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The Gnostic Scriptures: A New Translation with Annotations and Introductions (The Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library)

The Gnostic Scriptures: A New Translation with Annotations and Introductions (The Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library) The Gnostic Scriptures: A New Translation with Annotations and Introductions (The Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library)

"Bentley Layton's "The Gnostic Scriptures is the one indispensable book for the understanding of Gnosis and Gnosticism. No other translations are within light-years of Layton's in eloquence, pathos, and accuracy, while no other commentaries match his as an introduction to this perpetually relevant religious stance. Layton is particularly brilliant in his appreciation of Valentinus, the central Gnostic visionary, whose "Gospel of Truth is marvelously served in this translation." --Harold Bloom, author of "The Book of J and "The Western Canon

"Bentley Layton's "The Gnostic Scriptures" is the one indispensable book for the understanding of Gnosis and Gnosticism. No other translations are within light-years of Layton's in eloquence, pathos, and accuracy, while no other commentaries match his as an introduction to this perpetually relevant religious stance. Layton is particularly brilliant in his appreciation of Valentinus, the central Gnostic visionary, whose "Gospel of Truth" is marvelously served in this translation." --Harold Bloom, author of "The Book of J" and "The Western Canon"

About the Author:

Bentley Layton was educated at Harvard University and taught for five years in Jerusalem at the Ecole biblique et archeologique francaise. He worked in Cairo with UNESCO Technical Subcommittee to reconstruct the Coptic Gnostic manuscripts of Nag Hammadi and then taught at Yale University, where he was appointed to the Goff Professorship of Religious Studies. He is the recipient of fellowships from American Council of Learned Societies, National Endowment for the Humanities, and Guggenheim Foundation and past President of the International Association of Coptic Studies.

Paperback: 337 pages
Publisher: Independently published (January 9, 2018)

Gnosis: The Nature and History of Gnosticism

Gnosis: The Nature and History of Gnosticism Gnosis: The Nature and History of Gnosticism

Presents a readable and appealing introduction to what otherwise might seem an inaccessible religion of late antiquity.

'Kurt Rudolph is the world's leading expert on the only branch of Gnosticism that has survived down to the present. He also is the scholar who has the most authoritative overview of the whole Gnostic phenomenon....(His) popular survey of Gnosticism...does for the next generation what Hans Jonas's Gnostic Religion did for the generation just past: present a readable and appealing introduction to what otherwise might seem an inaccessible religion of late antiquity.'--James M. Robinson, General Editor, The Nag Hammadi Library in English

Paperback: 432 pages
Publisher: HarperOne; New Ed edition (May 6, 1987)

Gnosis: The Secrets of Solomon's Temple Revealed

Gnosis: The Secrets of Solomon's Temple Revealed Gnosis: The Secrets of Solomon's Temple Revealed

Solomon's Temple in Jerusalem-reputed to be the source of the most esoteric knowledge in human history-has fascinated scholars, seekers and dreamers for centuries. For generations, scholars and researchers have tried in vain to discover the fabled Temple of Solomon, only to be confronted by one problem after another. All the problems raised by these disparate and often desperate people have now been fully answered and can be revealed to the world. Through his own involvement in secret societies and his tenacious spirit, Philip Gardiner has unearthed the secrets of the Temple. From the Queen of Sheba and the arcane secrets of the Christian Gnostics to the Muslim Sufi and Hindu Avatars, Gnosis weaves a tale that is both profound and precise. Gardiner declares that the truth of Solomon's Temple has been known all along within the realm of esoteric understanding. Only one question remains: Is the world ready for the truth? Find the true secret of the Knights Templar and the mysteries of the ancients. Find the truth for yourself in Gnosis.

About the Author

Philip Gardiner is an international best-selling author of several books including Gnosis: The Secret of Solomon's Temple Revealed, The Ark, The Shroud, and Mary, The Shining Ones, and The Serpent Grail. He has appeared on television and radio across the world and has written for more than 200 magazines and newspapers. Commited to the constant struggle to uncover the real history of mankind and the unraveling of manipulative propaganda, Gardiner hosts the Forbidden Knowledge Conference. His Website is www.gardinersworld.com.

Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Weiser; 1 edition (September 15, 2006)

The Urantia Book
The Urantia Book The Urantia Book

Love

Love is truly contagious and eternally creative. (p. 2018) “Devote your life to proving that love is the greatest thing in the world.” (p. 2047) “Love is the ancestor of all spiritual goodness, the essence of the true and the beautiful.” (p. 2047) The Father’s love can become real to mortal man only by passing through that man’s personality as he in turn bestows this love upon his fellows. (p. 1289) The secret of a better civilization is bound up in the Master’s teachings of the brotherhood of man, the good will of love and mutual trust. (p. 2065)

Prayer

Prayer is not a technique of escape from conflict but rather a stimulus to growth in the very face of conflict. (p. 1002) The sincerity of any prayer is the assurance of its being heard. … (p. 1639) God answers man’s prayer by giving him an increased revelation of truth, an enhanced appreciation of beauty, and an augmented concept of goodness. (p. 1002) …Never forget that the sincere prayer of faith is a mighty force for the promotion of personal happiness, individual self-control, social harmony, moral progress, and spiritual attainment. (p. 999)

