Jesus Christ 'crippled' a man's son claims Biblical expert
The Gnostic Gospels are a collection of early Christian texts, uncovered near the town of Nag Hammadi, North Egypt, in 1945. All of the stories found were not included in the New Testament, a point which many scholars argue suggests they supplement the Bible and help to fill in the gaps of many of the text’s unexplainable events. Around 52 gospel texts were found in a sealed jar, collected in 13 leather-bound papyruses, dubbed the Nag Hammadi library.
One explicit difference remains between the Gospels: while the New Testament recounts the history of Jesus, the Gnostic Gospels explain his significance.
In reading the ancient texts, the period between his childhood and reaching the age of 30 is explored.
One, the Infancy Gospel of Thomas, was detailed during National Geographic’s ‘Secret Lives Of Jesus’.
Perhaps the most striking story sees Jesus lash out in anger at the son of a man who previously rebuked Jesus for working on the Sabbath – Jesus himself only a child at the time.
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Marvin Meyer, Professor of Bible and Christian Studies at Chapman University, said: “He has a temper, kind of a bad temper.
“And when Jesus gets mad watch out because he’s got some real wallop in his temper.”
The story claims Jesus as having said to the man and his son: “You also should be like a tree without a root and not bear fruit.”
The child then withers in Jesus’ presence.
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Bart Ehrman, Professor of religious studies at the University of North Carolina, said: “The child’s parents then come and carry the withered child away bemoaning his lost youth, wondering what a child is that can curse somebody like this.”
And while the story exemplifies Jesus’ darker side, it also explores the light-hearted relationship he shared with his father, Joseph.
In the documentary, Craig Evans, Professor of the New Testament at Acadia Divinity College, Acadia University, said: “One of the most humorous stories in the infancy tradition about Jesus growing up in Nazareth as the son of a carpenter, is the story about Joseph who turns out to be not a very good carpenter.”
Bart Ehrman, Professor of religious studies at the University of North Carolina added: “Joseph has been hired by a rich man to make a bed.
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“This will be a financial coup for the family, so it’s an important job.
“But unfortunately, Joseph makes a mistake.”
Joseph cuts the wood too short and has no money to buy a replacement – but Jesus tells him not to worry.
He uses his powers to stretch the board, restoring it to its proper length.
Professor Evans said in 2006: “And now it’s the perfect length, and Joseph is very happy.
“One more time we see the power of Jesus at work even as a teenager.”
While many remain sceptical about the texts, a number of modern day scholars have been influenced by the historic scripts in their pursuit of knowledge about early Christianity.
Others, like the biologist Richard Dawkins, have commented on the overt “significance” of the texts, pointing specifically towards the story of Judas Iscariot.
In the Gnostic Gospels, Judas is portrayed not as the arch-villain of the Jesus story, but as the person who fulfilled Jesus’ wish to ask the authorities for crucifixion in exchange for money.
The gospels are still widely debated today, and are held at the Coptic Museum in
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