The Nag Hammadi Library

Then, in this aeon, which is the psychic one, the man will come into being who knows the great Power. He will receive (me) and he will know me. He will drink from the milk of the mother, in fact. He will speak in parables; he will proclaim the aeon that is to come, just as he spoke in the first aeon of the flesh, as Noah. Now concerning his words, which he uttered, he spoke in all of them, in seventy-two tongues. And he opened the gates of the heavens with his words. And he put to shame the ruler of Hades; he raised the dead, and he destroyed his dominion.

Then a great disturbance took place. The archons raised up their wrath against him. They wanted to hand him over to the ruler of Hades. Then they recognized one of his followers. A fire took hold of his soul. He (Judas?) handed him over, since no one knew him (Jesus?). They acted and seized him. They brought judgment upon themselves. And they delivered him up to the ruler of Hades. And they handed him over to Sasabek for

nine bronze coins. He prepared himself to go down and put them to shame. Then the ruler of Hades took him. And he found that the nature of his flesh could not be seized, in order to show it to the archons. But he was saying: “Who is this? What is it? His word has abolished the law of the aeon. He is from the Logos of the power of life.” And he was victorious over the command of the archons, and they were not able by their work to rule over him.

The archons searched after that which had come to pass. They did not know that this is the sign of their dissolution, and (that) it is the change of the aeon. The sun set during the day; that day became dark. The evil spirits were troubled. And after these things he will appear ascending. And the sign of the aeon that is to come will appear. And the aeons will dissolve.

And those who would know these things that were discussed with them, will become blessed. And they will reveal them, and they will become blessed, since they will come to know the truth. For you have found rest in the heavens.

Then many will follow him, and they will labor in their birthplaces. They will go about; they will write down his words according to (their) desire.

Behold, these aeons have passed. What size is the water of the aeon that has dissolved? What dimensions do aeons have? How will men prepare themselves, and how will they be established, and how will they become indestructible aeons?

But at first, after his preaching – it is he who proclaims the second aeon, and the first. And the first aeon perished in the course of time. He made the first aeon, going about in it until it perished, while preaching one hundred and twenty years in number. This is the perfect number that is highly exalted. He made the border of the West desolate, and he destroyed the East. Then your seed and those who wish to follow our great Logos and his proclamation – […]

Then the wrath of the archons burned. They were ashamed of their dissolution. And they fumed and were angry at the life. The cities were <overturned>; the mountains dissolve. The archon came, with the archons of the western regions, to the East, i.e., that place where the Logos appeared at first. Then the earth trembled, and the cities were troubled. Moreover, the birds ate and were filled with their dead. The earth mourned together with the inhabited world; they became desolate.

Then when the times were completed, then wickedness arose mightily even until the final end of the Logos. Then the archon of the western regions arose, and from the East he will perform a work, and he will instruct men in his wickedness. And he wants to nullify all teaching, the words of true wisdom, while loving the lying wisdom. For he attacked the old, wishing to introduce wickedness and to put on dignity. He was incapable, because the defilement of his garments is great. Then he became angry. He appeared and desired to go up and to pass up to that place.

Then the appointed time came and drew near. And he changed the commands. Then the time came until the child had grown up. When he had come to his maturity, then the archons sent the imitator to that man in order that they might know our great Power. And they were expecting from him that he would perform for them a sign. And he bore great signs. And he reigned over the whole earth and all those who are under heaven. He placed his throne upon the end of the earth, for “I shall make you god of the world”. He will perform signs and wonders. Then they will turn from me, and they will go astray.

Then those men who will follow after him will introduce circumcision. And he will pronounce judgment upon those who are from the uncircumcision, who are the (true) people. For in fact he sent many preachers beforehand, who preached on his behalf.

When he has completed the established time of the kingdom of the earth, then the cleansing of the souls will come, since wickedness is stronger than you. All the powers of the sea will tremble and dry up, And the firmament will not pour down dew. The springs will cease. The rivers will not flow down to their springs. And the waters of the springs of the earth will cease. Then the depths will be laid bare and they will open. The stars will grow in size, and the sun will cease.

And I shall withdraw with everyone who will know me. And they will enter into the immeasurable light, (where) there is no one of the flesh nor the wantonness of the first to seize them. They will be unhampered (and) holy, since nothing drags them down. I myself protect them, since they have holy garments, which the fire cannot touch, nor darkness nor wind nor a moment, so as to cause one to shut the eyes.

Then he will come to destroy all of them. And they will be chastised until they become pure. Moreover their period, which was given to them to have power, which was apportioned to them, (is) fourteen hundred and sixty years. When the fire has consumed them all, and when it does not find anything else to burn, then it will perish by its own hand. Then the […] will be completed […] the second power […] the mercy will come […] through wisdom […]. Then the firmaments will fall down into the depth. Then the sons of matter will perish; they will not be, henceforth.

Then the souls will appear, who are holy through the light of the Power, who is exalted, above all powers, the immeasurable, the universal one, I and all those who will know me. And they will be in the aeon of beauty of the aeon of judgment, since they are ready in wisdom, having given glory to him who is in the incomprehensible unity; and they see him because of his will, which is in them. And they all have become as reflections in his light. They all have shone, and they have found rest in his rest.

And he will release the souls that are being punished, and they will come to be in purity. And they will see the saints and cry out to them, “Have mercy on us, O Power who art above all powers!” For […] and in the tree of iniquity that exists […] to him their eyes. And they do not seek him because they do not seek us, nor do they believe us, but they acted according to the creation of the archons and its other rulers. But we have acted

according to our birth of the flesh, in the creation of the archons, which gives law. We also have come to be in the unchangeable aeon.