Suffering

There is a great and glorious purpose in the march of the universes through space. All of your mortal struggling is not in vain. (p. 364) Mortals only learn wisdom by experiencing tribulation. (p. 556)

Angels

The angels of all orders are distinct personalities and are highly individualized. (p. 285) Angels....are fully cognizant of your moral struggles and spiritual difficulties. They love human beings, and only good can result from your efforts to understand and love them. (p. 419)

Our Divine Destiny

If you are a willing learner, if you want to attain spirit levels and reach divine heights, if you sincerely desire to reach the eternal goal, then the divine Spirit will gently and lovingly lead you along the pathway of sonship and spiritual progress. (p. 381) …They who know that God is enthroned in the human heart are destined to become like him—immortal. (p. 1449) God is not only the determiner of destiny; he is man’s eternal destination. (p. 67)

Family

Almost everything of lasting value in civilization has its roots in the family. (p. 765) The family is man’s greatest purely human achievement. ... (p. 939)

Faith

…Faith will expand the mind, ennoble the soul, reinforce the personality, augment the happiness, deepen the spirit perception, and enhance the power to love and be loved. (p. 1766) “Now, mistake not, my Father will ever respond to the faintest flicker of faith.” (p. 1733)

History/Science

The story of man’s ascent from seaweed to the lordship of earthly creation is indeed a romance of biologic struggle and mind survival. (p. 731) 2,500,000,000 years ago… Urantia was a well developed sphere about one tenth its present mass. … (p. 658) 1,000,000,000 years ago is the date of the actual beginning of Urantia [Earth] history. (p. 660) 450,000,000 years ago the transition from vegetable to animal life occurred. (p. 669) From the year A.D. 1934 back to the birth of the first two human beings is just 993,419 years. (p. 707) About five hundred thousand years ago…there were almost one-half billion primitive human beings on earth. … (p. 741) Adam and Eve arrived on Urantia, from the year A.D. 1934, 37,848 years ago. (p. 828)

From the Inside Flap

What’s Inside?

Parts I and II

God, the inhabited universes, life after death, angels and other beings, the war in heaven.

Part III

The history of the world, science and evolution, Adam and Eve, development of civilization, marriage and family, personal spiritual growth.

Part IV

The life and teachings of Jesus including the missing years. AND MUCH MORE…

Excerpts

God, …God is the source and destiny of all that is good and beautiful and true. (p. 1431) If you truly want to find God, that desire is in itself evidence that you have already found him. (p. 1440) When man goes in partnership with God, great things may, and do, happen. (p. 1467)

The Origin of Human Life, The universe is not an accident... (p. 53) The universe of universes is the work of God and the dwelling place of his diverse creatures. (p. 21) The evolutionary planets are the spheres of human origin…Urantia [Earth] is your starting point. … (p. 1225) In God, man lives, moves, and has his being. (p. 22)

The Purpose of Life, There is in the mind of God a plan which embraces every creature of all his vast domains, and this plan is an eternal purpose of boundless opportunity, unlimited progress, and endless life. (p. 365) This new gospel of the kingdom… presents a new and exalted goal of destiny, a supreme life purpose. (p. 1778)

Jesus, The religion of Jesus is the most dynamic influence ever to activate the human race. (p. 1091) What an awakening the world would experience if it could only see Jesus as he really lived on earth and know, firsthand, his life-giving teachings! (p. 2083)

Science, Science, guided by wisdom, may become man’s great social liberator. (p. 909) Mortal man is not an evolutionary accident. There is a precise system, a universal law, which determines the unfolding of the planetary life plan on the spheres of space. (p. 560)

Life after Death, God’s love is universal… He is “not willing that any should perish.” (p. 39) Your short sojourn on Urantia [Earth]…is only a single link, the very first in the long chain that is to stretch across universes and through the eternal ages. (p. 435) …Death is only the beginning of an endless career of adventure, an everlasting life of anticipation, an eternal voyage of discovery. (p. 159)

About the Author

The text of The Urantia Book was provided by one or more anonymous contributors working with a small staff which provided editorial and administrative support during the book's creation. The book bears no particular credentials (from a human viewpoint), relying instead on the power and beauty of the writing itself to persuade the reader of its authenticity.

Leather Bound: 2097 pages
Publisher: Urantia Foundation; Box Lea edition (August 25, 2015)

The Gnostic Notebook Omnibus: Volumes One, Two, and Three

The Gnostic Notebook Omnibus: Volumes One, Two, and Three The Gnostic Notebook Omnibus: Volumes One, Two, and Three

The Gnostic Notebook is a fresh examination of several classic texts in a search for hidden layers of meaning. The meanings are unlocked through a series of easy to follow steps, using a variety of steganographic and cryptographic techniques. The messages decrypted are not the usual esoteric or Freudian interpretations; rather they contain actual, undeniable information encoded into the texts ages ago. Their existence challenges everything we thought we knew about these texts, including our basic understanding of the Bible itself!

