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The Gospel of Judas & Gnosticism

From JUST FOR WOMEN Radio Broadcast (JFW/81) of April, 2006

With Yvonne S. Waite and her husband, Dr. D. A. Waite

Amplified with Additional Comments

B.F.T. #3270

Mrs. Waite: Werenít you disturbed when you heard about the Gospel of Judas being discovered? Didnít it upset you to learn that in the Gospel of Judas (1) the precious Scriptures that we hold to dearly are doubted; (2) that Jesus said in that Gospel of Judas that Judas was his very special friend; (3) and that He knew He had to die and get out of this world so He would have His "special friend" Judas betray him? Of course, that is all heresy. I want to have my husband talk a little bit about this. We hear all kinds of things about so-called "Christian" Gnostics who believe that the way of salvation is by secret knowledge delivered by Jesus to his inner circle. We hear about Gnostic gospels because we remember the Gospel of Mary in the Da Vinci Code and we know how false that was and how those people said that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene. This also is complete heresy.

Mrs. Waite: Dr. Waite, Iím really glad youíre here. We have tried real hard to get together. Can you tell us something about Gnosticism and about why we are all being swallowed up so by this Gospel of Judas which is absolutely wrong.

Dr. Waite: The Gospel of Judas is just the fourteenth of thirteen other false Gnostic gospels and other books that were written in the days of the early church. They are all Apocryphal or false books. They were never received by the churches into the canon of Scripture, that is, they were never accepted as genuine Scripture.

Let me list these false Gnostic productions:

The Prayer of the Apostle Paul

The Apocryphon of James

The Apocryphon of John

The Gospel of Thomas

The Gospel of Philip

The Book of Thomas the Contender

The (First) Apocalypse of James

The (Second) Apocalypse of James

The Acts of Peter and the Twelve Apostles

The Apocalypse of Peter

The Letter of Peter to Philip

The Act of Peter

The Secret Gospel of Mark, and most recently discovered,

The Gospel of Judas

Mrs. Waite: I didnít really realize there were so many of these awful gospels and Gnostic books. Now, you are going to tell us about the Gnostics.

Dr. Waite: Yes, these are other gospels of the Gnostics. I am taking this material, by the way, from a 235 large-page book entitled Gnosticism: The Doctrinal Foundation of the New Bible Versions by Mrs. Janet Moser from Southfield, Michigan. (It is BFT #2732 and is available from the Bible For Today, 900 Park Avenue, Collingswood, NJ 08108 for a gift of $25.00.) She has written an excellent study in very great detail about Gnosticism.

Mrs. Waite: When Mrs. Moser first came to our house and talked about this, I couldnít understand what she was talking about. But you knew what she was talking about.

Dr. Waite: The word, "Gnostics," comes from the Greek word, GNOSIS, which means "knowledge." The Gnostics believed that super knowledge, as Mrs. Waite mentioned earlier, brings a person to salvation. For the Gnostics, you have to be super-knowledgeable in order to be saved. What are some of the Gnostic doctrines? For instance, in Soteriology, the Doctrine of Salvation, they believe that Lucifer (the Devil) is the Saviour. Sophia, a woman deity, is the redeemer, not the Lord Jesus Christ. They believe the means of salvation is that man is saved by GNOSIS or knowledge.

Mrs. Waite: I remember Sophia is the goddess of Theo, and awhile ago people were worshiping her.

Dr. Waite: Thatís right. The Gnostics believe that people are saved by the symbolic death of Christ, not by the blood of Christ. (This is very similar to the false teaching of John MacArthur about the blood of Christ. He teaches that blood is only a symbol or figure of speech about death.) Then, in the Gnostic faith, people are saved and perfected by asceticism or self-denial.

Mrs. Waite: Is asceticism where they beat themselves?

