The Unknown Gospel: Egerton Papyrus 2

by Mark M. Mattison

The following translation has been committed to the public domain and may be freely copied and used, changed or unchanged, for any purpose. It is based on the critical Greek text in Other Early Christian Gospels by Andrew Bernhard. For information about the surviving manuscripts of this Gospel, see the Manuscript Information page.


Fragment 1, verso (↓)

[...] to the lawyers ["...all] the wrongdoers [...] and not me [...] how does he do it?"

[Then he turned] to [the] rulers of the people and made this statement: "Search [the] scriptures; [you think] you have life in them. They [testify] about me. Don't [think] I've come to accuse [you] before my Father. [The one who accuses] you is Moses, in whom [you] hope."

But they [said,] "We know [well] God [spoke] to Moses, but you -- we don't know [where you're from."]

Jesus [told them] in reply, "Now [you] stand accused because [you don't believe those who've been approved] by him; because if [you believed Moses,] you'd believe [me, for] he [wrote] about me to your ancestors [...]"


Fragment 1, recto (→)

[...] stones together [so they could stone him.] And the [rulers] laid their [hands] on him [so that] they might seize him and [deliver him] to the crowd. But they [could] not seize him, because the hour of his arrest [had] not yet [come.] So the Lord escaped [from their hands] and withdrew from [them.]

And look, someone with leprosy approached [him] and said, "Teacher Jesus, while I was [traveling] with [others] who had [leprosy] and eating at the inn [with them,] I [contracted leprosy] myself. But if [you want to,] you can cure me."

Now the Lord [told him, "I want to:] be cured." [And immediately] the leprosy left him.

Then Jesus [told] him, ["Go] and show [yourself] to the [priests] and offer [what Moses ordered for] your cure, and don't sin anymore [...]"


Fragment 2, recto (→)

[...] to him, examining him to test him: "Teacher Jesus, we know that you've come [from God,] because the things you do [testify] above and beyond all the prophets. [So tell] us: is it right [to give] kings what belong to them? [Should we pay] them, or [not?"]

But since Jesus knew what [they] were thinking, [he scolded them] and asked [them,] "Why do you pay me lip service as a Teacher but [don't do] what [I say? Isaiah] accurately prophesied [about] you when he said:

[These people honor] me with their [lips,]
[but] their [heart] is [far] from [me.]
[They worship me pointlessly,]
[... rules ...]


Fragment 2, verso (↓)

[...] enclosed in the [place ...] being subjected uncertainly [... its] weight unweighed [...] but [while] they were puzzled [as] to [his] strange question, Jesus walked and stood [on the] bank of the Jordan [river.] And reaching out with [his] right hand [...] and he sowed [on] the [...] and then [...] water [...] the [...] and [...] he produced [...] fruit [...]