THE GOSPEL OF THOMAS
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The Gospel of Thomas is a collection of traditional Sayings (logoi) of Jesus. It is attributed to Didymos Judas Thomas, the "Doubting Thomas" of the canonical Gospels, and according to many early traditions, the twin brother of Jesus ("didymos" means "twin" in Greek). We have two versions of the Gospel of Thomas today. The first was discovered in the late 1800's among the Oxyrhynchus Papyri, and consists of fragments of a Greek version, which has been dated to c. 200. The second is a complete version, in Coptic, from Codex II of the Nag Hammadi finds. Thomas was probably first written in Greek (or possibly even Syriac or Aramaic) sometime between the mid 1st and 2nd centuries. There has been much speculation on the relationship of Thomas to the canonical Gospels. Many Sayings in Thomas have parallels with the New Testament Sayings, especially those found in the synoptic Gospels. This leads many to believe that Thomas was also based on the so-called "Q" Document, along with Matthew, Luke, and Mark. Indeed, some have speculated that Thomas may in fact be "Q". Unlike the synoptic Gospels, and like "Q", the Gospel of Thomas has no narrative connecting the various Sayings. In form, it is simply a list of 114 Sayings, in no particular order. Comparison with New Testament parallels show that Thomas contains either more primitive versions of the Sayings, or developments of more primitive versions. Either way, Thomas seems to preserve earlier traditions about Jesus than the New Testament. Although it is not possible to attribute the Gospel of Thomas to any particular sect, it is clearly Gnostic in nature. As the preamble indicates, these are "secret sayings", and are intended to be esoteric in nature. The Sayings are not intended to be interpreted literally, as their New Testament parallels often are, but to be interpreted symbolically, as attested by Saying #1. While a literal interpretation may make sense, only by understanding the deeper meanings of the Sayings can one truly understand them. Thus in Saying #114, it is to be understood that "male" symbolizes the pneumatic (spiritual, or Gnostic) Christians, and "female" symbolizes the psychic (unenlightened, or orthodox) Christians, rather than actually referring to males and females. Keep in mind that true understanding of this text was meant to come from PERSONAL contact with the Divine, inspiration from within. I will now present translations of both the Greek and Coptic versions of the Gospel of Thomas. Of the 114 Sayings in the complete work, and all of the fragments of the Greek text. Also, the Greek version contains one Saying not found in the Coptic version, which comes between Sayings 32 and 33 of the Coptic version. I will enter the Coptic version first, as it is more complete, followed by the Greek version. After both translations, I've provided a listing of New Testament parallels for all 114 sayings for easier comparison. Note that for the Coptic version, I use the standard NHL translation, except for saying 70, where I have substituted the translation found in Elaine Pagels' "The Gnostic Gospels", as it seems a better translation. [Webmaster comment: the greek version being incomplete, it is found in the comment of the copt version.]


(William Wake and Solomon Caesar Malan version)



1. 0  
These are the secret sayings which the living Jesus spoke and which Didymos Judas Thomas wrote down.

These are the secret sayings which were spoken by Jesus the Living One, and which Judas, who is called Thomas, wrote down"
1. 1  
And He said, "Whoever finds the interpretation of these sayings will not experience death."

He said to them: "Whoever hears these words shall never taste death."
1. 2  
Jesus said, "Let him who seeks continue seeking until he finds. When he finds, he will become troubled. When he becomes troubled, he will be astonished, and he will rule over the All."

[Jesus said]: "Let him who seeks not cease until he finds, and when he finds he shall wonder; wondering he shall reign, and reigning shall rest."
1. 3  
Jesus said, "If those who lead you say, 'See, the Kingdom is in the sky,' then the birds of the sky will precede you. If they say to you, 'It is in the sea,' then the fish will precede you. Rather, the Kingdom is inside of you, and it is outside of you. When you come to know yourselves, then you will become known, and you will realize that it is you who are the sons of the living Father. But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty and it is you who are that poverty."

