170 NOTES ON THE GOSPEL OF THOMAS BY ROBERT M. GRANT When we consider the question of the origin of the new Gospel of Thomas, our conclusions are likely to be influenced by the method we choose to employ. It seems to me that one of the first questions to be asked is this: what environment is reflected by the Gospel as a whole ? Second, we should ask how the sayings of Jesus were used in this environment (or these environments). Then we can turn to the problem of the transmission of the sayings 1. I. ENVIRONMENT The Gospel of Thomas was originally written in Greek and three fragments of it are to be found in Oxyrhynchus papyri of the third and fourth centuries (P. Oxy. I 1, IV 654, 655). Either by that time or later it had undergone interpolation; one saying in the Coptic version (no. 50) is a blessing upon monks, and references to monks have been added to two others (16, 75). Moreover the Greek version of Saying 37 (P. Oxy. IV 655) includes more sayings of Jesus from the synoptic gospels than the Coptic version does. It does not seem possible to
Vigiliae Christianae – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1959
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