Using various texts from the Nag Hammadi library, including the Gospel of Thomas, Lambert identifies a list of seven key parables found within the Synoptic Gospels. According to the texts, the successful interpretation of these seven parables is enough to unlock the mysteries hidden within the teachings of Jesus.

Follow along as Lambert searches for evidence of this secret teaching in the most peculiar of places from Salvador Dali's Crucifixion (Corpus Hypercubus) through Plato's Allegory of the Cave to the very formation of the elements and beyond. What he finds almost defies explanation, and this book is certain to challenge the beliefs of any who read it.

About the Author:

Timothy James Lambert is a writer, stand-up comedian, and Gnostic. The author of The Gnostic Notebook series, he has been a resident of Prague, the Alchemical Capital of Europe, for the last twenty years. Known as the Judas Iscariot of Gnosticism for his propensity of revealing that which is not to be revealed, he is hard at work on his new book.

Paperback: 337 pages
Publisher: Independently published (January 9, 2018)

Gnosticism: a source book of heretical writings from the early Christian period

Gnosticism: a source book of heretical writings from the early Christian period Gnosticism: a source book of heretical writings from the early Christian period

No details.

Paperback: ? pages
Publisher: Harper; 1St Edition edition (1961)

The Nag Hammadi Library in English

The Nag Hammadi Library in English The Nag Hammadi Library in English

This definitive edition of THE NAG HAMMADI LIBRARY is the only complete, one-volume, English-language edition of the renowned library of fourth-century manuscripts discovered in Egypt in 1945 It includes the Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Mary and other Gnostic gospels and sacred tests. First published in 1978 and revised, expanded, and updated in 1999, THE NAG HAMMADI LIBRARY launched modern Gnostic studies and exposed a movement within Christianity whose teachings are in many ways – as bestselling author Elaine Pagels has shown – as relevant today as they were centuries ago. This edition takes into account recent developments in Gnostic scholarship, including the significance of the Gospel of Thomas as a source of the authentic sayings of Jesus. The translators include such prominent scholars as Elaine Pagels, Marvin Meyer, Helmut Koester, and Bentley Layton. The Chicago Theological Seminary Register called it “A tremendous achievement”.

Paperback: 549 pages
Publisher: HarperOne; 3rd edition (1988)


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The Other Gospels: Non-Canonical Gospel Texts The Other Gospels: Non-Canonical Gospel Texts

The Other Gospels: Non-Canonical Gospel Texts The Other Gospels: Non-Canonical Gospel Texts

This anthology of gospel literature contains texts that are not a part of the New Testament but are of great importance for the study of Christian origins. Containing some of the writings from the Nag Hammadi library, these sixteen texts constitute what remains of the non-canonical Gospels from the first and second centuries. They transmit sayings of Jesus and relate stories about Jesus.

About the Author

Ron Cameron is Professor of Religion at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut.

Paperback: 191 pages
Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press; 1st edition (January 1, 1982)

The Apocryphon Of James

translated by Ron Cameron

from

The Other Gospels



TABLE OF CONTENTS


The Apocryphon of James

Translated by Ron Cameron




James writes to you. Peace be with you from Peace, love from Love, grace from Grace, faith from Faith, life from Holy Life!

Since you asked me to send you a secret book which was revealed to me and Peter by the Lord, I could neither refuse you nor speak directly to you, but I have written it in Hebrew letters and have sent it to you - and to you alone. But inasmuch as you are a minister of the salvation of the saints, endeavor earnestly and take care not to recount this book to many - this which the Savior did not desire to recount to all of us, his twelve disciples. But blessed are those who will be saved through faith in this discourse.

Now I sent you ten months ago another secret book with the Savior revealed to me. But that one you are to regard in this manner, as revealed to me, James.

Now the twelve disciples were sitting all together at the same time, and, remembering what the Savior had said to each one of them, whether secretly or openly, they were setting it down in books. And I was writing what was in my book - lo, the Savior appeared, after he had departed from us while we gazed at him. And five hundred and fifty days after he arose from the dead, we said to him: "Have you gone and departed from us?"

And Jesus said: "No, but I shall go to the place from which I have come. If you desire to come with me, come."

They all answered and said: "If you bid us, we'll come."
    He said: "Truly I say to you, no one ever will enter the Kingdom of Heaven if I bid him, but rather because you yourselves are full. Let me have James and Peter, in order that I may fill them." And when he called these two, he took them aside, and commanded the rest to busy themselves with that with which they had been busy.

The Savior said; "You have received mercy....
    (7 lines missing) Do you not desire, then, to be filled? And is your heart drunk? Do you not desire, then, to be sober? Therefore, be ashamed! And now, waking or sleeping, remember that you have seen the Son of Man, and with him you have spoken, and to him you have listened. Woe to those who have seen the Son of Man! Blessed are those who have not seen the Man, and who have not consorted with him, and who have not spoken with him, and who have not listened to anything from him. Yours is life! Know, therefore, that he healed you when you were ill, in order that you might reign. Woe to those who have rested from their illness, because they will relapse again into illness! Blessed are those who have not been ill, and have known rest before they became ill. Yours is the Kingdom of God! Therefore I say to you, become full and leave no place within you empty, since the Coming One is able to mock you."

