Easter must be drawing near. The media is getting hysterical over another “latest discovery” guaranteed to scuttle the Church’s battered barque once and for all. This time it is the release of info relating to the discovery of documentary fragments purporting to belong to “The Gospel of Judas”, where it is claimed that Judas, rather than betraying Jesus, colluded with him in his demise.
Knowledge of the Gospel of Judas, along with many other extant writings from diverse groups within early Christianity, has been around a long time. Irenaeus, a well-known and influential Church leader of the 2nd century, refers to it and dismisses it rather curtly. Not that the assertion in the Gospel of Judas makes much difference to the essential themes of the Christian gospel. But such details are important to some.
For details visit http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/gospeljudas.html
But what of Judas as presented to us in the canonical gospels? I find him an enigmatic figure. It is very easy to project all the worst that is in us onto him and he becomes our scapegoat. I don’t think this is what the gospel is about. Some helpful reframing questions might be, “Is the gospel of Jesus for Judas along with eveyone else?” “If so, what are the implications for me when I accuse myself of being beyond the pale?”