The texts reveal the Gnostics as they saw themselves, not as the Church Fathers characterized them, and thus these texts have provided a wealth of information for the study of ancient Gnosticism and, by extension, ancient Christianity.
We are told that these people spent 40 years wandering around in the desert — they escaped, as slaves from Egypt, and so forth.
There is not a shred of archaeological or historical evidence, outside of the Bible, that this is even true! You would think that if a people spent 40 years wandering around in the desert they'd leave some archaeological evidence? There's no evidence that somebody named Moses even existed.
In a religious context, gnosis is mystical or esoteric knowledge based on direct participation with the divine.
In most Gnostic systems the sufficient cause of salvation is this "knowledge of" ("acquaintance with") the divine.
Each one of the documents is introduced with excellent notes on estimated dating and other information critical to an understanding of the text.
This volume is a welcome addition to the personal library of any person who professes an interest in the history of early Christianity, and it is absolutely necessary to anyone who is interested in ancient Gnosticism.
While the Gospel of Thomas does not directly point to Jesus' divinity, it also does not directly contradict it, and therefore neither supports nor contradicts gnostic beliefs.
When asked his identity in the Gospel of Thomas, Jesus usually deflects, ambiguously asking the disciples why they do not see what is right in front of them, similar to some passages in the canonical gospels like John and Luke .
Christian and Jewish literalists do not accept this.
A detailed examination of the innumerable issues raised by the fringe Velikovsky and Rohl alternate chronologies is beyond the scope of this article, and will not be attempted here.
Despite being regarded in Judaism as the primary factual historical narrative of the origin of the religion, culture and ethnicity, Exodus is now accepted by scholars as having been compiled in the 8th–7th centuries BCE from stories dating possibly as far back as the 13th century BCE, with further polishing in the 6th–5th centuries BCE, as a theological and political manifesto to unite the Israelites in the then‐current battle for territory against Egypt.