Then Peter answered: "Lord, three times you have said to us 'Become full', but we are full."
    The Lord answered and said: "Therefore I say unto you, become full, in order that you may not be diminished. Those who are diminished, however, will not be saved. For fullness is good and diminution is bad. Therefore, just as it is good for you to be diminished and, on the other hand, bad for you to be filled, so also the one who is full is diminished; and the one who is diminished is not filled as the one who is diminished is filled, and the one who is full, for his part, brings his sufficiency to completion. Therefore, it is fitting to be diminished while you can still be filled, and to be filled while it is still possible to be diminished, in order that you can fill yourselves the more. Therefore become full of the spirit but be diminished of reason. For reason is of the soul; and it is soul."

And I answered, and said to him: "Lord, we can obey you if you wish. For we have forsaken our forefathers and our mothers and our villages and have followed you. Grant us, therefore, not to be tempted by the wicked Devil."
    The Lord answered and said: "What is your merit when you do the will of the Father if it is not given to you by him as a gift, while you are tempted by Satan? But if you are oppressed by Satan and are persecuted and you do the Father's will, I say that he will love you and will make you equal with me and will consider that you have become beloved through his providence according to your free choice. Will you not cease, then, being lovers of the flesh and being afraid of sufferings? Or do you not know that you have not yet been mistreated and have not yet been accused unjustly, nor have you yet been shut up in prison, nor have you yet been condemned lawlessly, nor have you yet been crucified without reason, nor have you yet been buried shamefully, as was I myself, by the evil one? Do you dare to spare the flesh, you for whom the spirit is an encircling wall? If you contemplate the world, how long it is before you and also how long it is after you, you will find that your life is one single day and your sufferings, one single hour. For the good will not enter the world. Scorn death, therefore, and take concern for life. Remember my cross and my death and you will live."

And I answered and said to him: "Lord, do not mention to us the cross and the death, for they are far from you."
    The Lord answered and said: "Truly I say to you, none will be saved unless they believe in my cross. But those who have believed in my cross, theirs is the Kingdom of God. Therefore, become seekers for death, just as the dead who seek for life, for that which they seek is revealed to them. And what is there to concern them? When you turn yourselves towards death, it will make known to you election. In truth I say to you, none of those who are afraid of death will be saved. For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who have put themselves to death. Become better than I; make yourselves like the son of the Holy Spirit."

Then I questioned him: "Lord how may we prophesy to those who ask us to prophesy to them? For there are many who ask us and who look to us to hear an oracle from us."
    The Lord answered and said: "Do you not know that the head of prophecy was cut off with John?"
And I said: "Lord, it is not possible to remove the head of prophecy, is it?"
    The Lord said to me: "When you come to know what 'head' is, and that prophecy issues from the head, then understand what is the meaning of 'Its head was removed'. I first spoke with you in parables, and you did not understand. Now, in turn, I speak with you openly, and you do not perceive. But it is you who were to me a parable in parables and what is apparent in what are open.

"Be zealous to be saved without being urged. Rather, be ready on your own and, if possible, go before me. For thus the Father will love you.

"Become haters of hypocrisy and evil thought. For it is thought which gives birth to hypocrisy, but hypocrisy is far from the truth.

"Let not the Kingdom of Heaven wither away. For it is like a date palm shoot whose fruits poured down around it. It put forth leaves and, when they budded, they caused the productivity of the date palm to dry up. Thus it is also with the fruit which came from this single root; when the fruit was picked, fruits were collected by many harvesters. It would indeed be good if it were possible to produce these new plants now; for then you would find the Kingdom.

"Since I have been glorified in this manner before this time, why do you all restrain me when I am eager to go? You have constrained me to remain with you eighteen more days for the sake of the parables. It sufficed for some persons to pay attention to the teaching and understand 'The Shepherds' and 'The Seed' and 'The Building' and 'The Lamps of the Virgins' and 'The Wage of the Workers' and 'The Double Drachma' and 'The Woman'.

"Become zealous about the Word. For the Word's first condition is faith; the second is love; the third is works. Now from these comes life. For the Word is like a grain of wheat. When someone sowed it, he believed in it; and when it sprouted, he loved it, because he looked forward to many grains in the place of one; and when he worked it, he was saved, because he prepared it for food. Again he left some grains to sow. Thus it is also possible for you all to receive the Kingdom of Heaven: unless you receive it through knowledge, you will not be able to find it.

"Therefore I say to you, be sober. Do not go astray. And many times I have said to you all together - and also to you alone, James, I have said - 'Be saved!' And I have commanded you to follow me, and I have taught you the response in the presence of the rulers. Observe that I have descended, and I have spoken, and I have troubled myself, and I have received my crown, when I saved you. For I have descended to dwell with you in order that you also may dwell with me. And when I found that your houses had no ceilings over them, I dwelt in houses which would be able to receive me when I descended.

"Therefore, obey me, my brothers. Understand what the great light is. The Father does not need me. For a father does not need a son, but it is the son who needs the father. To him I am going, for the Father of the Son is not in need of you.

