The Gnostic Gospels Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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

Short Answer Questions

1. The finding of the earthenware jar became known as the Naj or the Nag ________________ find.

2. While the scrolls were taken to the Coptic museum for safekeeping, _______ of the codices were smuggled out of the country.

3. Valentinus described God as the Father, the Ineffable, the Depth, and the Primal ______________.

4. Gnostic teachers debated whether or not the Dyad was an actual unified __________, with a male/female structure.

5. The Gnostics, some said, interpreted the resurrection to be something like an apparition that appears in a ________ state.

Short Essay Questions

1. What was the vision that John had, emotionally distraught over the crucifixion in the Apocryphon of John?

2. What are some of the explanations that the Gnostics offered for the resurrection stories of Jesus?

3. When Paul is writing in his letters, he refers to something that is 'whether it is in the body or out of the body I do not know.' What is he referring to?

4. What was the primary goal of the Valentianians in the way they lived and followed their beliefs?

5. What are some of the images of Christ that John and James witness in the Acts of John, discovered before Nag Hammadi?

6. What does Pagels give as an explanation as to why the story of the story of the resurrection seems to be so important to the faithful?

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

8. What did the Roman Empire seem to think of the new following of Jesus and the development of Christianity?

9. What is the image that would infuriate the orthodox, the one that is described in Nag Hammadi's Apocalypse of Peter?

10. Describe the idea of the social reality in which those who practice orthodox faith live.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Gnostics seem to have several different versions of the story of what happened to Jesus after he hung on the cross.

Part 1: Why do you think the Gnostics are fine with having multiple and varying stories?

Part 2: Do you think it's a good idea to have as many different sorts of stories as possible or to have one story? Why?

Part 3: How do you think the Gnostic person interprets the idea of the resurrection? Why?

Essay Topic 2

The belief in the resurrection was one that spread because of its political power, according to Pagels.

Part 1: Why do you think the idea of the resurrection was so effective in politics?

Part 2: Do you think that a person has to choose whether they believe the resurrection happened or not? Why?

Part 3: Does it matter to you what faith your elected officials are? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

At a certain point in time, the idea of Martyrdom become something that was accepted in the Christian world.

Part 1: Why do you think the being a martyr is so acceptable?

Part 2: Do you believe that being a martyr for your faith is an honorable thing? Why or why not?

Part 3: Do you think that martyrdom is something which should be celebrated? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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