The Gnostic Gospels Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. To Iranaeus, the monotheism of the Valentianians was a kind of ________, a hoax that would allow them to participate in the orthodox church.

2. Some Gnostic authors see Sophia as the ___________ benevolently having provided the gift of self-awareness to Adam and to Eve.

3. The Romans believed in divine authority for __________, which eventually led to Inanaeus' death sentence for treason.

4. ___________ was the issue of the day for the orthodox church, according to Pagels' findings in this chapter.

5. A __________ tourist in 1769 bought a Coptic codex near Thebes, which helped to explain more about the time period of the gospels.

Short Essay Questions

1. What are the three Gnostic interpretations of the divine that Pagels speaks of in this section of the book?

2. What do most people agree about in terms of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ?

3. What happened when a Roman soldier expressed his contempt for the Jews?

4. To whom did one's real allegiance belong, according to the ideas of Valentine?

5. What did Iranaeus think about the idea of monotheism of the Valentinians and its place in the faith?

6. What did Tertullian find so horrible about those who claimed the secret gnosis?

7. What did Hippolytus, great enemy of the agnostics, accuse Callistus of?

8. What was the debate the gnostic teachers had about the idea of the Dyad in the relationship of God?

9. Why did the orthodox preserve Christianity, according to the logic of Pagels?

10. What are some of the roles that a masculine God might have in the prayers of Christians, Jews, and Muslims?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Pagels also points out that at times, beliefs that weren't logical became preeminent.

Part 1: Do you think it's dangerous for illogical beliefs to be powerful? Why or why not?

Part 2: Does it matter whether a belief is logical? Why or why not?

Part 3: How do you think society would change of all accepted beliefs were logical? Why?

Essay Topic 2

The Gnostics seem to lean toward a dualistic form of God, with one being lighter and another being darker.

Part 1: Do you think the dualistic views of God are important? Why or why not?

Part 2: How does having more than one view of God change a belief system?

Part 3: Do you think that it's easier or better to have one God? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

The Gnostic gospels seem to state that it's not that becoming a martyr will lead to Heaven each time, but that the awareness of the teachings of Christ is the reward.

Part 1: Do you think that Heaven should be seen as the ultimate reward in the Christian life? Why or why not?

Part 2: Do you believe that the awareness of Christ is something that is more important than what happens when you die? Why or why not?

Part 3: How do you think Christianity might change if there was no idea of Heaven or Hell?

(see the answer keys)

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