"Pay attention to the Word. Understand Knowledge. Love Life. And no one will persecute you, nor will any one oppress you, other than you yourselves.

"O you wretched! O you unfortunates! O you dissemblers of the truth! O you falsifiers of knowledge! O you sinners against the spirit! Do you even now dare to listen, when it behooved you to speak from the beginning? Do you even now dare to sleep, when it behooved you to be awake from the beginning, in order that the Kingdom of Heaven might receive you? In truth I say to you, it is easier for a holy one to sink into defilement, and for a man of light to sink into darkness, than for you to reign - or even not to reign!

"I have remembered your tears and your grief and your sorrow. They are far from us. Now, then, you who are outside the inheritance of the Father, weep where it behooves you and grieve and proclaim that which is good, since the Son is ascending appropriately. In truth I say to you, had it been to those who would listen to me that I was sent, and had it been with them that I was to speak, I would have never descended upon the earth. And now, then, be ashamed on account of them.

"Behold, I shall depart from you. I am going and I do not desire to remain with you any longer - just as you yourselves have not desired. Now, then, follow me quickly. Therefore I say to you, for your sake I have descended. You are the beloved; you are those who will become a cause of life for many. Beseech the Father. Implore God often, and he will give to you. Blessed is the one who has seen you with him when he is proclaimed among the angels and glorified among the saints. Yours is life! Rejoice and be glad as children of God. Keep his will in order that you may be saved. Take reproof from me and save yourselves. I intercede on your behalf with the Father, and he will forgive you much."

And when we heard these things, we became elated, for we had been depressed on account of what we had said earlier. Now when he saw our rejoicing, he said: "Woe to you who are in want of an advocate! Woe to you who are in need of grace! Blessed are those who have spoken freely and have produced grace for themselves. Make yourselves like strangers; of what sort are they in the estimation of your city? Why are you troubled when you oust yourselves of your own accord and depart from your city? Why do you abandon your dwelling place of your own accord, readying it for those who desire to dwell in it? O you exiles and fugitives! Woe to you, because you will be caught! Or perhaps you imagine that the Father is a lover of humanity? Or that he is persuaded by prayers? Or that he is gracious to one on behalf of another? Or that he bears with one who seeks? For he knows the desire and also that which the flesh needs. Because it is not the flesh which yearns for the soul. For without the soul the body does not sin, just as the soul is not saved without the Spirit. But if the soul is saved when it is without evil, and if the spirit also is saved, then the body becomes sinless. For it is the spirit which animates the soul, but it is the body which kills it - that is, it is the soul which kills itself. Truly I say to you, the Father will not forgive the sin of the soul at all, nor the guilt of the flesh. For none of those who have worn the flesh will be saved. For do you imagine that many have found the Kingdom of Heaven? Blessed is the one who has seen himself as a fourth one in Heaven."

When we heard these things, we became distressed. Now when he saw that we were distressed, he said: "This is why I say this to you, that you may know yourselves. For the Kingdom of Heaven is like an ear of grain which sprouted in a field. And when it ripened, it scattered its fruit and, in turn, filled the field with ears of grain for another year. You also: be zealous to reap for yourselves an ear of life, in order that you may be filled with the Kingdom.

"As long as I am with you, give heed to me and obey me. But when I am to depart from you, remember me. And remember me because I was with you without your knowing me. Blessed are those who have known me. Woe to those who have heard and have not believed! Blessed are those who have not seen but have had faith!

"And once again I persuade you. For I am revealed to you building a house which is very valuable to you, since you take shelter under it; in the same way it will be able to support the house of your neighbors when theirs is in danger of falling. In truth I say to you, woe to those on behalf of whom I was sent down to this place! Blessed are those who are to ascend to the Father. Again I reprove you. You who are, make yourselves like those who are not, in order that you may come to be with those who are not.

"Let not the Kingdom of Heaven become desolate among you. Do not become arrogant on account of the light which illumines. Rather, become to yourselves in this manner, as I am to you. For I have placed myself under the curse, in order that you may be saved"

And Peter answered to this and said: "Sometimes you urge us on to the Kingdom of Heaven, and other times you turn us away, Lord. Sometimes you persuade us and impel us to faith and promise us life, and other times you expel us from the Kingdom of Heaven."

And the Lord answered and said to us: "I have given you faith many times. Moreover, I have revealed myself to you, James, and you have not known me. Again, now I see you rejoicing many times. And when you are elated over the promise of life, are you nevertheless glum? And are you distressed when you are taught about the Kingdom? But you through faith and knowledge have received life. Therefore, scorn rejection when you hear it, but, when you hear the promise, be the more glad. In truth I say to you, the one who will receive life and believe in the Kingdom will never leave it - not even if the Father desires to banish him!

"These things I shall say to you for the present. But now I shall ascend to the place from which I have come. But you, when I was eager to go, have driven me out, and, instead of your accompanying me, you have pursued me. But give heed to the glory which awaits me, and, having opened your hearts, listen to the hymns which await me up in heaven. For today I am obliged to take (my place) at the right hand of my Father. Now I have said my last word to you. I shall part from you. For a chariot of wind has taken me up, and from now on I shall strip myself in order that I may clothe myself. But give heed: blessed are those who have preached the Son before he descended, in order that, when I have come, I may ascend. Thrice-blessed are thos who were proclaimed by the Son before they came into being, in order that you may have a portion with them."

