The Gospel of Judas gives a different view of the relationship between Jesus and Judas.
I watched this show on Nat Geog last night, and taped it as well for my mate Adamski.
It was cool.
According to the Gospel of Judas, Jesus came to Judas a few days before the last supper and convinced Judas to betray him and hand him over to the Romans.
Judas was reluctant, of course, especially as he had had dreams about being stoned to death by the other apostles, but eventually he was pursuaded by Jesus and agreed to do the deed for his master.
Although this book, along with around 30 other gospels, was denounced by the orthodox church as a heresy, it miraculasly survived. [Most of the others were systematically destroyed by the church, and people who followed them wiped out.(so much for christian compassion)]
The show also had some good insights as to why the early church acted the way it did towards these other gospels.
The first reason is that the Romans were persecuting ALL Jews at the time for various failed seditious uprisings.
So Christians wanted to have a seperate identity and the more distinctive, or antisemitic, gospels were kept.
The more fuzzy or ambiguous gospels were ditched. [Christianity was s Jewish sect which allowed Gentiles to join]
The reason behind the choice of just four gospels came from the fact that there are four ordinal points on a compass. [I.e. makes absolutely no bloody sense at all]
Of course the church says this gospel is heresy and has nothing to contribute to the understanding of Jesus.
But as it was contemporary to the four canonical gospels, unlike some other extant gnostic gospels, and existed before C.E. 180, I believe it does have something very important to say about Christianity and Jesus.
Basically that there are no truly canonical texts about Jesus. They all show varying political opinions and struggles of Jesus’ believers, rather than being a historically accurate tableau of his life.
To me The Gospel of Judas is just as vaild as that of Mathew, Mark, Luke or John and discounting it is just because it has a contrary viewpoint is conceited arrogance.