agonizing disputes and exultant visions of God that ultimately came to shape Christianity.
Working from Karen King's brilliant new translation of the fragmentary gospel, Elaine Pagels and King give us the context we need for considering its meaning. The Gospel of Judas, along with other newly discovered writings, restores the vibrant and tumultuous picture of early Christianity, a time of intense reflection, experimentation, and struggle involving every fundamental issue of human life.
READING JUDAS raises compelling issues––about the nature of God, the meaning of Jesus's death, the suffering of martyrs, and much else––issues as important today as they were nineteen centuries ago.
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  • AudioFile Magazine The historical figure of Judas Iscariot is one of deep paradox--he was one of Jesus's handpicked followers, yet he is also the archetype of betrayal. Elaine Pagels and Karen King are both highly regarded yet unorthodox academics, from Princeton and Harvard, respectively. The professors attempt to recast the fallen disciple using the initial translation of the Judas document recently unveiled by the National Geographic Society. Justine Eyre reads the commentary, and Robertson Dean delivers the Judas material. Both try to create an air of reverence, but it ultimately falls flat under the weight of the dense Gnostic theology. Although audibly agreeable, the content overwhelms all but the most enthusiastic listeners. S.M.M. (c) AudioFile 2008, Portland, Maine
  • Library Journal

    August 15, 2007
    The story of Judas is one of the most fascinating in the Gospels of the New Testament. Using the recent manuscript fragments discovered by the National Geographic Society, well-known religion scholars Pagels (The Gnostic Gospels ) and King (Magdala ) have written a lively discussion regarding the questions this Gnostic gospel creates. They work from King's translation of the fragmentary gospel, employing their collective knowledge to present a fascinating study of the contrasts between good and evil, the still compelling stories of how Christianity evolved, and the complex nature of human suffering and redemption. Well written and researched, this book provides clues as to how the contemporary vision of Jesus compares with the view of Jesus 1900 years ago. The reading by Justine Eyre and Robertson Dean provides an excellent point-counterpoint approach to the questions of what the lost writings have to say about the nature of God, the relationship between Jesus and Judas, the complicated-and sometimes conflicting-relationships between the other disciples of Jesus and Judas, and the insights Judas has to offer into the teachings of Jesus.Reading Judas is highly recommended for both public and academic libraries with large audio and/or religion collections. [Books on Tape also has a version available: 5 CDs. unabridged. 5½ hrs. 2007. ISBN-Pam Kingsbury, Univ. of North Alabama, Florence

    Copyright 2007 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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Reading Judas
Reading Judas
The Gospel of Judas and the Shaping of Christianity
Elaine Pagels
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