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Fate And The Wandering Stars: The Jewish Apocalyptic Roots Of The Gospel Of Judas

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Chapter Summary

&t;Judas, your star has led you astray". So says Jesus to his disciple Judas in the Gospel of Judas. Is this a general statement, or does Jesus simply mean that each disciple has his own star? Is there a seminal relationship between cosmological sections of the text and dialogical sections in which Jesus teaches Judas about the "error of the stars"? To approach these questions, this chapter compares the Gospel of Judas' cosmological scheme and its system of fate with Jewish apocalyptic writings from late Second Temple Period. It argues that this gospel reflects a Jewish cosmological system, which is deeply concerned with apocalyptic speculation reminiscent of other Jewish apocalyptic texts. It then endeavors to uncover the cosmological system alluded to in Gospel of Judas by placing it within intellectual horizons of Jewish teachings on nature and influence of stars - particularly on the confluence between cosmology and systems of astral fatalism.

Keywords: astral fatalism; cosmological scheme; Gospel of Judas; Jesus; Jewish apocalyptic writings; Second Temple period



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