Photo courtesy of the Institute for Antiquity and Christianity, Claremont, California

Evangelion Kata Thomas—“The Gospel According to Thomas”—read the two inset lines on the “title page” of this apocryphal gospel, which claims to be a collection of Jesus’ sayings. The earliest Greek fragments of the Gospel of Thomas date to 200 C.E.; this fragment, from the fourth century, is in Coptic, an Egyptian language that used Greek characters. Ever since its discovery in Nag Hammadi, Egypt, in 1945, the gospel has inspired debate about the historicity of its 114 sayings. Now, it has inspired a movie—Stigmata—which suggests that the gospel includes a heretic theology that the Vatican tried desperately to suppress. In the accompanying film review, Stephen Patterson describes just what goes wrong when Bible scholarship goes Hollywood.