Jesus said, "If those who attract you say, 'See, the Kingdom is in the sky,' then the birds of the sky will precede you. If they say to you, 'It is under the earth,' then the fish of the sea will precede you. Rather, the Kingdom of God is inside of you, and it is outside of you. [Those who] become acquainted with [themselves] will find it; [and when you] become acquainted with yourselves, [you will understand that] it is you who are the sons of the living Father. But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty and it is you who are that poverty."
1. 4  
Jesus said, "The man old in days will not hesitate to ask a small child seven days old about the place of life, and he will live. For many who are first will become last, and they will become one and the same."

Jesus said: "Let the old man who is full of days not hesitate to ask the child of seven days about the place of life; then he will live. For many that are first will be last, and last, first, and they will become a single one."
1. 5  
Jesus said, "Recognize what is in your sight, and that which is hidden from you will become plain to you. For there is nothing hidden which will not become manifest."

Jesus said: "Recognize what is before your face and that which is hidden from the you will be revealed to you. For there is nothing hidden which shall not be made manifest, nor buried which shall not be raised."
1. 6  
His disciples questioned Him and said to Him, "Do you want us to fast? How shall we pray? Shall we give alms? What diet shall we observe?" Jesus said, "Do not tell lies, and do not do what you hate, for all things are plain in the sight of Heaven. For nothing hidden will not become manifest, and nothing covered will remain without being uncovered."
1. 7  
Jesus said, "Blessed is the lion which becomes man when consumed by man; and cursed is the man whom the lion consumes, and the lion becomes man."
1. 8  
And He said, "The Kingdom is like a wise fisherman who cast his net into the sea and drew it up from the sea full of small fish. Among them the wise fisherman found a fine large fish. He threw all the small fish back into the sea and chose the large fish without difficulty. Whoever has ears to hear, let him hear."
1. 9  
Jesus said, "Now the sower went out, took a handful (of seeds), and scattered them. Some fell on the road; the birds came and gathered them up. Others fell on the rock, did not take root in the soil, and did not produce ears. And others fell on thorns; they choked the seed(s) and worms ate them. And others fell on the good soil and produced good fruit: it bore sixty per measure and a hundred and twenty per measure."
1. 10  
Jesus said, "I have cast fire upon the world, and see, I am guarding it until it blazes."
1. 11  
Jesus said, "This heaven will pass away, and the one above it will pass away. The dead are not alive, and the living will not die. In the days when you consumed what is dead, you made it what is alive. When you come to dwell in the light, what will you do? On the day when you were one you became two. But when you become two, what will you do?"
1. 12  
The disciples said to Jesus, "We know that You will depart from us. Who is to be our leader?" Jesus said to them, "Wherever you are, you are to go to James the righteous, for whose sake heaven and earth came into being."
1. 13  
Jesus said to His disciples, "Compare me to someone and tell Me whom I am like." Simon Peter said to Him, "You are like a righteous angel." Matthew said to Him, "You are like a wise philosopher." Thomas said to Him, "Master, my mouth is wholly incapable of saying whom You are like." Jesus said, "I am not your master. Because you have drunk, you have become intoxicated by the bubbling spring which I have measured out." And He took him and withdrew and told him three things. When Thomas returned to his companions, they asked him, "What did Jesus say to you?" Thomas said to them, "If I tell you one of the things which he told me, you will pick up stones and throw them at me; a fire will come out of the stones and burn you up."
1. 14  
