The Childhood of Jesus: Decoding the Apocryphal Infancy Gospel of Thomas

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James Clarke & Co, 26 jun. 2014 - 285 pagina's
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The mid-second-century apocryphal infancy gospel, the Gospel of Thomas, which deals with the childhood of Jesus from age five to age twelve, has attained only limited interest from scholars. Much research into the story has also been seriously misguided - especially study of the story's origin, character, and setting. This book gives a fresh interpretation of the infancy gospel, not least by applying a variety of new approaches, including orality studies, narrative studies, gender studies, and social-scientific approaches. The book comes to a number of radical new conclusions: The Gospel of Thomas is dependent on oral storytelling and has far more narrative qualities than has been previously assumed. The narrative world depicted in the gospel is that of middle-class Christianity, with the social and cultural ideas and values characteristic of such a milieu. The gospel's theology is not heretical--as has often been claime--but mirrors mainstream thinking rooted in biblical tradition, particularly in the Johannine and Lukan traditions. Jesus is portrayed as a divine figure but also as a true-to-life child of late antiquity. The audience for the Gospel of Thomas is likely to have come from the rural population of early Christianity, a milieu that has received little attention. A main audience for the story was children among early Christians, making this--at least within Christianity--the oldest-known children's tale. The book provides a Greek text and a translation, and several appendixes on the story, along with other early Christian infancy material.
 

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Inhoudsopgave

1 The History of Research
1
2 OralWritten Tradition
14
3 Narrative and Literary Features
35
4 Daily Life and Social Relations
53
5 Cultural Concepts and Values
73
6 Jesus as a Child
86
7 Jesus from Boy to Man
103
8 IntertextualityReflections of the Bible
113
13 Conclusions
214
Appendix 1 Greek Text
219
Appendix 2 English Translation
233
Appendix 3 The Structure of GaGbGd
243
Appendix 4 Designations of Individual Episodes
245
Appendix 5 Survey of Greek Variants and the Versions
248
Appendix 6 Survey of IGT Evidence by Century
252
Appendix 7 Survey of Early Christian Infancy Stories
254

9 Strange Sayings
137
10 Main Theological Issues
149
11 A Popular Tale from Early Rural Christianity
166
12 Christianitys First Childrens Story
192
Bibliography
259
Back Cover
277
Copyright

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Over de auteur (2014)

Reidar Aasgaard is Project Leader in the Norwegian Bible Society and has earned a doctorate in New Testament/Early Christianity. He is the author of My Beloved Brothers and Sisters (2004) and has published a study edition of the New Testament as well as Norwegian translations of Augustine.

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