The Concept of Our Great Power

Selection made from James M. Robinson, ed., The Nag Hammadi Library, revised edition. HarperCollins, San Francisco, 1990.


The Nag Hammadi Library

The Dialogue of the Savior


Translated by Stephen Emmel

The Savior said to his disciples, “Already the time has come, brothers, for us to abandon our labor and stand at rest. For whoever stands at rest will rest forever. And I say to you, be always above […] time […] you […] be afraid of […] you […] anger is fearful […] arouse anger […] but since you have […] they accepted these words concerning it with fear and trembling, and it set them up with governors, for from it nothing was forthcoming. But when I came, I opened the path, and I taught them about the passage which they will traverse, the elect and solitary, who have known the Father, having believed the truth and all the praises while you offered praise.

“So when you offer praise, do so like this: Hear us, Father, just as you heard your only- begotten son, and received him, and gave him rest from any […] You are the one whose power […] your armor […] is […] light […] living […] touch […] the word […] repentance […] life […] you. You are the thinking and the entire serenity of the solitary. Again: Hear us just as you heard your elect. Through your sacrifice, these will enter; through their good works, these have saved their souls from these blind limbs, so that they might exist eternally. Amen.

“I will teach you. When the time of dissolution arrives, the first power of darkness will come upon you. Do not be afraid and say “Behold! The time has come!” But when you see a single staff … (3 lines indecipherable) … understand […] the work […] and the governors […] come upon you […]. Truly, fear is the power […]. So if you are going to be afraid of what is about to come upon you, it will engulf you. For there is not one among them who will spare you or show you mercy. But in this way, look at the […] in it, since you have mastered every word on earth. It […] take you up to the […] place where there is no rule […] tyrant. When you […] you will see those who […] and also […] tell you […]

the reasoning power […] reasoning power […] place of truth […] but […]. But you […]

truth, this […] living […] and your joy […]. So […] in order that […] your souls […] lest it […] the word […] raise… (3 lines indecipherable) … For the crossing place is fearful before you. But you, with a single mind, pass it by! For its depth is great; its height is enormous […] single mind […] and the fire […] […] all the powers […] you, they […] and

the powers […] they […][…] soul […] […] in everyone […] you are the […] and […] forget […] son […] and you […][…].”

Matthew said, “How […][…]?”

The Savior said “[…] the things inside you […] will remain, you […].”

Judas said, “Lord […] the works […] these souls, these […], these little ones, when […] where will they be? […] the spirit […]?”

The Lord said, “[…] receive them. These do not die, […] they are not destroyed, for they have known their consorts and him who would receive them. For the truth seeks out the

wise and the righteous.”

The Savior said, “The lamp of the body is the mind. As long as the things inside you are set in order, that is, […], your bodies are luminous. As long as your hearts are dark, the luminosity you anticipate […] I have […] I will go […] my word […] I send […].”

His disciples said, “Lord, who is it who seeks, and […] reveals?”

The Lord said to them, “He who seeks […] reveals […].”

Matthew said, “Lord, when I […] and when I speak, who is it who […] and who listens?”

The Lord said, “It is the one who speaks who also listens, and it is the one who can see who also reveals.”

Mary said, “Lord, behold! Whence do I bear the body while I weep, and whence while I [laugh]?”

The Lord said, “[…] weeps on account of its works […] remain and the mind laughs

[…][…] spirit. If one does not […] darkness, he will be able to see […]. So I tell you […] light is the darkness […] stand in […] not see the light […] the lie […] they brought them from […]. You will give […] and […] exist forever. […][…] ever. Then all the powers which are above, as well as those below, will […] you. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth over the end of all these things.”

Judas said, “Tell us, Lord, what was […] before the heaven and the earth existed.”

The Lord said, “There was darkness and water, and spirit upon water. And I say to you […] what you seek after […] inquire after […] within you […] the power and the mystery […] spirit, for from […] wickedness […] come […] mind […] behold […][…].”

[…] said, “Lord, tell us where the […] is established, and where the true mind exists.”

The Lord said, “The fire of the spirit came into existence […] both. On this account, the […] came into existence, and the true mind came into existence within them […]. If someone sets his soul up high, then he will be exalted.”

And Matthew asked him, “[…] took […], it is he who […].”

The Lord said, “[…] stronger than […] you […] to follow you and all the works […] your hearts. For just as your hearts […], so […] the means to overcome the powers above, as well as those below […]. I say to you, let him who possesses power renounce it and repent. And let him who […] seek and find and rejoice.”

Judas said, “Behold! I see that all things exist […] like signs upon […]. On this account did they happen thus.”

The Lord said, “When the Father established the cosmos, he […] water from it, and his

Word came forth from it, and it inhabited many […]. It was higher than the path […] surrounds the entire earth […] the collected water […] existing outside them. […] the water, a great fire encircling them like a wall. […] time once many things had become

separated from what was inside. When the […] was established, he looked […], and said to it, ‘Go, and […] from yourself, in order that […] be in want from generation to generation, and from age to age.’ Then it cast forth from itself fountains of milk and fountains of honey, and oil and wine and good fruits, and sweet flavor and good roots, in order that it might not be deficient from generation to generation, and from age to age. And it is above […] standing […] its beauty […] and outside there was a great light, powerful […] resemble it, for it […] rules over all the aeons above and below. […] was taken from the fire […] it was scattered in the […] above and below. All the works which depend on them, it is they […] over the heaven above and over the earth below. On them depend all the works.”

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