Gospel of Thomas – a Sufi commentary

Aleppo:  Maqam prophet_zakariyya

  • Jesus (as) and Why You Should Not Idolize All People

Bismillahi Rahmani Raheem, Assalamu Alaikum

The following is our Tafsir ( commentary) from a translation to the Gospel of Thomas (as) who Jesus (as) said to us are His (as) words. The Gospel of Thomas is a sayings gospel, it was discovered near Nag Hammadi, Egypt, in December 1945 among a group of books known as the Nag Hammadi library. This is why it was not included in the bible as canon, it was lost to time, these are Jesus’s (as) last words on earth before His (as) ascension, what you will find is that the sum of its advice is the same as the advice the Angels gave to John (q) in the book of revelations regarding the empires that would arise at the end of time some 2000 years later, our time.

Muslims should study this because Jesus (saws) began it by saying:

Whoever finds the meaning of these words will not taste (spiritual) death.”

Thomas (as) said to Jesus (as), “Therefore I beg you to tell me what I ask you before your ascension, and when I hear from you about the hidden things (Ghayb, the Unseen), then I can speak about them. And it is obvious to me that the truth is difficult to perform (explain) before men.”

Jesus (saws) answered regarding the unseen and sainthood, saying,

If the things that are visible to you are obscure to you (your mind), how can you hear about the things that are not visible?

If the deeds of the truth that are visible in the world are difficult for you to perform, how indeed, then, shall you perform those that pertain to the exalted height (those who act on what they witness from the unseen, like Sayyidinah Khidr) and to the pleroma (the totality of divine powers) which are not visible? And how shall you be called ‘laborers’? (saintly, those who do this work) In this respect you are apprentices, and have not yet received the height of perfection (Ihsan).” (The Book of Thomas)

Jesus (saws) said, “Brother Thomas while you have time in the world, listen to me, and I will reveal to you the things you have pondered in your mind.”

Now, since it has been said that you are my twin and true companion, examine yourself, and learn who you are, in what way you exist, and how you will come to be (your nature and the reason you developed this way). Since you will be called my brother, it is not fitting that you be ignorant of yourself. And I know that you have understood, because you had already understood that I am the knowledge of the truth. So while you accompany me, although you are uncomprehending (of spiritual things and their technical nature), you have (in fact) already come to know (experience, gain Maa’rifah), and you will be called ‘the one who knows himself’.

For he who has not known himself has known nothing, but he who has known himself (his nature and why he does things) has at the same time already achieved knowledge about the depth of the all (that is the source of all inspiration and you have connected to it so it guides you). So then, you, my brother Thomas, have beheld what is obscure to men, that is, what they ignorantly stumble against (chasing the world looking for answers there while it is only within them that answers exist).” (The Book of Thomas)

Don’t change the world in hopes of changing yourself, change yourself so the world changes because of you.

This is the mistake of the west, in its morally bankrupt history and its many notable figures it has come to idolise just about any person who has achieved something in life, while people should be acknowledged for their work that is different from placing them in a position to nurture your society from, the west is clearly lacking insight into the implications of raising people of questionable morality above them, or not, its leaders may perfectly understand who they want you to emulate and its results.

There is a real reason Muslims deliberately follow a sunnah and only raise in esteem above them saintly people, it is because you imitate those you idolise, you make them the vision you take from spiritually in hopes that your society as a whole maintains a moral standard.

This reality of man extends to everything even if you idolise an animal or a fish because human character moulds itself around what it places in its eye and makes its idol.

Jesus (saws) said, “If your leaders say to you, ‘Look, the (Father’s) kingdom is in the sky,’ then the birds of the sky will precede you. If they say to you, ‘It is in the sea,’ then the fish will precede you. Rather, the (Father’s) kingdom is within you and it is outside you (around you).”

Jesus’s (saws) disciples said, “Show us the place where you are (spiritually), for we must seek it.” He said to them, “Anyone here with two ears had better listen! There is light within a person of light, and it shines on the whole world. If it does not shine, it is dark.”

“O Prophet! Lo! We have sent thee as a witness and a bringer of good tidings and a warner. And as a summoner unto Allah by His permission, and as a lamp that giveth light.” (Quran 33:46-47) The light of a person spreads the sunnah of that person to others.

