Gospel of Judas No. 4 Judas Not to Ascend to the Holy

Darrell L. Bock's picture

The fourth error that DeConick points out has already produced agreement in the period after the original release. What the original National Geographic translation of 46.25-47.1 read as:"They will curse your ascent to the holy [generation]" now reads as:"...You will not ascend to the holy [generation]" (DeConick)"...you will not ascend on high to the holy [generation]" (Judas Critical edition).The problem here were that small parts of both lines are missing in the manuscript and thus the entire line had to be reconstructed. Now there seems to be agreement on what it likely should read and say (Meyer's translation in his own edition of Judas reflects the change in the reading). So the very positive reading that Judas will be blessed at the highest level is not the meaning here. As DeConick concludes on this point: "Without this fictitious Coptic line, there is no ascent of Judas into the holy generation." The only question that remains is does Judas end up in another blessed level or some more neutral status (so Meyer) or is this an example of a negative take on Judas (DeConick).This kind of problem, trying to determine what is missing in a defective manuscript, does occur here and there in trying to translate ancient documents. This is what happens when the key materials we are working with are between 1500-1850 years old.  

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