Dr. Waite: Yes, that is part of asceticism. They sometimes beat themselves or hurt themselves in other ways in order to gain salvation or merit with God. They also believe that they are saved by following the example of the Redeemer rather than genuine faith in Him. They believe people can be saved by sacraments, saved by baptism, saved by formulas, saved by initiation rites, and saved by faith in themselves. They believe that angles and even Satan will be saved. This is a horrible doctrine. They even believe that the Lord Jesus Christ had to be redeemed because He had a fallen nature. They didnít believe that He was perfect God and perfect Man at all.

Mrs. Waite: Did this Gnosticism start in Egypt?

Dr. Waite: Yes, it began in Alexandria, Egypt. This was the center and source of the teachings of Gnosticism.

Mrs. Waite: Isnít that also where a lot of the wrong manuscripts of our Bible came from?

Dr. Waite: Yes, the leading Gnostics of Alexandria were (1) Clement of Alexandria, (2) Origin, and (3) Eusebius. The false manuscripts that form the basis of most modern Bible versions of today originated in this Gnostic-dominated city of Alexandria. The main two manuscripts are the Vatican ("B") and the Sinai ("Aleph") manuscripts. They were made in the Gnostic headquarters of Alexandria, Egypt and form, as Mrs. Moser as stated in the title of her book, "The Doctrinal Foundation of the New Bible Versions."

Mrs. Waite: The Vatican and the Sinai are the Gnostic manuscripts that the New International Version and the New American Standard Version are based upon?

Dr. Waite: Yes, the NIV, the NASV, the American Standard Version, the Revised Standard Version, the New Revised Standard Version, the English Standard Version, Good News for Modern Man, the Message, the Amplified Version, the Living Version, and 99% of the other modern versions in English and every foreign language in the world are based on the Gnostic Vatican ("B") and Sinai ("Aleph") Greek manuscripts. In the book I have been quoting from, Gnosticism, the Doctrinal Foundation of the New Bible Versions, we can see that every one of these false doctrines that the Gnostics believed are found somewhere in the Vatican and Sinai manuscripts ("B" and "Aleph") and the translations which are based upon them. In fact, the Gnostic manuscripts of "B" (Vatican) and "Aleph" (Sinai) which Westcott and Hort used to form their false Greek New Testament, drop out 2,886 Greek Words compared to the Received Greek Words that underlie our King James Bible. In many instances, the result of these dropped out Words was to conform the verse to the Gnostic heresies.

There are a total of over 8,000 differences (some minor differences and some major differences) between the false Critical Texts (of either Westcott and Hort, Nestle/Aland, or the United Bible Societies) and the Received Text Words underlying the King James Bible.

In addition, and most importantly, because of the false Gnostic heresies, there are 356 doctrinal passages where the Gnostic manuscripts of Vatican and Sinai have followed the Gnostic false doctrines rather than the true doctrines found in the Received Greek Text underlying the King James Bible. These 356 doctrinal passages are also found in the NIV, the NASV, and the other English and foreign-language translations based upon the Gnostic Vatican and Sinai manuscripts.

Another false doctrine that the Gnostics believe is that the whole world will be saved. In other words, they believe in universal salvation. This is absolutely false. Only those who genuinely believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as their Saviour will be saved.

Mrs. Waite: Universalism came from the Gnostics?

Dr. Waite: Yes, thatís right. Not only that, but they also believe that salvation is a myth and not an historical event. They believe that some of the evidences and proof that a person is saved is that they will become luminous (or shining), they will speak in tongues (like the modern charismatic movement teaches), and that you will enter the kingdom of God laughing (like the "laughing revivals" in Toronto, Canada, a few years ago).

Mrs. Waite: What does "luminous" mean?

Dr. Waite: It means "light-bearing, or shining." I guess it is like having a shiny nose or a shiny forehead. Some men and women use powder to get rid of the shine. I guess the Gnostics liked it. The Lord Jesus Christ, according to Gnosticism, is not the Son of God. They believe that Joseph was His literal father and not God the Holy Spirit by means of the Virgin birth. So, to the Gnostics, the Lord Jesus Christ was just a human being like all of us. This is blasphemous.

