The Gospel of Thomas Goes Public
What you'll learn
- Why the Gospel of Thomas is so important for Bible lovers to understand
- Develop confidence in their own ability to interpret some of the complicated passages in the Gospel of Thomas
- Understand the Gospel of Thomas in relation to the Bible and to multiple early Christ movements
- Appreciate the uniqueness of the Gospel of Thomas within the Nag Hammadi Library
- Find thought-provoking inspiration in the text itself
- Students should have some familiarity with the four gospels of the biblical New Testament
The best-known and quite provocative ancient text discovered in the Nag Hammadi collection is the Gospel of Thomas. But its relationship to the Bible is mysterious; its teaching on women is inspiring and confusing; the light it sheds on understanding Jesus is surprising. Most of all, its 114 Sayings are compelling and thought-provoking. Dr. Shirley Paulson and Dr. Hal Taussig introduce all these topics and give students the opportunity to explore, learn, ponder, and decide for themselves how to answer some of these important questions that surface for all readers of the Gospel of Thomas.
Who this course is for:
- Enthusiastic but untrained Bible readers
- People who are curious about the development of early Christianity and how it impacts religion today
- Spiritual seekers
- Historians who especially enjoy the Christian elements of antiquity
- Christians who may be interested in deeper answers to big religious questions
My PhD, from the University of Birmingham, UK, is in religion and theology. I studied forgotten ancient Christian texts and their healing messages in conjunction with what they mean to the modern world. My personal experience with healing helps me recognize and understand the relevance of the ancient texts. And through my academic work in Practical Theology, I strive to learn from my students how their own experiences enlighten the texts as well.
Hal Taussig is a retired professor and United Methodist pastor. Some of the most recent of his 14 published books is Re-Reading the Gospel of Mark Amidst Loss and Trauma and A New New Testament: A 21st Century Bible Combining Traditional and Newly Discovered Texts. His mediography includes The New York Times, Time Magazine, The Daily Show, People Magazine, Newsweek Magazine, National Public Radio, the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Brian Lehrer Show on WNYC, the Bob Edwards Show on Sirius Radio, The History Channel, and the Washington Post. He was Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at the Union Theological Seminary in New York for 17 years and the Chestnut Hill Collegage Graduate Program in Spirituality for 11 years.