Catholic Culture Dedication
Catholic Culture Dedication

a PR blitz for Judas

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Mar 17, 2006

Easter is coming.

How can you tell? Sure, there's the liturgical calendar, and the rumbling in your stomach after days of Lenten fasting. But there are also those reliable harbingers of the season: the crackpot theories debunking traditional Christian belief.

This year, even before the members of the Jesus Seminar weigh in with their helpful explanations of what Jesus really said-- which, curiously enough, always turns out to be very close to what Oprah is saying right now-- we have an impressive entry in the Gospel-Deconstruction department.

The buzz is coming from Australia, where (unless I miss my guess) some busy publicity agent is flogging the newly discovered "Gospel of Judas." Which was-- I'm not making this up-- discovered in Egypt, written in Coptic, in the 4th century.

You might be wondering, about now, why a document written in Coptic and discovered in Egypt in the 4th century is attributed to a man who hanged himself in another country a few centuries earlier. Good question. Australian newspapers have anticipated such questions; they point out that the work might actually have been written in 187 AD. All perfectly clear now?

The "Gospel of Judas," we are told, offers a sympathetic portrayal of the apostle who betrayed Jesus. If the document is authentic, then Judas is that rarest of men: a criminal who says he's not guilty.

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