Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Non-Gnostic Gospels Outside the New Testament: Preserved Hebrew or Aramaic Loan-Words

The series continues with a review of documents sometimes called gospels outside the Bible, here focusing on gospels that are not classified as Gnostic. Again it bears mentioning that the study aids and resources (and reference systems) aren't as fully developed for these are for the canonical Christian gospels. Even though I have had the help of interlinear texts in some cases, there is an over-reliance on translations.

The Gospel of the Savior 

Cherubim: 1x
38 [The angels] and the archangels [bowed down] on [their faces. 39 The] cherubim [...]... 
Amen [manuscript damaged, possibly 23x on a likely reconstruction]
He said, "Amen!" 
Infancy Gospel of Thomas 

Amen: 1x
11:3 And when they departed into the city Joseph told it to Mary, and she when she heard and saw the wonderful mighty works of her son rejoiced, glorifying him with the Father and the Holy Spirit now and for ever and world without end. Amen
Sabbath: 2x
3:1 Now Jesus made of that clay twelve sparrows: and it was the Sabbath day. And a child ran and told Joseph, saying: Behold, your child plays about the brook, and has made sparrows of the clay, which is not lawful.
Gospel of Peter

Sabbath: 3x
5 And Herod said: 'Brother Pilate, even if no one had requested him, we would have buried him, since indeed Sabbath is dawning. For in the Law it has been written: The sun is not to set on one put to death.'
Proto-Evangelium of James

Amen: 3x without the colophon, or 4x including the colophon
6 And all the people said: So be it, so be it, amen.

Again, the documents in this group have relatively few different loan-words, often only "Amen" or "Sabbath". Outside of these two particular words, so far I have discovered only one other use of such loan-words in these texts, a reference to cherubim in the Gospel of the Savior. For those keeping track of unique words, this is the first time that cherub or cherubim has come to our attention in this series. It is used in the New Testament book of Hebrews in its Greek form, and the Hebrew scriptures contain a number of reference, but the New Testament gospels make no reference specifically to cherubim.

Another noteworthy feature is the high incidence of the word "Amen" in the Gospel of the Savior. This tracks to a section that has the format of many liturgical prayers, with "Amen" being the response.

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