The Gospel of Judas: Just another fiction!

- Bobit S. Avila -
Since we don’t have a Good Friday edition, allow me then to write this article pertaining to the Catholic faith, especially since in the past week, two important events have been given worldwide media prominence. First, the big news came from a court in England about the legal battle between two books, one written by Dan Brown, the now infamous Da Vinci Code, and another book entitled Holy Blood, Holy Grail written by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln.

Last April 7, British High Court Judge Peter Smith ruled that the Da Vinci Code did not steal ideas from the other book, Holy Blood, Holy Grail. Thus, rejecting a copyright-infringement claim by Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh. In reaction to that verdict, Dan Brown said, "I’m pleased with today’s outcome, not only from a personal standpoint but also as a novelist."

The authors of Holy Blood, Holy Grail apparently sued Dan Brown for plagiarism, insisting that Dan Brown copied the idea of our Lord Jesus Christ having sired children with Mary of Magdala. But I’m glad that in his response to that verdict, Dan Brown mentioned that he was a novelist.

In the past month, I’ve been bombarded with this text message, "The movie "Da Vinci Code" is coming on May 17. Help counter the deception. Access website www.jesusdecoded.com produced by the Catholic Bishops USA. Pls pass TY." For those of you who have access to the Internet, this is very interesting reading, so you can see for yourself, that despite its popularity, you will know why the books Holy Blood, Holy Grail or the Da Vinci Code are nothing but pure fiction. Mind you, we’re not questioning the popularity of these books. In fact it even developed into a minor industry in itself, especially when other authors wrote four books debunking the Da Vinci Code.

No, I didn’t get a copy of Dan Brown’s book simply because, years ago, I already read Holy Blood, Holy Grail, which is to my mind, the biggest lie about our Lord Jesus Christ since his crucifixion — that he was married to Mary Magdalene and had children. This, we learn is non-scriptural because none of these allegations can be found in the Bible.

The reason why I didn’t care to get a copy of the Da Vinci Code is because when I browsed through the book, I thought I had read this piece already. When I saw the National Geographic documentary about the Da Vinci Code, they interviewed not only Dan Brown, but also Robert Leigh and Henry Lincoln.

Perhaps the only major difference between the two books is that Dan Brown came up with a more catchy title, but in substance, it is to my mind, almost the same book that Robert Leigh wrote. Now why did I buy Holy Blood, Holy Grail back in the ’80s? Perhaps it was to test my faith. Back then I wasn’t reading the Bible the way I’m reading it today. But yes, when I read that book, my faith stood firm that all this was an evil machination designed to debase our Lord Jesus Christ.

What is crystal clear here is both books, Holy Blood, Holy Grail and Da Vinci Code are not holy books and would never stand up to the big question, "Where is that in the Bible?" Let me point out that there are many other books you can find in the Protoevangelium or the Apocryphal Gospel of the Infancy or the Book of James (the less), which were not included in the Bible, but nonetheless considered holy books. For instance, how was it that we knew of St. Joachim and St. Anne as the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary? Yet you will never find this in the Bible. They were considered as holy books, but not inspired by divinity.

I’m glad that the British judge threw out this case citing that this idea wasn’t even original with the authors of Holy Blood, Holy Grail. How true! All that one needs to do is read the numerous books about early Christianity and you will even find a story that will soon be featured in the National Geographic — the existence of those who also claimed to be the Messiah. Indeed, when that man named Jesus was crucified in Golgotha, no one ever believed that his followers would eventually prevail and bring a new-found faith to many people. Eventually, Christianity would even be embraced as the official religion of the then pagan Roman empire.

Naturally, when Christianity was accepted by the world, suddenly, there appeared so many pretenders to the Throne of God. First there were the Agnostics who believed that God didn’t exist at all, and then came the Gnostics, Arianism and Manicheism, all of whom and which did not follow the true teaching of the Catholic church. Well even today, we have people making various claims that doesn’t follow the true path of Christianity, from the Iglesia ni Kristo to Eli Soriano to Quiboloy!

Let’s now go to the other equally controversial revelation, which I saw Last Sunday on National Geographic special entitled "The Gospel of Judas." Since I don’t have the space and time to discuss what transpired in that show, let me focus on its major flaw. Thomas Maugh, Times staffwriter wrote this piece last April 7, 2006:

"Judas Iscariot, long reviled as history’s quintessential betrayer, was actually the best friend of Jesus and turned him over to authorities only because Jesus asked him to, according to the Gospel of Judas, a long-lost document revealed Thursday. The manuscript, which scientists date to the year 300, is an account of conversations between Jesus and Judas in the last week of their lives, conversations in which Jesus is said to have shared religious secrets not known by the other disciples."

The first question we ought to ask is: Who wrote this piece? First of all, it’s wrong to say that Judas Escariot wrote this piece. After all, no one even knows if Matthew wrote Matthew or that Mark wrote Mark. We only attribute these gospel writings… thanks to the tradition of the Catholic Church! It is possible that the Gnostics wrote this piece three hundred years after Christ ascended into heaven. So, let us not be fooled by this nonsense and focus on the reality that our Lord Jesus Christ suffered and died on the cross for our salvation. As Jesus promised us in Matt. 28:20, "teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always until the end of the age." To sum all this up… I read a sign in a US church, which declared "Try Jesus, if you don’t like him, the devil will always take you back!"
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For e-mail responses to this article, write to [email protected]. Bobit Avila’s columns can also be accessed through www.thefreeman.com. He also hosts a weekly talkshow, "Straight from the Sky," shown at 8.pm., every Monday only in Metro Cebu on Channel 15 of SkyCable.











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