Gnostic Doctrine

Thursday, 30 January 2020

Samaritan carrying a lamb Gospel of Thomas Saying 60

Saying 60 <They saw> a Samaritan carrying a lamb, who was going to Judaea. He said to his disciples: (What will) this man (do) with the lamb? They said to him: Kill it and eat it. He said to them: While it is alive he will not eat it, but (only) when he kills it (and) it becomes a corpse. They said to him: Otherwise he cannot do it. He said to them: You also, seek a place for yourselves in rest, that you may not become a corpse and be eaten.

Saying 60 is usually translated “They saw a Samaritan carrying a lamb on his (i.e., the Samaritan’s) way to Judaea.’ But the text should certainly be restored to provide the following translation: 'He (i.e., Jesus) saw a Samaritan carrying a lamb, when he (i.e., Jesus) was on his way to Judaea.'"
The background for this saying may be Lu 17:11 “And it came to pass, as he went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee.” then He (i.e., Jesus) saw a Samaritan carrying a lamb, when he (i.e., Jesus) was on his way to Judaea.'"

This saying is similar to 2Clem 5:1-5: Wherefore, brethren, let us forsake our sojourn in this world and do the will of Him that called us, and let us not be afraid to depart out of this world. 5:2 For the Lord saith, Ye shall be as lambs in the midst of wolves. 5:3 But Peter answered and said unto Him, What then, if the wolves should tear the lambs? 5:4 Jesus said unto Peter, Let not the lambs fear the wolves after they are dead; and ye also, fear ye not them that kill you and are not able to do anything to you; but fear Him that after ye are dead hath power over soul and body, to cast them into the Gehenna of fire. 5:5 And ye know, brethren, that the sojourn of this flesh in this world is mean and for a short time, but the promise of Christ is great and marvellous, even the rest of the kingdom that shall be and of life eternal.

The saying as a whole is reminiscent of Saying 7. The lamb is Jesus Christ the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world and the Samaritan is the world-rulers who killed Jesus, the Samaritan is both the rulers of the Jews and the Roman overseer both Jewish and Gentile for this is what the Samaritans were Jewish-Gentiles or Gentiles who say they are Jews but are not.

“While it is alive” Even a Samaritan must slaughter an animal properly, making sure the soul-blood Lev 17:10,11 has been purred out or drained from the animal, that it is a carcass and this is quite similar to that of the Jerusalem Church Acts 15:19,20,29 Paul 1Cor 8:8-13 10:25-29. In addition, 'alive' (v. 4) is a key word linking it to Logion 59, 60 and Logion 61.

“Corpse” as I have said above here and in Saying 7 the lion or lamb can be eaten only if it is killed and becomes a corpse. (Compare 7, 11.) So the disciples are only in danger of becoming a corpse only after eating the lamb or lion, after becoming alive by living from the Living One and being dead from their sins only than are they in danger of dieing cp. 51 111. Thus, the Carcass means that we have become dead in our sins.

Also the word “Corpse” links this saying with saying 56 'carcass' and that knowing the world is equivalent to finding a corpse (56) - the world is not worthy of those who find such a corpse. Add some thing here The Gnostic who has eaten what is dead has made it living (Saying 11). Therefore, by eating the dead lion, which may be the hostile world (cf., 1Peter 5:8: ‘Your adversary the devil, like a raging lion . . .’), you can overcome the world by assimilating it to yourself. If the true inner man is consumed by the lion, and the lion becomes the man, the world has overcome the true believer (Extracts from the Works of Theodotus, 84)."

But how does a person avoid death and the cruel fate of being eaten by worms ? Matt 6:19=20 by seeking the place of rest cp. Saying 50, 51 Note that the 'place' of rest is 'within,' as in Saying 24 90." A place within for rest and this rest is a regeneration or reaction within us and this is the perfect peace of the kingdom of heaven not merely in the age to come but right here right now in the present life. Seek the Christ centre within and living the way of holiness. It is this that brings the realization of eternal life on earth.

Jesus adds that they should seek a place to rest (hide) or they too will be sacrificed. So we should understand that it wasn’t necessarily fear that kept the disciples in hiding after Jesus’ death and resurrection. It is likely that Jesus warned them to lay low for a while. This divine wisdom from the mouth of Jesus may have saved their life for the sake of the gospel. Many passages in the New Testament refer to even Jesus hiding himself from those who would do him harm before his appointed time.

60) <They saw> a Samaritan [a worldly spiritual leader still bound in the types and images of the Old Covenant trying to heal others with physical (carnal) understandings of the "letter"] carrying a lamb [the teachings of Messiah - the New Covenant] on his way to Judea ["celebrated" - he is going to slaughter the lamb (the Word) in an attempt to gain life by his own works of righteousness] . He said to his disciples, "(Why does) that man (carry) the lamb around [why does he pretend to understand what it is for]?" They said to him, "So that he may kill it [with his own traditions and carnal teachings from the Old Testament] and eat it [consume it as truth]." He said to them, "While it is alive [the unleavened Word (Truth) - which is able to make them alive], he will not eat it [won't accept it for it hits too close to the bone for his liking and he will lose all of his worldly power and status if he accepts it as is], but only when he has killed it [leavens it with his own carnal interpretation\teachings] and it has become a corpse [part of the "corpus" of scriptures only - lacking spirit and life]." They said to him, "He cannot do so otherwise [being carnal in nature he cannot possibly discern the spiritual (Living Word) and find life in the scriptures no matter how hard he looks]." He said to them, "You too, look for a place for yourself within the Repose [His rest - i.e. remain fast in His teachings and doctrine - learn from Him and no one else], lest you become a corpse [stripped of your understanding of higher/inward (spiritual) substance of things] and be eaten [accepted by others of the world on the level of their lifeless understanding]." 

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