The Many Faces of Christ: The Thousand-Year Story of the Survival and Influence of the Lost Gospels

The Many Faces of Christ: The Thousand-Year Story of the Survival and Influence of the Lost Gospels

The average account of early Christianity tells us that the 1st centuries after Jesus’ demise witnessed an efflorescence of Christian sects, every one with its personal gospel. we're taught that those replacement scriptures, which represented intoxicating, bold, and infrequently strange rules, have been suppressed within the fourth and 5th centuries, while the Church canonized the gospels we all know this day: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. the remainder have been misplaced, destroyed, or hidden.

In The Many Faces of Christ, the popular spiritual historian Philip Jenkins completely refutes our most elementary assumptions concerning the misplaced Gospels. He finds that dozens of different gospels not just survived the canonization procedure yet in lots of circumstances remained influential texts in the respectable Church. complete new gospels persevered to be written and authorized. For 1000 years, those unusual tales in regards to the existence and dying of Jesus have been freely admitted onto church premises, licensed for liturgical interpreting, learn by way of traditional laypeople for guide and enjoyment, and pointed out as authoritative by way of students and theologians.

The misplaced Gospels unfold all over, crossing geographic and non secular borders. the traditional Gospel of Nicodemus penetrated into Southern and principal Asia, whereas either Muslims and Jews wrote and propagated gospels in their personal. In Europe, in the meantime, it used to be no longer till the Reformation and Counter-Reformation that the misplaced Gospels have been successfully pushed from church buildings. yet nonetheless, many survived, and a few proceed to form Christian perform and trust in our personal day.

Offering a revelatory new point of view at the formation of the biblical canon, the character of the early Church, and the evolution of Christianity, The Many Faces of Christ restores those misplaced Gospels to their imperative position in Christian history.

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