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Text 10 Jan Review of “Greek Apocryphal Gospels, Fragments, and Agrapha”

This is a temporary violation of the self-imposed end to my blog - because the Dropbox link to the following file did not work!

Many Christians assume that everything Jesus said is found in the canonical Gospels, but if John wrote that Jesus did many more things than could be recorded, we should expect that He also said many more things than were recorded. Rick Brannan collects and brings these sayings to our attention, some of which are even found in other books of the NT.

Ironically, these sayings are called agrapha (“unwritten”) but they were indeed written down, just not written down in the canonical Gospels. Brannan uncovers the evidence of these sayings also in the Apostolic Fathers (esp. 2 Clement) as well as in Justin Martyr and even as variant readings in some NT manuscripts. Another valuable contribution is the inclusion of a number of papyri fragments which include these sayings.

In addition to the agrapha, Rick publishes and explains some of those second century “gospels” that did not make it into the canon, but are the sources of some of our traditional ideas about the Nativity! What is advantageous about his presentation is that he includes both the Greek original plus his clear translation, which previous editions of these gospels usually do not. Because of the digital format, the Greek words even have morphological tagging – something that printed Greek editions of these gospels do not have! Since the Greek original and the translation are separate works, the Logos user can also view them in parallel windows for comparison.

This work is a very valuable contribution that goes beyond previous lists of sayings and publications of only the English gospels. Rick’s brief but insightful comments about each of the sayings, variants, and gospels round out his work in a way that makes it accessible to both lay readers and scholars.

I heartily commend this valuable contribution to the burgeoning field of Jesus studies.

Here is the pre-pub page for Rick’s digital Book.