When he said these things, he went away. And we knelt down, I and Peter, and gave thanks, and sent our hearts up to heaven. We heard with our ears and saw with our eyes the sound of wars and a trumpet call and a great commotion.

And when we passed beyond that place, we sent out minds up further. And we saw with our eyes and heard with our ears hymns and angelic praises and angelic jubilation. And heavenly majesties were hymning, and we ourselves were jubilant.

After this, we also desired to send our spirits above to the Majesty. And when we ascended, we were permitted neither to see nor to hear anything. For the rest of the disciples called to us and questioned us: "What is it that you have heard from the Master?" And, "What has he said to you?" And, "Where has he gone?"

And we answered them: "He has ascended." And, "He has given us a pledge and has promised us all life and disclosed to us children who are to come after us, since he has bid us to love them, inasmuch as we will be saved for their sake."

And when they heard, they believed the revelation, but were angry about those who would be born. Then I, not desiring to entice them to scandal, sent each one to another place. But I myself went up to Jerusalem, praying that I may obtain a portion with the beloved who are to be revealed.

And I pray that the beginning may come from you, for thus I can be saved. Because they will be enlightened through me, through my faith and through another's which is better than mine, for I desire that mine become the lesser. Endeavor earnestly, therefore, to make yourself like them, and pray that you may obtain a portion with them. For apart from what I have recounted, the Savior did not disclose revelation to us. For their sake we proclaim, indeed, a portion with those for whom it was proclaimed, those whom the Lord has made his children.




From Ron Cameron, The Other Gospels
(Westminster Press, Philadelphia, 1982),
as quoted in Willis Barnstone, The Other Bible
(Harper & Row, San Francisco, 1984).


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The Oxford History of the Biblical World

The Oxford History of the Biblical World The Oxford History of the Biblical World

Here, in one impressively illustrated volume, leading scholars offer compelling glimpses into the biblical world, the world in which prophets, poets, sages, and historians created one of our most important texts--the Bible.

For more than a century, archeologists have been unearthing the tombs, temples, texts, and artifacts of the ancient Near East and the Mediterranean world. Using new approaches, contemporary scholars have begun to synthesize this material with the biblical traditions. The Oxford History of the Biblical World incorporates the best of this scholarship, and in chronologically ordered chapters presents the reader with a readable and integrated study of the history, art, architecture, languages, literatures, and religion of biblical Israel and early Judaism and Christianity in their larger cultural contexts. The authors also examine such issues as the roles of women, the tensions between urban and rural settings, royal and kinship social structures, and official and popular religions of the region. Readers will find that 200 photographs, line drawings, and maps as well as an insert containing 25 color photographs vividly illustrate the history discussed.

Understanding the biblical world is a vital part of understanding the Bible. Broad, authoritative, and visually engaging, The Oxford History of the Biblical World will illuminate for any reader the ancient world from which the Bible emerged.

Hardcover: 672 pages
Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (January 21, 1999)

The Biblical World: An Illustrated Atlas

The Biblical World: An Illustrated Atlas The Biblical World: An Illustrated Atlas

Casting the tumultuous history of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam against the rich canvas of the Near East, The Biblical World reveals how three great religions emerged from the same cradle. Author Jean-Pierre Isbouts employs a non-denominational perspective and a wide range of sources—from ancient hieroglyphic texts to the latest scientific findings—to place Bible stories in the framework of history. Chronologically arranged chapters detail battles, conquests, tribal migrations, natural calamities, and more, supporting the stories with intriguing archaeological evidence. To locate sites and events, National Geographic cartographers have created fifty all-new maps of stunning quality. Hundreds of photographs and artifacts add visual excitement. Quick-read timelines link events across cultures while illustrated sidebars focus on what life was like during each era: family roles, farming, trade, dress, childbirth, burial customs, and other aspects of daily existence.

The story traces the evolution of Judaism from Abraham to the Unified Kingdom of Israel... chronicles the emergence of Christianity in the context of Greco-Roman civilization... and identifies the unique circumstances that prepared for the rise of Islam. The multi-dimensional approach weighs similarities and differences among the three faiths and follows developments in nearby lands. With a foreword from bestselling author Bruce Chilton and text reviewed by distinguished advisers, The Biblical World offers a carefully researched, balanced view of history and religious tradition. For its scope, beauty, and relevance in today's world, this unparalleled atlas is destined to become a classic.

About the Author

Jean-Pierre Isbouts holds a Ph.D in archaeology and art, and is currently Professor of Culture and Media Studies at Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, CA. He is the writer and producer of four programs that explore the legacy of the Bible, including the award-winning television mini-series The Quest For Peace.

Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: National Geographic (November 6, 2007)

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible

Complete, trustworthy, and portable, Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible is an indispensable reference for all readers of the Bible. For nearly a century, lay people and scholars alike have valued both the authoritative contents and the convenient format of this one-volume work. 

