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The Gospel of the Nazoreans

The Gospel of the Nazoreans

The following selection is excerpted from Ron Cameron's The Other Gospels: Non-Canonical Gospel Texts (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1982), pp. 99-102. Philipp Vielhauer and George Ogg of New Testament Apocrypha originally made the translation.

  1. To these (citations in which Matthew follows not the Septuagint but the Hebrew original text) belong the two: "Out of Egypt have I called my son" and "For he shall be called a Nazaraean."

    (Jerome, De viris inlustribus 3)

  2. Behold, the moter of the Lord and his brethren said to him: John the Baptist baptizes unto the remission of sins, let us go and be baptized by him. But he said to them: Wherein have I sinned that I should go and be baptized by him? Unless what I have said is ignorance (a sin of ignorance).

    (Jerome, Adversus Pelagianos 3.2)

  3. The Jewish Gospel has not "into the holy city" but "to Jerusalem."

    (Variant to Matthew 4:5 in the "Zion Gospel" Edition)

  4. The phrase "without a cause" is lacking in some witnesses and in the Jewish Gospel.

    (Variant to Matthew 5:22, ibid.)

  5. In the so-called Gospel according to the Hebrews instead of "essential to existence" I found "mahar," which means "of tomorrow, so that the sense is: "Our bread of tomorrow" - that is, of the future - "give us this day."

    (Jerome, Commentary on Matthew 1 [on Matthew 6:11])

  6. The Jewish Gospel reads here as follows: "If ye be in my bosom and do not the will of my Father in heaven, I will cast you out of my bosom."

    (Variant to Matthew 7:5 - or better to Matthew 7:21-23 - in the "Zion Gospel" Edition)

  7. The Jewish Gospel: (wise) more than serpents.

    (Variant to Matthew 10:16, ibid.)

  8. The Jewish Gospel has: (the kingdom of heaven) is plundered.

    (Variant to Matthew 11:12, ibid.)

  9. The Jewish Gospel has: I thank thee.

    (Variant to Matthew 11:25, ibid.)

  10. In the Gospel which the Nazarenes and the Ebionites use, which we have recently translated out of Hebrew into Greek, and which is called by most people the authentic (Gospel) of Matthew, the man who had the withered hand is described as a mason who pleaded for help in the following words: "I was a mason and earned (my) livelihood with (my) hands; I beseech thee, Jesus, to restore me to my health that I may not with ignominy have to beg for my bread."

    (Jerome, Commentary on Matthew 2 [on Matthew 12:13])

  11. The Jewish Gospel does not have: three d(ays and nights).

    (Variant to Matthew 12:40 in the "Zion Gospel" Edition)

  12. The Jewish Gospel: corban is what you should obtain from us.

    (Variant to Matthew 15:5, ibid.)

  13. What is marked with an asterisk (i.e., Matthew 16:2-3) is not found in other manuscripts, also it is not found in the Jewish Gospel.

    (Variant to Matthew 16:2-3, ibid.)

  14. The Jewish Gospel: son of John.

    (Variant to Matthew 16:17, ibid.)

  15. He (Jesus) said: If thy brother has sinned with a word and has made three reparations, receive him seven times in a day. Simon his disciple said to him: Seven times in a day? The Lord answered and said to him: Yea, I say unto thee, until seventy times seven times. For in the prophets also after they were anointed with the Holy Spirit, the ord of sin (sinful discourse?) was found.

    (Jerome, Adversus Pelagianos 3.2)

    The Jewish Gospel has after "seventy times seven times": For in the prophets also, after they were anointed with the Holy Spirit, the ord of sin (sinful discourse?) was found.

    (Variant to Matthew 18:22 in the "Zion Gospel" Edition)

  16. The other of the two rich men said to him: Master, what good thing must I do that I may live? He said to him: Man, fulfil the law and the prophets. He answered him: That have I done. He said to him: Go and sell all that thou possessest and distribute it among the poor, and then come and follow me. But hte rich man then began to scratch his head and it (the saying) pleased him not. And the Lord said to him: How canst though say, I have fulfilled the law and the prophets? For it stands written in the law: Love thy neighbor as thyself; and behold, many of the brethren, sons of Abraham, are begrimed with dirt and die of hunger - and thy house is full of many good things and nothing at all comes forth from it to them! And he turned and said to Simon, his disciple, who was sitting by him: Simon, son of Jona, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of heaven.

    (Origen, Commentary on Matthew 15.14 [on Matthew 19:16-30])

  17. In the Gospel which the Nazarenes use, instead of "son of Barachias" we have found written "son of Joiada."

    (Jerome, Commentary on Matthew 4 [on Matthew 23:35])

  18. But since the Gospel (written) in Hebrew characters which has come into our hands enters the threat not against the man who had hid (the talent), but against him who had lived dissolutely - for he (the master) had three servants: one who squandered his master's substance with harlots and flute-girls, one who multiplied the gain, and one who hid the talent; and accordingly one was accepted (with joy), another merely rebuked, and another cast into prison - I wonder whether in Matthew the threat which is uttered after the word against the man who did nothing may not refer to him, but by epanalepsis to the first who had feasted and drunk with the drunken.

    (Eusebius, Theophania 22 [on Matthew 25:14-15])

  19. The Jewish Gospel: And he denied and swore and damned himself.

    (Variant to Matthew 26:74 in the "Zion Gospel" Edition)

  20. Barabbas. . . is interpreted in the so-called Gospel according to the Hebrews as "son of their teacher."

    (Jerome, Commentary on Matthew 4 [on Matthew 27:16])

  21. But in the Gospel which is written in Hebrew characters we read not that the veil of the temple was rent, but that the lintel of the temple of wondrous size collapsed.

    (Jerome, Epistula ad Hedybiam 120.8)

  22. The Jewish Gospel: And he delivered to them armed men that they might sit over against the cave and guard it day and night.

    (Variant to Matthew 27:65 in the "Zion Gospel" Edition)

  23. He (Christ) himself taught the reason for the separations of souls that take place in houses, as we have found somewhere in the Gospel that is spread abroad among the Jews in the Hebrew tongue, in which it is said: "I choose for myself the most worthy: the most worthy are those whom my Father in heaven has given me."

    (Eusebius, Theophania 4.12 [on Matthew 10:34-36])

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