Jesus (saws) said, “If they say to you, ‘Where have you come from?’ say to them, ‘We have come from the light, from the place where the light came into being by itself, established [itself], and appeared in their image.’

If they say to you, ‘Is it you?’ say, ‘We are its children, and we are the chosen of the living Father.’

If they ask you, ‘What is the evidence of your Father in you?’ say to them, ‘It is motion and rest (science).’”

Jesus (saws) said “if one is whole (complete), one will be filled with light, but if one is divided, one will be filled with darkness.”

This is al Yaqeen, the eye of Certainty, “And serve your Lord until certainty comes to you.” (Quran -5:99)

Jesus (saws) said, “Images are visible to people (their Sunnah, habits), but the light within them is hidden in the image of the Father’s light (takes from Allah and shines through them to others). He will be disclosed (known), but his image (Sunnah) is hidden (veiled) by his light (So seek it).”

Jesus (saws) said “If you do not fast from the world, you will not find the (Father’s) kingdom (Spirituality). If you do not observe the sabbath as a sabbath you will not see the Father (if you do not act with its reality you will not experience its reality and see Allah).”

Jesus (saws) said, “I took my stand in the midst of the world, and in flesh I appeared to them. I found them all drunk, and I did not find any of them thirsty. My soul ached for the children of humanity, because they are blind in their hearts and do not see, for they came into the world empty, and they also seek to depart from the world empty. But meanwhile they are drunk (on its products). When they shake off their wine, then they will change their ways.”

Jesus (saws) said, “Grapes are not harvested from thorn trees (from trees that don’t bear these fruit), nor are figs gathered from thistles, for they yield no fruit. Good persons produce good from what they’ve stored up; bad persons produce evil from the wickedness they’ve stored up in their hearts, and say evil things. For from the overflow of the heart they produce evil.”

Jesus (saws) said, “If you bring forth what is within you, what you have will save you. If you do not have that within you, what you do not have within you [will] kill you.”

Jesus (saws) said, “A person was receiving guests. When he had prepared the dinner, he sent his slave to invite the guests.

The slave went to the first and said to that one, ‘My master invites you.’ That one said, ‘Some merchants owe me money; they are coming to me tonight. I have to go and give them instructions. Please excuse me from dinner.’

The slave went to another and said to that one, ‘My master has invited you.’ That one said to the slave, ‘I have bought a house, and I have been called away for a day. I shall have no time.

The slave went to another and said to that one, ‘My master invites you.’ That one said to the slave, ‘My friend is to be married, and I am to arrange the banquet. I shall not be able to come. Please excuse me from dinner.’

The slave went to another and said to that one, ‘My master invites you.’ That one said to the slave, ‘I have bought an estate, and I am going to collect the rent. I shall not be able to come. Please excuse me.’

The slave returned and said to his master, ‘Those whom you invited to dinner have asked to be excused.’ The master said to his slave, ‘Go out on the streets and bring back whomever you find to have dinner.’
Buyers and merchants [will] not enter the places of my Father.

Jesus (saws) said, “Those who know all, but are lacking in themselves, are utterly lacking.”

Jesus (saws) said, “Why have you come out to the countryside? To see a reed shaken by the wind? And to see a person dressed in soft clothes, [like your] rulers and your powerful ones? They are dressed in soft clothes, and they cannot understand truth.”

Jesus (saws) said, “When you make the two into one (become insan Kamil, complete), you will become children of Adam, and when you say, ‘Mountain, move from here!’ it will move.”

Jesus (saws) said, “Let one who has found the world, and has become wealthy, renounce the world (and stay wealthy).”

Jesus (saws) said, “Congratulations to you when you are hated and persecuted; and no place will be found, wherever you have been persecuted.”

Jesus (saws) said, “Congratulations to those who have been persecuted in their hearts: they are the ones who have truly come to know the Father”.

They said to him, “Tell us who you are so that we may believe in you.”

He said to them, You examine the face of heaven and earth (the outward, the physical), but you have not come to know the one who is in your presence, and you do not know how to examine the present moment (your reality, your state).”

These are some of the sayings of Isa (as) which He (saws), Sayidah Maryam (as) and Allah taught us over the many years of our life, regarding them Isa (as) said “Whoever discovers the interpretation of these sayings will not taste (spiritual) death” and certainly we have achieved this reality that has saved us many times from the spiritual deaths our enemies wished upon us, no matter how hard our enemies tried we surpassed every spiritual death they attacked us with.