Here are just a few reasons Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible has generally been considered the best single-volume Bible dictionary:

• Important events, biblical doctrines, and theological concepts are treated completely and concisely
• Bold-faced cross references point the reader easily to related articles
• Accessible to all, the articles are comprehensive but nontechnical
• Explains all the proper names mentioned in the Old Testament, New Testament, and Apocrypha

About the Author

James Hastings (1852-1922) was a distinguished scholar and pastor. He was founder and editor of the Expository Times and is also well known for editing the five-volume Dictionary of the Bible as well as the Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics, the Dictionary of Christ and the Gospels, and the Dictionary of the Apostolic Church.

Hardcover: 1008 pages
Publisher: Baker Books; Reprint edition (November 1, 1994)

Strongest Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible
Strongest Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible Strongest Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible

Like a redwood that towers above all other trees, The Strongest Strong’s takes James Strong’s classic concordance to unprecedented heights. Reflecting thousands of research hours, custom computer technology, and an exclusive database perfected over twenty years, The Strongest Strong’s is packed with features that make it the last word in accuracy and usefulness. No other Strong’s concordance can touch it. This is no mere study tool. Destined to become a foundational resource for Bible study the world over, The Strongest Strong’s is a landmark in biblical reference works.

What Makes This Strong’s the Strongest? Rebuilding Strong’s time-honored concordance from the ground up, biblical research experts John Kohlenberger and James Swanson have achieved unprecedented accuracy and clarity. Longstanding errors have been corrected. Omissions filled in. Word studies simplified. Thoroughness and ease of use have been united and maximized.

Kohlenberger and Swanson have also added the Nave’s Topical Bible Reference System―the world’s most complete topical Bible, updated, expanded, and streamlined to meet the needs of today’s Bible user. No other edition of Strong’s or Nave’s gives you all the information combined in The Strongest Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible.

A Stunning Array of World-Class Features

In order to experience all the advantages of The Strongest Strong’s, you’ll have to look inside. But here is a thumbnail sketch of what awaits you:

  • Computer-verified accuracy. For the first time ever, cutting-edge computer analysis provides unparalleled, pinpoint accuracy
  • Strong’s numbering system speeds you through word studies, giving you clear insights into Greek and Hebrew words
  • Goodrick-Kohlenberger numbers in the dictionary indexes give you access to the growing library of reference tools that use these numbers―another unique feature
  • The most up-to-date Hebrew and Greek dictionaries ensure precise meaning in your word studies
  • Nave’s Topical Bible Reference System supplies the complete descriptive content and references (without the Bible text) of Nave’s Topical Bible, expanded to provide a total of more than 100,000 verses indexed by subject, word, phrase, synonym, and example
  • Cross-references to places and names used in Bible translations besides the KJV
  • Word counts furnish a complete accounting of every word in the Bible
  • Fast-Tab locators help you find your place quickly and easily
  • Smythe-sewn binding opens fully, lays flat, and lasts longer
  • Words of Christ highlighted in red
  • Maps
  • Clear, easy-to-read type PLUS: Comprehensive guidance for using The Strongest Strong’s
  • Major Social Concerns of the Mosaic Covenant
  • Old Testament Sacrifices
  • Hebrew Calendar
  • Hebrew Feasts and Holy Days
  • Weights, Lengths, and Measures of the Bible
  • Kings of the Bible
  • Harmony of the Gospels
  • Prophecies of the Messiah Fulfilled in Jesus
  • Parables of Jesus
  • Miracles of Jesus
  • Chronology of the Bible

About the Author

Dr. James Strong (1822-1894) was formerly president of Troy University and professor of exegetical theology at Drew Theological Seminary.

Hardcover: 1742 pages
Publisher: Zondervan; Supesaver ed. edition (September 1, 2001)

Zondervan Pictorial Encylopedia of the Bible, Vols. 1-5
Zondervan Pictorial Encylopedia of the Bible, Vols. 1-5 The Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible (5 Volume Set)

From the Back Cover

The Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible, the result of more than ten years of research and preparation, provides Bible students with a comprehensive and reliable library of information. Varying viewpoints of scholarship permit a well-rounded perspective on significant issues relating to doctrines, themes, and biblical interpretation. Well-organized and generously illustrated, this encyclopedia will become a frequently used resource and reference work because of its many helpful features: - More than 5,000 pages of vital information of Bible lands and people - More than 7,500 articles alphabetically arranged for easy reference - Hundreds of full-color and black-and-white illustrations, charts, and graphs - Thirty-two pages of full-color maps and hundreds of black-and-white outline maps for quick perspective and ready reference - Scholarly articles ranging across the entire spectrum of theological and biblical topics, backed by recent archaeological discoveries - Two hundred and thirty-eight contributors from around the world. The editors have brought to this encyclopedia the fruit of many years of study and research.

About the Author

Merrill C. Tenney was professor of theological studies and dean of the Graduate school of Theology at Wheaton College.

