Seemingly hidden for many centuries, but now revealed, the recent discovery of a "key of knowledge" has yielded a practical and very useful cross reference tool to understand the scriptures.
This Tau-Rho Cross is created by the joining of the two letters Tau (T) and Rho (P) into the one amalgamated letter often known as the Staurogram. This amalgamation reveals the primary message of "The Word of God": specifically, "Make the two into one." The joining together of these two letters into the one amalgamated letter illustrates the marriage of the bride and the bridegroom, and also the reconciliation of all things into the one body, (Ephesians 1:10, 5:32).
Turned sideways this Staurogram or Tau-Rho Cross looks a lot like a key. Jesus said, “Woe unto you, lawyers! for you have taken away the key of knowledge: you have not entered in yourselves (into the kingdom), and them that were entering in you hindered,” (Luke 11:52). Jesus said "When you make the two into one... then will you enter the kingdom" (Thomas 39). This key is a parable, an illustration revealing the great mystery, and the primary message of The Word of God: Reunite that which is divided, make the two one, and enter the kingdom.
Convincing sequential similarities in thought, word, and rhetoric between the Gospel of Thomas and several canonical writings become plainly visible. Providing an invaluable contribution to the study of the New Testament, these connections appear to reveal the original thought processes behind the apostolic writings.
Aligning and combining the sayings of Jesus within The Gospel of Thomas together with the canonical apostolic writings, we "make the two into one." It's almost like Jesus and the apostles left us a cross reference study bible.
Cross Reference Study
Open the links. Connect the Key Words. Be Amazed and Enter.
The Gospel of Thomas - Romans Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - 1 Corinthian Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - Galatians Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - Ephesians Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - Philippians Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - Colossians Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - 1 Thessalonians Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - 2 Thessalonians Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - 1 Timothy Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - Titus Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - Hebrews Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - James Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - 1 Peter Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - 1 John Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - Revelations Connection
The Gospel of Thomas - The Gospel of John Connection
“Give attendance to reading… Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all,” 1 Timothy 4:13- 15.
These new insights suggest that The Gospel of Thomas squares more neatly into the framework of early Christianity than is commonly assumed. Such similarities, connections, and cross references could revolutionize our understanding of the epistles, the gospel, the tapestry of the early church, and even of Christ.
I think the implications of these revelations stretch the imagination beyond belief. What do you think? Being the only known document with simultaneously extensive, sequential, and unique connections to all these early canonical writings does not suggest a later date for Thomas, but rather a very, very early date.
If there had been only one New Testament text that aligned with the Thomas text it might be difficult to determine which text came first, but this is not the case. As can be seen in the above links, there are many New Testament writings aligning themselves with Thomas.
The reason this suggests an early date is that it becomes extremely unlikely that a later author could have fashioned Thomas using the sayings of Jesus from the canonical Gospels, while simultaneously and sequentially matching the Rhetoric of so many epistles (See the Key Word Connection links above), while also consistently maintaining both the inner and outer loosely based chiasms that provide the overarching structure for the Gospel of Thomas. It is much, much easier to believe that Thomas came first, and that the other writings flowed out from Thomas.
What does all this mean?
Why are these texts interconnected in such an extensive manner?
What do these connections teach us about the meaning of the canonical letters and about Thomas?
Did Paul, James, Peter, and John construct their letters using "The Gospel of Thomas?" This does appear to be the case, (See the Key Word Connection links above). Why would the apostles do this? I am suggesting that the apostles appear to be following a pattern provided to them by Jesus.
Without being overly dramatic, I would like to make this next point as straightforward as possible. Perhaps the most simple explanation for these connections, and for the apparent apostolic reliance upon the Gospel of Thomas is that Thomas was The Original Gospel Of Christ.
Thomas appears to be the "Original Gospel" Jesus delivered to those closest to him, and to those who walked with him in His Way. Specifically, Thomas appears to be a more spiritual minded message tailored primarily for those who had forsaken all to follow Christ.
The Thomas prologue explains that Christ was the originator of this Gospel and that this gospel was merely written down or scribed by Thomas. Apostolic acceptance that Christ was the author of this gospel would explain the connections, and would explain why the apostles used this gospel so extensively? (See the Thomas prologue)
As mentioned earlier, as can be seen in the above links, the apostles appear to have relied heavily upon this Original Gospel authored by Christ, considering phrase by phrase the words of Jesus in Thomas, as they wrote their own writings. If this reliance and interconnectedness between the New Testament and Thomas is genuine, as it appears to be, then the many canonical references to "The Gospel of Christ", "The Testimony of Jesus ", " The Doctrine of Christ", " His Sayings", " The Preaching of Jesus Christ", " The Gospel of God", " The Word of God", " The Revelation of Jesus Christ", " The Everlasting Gospel", and even just " The Gospel" could all reasonably be direct references, and sometimes even veiled references to "The Gospel of Thomas"
If we have now recovered Christ's own gospel, then this could be revolutionary. As a unique gospel, apparently intended primarily for those within the church, this key of knowledge teaches those who would follow Jesus, as one of his disciples, how to live life as a wandering radical. It then reveals to these solitary and elect the complete reunification and oneness of the all through the teachings of the bridal chamber. This gospel, if sent and received, could be a significant challenge to the current religious world.
May we be granted wisdom and grace.
And may we be found building upon the Rock,
P.S. Perhaps The Gospel of Thomas was even used by non-canonical authors:
See The Gospel of Thomas - The Gospel of Mary Connection
See also The Gospel of Thomas - The Quran Connection
This page examines the concept of the Injel or the Original Gospel of Christ
is a possible connection between Thomas and the Upanishads.
Cross Reference Study
Read The Gospel of Thomas