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This article argues that many of the disparate soteriological themes in the Gospel of Thomas can be united under the category of deification. Strikingly, the Gospel of Thomas presents an early Christian form of deification parallel to the deification of Jesus in the Gospel of John. Like John's Gospel, the Gospel of Thomas presents a Jesus who is fully divine. Unlike in John, however, Jesus's distinctively divine traits and predicates are applied also to the elect in the Gospel of Thomas. The homology of Jesus and the Thomasine Christian indicates a soteriology of gemination—a scenario in which the elect realize their identity with Jesus and thus their status as spiritual “twins.” Since Jesus is presented as a divine figure in the Gospel of Thomas, Thomasine gemination is simultaneously a form of deification.


Institute for Religion and Critical Inquiry

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Journal Article

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