Ian Brown deposited Where Indeed Was the Gospel of Thomas Written? Thomas in Alexandria in the group Biblical Studies on Humanities Commons 1 month ago
This article argues that the Gospel of Thomas was written in Alexandria, not in Eastern Syria as is the current consensus. The arguments in favor of a Syrian Gospel of Thomas are not as strong as is often assumed, and a stronger case can be made for Alexandria. The Gospel of Thomas has a number of features that suggest it was a product of the Judean intellectual culture of Alexandria, including its genre (a collection of chreiai), its presentation of Jesus as a wisdom teacher, and its Platonic/Philonic exegesis of the creation stories in Genesis. I argue that these features, particularly the exegesis of Gen 1:26–27 and 2:7, indicate an Alexandrian provenance for Thomas. Alexandria was a center of Judean philosophy and was known particularly for producing exegesis of the LXX. These social and literary affinities with Alexandrian intellectual life make an Alexandrian Gospel of Thomas more probable than a Syrian Thomas.