Was Judas really a traitor?


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#1 Accounting Troll

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Posted 08 April 2006 - 03:53 PM

One of the central tenets of Christian belief is that Jesus was betrayed to the Jewish authorities by Judas Iscariot before being executed and resurrected.  The very name Judas has become synonymous with treachery in the English language.

However, some recently unearthed early Christian manuscripts claim that Jesus knew that he had to die on the cross for his message to get through, and that as Judas was his best pupil, he instructed Judas to arrange for his arrest; wikipedia link.

Is this manuscript genuine?  If so, what does it mean for Christianity, and perhaps other religions, if the Bible has misjudged Judas for so many centuries?

#2 Azrael Strife

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Posted 08 April 2006 - 04:02 PM

Well, since the Bible is nothing more than a bunch (large bunch) or papers written by men and that was compiled by the Church in the way it best served their interests, I don't think it means anything for Christianity, people will just choose to ignore anything that has to do with logic, common sense or even science when it comes to religion.
Maybe I'm not the best one to discuss the topic :lovetammy:
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#3 FullAuto

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 06:30 PM

Well, even according to normal Christian religion without looking at any controversial evidence, I think it's pretty obvious that Jesus knew he was for the chop.  I'm not sure the how of it is as important to Christians as the fact that he died, but Judas fulfills the 'bad guy' role quite handily, and will probably continue to do so.

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#4 Crazy Gringo

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 06:55 PM

Did any of you catch that 'The Judas Gospel' on Nation Geographics Channel this last Sunday evening around 22.00 GMT+1?
I only saw the last hour and it does rattle the bible chain....So only 4 gospels are in the New Testament....What about the other 26 gospels out there....Damn that Ireneus character for dumping them all on the 'cutting room floor' as they called it in the show.
Was Judas guilty of 'framing' Jesus? That is a question of faith. Blind faith at best which can be a dangerous thing to those caught of the wrong side of it.
Like the fact that the catholic church probably set back scientific discovery some 500 years with their 'divine intervention' with suppressing, condemning and burning wouldbe Albert Einsteins of the time (I will not mention any names).
From what the show told about Jesus and Judas' relationship was that Judas was the only one that really understood Jesus and that was the reason that he 'framed' Jesus. Judas knew that Jesus had to be sacrificed/die so that his teachings would survive 'One must fall so that the other may ascend'.
One other thought is that the time was not right for the real teachings of Jesus which Judas learned about and so the departure from this world of both Jesus and Judas are 'staged' and what we are left with is....Christianity as we know it today.
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#5 Accounting Troll

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 07:32 PM

I'm afraid I haven't seen the documentary, but I was aware that the early church dumped some of the gospels.

Even the surviving gospels are full of mutual contradictions.  When I was at school, we were given the exercise of reading how each writer had described Saul's conversion on the road to Damascus.  After that, blind faith can be a bit hard.

A little philosophical thought here:

Jesus had all sorts of troubles with the Jewish authorities because they expected the Son of God to turn Judeah into a major military power and do some Old Testament smiting.  The only argument the Romans (who got stuck with the dirty work of killing him) EVER had against Christianity was that it denied the divine nature of the Roman Emperor.

A lot of people predicted that the coming of the Third Millenium would result in a massive spiritual awakening for humanity, maybe even the Second Coming.  We have now discovered some ancient scrolls (they passed the carbon dating test) that reapprise the role of Judas.

Perhaps these scrolls ARE actually the Second Coming in its entirety.  Perhaps both Christians and Muslims will be forced to be a little more questioning about their religious teachings, which will make them more hesitant about slaughtering each other.

Although I am pretty cynical, I still possess a tiny bit of hope that humanity will get its act together one day.

#6 FullAuto

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 09:20 AM

The world as it is today still isn't ready to turn the other cheek, and I severely doubt it ever will be.  There won't be any great change in religous attitudes because the religions are entrenched in their positions and have been for a very long time.  They can't change much for fear of losing a big chunk of their worshippers.

You can be cynical and say they're trying to keep hold of their 'viewers' or you can assume good faith (haha) and say they're merely worried about people going to Hell for losing their faith.  Still, there is a current trend to blame religion for everything bad, when it's obvious that mankind doesn't need religion or anything else to fight each other, they merely want an excuse.

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#7 DeepOne

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Posted 13 April 2006 - 04:38 AM

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Accounting Troll:
Is this manuscript genuine? If so, what does it mean for Christianity, and perhaps other religions, if the Bible has misjudged Judas for so many centuries?

It may be a genuinely old manuscript, but I don't believe it is accurate.  For it to be accurate, the accepted gospels would have to be wrong with respect to Judas.  I'm sure it would delight many people to point to anything in the Bible as inaccurate (I've seen them go to great lengths in the attempt to do so), so they will be happy to promote it as legitimate.  But some of the things in the Gospel of Judas (I just watched that NGC documentary) are really weird and contrast with Biblical accounts, so I'm inclined to think it was written by some ancient nutjobs (we still have plenty of those around).  The Bible as we know it makes it clear that there were already many denominations or factions present at the time of its writing, and it also makes it clear that this was not a good thing.

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Azrael Strife:
Well, since the Bible is nothing more than a bunch (large bunch) or papers written by men and that was compiled by the Church in the way it best served their interests, I don't think it means anything for Christianity,

If you would actually read the Bible, I think you would find that it does not "serve the interests" of any church.  In fact, the Catholic church used to forbid people from reading the Bible.  I think this was because they knew that people would discover that the bulk of what their Church was telling them was a load of crap to serve the interests of the Church leaders.

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Accounting Troll:
Even the surviving gospels are full of mutual contradictions. When I was at school, we were given the exercise of reading how each writer had described Saul's conversion on the road to Damascus.

I think you're confused.  Saul is not mentioned at all in the gospels.  He appears in the book of Acts (following Jesus' crucifixion), and as far as I can recall, there are not multiple accounts of his conversion.  What sort of school was this?

#8 Mikal

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Posted 12 May 2007 - 09:19 AM

Here's an amusing little footnote. Simon Scarrow's latest book in the Eagle series has Judas being one of three conspirators who chose to have himself killed because he was losing the political plot.




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