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The Roberts Trap is Sprung

By:  Bill Dunne
One of the most overlooked aspects of the year just ended is the vindication of Chief Justice John Roberts -- a vindication that showed up as the national catastrophe known as ObamaCare got rolling.  Roberts may have also doomed Hillary Clinton's chance to live in the White House again... click here to read whole editorial


Early Christians and Their “Lost Books” of the Bible


By:  David Deschesne

Editor/Publisher, Fort Fairfield Journal

May 25, 2016


    It’s been said Jesus the Christ did not come to Earth to start a new religion; He also never considered himself to be God, or the Heavenly Father.  These ideas were cultivated decades later as part of developing church dogma.  The very first followers of Christ were Jews who followed the religion as established in the Kitvé ha-Kodesh, known today as the Tanakh in Hebrew and in English as the Old Testament. They simply considered Christ as their messiah and under James’ and Peter’s guidance continued in the practice of the Jewish faith while folding Christ’s message into it.


   Toward the end of the first century A.D. there were numerous groups of people who proclaimed to be following Christ and each group had their own understanding of Christ’s teachings, their own sacred writings, and their own religious identity.


   The names of some of the early Christian groups were:  the Nazarene (a/k/a Mandaean or Desposyni) Christians; Oriental Orthodox Christians, the Pauline (followers of the apostle Paul) - a/k/a Chalcedonian  Christians and the Gnostic Christians.1


   Early, pre-Catholic Christians were divided into four primary belief systems:


  1.)  Ebionites—Extant in the 2nd through 4th centuries, these were Jewish Christians who believed in Jesus Christ as a life-long practicing Jew who was sent by the Jewish God Yahweh to be the Jewish Messiah in fulfillment of Jewish Scriptures.

   2.)  Marcionites—The Marcionites followed a disciple of Paul named Marcion.  He preached a separation between the Law of the Jews and the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Marcion also took Paul’s message to the logical extreme by pointing out that the God of the Old Testament is diametrically opposed to Christ’s Heavenly Father of the New Testament and suggested that they were indeed two separate gods—which is a Gnostic belief—the former was the curt, vengeful, mean, vindictive god, Yahweh of the Jews and the latter was the kind, gracious and forgiving Heavenly Father Christ described.  Marcionites held the Gnostic belief that Christ came to Earth to save the people from Yahweh and reconcile them to the Heavenly Father.

   3.)  Gnostic—The Gnostic Christians had a two-god belief system as described above, and took a more spiritual approach to Christianity.  They didn’t believe Christ actually died on the cross because they considered Christ as a spirit and a spirit cannot die.  Gnostic Christians believe Christ came to this earth as a spirit, inhabiting a man—named Jesus— to save us not from “Original Sin” or any other “sins” but from the material bonds and suffering of this earthly life, and the suppression and wrath of the evil fallen creator of this world.

   4.) Proto-Orthodox Christians—forerunners of today’s modern Christian sects who look to the Apostle Paul for the backbone of their belief systems.  They believe that, despite the widely divergent personalities, the God of the Old and New Testaments are the same God, Christ was  God in human form, that he came to Earth to save mankind from their sins, and that their ‘holy scriptures’ are inerrant (without error) and the only ones to be considered “Divinely Inspired” amidst all the other Christian texts extant at the time.  This is the group that eventually won favor with the Roman emperor, Constantine, became the Catholic Church, vehemently quashed all other Christian belief systems and eventually fractured into today’s Protestant religions in the 16th century. 2

  Modern day flavors of Christianity are the Catholic flavors of Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, Armenian Orthodox, and Anglican/Episcopal.  The Protestant flavors are  Lutheran, Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian, Pentecostal and some untold thousands of other variations that have each developed their own unique dogmas and traditions over the past 600 years.


   In the ensuing years after Christ there was no one “Bible” as we know it today.  There were many different sects and many different writings.  It wasn’t until Irenaeus, Bishop of Lyons, around 180 A.D. arbitrarily chose four anonymously authored gospels, out of nearly a dozen to choose from, that an establishment “authorized” version began to be compiled.  Many Bible scholars now believe the names “Matthew,” “Mark,” “Luke,” and “John” were added as titles to those first gospels many years after they were written and it is unlikely that the people by those names originally wrote those particular books to begin with.2


   In 325 A.D. the Nicene Creed was issued to unite the Pauline sect of Christianity under one banner, resulting in that establishment church declaring any Christians who did not believe it to be ‘heretics.’


