Photo courtesy Institute for Antiquity and Christianity, Claremont, CA

The Gospel of Thomas, a page of which is shown here, is one of the texts found in 1945 at Nag Hammadi, a small town on the Nile 300 miles south of Cairo.

“The Gospel According to Thomas”—the text in the two lines standing alone in the photo—contains sayings of Jesus but no narrative or biographical passages; a number of the sayings have parallels in the canonical Gospels. But Thomas includes none of the canonical Gospels’ apocalyptic sayings, despite the fact that it was composed in Syria-Palestine at a relatively early date (between the mid-first and mid-second century C.E.). Thus Thomas offers indirect evidence that Jesus may not actually have uttered eschatological sayings, such as the one in Mark 8:38: “Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”