Hardcover: 5 volume set More than 5,000 pages
Publisher: Zondervan Publishing House; Second Printing edition (March 15, 1975)

Archaeology of the Bible: The Greatest Discoveries From Genesis to the Roman Era
Archaeology of the Bible: The Greatest Discoveries From Genesis to the Roman Era Archaeology of the Bible: The Greatest Discoveries From Genesis to the Roman Era

From ancient holy sites, to buried relics and treasures, National Geographic uncovers the history and the archaeological discoveries from Scripture and the biblical world. Richly illustrated and written from an objective and nondenominational perspective, author Jean-Pierre Isbouts uses the latest scientific and archaeological discoveries to place biblical stories in the framework of human history. Chapters, beginning with the dawn of human civilization and ending with present day and the future of archaeology, chronicle hundreds of sites and artifacts found in Sumer, Babylon, the Second Temple, along the route of the Exodus, and in many other regions across the Middle East. Timelines bridge hundreds of years and several empires, maps give readers a visual sense of location, while hundreds of photos and illustrations of rare artifacts and ancient places add to the visual splendor. lt concludes with details of what remains to be found and the evolving dynamic of biblical faith in an increasingly scientific world in which archaeologists make daily breakthroughs.

About the Author

JEAN-PIERRE ISBOUTS is a humanities scholar and graduate professor in the doctoral programs at Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, California. He has published widely on the origins of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, including the bestseller Biblical World: An Illustrated Atlas; Young Jesus: Restoring the “Lost Years” of a Social Activist and Religious Dissident; From Moses to Muhammed; The Shared Origins of Judaism, Christianity and Islam; and The Mysteries of Jesus. An award-winning filmmaker, Isbouts has also produced Charlton Heston’s Voyage Through the Bible, The Quest for Peace, and Young Jesus.

Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: National Geographic (October 25, 2016)

Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps, and Time Lines
Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps, and Time Lines Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps, and Time Lines

NEW Anniversary Edition of Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps and Timelines, Volume 1 covers over 200 Bible topics and features MORE pages, 6 EXTRA topics, updated information, and a bonus 24' fold-out on Jesus' Family Tree.

The #1 Bible Reference book celebrates its 10th anniversary with an updated 230-page edition that features more Bible maps, charts and illustrations than the original! This stunning, easy-to-understand reference book still provides the same full-color, REPRODUCIBLE Bible charts and overviews that made the original a favorite, but in an easier-to-use, updated format!

Plus! It includes over 37 ADDED pages of ALL NEW content on popular Bible topics, including Psalm 23, Lord's Prayer, the 12 Tribes of Israel, and more!

Features ALL NEW content and Updated Information, such as:

  • 6 NEW pamphlets on popular Bible topics, including Psalms 23, Lord's Prayer, Twelve Tribes of Israel, and more.
  • Bonus 24' foldout of the genealogy of Jesus!
  • Our 4 bestselling 'Then and Now Bible Maps' that show where Bible places are located today.
  • And More!

Features more than 200 REPRODUCIBLE Bible Charts, Maps, and Timelines, including:

2 Bible Foldout Posters: Bible Time Line and Jesus' Genealogy

  • NEW! Jesus' Genealogy 24' Foldout!
  • Bible Time Line 24'

Overviews on Popular Old Testament Topics

  • NEW! Psalm 23
  • Tabernacle
  • Ark of the Covenant
  • Archaeology & the Bible (50 Proofs of the Old Testament
  • Solomon's Temple
  • Names of God
  • The Ten Commandments and You
  • 100 Well-Known Old Testament Events
  • The Creation
  • The Exodus

Overviews on Key Old Testament Topics

  • NEW! The 12 Tribes of Israel
  • Kings and Prophets
  • Family Tree of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
  • The Judges
  • Feasts & Holidays of the Bible
  • Archaeology & The Bible (50 Proofs of the New Testament)

Overviews on Popular New Testament Topics

  • NEW! The Lord's Prayer
  • NEW! Essential Christian Doctrine
  • NEW! Heroes of the Faith: Hebrews 11
  • The Twelve Disciples
  • 1 Corinthians 13: The Love Chapter
  • The Armor of God
  • The Fruit of the Spirit
  • 100 Well-Known Events from Acts to Revelation

Overviews of Jesus' Life and Teachings

  • Jesus & The Names of God
  • The Genealogy of Jesus Christ
  • Events in the Life of Jesus
  • Miracles of Jesus
  • Parables of Jesus
  • The Beatitudes from the Sermon on the Mount
  • Evidence for the Resurrection

Bible Overview: Books of the Bible and Key Bible Stories

  • NEW! 52 Key Bible Stories
  • 100 Well-Known People in the Bible
  • 100 Well-Known Prayers in the Bible
  • Books of the Bible
  • Bible Overview Old Testament
  • Bible Overview New Testament
  • UPDATED! Table of Biblical Weights and Measures
  • 100 Proofs for the Bible

Christian History

  • How We Got the Bible
  • Christian History Time Line

Charts Comparing Christianity to Islam and 20 Other World Religions

  • UPDATED! Islam and Christianity
  • UPDATED! Christianity, Cults and Religions pamphlet

And so much more!

Paperback: 230 pages
Publisher: Rose Publishing; 10th Anniversary edition (March 13, 2015)


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