The Gospel of St Thomas

This leaf from a papyrus codex is one of the earliest surviving Christian texts. It was unearthed in 1897 by two Oxford archaeologists, B. P. Grenfell and A. S. Hunt, during their first season of excavation at Oxyrhynchus in northern Egypt. The Greek text, first published as Logia Ihesou, ‘Sayings of Our Lord’, is now known to be from the apocryphal Gospel of Thomas. Unlike the Gospels of the New Testament, the Gospel of Thomas is not a linear narrative, but, more simply, a list of 114 sayings attributed to Jesus.



1-4: (26) and then you will see
in order to cast out the splinter
which (is) in the eye
of your brother.’

4-11: (27) Said
Jesus: ‘If you do not fast
to the world, you will not
find the kingdom
of God; and if you do not
make the sabbath a sab-
bath, you will not see the

11-21: (28) Jesus said: ‘I s[t]ood
in the midst of the world,
and I appeared to them in flesh,
and I found them all
drunken, and
I found not one thirst-
ing among them, and pain-
ed is my soul over
the sons of men,
for they are blind in their heart
and do [not] se[e ..]

22: (29) [“… th]is poverty.’

23-30: (30) [Jesus sa]ys, ‘[Wh]ere there are
[three g]o[ds, they ar]e gods. And
when one is all alone [to hims]
elf, I am with hi[m].
Ta[k]e up the ston[e],
and there you will find me;
split the wood, and
I am there.’

30-35: (31) Jesus says, ‘It
is not acceptable for a pro-
phet (to be) in his own homeland,
nor does a physician work
cures on those
who know him.’

36-41: (32) Jesus said: ‘A city built
on the top of a high
[m]ountain and made fast
can neither fa[l]l nor be

41-42: (33a) J(esu)s says, ‘[What] you will hear
[w]ith your one ear, tha[t ..]’

This Treasure isn’t currently on display in the Weston Library.