   After the Emperor, Theodosius had cemented the Pauline version of Christianity as the official State religion of the Roman empire in 380, a collection of Christian books deemed in compliance with the Nicene Creed was authorized at the Council of Hippo in Africa in 393.  Later, the Council of Trent and the Vatican Council reaffirmed the cannon of Hippo.  The books found in the Catholic Bible [and most Protestant Bibles] today were those authorized by the Catholic Church at the councils at Hippo, Trent and the Vatican.3  A decade before Hippo, Pope Saint Damasus, dissatisfied with the many defective Latin texts commissioned Saint Jerome, his secretary, to make a new Latin translation, which was ultimately called the “Vulgate” and was completed in 383 A.D.4  


  Other Catholic translations after the Vulgate were the Douay Bible, the Ronald Knox Bible, the Confraternity Edition, and the Westminster Version.5


   Protestants such as Baptists, Pentecostals, Methodists and others today might be dismayed to discover that their Holy Bible is essentially a copy of the Catholic Bible, after being purged of versus that conflicted with their new message.


   This embarrassingly brief introduction to the formation of the Holy Bible is just a sketch and, done right,  would take an entire book.  I use it to illustrate how an establishment group appointed themselves as the “leaders” and declared their narrative and doctrine to be “divinely inspired” at the expense of all others.


   The books of the early Christians listed below were deemed “heretical” by the early Catholic church and ordered banned or, worse yet, burned and did not make it into today’s Holy Bible.  They have, however, survived more or less intact through to today with the bulk of them being Gnostic texts that were found buried in clay pots under the sand in Nag Hammadi, Egypt in 1945.  Keep in mind these early Christians revered and believed in the sanctity and divinity of their sacred texts as much as the Catholics and Evangelical protestant fundamentalists do with today’s modern version of their authorized “Holy Bibles.” 


   There are three primary books in publication with English translations of these early Christian gospels, Acts and Apocalypses.  I will list the title of the books, and their respective table of contents detailing the titles of the early Christian texts they each contain.  Those who are interested in reading these early Christian texts may then acquire the publications listed and begin their study:


Book #1

The Nag Hammadi Library, James M. Robinson, General Editor, ISBN 0-06-066935-7.  A collection of Gnostic Christian literature found buried at Nag Hammadi, Egypt in 1945.  Many of these texts were written by the actual disciples of Christ while he was alive. Christian texts include:


- Prayer of the Apostle Paul

- The Apocryphon of James

- The Gospel of Truth

- The Treatise on the Resurrection

- The Tripartite Tractate

- The Apocryphon of John

- The Gospel of Thomas

- The Gospel of Phillip

- The Hypostasis of the Archons

- On the Origin of the World

- The Exegesis on the Soul

- The Book of Thomas the Contender

- The Gospel of the Egyptians

- Eugnostos the Blessed

- The Dialogue of the Savior

- The Apocalypse of Paul

- The (First) Apocalypse of James

- The (Second) Apocalypse of James

- The Apocalypse of Adam

- The Acts of Peter and the Twelve


- The Thunder, Perfect Mind

- Authoritative Teaching

- The Concept of Our Great Power

- Plato, Republic

- The Discourse on the Eighth and


- The Prayer of Thanksgiving

- Asclepius

- The Paraphrase of Shem

- The Second Treatise of the Great


- The Apocalypse of Peter

- The Teachings of Silvanus

- The Three Steles of Seth

- Zostrianos

- The Letter of Peter to Phillip

- Melchizedeck

- The Thought of Norea

- The Testimony of Truth

- Marsanes

- The Interpretation of Knowledge

- A Valentinian Exposition

- Allogenes

- Hypsiphrone

- The Sentences of Sextus

- Fragments

- Trimorphic Protennia

- The Gospel of Mary

- The Act of Peter


Book #2

The Lost Books of the Bible and the Forgotten Books of Eden, World Bible Publishers. ISBN 0-529-03385-2.  A collection of early Christian writings, some Gnostic, some not.  Also contains 1 Adam & Eve and 2 Adam & Eve that greatly expands the creation and fall of man story in Genesis.