Isa (as) and His (saws) mother (as) spent years watching over us and nurturing us, teaching us the realities of what Isa (as) taught so we could face what we faced in life and the people who claim they are Christians.

This is how Allah and His elect looked after us and raised us, what you see in all people Ahl al ghayb go to a lot of effort to prepare them for it, this is what the dead do for the living, some people are helped by their relatives, some by the Qwliyah and some by the prophets, each according to his burden.

There is not a single one of these sayings we do not understand, in fact much of it our work explains it, when you read the full list of these sayings you will see Isa (as), you will see His (as) Ihsan, His (as) strictness, elevated state, purity, absoluteness, intellect, wisdom and above all beauty, you will walk away from them elevated in your self hoping you are not anything less then what He (as) said.

They are from the Gospel of Thomas which He (saws) informed us are His (saws) words, (they are different from the Book of Thomas that we quoted at the start). The gospel is a list of 114 sayings of Isa (as), most of which are His (saws) except for two or three, and they read very much like the Hikmah of ibn Ata Allah (as).

  • cross

The that is idolized by Christians as if a person was never a Christian symbol for the first 300 years of its existence, they were still being crucified upon it during this time so why would they venerate it.

Rather as history staters it was a Roman symbol the Romans used to terrify their enemies, this is its heritage and spiritual origin, it was used much later as a sign when the Romans adopted Christianity 300 years later, if Christians understood the spiritual implication of taking a torture device as a religious focus they would throw it away and never torture themselves with it, let alone nurture their souls upon it.

Twisted objects have a twisted spirituality and produce twisted souls, the reality of history the soul latches onto is not destroyed unless you get rid of history.

Further to this the bible says “Christ” was crucified upon a stake (a simple pole), not a cross, which sometimes the Romans used instead.

The Greek word xyʹlon. (Acts 5:30; 10:39; 13:29;Galatians 3:13; 1 Peter 2:24) simply means “timber” or “a stick, club, or tree.”

“Modern scholars, following descriptions of criminals carrying crossbars by Plautus and Plutarch, often take the Gospel description (which is lite on details) as meaning Jesus, then Simon, carried only a heavy patibulum, the crossbar, to a pole, stipes, which was permanently driven into the ground at Golgotha. However, in Christian imagery (and translations) Jesus, and Simon, carry the complete cross—both patibulum and stipes.”

Paul says: “Christ purchased us, releasing us from the curse of the Law by becoming a curse instead of us, because it is written: ‘Accursed is every man hung upon a stake.’” (Galatians 3:13) Paul is quoting Deuteronomy 21:22, 23, the only account to state what he was crucified upon, crucifixion made the person “a curse” so Paul was using wisdom to describe what occurred.

The reality is Christians stopped studying their texts a long time ago.

Jesus’s (saws) disciples said to him, “When will the kingdom come?”

Jesus (saws) said “It will not come by watching for it. It will not be said, ‘Look, here!’ or ‘Look, there!’ Rather, the Father’s kingdom is spread out upon the earth, and people don’t see it.”

It is the spiritual world, the subatomic part of our universe around you. If you understand what Jesus (saws) meant by the Kingdom here, you will see the confusion of Christians in interpreting His (saws) words everywhere else.

Jesus (saws) said, “Perhaps people think that I have come to cast peace upon the world. They do not know that I have come to cast conflicts upon the earth: fire, sword, war.

For there will be five in a house: there’ll be three against two and two against three (people who know truth against people who don’t), father against son and son against father, and they will stand alone (on their convictions).”

Jesus (saws) deliberately spoke from a high place to an illiterate people who could scarcely understand Him (saws) because this was His (saws) mission, certainly Christians have been asleep in regards to His (saws) teachings and the Kingdom.

[Rasul Allah (saws) said when people study this they will find we only made a few mistakes. Here is a copy of the Gospel although this is not the one we used: https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/biblical-topics/bible-versions-and-translations/the-gospel-of-thomas-114-sayings-of-jesus/ ]

Shaykh Rami Al Rifai.

“O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you.” (4:59)

فَإِنَّهُ علَم السِّرَّ وَأَخْفَى

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