Gospel of Barnabas

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{church, century, christian}
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{son, year, death}
{language, word, form}
{law, state, case}
{group, member, jewish}
{school, student, university}

The Gospel of Barnabas is a substantial book depicting the life of Jesus; and claiming to be by Jesus's disciple Barnabas, who in this work is one of the twelve apostles. Two manuscripts are known to have existed, both dated to the late sixteenth century and written respectively in Italian and in Spanish; although the Spanish manuscript is now lost, its text surviving only in a partial eighteenth-century transcript. Barnabas is about the same length as the four Canonical gospels put together (the Italian manuscript has 222 chapters); with the bulk being devoted to an account of Jesus' ministry, much of it harmonised from accounts also found in the canonical gospels. In some key respects, it conforms to the Islamic interpretation of Christian origins and contradicts the New Testament teachings of Christianity.

This Gospel is considered by the majority of academics, including Christians and some Muslims (such as Abbas el-Akkad) to be late and pseudepigraphical;[1] however, some academics suggest that it may contain some remnants of an earlier apocryphal work edited to conform to Islam, perhaps Gnostic[2] or Ebionite[3] or Diatessaronic.[4] Some Muslims consider the surviving versions as transmitting a suppressed apostolic original. Some Islamic organizations cite it in support of the Islamic view of Jesus.

This work should not be confused with the surviving Epistle of Barnabas, nor with the surviving Acts of Barnabas.

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