Introduction to the Nag Hammadi Library


Sometimes described as the “Dead Sea Scrolls of Christianity”, the Nag Hammadi Library is a collection of primarily Gnostic Christian texts produced early in the Christian era and re-discovered in 1945 near the town of Nag Hammadi in Egypt. In this course we will read extensive selections of these texts (with the help of secondary sources that put them in context) in an effort to understand and appreciate a puzzling “heretical” form of early Christianity, both in its own right and in relation to orthodox Christianity.  No prior knowledge or experience of any kind is required.

  • The Nag Hammadi Library
  • Hoeller, Gnosticism: New Light on the Ancient Tradition of Inner Knowing
  • Rudolph, Gnosis: The Nature and History of Gnosticism
  • Jonas, The Gnostic Religion
  • New Testament
  • Hebrew Bible