The Gospel of the Egyptians
(also called The Gospel According to the Egyptians)
[Note: This work exists only in the fragments
quoted by the Church Fathers.
Fragments are taken from M. R. James, The Apocryphal New Testament, pp. 10-12.]
Clem. Alex. Strom. iii. 9. 64. 'Whence it is with reason that after the Word had told about the End, Salome saith: Until when shall men continue to die? (Now, the Scripture speaks of man in two senses, the one that is seen, and the soul: and again, of him that is in a state of salvation, and him that is not: and sin is called the death of the soul) and it is advisedly that the Lord makes an answer: So long as women bear children.'
Clem. Alex. Strom. iii. 9. 66. 'And why do not they who walk by anything rather than the true rule of the Gospel go on to quote the rest of that which was said to Salome: for when she had said, 'I have done well, then, in not bearing children?' (as if childbearing were not the right thing to accept) the Lord answers and says: Every plant eat thou, but that which hath bitterness eat not.'
Clem. Alex. Strom. iii. 13. 92. 'When Salome inquired when the things concerning which she asked should be known, the Lord said: When ye have trampled on the garment of shame, and when the two become one and the male with the female is neither male nor female. In the first place, then, we have not this saying in the four Gospels that have been delivered to us, but in that according to the Egyptians.'
Clem. Alex. Strom. iii. 9. 63. 'But those who set themselves against God's creation because of continence, which has a fair-sounding name, quote also those words which were spoken to Salome, of which I made mention before. They are contained, I think (or I take it) in the Gospel according to the Egyptians. For they say that 'the Savior himself said: I came to destroy the works of the female'. By female he means lust: by works, birth and decay.'
Clement of Rome, Second Epistle, c. xii. 2: 'For the Lord himself being asked by some one when his kingdom should come, said: When the two shall be one, and the outside (that which is without) as the inside (that which is within), and the male with the female neither male nor female.'
Apocryphal Acts, iii. 6. 45. 'The Lord said to Salome when she inquired: How long shall death prevail? 'As long as ye women bear children', not because life is an ill, and the creation evil: but as showing the sequence of nature: for in all cases birth is followed by decay.'
Theodotus, 67. 'And when the Saviour says to Salome that there shall be death as long as women bear children, he did not say it as abusing birth, for that is necessary for the salvation of believers.'
Hippolytus, Against Heresies, v. 7. '(The Naassenes) say that the soul is very hard to find and to perceive; for it does not continue in the same fashion or shape or in one emotion so that one can either describe it or comprehend its essence. And they have these various changes of the soul, set forth in the Gospel entitled according to the Egyptians.'
Epiphanius, Heresy lxii. 2. 'Their (i.e. the Sabellians) whole deceit (error) and the strength of it they draw from some apocryphal books, especially from what is called the Egyptian Gospel, to which some have given that name. For in it many suchlike things are recorded (or attributed) as from the person of the Saviour, said in a corner, purporting that he showed his disciples that the same person was Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.'