Gospel of Judas, Part II

The Boston Globe has an article by James Martin, a respected Jesuit journalist and, most recently, the book My Life With the Saints, on the Gospel of Judas.

Some excerpts:

The Gospel of Judas has an agenda -- at least when it comes to the story of Good Friday. For that matter, so do the familiar gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. But their aim was different: to portray not Judas but Jesus in a positive light, and to describe what led to the Crucifixion. They are far less concerned with Judas. As a result, they offer contradictory and even confusing, explanations for Judas's betrayal.


In the end, Judas wanted a God of his own making, an avenging God who would serve justice by tossing out the hated occupiers and restoring the fortunes of the people of Israel. What Judas got was very different: a suffering God who accepted a shameful death on a cross. Tragically, Judas didn't stick around to see what happened on Easter morning.

The Gospel of Judas will continue to be fodder for television shows, magazine covers, and lunchtime conversations. But the answer to the question raised every Good Friday remains the same. Why did Judas do it? Because Judas, like many of us, wanted to make God in his own image -- rather than the other way around.

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