Jesus said to them, "If you fast, you will give rise to sin for yourselves; and if you pray, you will be condemned; and if you give alms, you will do harm to your spirits. When you go into any land and walk about in the districts, if they receive you, eat what they will set before you, and heal the sick among them. For what goes into your mouth will not defile you, but that which issues from your mouth - it is that which will defile you."
1. 15  
Jesus said, "When you see one who was not born of woman, prostrate yourselves on your faces and worship him. That one is your Father."
1. 16  
Jesus said, "Men think, perhaps, that it is peace which I have come to cast upon the world. They do not know that it is dissension which I have come to cast upon the earth: fire, sword, and war. For there will be five in a house: three will be against two, and two against three, the father against the son, and the son against the father. And they will stand solitary."
1. 17  
Jesus said, "I shall give you what no eye has seen and what no ear has heard and what no hand has touched and what has never occurred to the human mind."
1. 18  
The disciples said to Jesus, "Tell us how our end will be." Jesus said, "Have you discovered, then, the beginning, that you look for the end? For where the beginning is, there will the end be. Blessed is he who will take his place in the beginning; he will know the end and will not experience death."
1. 19  
Jesus said, "Blessed is he who came into being before he came into being. If you become My disciples and listen to My words, these stones will minister to you. For there are five trees for you in Paradise which remain undisturbed summer and winter and whose leaves do not fall. Whoever becomes acquainted with them will not experience death."
1. 20  
The disciples said to Jesus, "Tell us what the Kingdom of Heaven is like." He said to them, "It is like a mustard seed, the smallest of all seeds. But when it falls on tilled soil, it produces a great plant and becomes a shelter for birds of the sky."
1. 21  
Mary said to Jesus, "Whom are Your disciples like?" He said, "They are like children who have settled in a field which is not theirs. When the owners of the field come, they will say, 'Let us have back our field.' They (will) undress in their presence in order to let them have back their field and give it back to them. Therefore I say to you, if the owner of a house knows that the thief is coming, he will begin his vigil before he comes and will not let him into his house of his domain to carry away his goods. You, then, be on your guard against the world. Arm yourselves with great strength lest the robbers find a way to come to you, for the difficulty which you expect will (surely) materialize. Let there be among you a man of understanding. When the grain ripened, he came quickly with his sickle in his hand and reaped it. Whoever has ears to hear, let him hear."
1. 22  
Jesus saw infants being suckled. He said to His disciples, "These infants being suckled are like those who enter the Kingdom." They said to Him, "Shall we then, as children, enter the Kingdom?" Jesus said to them, "When you make the two one, and when you make the inside like the outside and the outside like the inside, and the above like the below, and when you make the male and the female one and the same, so that the male not be male nor the female female; and when you fashion eyes in the place of an eye, and a hand in place of a hand, and a foot in place of a foot, and a likeness in place of a likeness; then will you enter [the Kingdom]."
1. 23  
Jesus said, "I shall choose you, one out of a thousand, and two out of ten thousand, and they shall stand as a single one."
1. 24  
His disciples said to Him, "Show us the place where You are, since it is necessary for us to seek it." He said to them, "Whoever has ears, let him hear. There is light within a man of light, and he (or "it") lights up the whole world. If he (or "it") does not shine, he (or "it") is darkness."
1. 25  
Jesus said, "Love your brother like your soul, guard him like the pupil of your eye."
1. 26  
Jesus said, "You see the mote in your brothers eye, but you do not see the beam in your own eye. When you cast the beam out of your own eye, then you will see clearly to cast the mote from your brother's eye."
1. 27  
"If you do not fast as regards the world, you will not find the Kingdom. If you do not observe the Sabbath as a Sabbath, you will not see the Father."