According to the Gnostics, idolatry is not evil. The Gnostics believe that marriage is evil.

Mrs. Waite: Marriage is evil?

Dr. Waite: Thatís right. But, on the contrary, they donít think either prostitution, or homosexuality, or bisexuality, is evil. They believe these sins are signs of perfection. They donít believe in a literal heaven or a literal hell. The doctrines of the Christian faith are torn asunder. The Gnostics deny the deity of Christ, His bodily resurrection, the saving power of the blood of Christ, salvation by Godís grace through genuine saving faith, and practically all of the other important doctrines that the Bible teaches. Basically, Mrs. Waite, that is what the Gnostics believe. There are many other details found in Mrs. Moserís book on Gnosticism: The Doctrinal Foundation of the New Bible Versions. This newly discovered and advertised Gospel of Judas is just one more part of the multitude of heretical and blasphemous teachings of the Gnostics of Alexandria, Egypt.

Mrs. Waite: I read here in this paper from The National Geographic that Bob Ehrman is chair of religious study at the University of North Carolina, in Chapel Hill. He says, "This Gospel of Judas has a completely different understanding of God, the world, Christís Salvation, human existence, not to mention of Judas, himself, that came to be embodied in the Christian creed and cannon." So, this Judas Gospel is really rank heresy isnít it?

Dr. Waite: Yes, it is. No question about it. Judas was an evil person. The Lord Jesus Christ said that one of the twelve disciples (meaning Judas) was "a devil" (John 6:70). Of Judas it is written: "devil . . . put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simonís son, to betray Him" (John 13:2). It is also said of Judas, "Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve" (Luke 22:3). The Lord Jesus said to Judas, "What thou doest, do quickly" (Luke 22:3). He went out and betrayed the Saviour. Judas was not a "friend," but an enemy, and to represent him as a "friend" is absolutely erroneous and false.

Mrs. Waite: I know. It is terrible.

Dr. Waite: As someone has said, "With Ďfriendsí like that, who needs enemies?"

Mrs. Waite: Jesus had many enemies besides Judas when they crucified Him on Calvary. He came to this world to die for the sins of the world.

Dr. Waite: Thatís right. That was His mission given to Him by God the Father.

Mrs. Waite: He gave His life so that you and I and the people listening could be born again. The apostle Peter said of Him, "Who His own Self bare our sins in His own body on the tree . . ." (1 Peter 2:24). He was the "Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world" (John 1:29b). Then he was buried and rose bodily from the grave, which was the most miraculous thing.

Dr. Waite: The modernists and liberals say that Christ arose, but they donít mean that it was a bodily resurrection. They just mean His spirit arose. The congregations donít realize that when liberal pastors talk about "resurrection," they are not meaning a bodily resurrection. If you were to ask them if they mean a bodily resurrection of the Saviour, they would say "No." They just mean that His spirit arose.

Mrs. Waite: I hope that none of you girls go to that kind of church where they say one thing, but mean another. Come and visit us at the Bible For Today Baptist Church. We are starting the book of 2 Corinthians this week, verse by verse. Our pianist touches our hearts with his music. Gertrude Sanborn has written

"They have taken away my Lord, she wept.

He was not there.

She did not believe He was risen

And so she was in deep despair

But we understand more than Mary,

For God had raised His dear Son.

So let us not weep in the Garden,

On the grave of our dear absent one."

John 20:13, "And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him."

Maybe you have laid somebody in the grave this very year and you grieve. Dear heart, I know this upsets you to have someone die, but most of all Iím wondering about you. If you should die would you go to be with the Lord Jesus Christ in Heaven? If you should die, where would your soul go? Would you be like Judas, "a son of perdition" (John 17:12)? Or would you be like those of us who know Jesus Christ as our Saviour?

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