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The Unknown Gospel: Egerton Papyrus 2

by Andrew Bernhard

Translation adapted from and based on the critical Greek text in Other Early Christian Gospels. For the sake of readability, square brackets indicating text lost from the manuscript have not been included in the English translation.

 

Fragment 1, verso (↓)

" . . . to the lawyers . . . the one who acts unjustly . . . and not me . . . how he does what he does."

Then he turned to the rulers of the people and made this statement, "Search the scriptures, in which you suppose that you have life. They are what bear witness about me. Do not think that I have come to accuse you to my father. The one who is accusing you is Moses, in whom you have set your hope."

They said, "We know well that God spoke to Moses, but as for you, we do not know where you are from."

Jesus answered them, "Your failure to believe in that which has been attested by him is condemning. For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote about me to your fathers . . . "

 

 

Fragment 1, recto (→)

. . . stones together so that they could stone him. The rulers were trying to lay their hands on him so that they could seize him and deliver him to the crowd. But they were not able to seize him because the hour of his arrest had not yet come. So the Lord escaped from their hands and withdrew from them.

Now a leper came to him and said, "Teacher Jesus, while I was travelling with lepers and eating with them at the inn, I contracted leprosy myself. But if you are willing, I can be made clean."

The Lord said to him, "I am willing: be clean." And immediately the leprosy departed from him.

Then Jesus said to him, "Go and show yourself to the priests and make an offering for the cleansing as Moses commanded and sin no more . . . "

 

 

Fragment 2, recto (→)

. . . to him, they tested him rigorously, saying, "Teacher Jesus, we know that you have come from God. For the things that you are doing provide a testimony that is above and beyond all the prophets. So tell us: is it proper to pay kings the things that relate to their rule? Should we pay them or not?"

But since he knew their intention, Jesus scolded them and said, "Why do you call me teacher with your mouths when you do not do what I say? Well did Isaiah prophesy about you when he said, 'This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me . . . commandments . . .'"

 

 

Fragment 2, verso (↓)

. . . being enclosed in the place . . . placed underneath secretly . . . its weight unweighed . . . Then while they were perplexed as to his strange question, Jesus walked and stood on the bank of the Jordan river. And stretching out his right hand . . . and he sowed on the . . . and then . . . water . . . the . . . and . . . he brought forth . . . fruit . . .