Jesus said: "Unless you fast to the world, you shall in no way find the Kingdom of God; and unless you sabbatize the Sabbath, you shall not see the Father."
1. 28  
Jesus said, "I took my place in the midst of the world, and I appeared to them in the flesh. I found all of them intoxicated; I found none of them thirsty. And My soul became afflicted for the sons of men, because they are blind in their hearts and do not have sight; for empty they came into the world, and empty too they seek to leave the world. But for the moment they are intoxicated. When they shake off their wine, then they will repent."

Jesus said: "I stood in the midst of the world, and in the flesh I was seen by them, and I found all drunken, and I found none among them thirsty. And my soul grieved over the souls of men, because they are blind in their heart and see not. [...]
1. 29  
Jesus said, "If the flesh came into being because of spirit, it is a wonder. But if spirit came into being because of the body, it is a wonder of wonders. Indeed, I am amazed at how this great wealth has made its home in this poverty."
1. 30  
Jesus said, "Where there are three gods, they are gods. Where there are two or one, I am with him."

Jesus said: "Where there are [two, they are not] without God, and when there is one alone, [I say,] I am with him. Raise the stone, and there you will find me; cleave the wood, and there I am."
1. 31  
Jesus said, "No prophet is accepted in his own village; no physician heals those who know him." 32) Jesus said, "A city being built on a high mountain and fortified cannot fall, nor can it be hidden."

Jesus said: "A prophet is not acceptable in his own country, neither does a physician work cures upon those that know him."
1. 32  
Jesus said, "A city being built on a high mountain and fortified cannot fall, nor can it be hidden."

Jesus said: "A city built on the top of a high hill and fortified can neither fall nor be hid." (--) Jesus said: "Thou hearest with one ear, [but the other thou has closed].)
1. 33  
Jesus said, "Preach from your housetops that which you will hear in your ear {(and) in the other ear}. For no one lights a lamp and puts it under a bushel, nor does he put it in a hidden place, but rather he sets it on a lampstand so that everyone who enters and leaves will see its light."
1. 34  
Jesus said, "If a blind man leads a blind man, they will both fall into a pit."
1. 35  
Jesus said, "It is not possible for anyone to enter the house of a strong man and take it by force unless he binds his hands; then he will (be able to) ransack his house."
1. 36  
Jesus said, "Do not be concerned from morning until evening and from evening until morning about what you will wear."

Jesus said, "Do not worry from dawn to dusk and from dusk to dawn about [what food] you [will] eat, [or] what [clothing] you will wear. [You are much] better than the [lilies], which [neither] card nor spin. And for your part, what [will you wear] when you have no clothing? Who would add to your stature? It is he who will give you your clothing.
1. 37  
His disciples said, "When will You become revealed to us and when shall we see You?" Jesus said, "When you disrobe without being ashamed and take up your garments and place them under your feet like little children and tread on them, then [will you see] the Son of the Living One, and you will not be afraid"
1. 38  
Jesus said, "Many times have you desired to hear these words which I am saying to you, and you have no one else to hear them from. There will be days when you look for Me and will not find Me."
1. 39  
Jesus said, "The Pharisees and the scribes have taken the keys of Knowledge and hidden them. They themselves have not entered, nor have they allowed to enter those who wish to. You, however, be as wise as serpents and as innocent as doves."
1. 40  
Jesus said, "A grapevine has been planted outside of the Father, but being unsound, it will be pulled up by its roots and destroyed."
1. 41  
Jesus said, "Whoever has something in his hand will receive more, and whoever has nothing will be deprived of even the little he has."
1. 42  
Jesus said, "Become passers-by."
1. 43  
His disciples said to him, "Who are You, that You should say these things to us?" "You do not realize who I am from what I say to you, but you have become like the Jews, for they (either) love the tree and hate its fruit or love the fruit and hate the tree."
1. 44  
Jesus said, "Whoever blasphemes against the Father will be forgiven, and whoever blasphemes against the Son will be forgiven, but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven either on earth or in heaven."
1. 45  
Jesus said, "Grapes are not harvested from thorns, nor are figs gathered from thistles, for they do not produce fruit. A good man brings forth good from his storehouse; an evil man brings forth evil things from his evil storehouse, which is in his heart, and says evil things. For out of the abundance of the heart he brings forth evil things."
1. 46  
Jesus said, "Among those born of women, from Adam until John the Baptist, there is no one so superior to John the Baptist that his eyes should not be lowered (before him). Yet I have said whichever one of you comes to be a child will be acquainted with the Kingdom and will become superior to John."
1. 47  
Jesus said, "It is impossible for a man to mount two horses or to stretch two bows. And it is impossible for a servant to serve two masters; otherwise he will honor the one and treat the other contemptuously. No man drinks old wine and immediately desires to drink new wine. And new wine is not put into old wineskins, lest they burst; nor is old wine put into a new wineskin, lest it spoil it. An old patch is not sewn onto a new garment, because a tear would result."
1. 48  
Jesus said, "If two make peace with each other in this one house, they will say to the mountain, 'Move Away,' and it will move away."
1. 49  
Jesus said, "Blessed are the solitary and elect, for you will find the Kingdom. For you are from it, and to it you will return."


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