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Gospel of Nicodemus
Excerpt from the Lexham Bible Dictionary, the most advanced Bible dictionary.
A noncanonical gospel that claims to be Nicodemus’ account of the passion of Jesus (John 3:1; 7:50–52; 19:39). The first half of the Gospel of Nicodemus (chapters 1–16) is the Acts of Pilate, which forms the central text of the Pilate Cycle. The other half of the Gospel of Nicodemus (chapters 17–27) is Christ’s Descent into Hell (Descensus Christi ad Inferos), a text describing Jesus’ victory over darkness during the time between his death and resurrection. However, this text was never widely authoritative in the early church period and does not appear in any ancient Bibles or canonical lists.Parts of the Gospel of Nicodemus are thought to be written as early as the fourth century (Klauck, Apocryphal Gospels, 97). This text inspired the medieval “harrowing of hell” legends.
Dictionaries
The Lexham Bible Dictionary
Gospel of Nicodemus
Gospel of Nicodemus A noncanonical gospel that claims to be Nicodemus’ account of the passion of Jesus (John 3:1; 7:50–52; 19:39). The first half of the Gospel of Nicodemus (chapters 1–16) is the Acts of Pilate, which forms the central text of the Pilate Cycle. The other half of the Gospel of Nicodemus
Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible
Nicodemus, Gospel Of
Nicodemus, Gospel ofThe name ascribed by Latin traditions of the 13th–14th centuries c.e. to the Acts of Pilate.
The Zondervan Encyclopedia of the Bible, Volume 4, M–P
Nicodemus, Gospel of (Writing)
Nicodemus, Gospel of. A passion gospel consisting of two parts: the Acts of Pilate, and the Descent of Christ to the Lower World. The name Gospel of Nicodemus was given to it no earlier than the 13th cent. For discussion, see Pilate, Acts of.
The New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, Volumes 1–5
NICODEMUS, GOSPEL OF
NICODEMUS, GOSPEL OF. According to the Latin tradition after the 14th cent., the name for the Acts of Pilate. See PILATE, ACTS OF.