Lost Books of the Bible

- I Infancy (of Jesus)

- II Infancy (of Jesus)

- Christ and Abgarus

- Nicodemus

- The Apostle’s Creed

- Laodiceans

- Epistles of Paul and Seneca

- The Acts of Paul and Thecla

- I Clement

- II Clement

- General Epistle of Barnabus

- Epistle of Ignatius to Ephesians

- Epistle of Ignatius to Magnesians

- Epistle of Ignatius to Trallians

- Epistle of Ignatius to Romans

- Epistle of Ignatius to Philadelphians

- Epistle of Ignatius to Smyrneans

- Epistle of Ignatius to Polycarp

- Epistle of Polycarp to Philippians


The Forgotten Books of Eden (early Jewish Literature that compliments many parts of the Old Testament)

- The First Book of Adam & Eve

- The Second Book of Adam & Eve

- The Secrets of Enoch

- The Psalms of Solomon

- The Odes of Solomon

- The Letter of Aristeas

- The Fourth Book of Macabees

- The Story of Ahikar

- The Testament of Reuben

- Simeon

- Levi

- Judah

- Issachar

- Zebulum

- Dan

- Naphtali

- Gad

- Asher

- Joseph

- Benjamin


Book #3

The Other Bible, ©2005 Willis Barnstone, editor.  ISBN 978-0-7394-8434-0.  Contains selections of Gnostic Gospels, Dead Sea Scrolls, Visionary Wisdom Texts, Christian Apocrypha, Jewish Pseudepigrapha and Kabbalah.  I will only list here the texts it contains relative to the early Christians from its table of contents.


- The Secret Book of John

- On the Origin of the World

- The Hypostasis of the Archons

- The Apocalypse of Adam

- The Gospel of Philip

- The Paraphrase of Shem

- The Second Treaty of the Great


- Creation of the World and Alien


- The Gospel of Truth and the

   Valentinian Speculation

- The Gospel of Thomas

- The Hymn of the Pearl

- Manichaean Hymn-Cycles

- The Coptic Psalm Book

- The Gospel of the Hebrews

- The Gospel of the Ebionites

- The Secret Gospel of Mark

- The Apocryphon of James

- The Gospel of Bartholomew

- The Gospel of Nicodemus

- The Infancy Gospel of James (birth of


- The Infancy Gospel of Matthew

  (book about Mary and childhood of 


- The Infancy Gospel of Thomas 

   (book about Jesus as a youth)

- A Latin Infancy Gospel

- The Arabic Infancy Gospel

- The Apocryphal Acts of the

  Apostles and the Acts of John

- the Acts of John

- The Acts of Peter

- The Acts of Paul

- The Acts of Andrew

- The Acts of Thomas

- The Ascension of Isaiah

- The Apocalypse of Peter

- The Apocalypse of Paul

- The Apocalypse of Thomas

- Christian Sibyllines

- The Book of Thomas the Contender

- Trimorphic Protennoia

- The Thunder, Perfect Mind

- Simon Magnus

- Valentinus and the Valentinian

   System of Ptolemaeus
- Ptolemaeus’ Letter to Flora

- Basilides

- The Naassene Psalm

- Baruch by Justin

- Marcion

- Carpocrates

- The Cainites

- The Sethians

- The Sethian-Ophites

- Ophite Diagrams

- Mani and Manichaeism

- Faust Concerning Good & Evil

- Augustine’s Letters Against the


- From Other Letters of Augustine on

  the Manichaeans

- Evodisu, Against the Manichaeans

- The Kephalaia of the Teacher

- Diverse Manichaean Documents

- Mandaean Salvation and Ethics

- The Mystical Theology of



  As you can see, Protestants and Catholics today have an extremely limited number of books in the New Testament to choose from compared to the Christians immediately following Christ’s sojourn on Earth.  Centuries of habit, tradition and church dogma have all but erased from the minds of Christians the roots of their beliefs and what their forbearers believed about Christ, their Savior.  In reading these lost books, a Christian may find a much greater context in which to expand and diversify their own personal understanding of their faith.



1.) ref. Bloodline of the Holy Grail, ©1996 Laurence Gardner, 2000 Barnes & Noble Books edition.

2.)  Alternative Christianities, Vol. 1,  ©2014 Vince Nicolas, pp. 275-378

3.) The Catholic Family Bible, ©1950 the Catholic Press, pp. ix-x.

4.)  Encyclopedia Britannica Vol. 3, ©1958 pp. 506, 516

5.)  The Catholic Family Bible, p. x



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