The Many Faces of Christ.
The Thousand-Year Story of the Survival and Influence of the Lost Gospels

Jenkins Ph.

We are often told that early Christianity comprised a vast multitude of strange sects, and that this diversity was wiped out in the fourth century when the Church canonized the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. But how, then, can we explain that the scene of the baby Jesus in the manger — the central image of the Christmas story—shows the influence of the “Protevangelium,” or that our belief that the Serpent in Eden is Satan comes from another so-called Lost Gospel?

In this book, Philip Jenkins offers a revelatory new history of Christianity, showing that hundreds of these supposedly lost alternate gospels were never suppressed by the early Church, but instead remained widely influential until the Reformation — and continue to play major roles in Christian belief to this day. An authoritative account of the formation of the biblical canon and the evolution of modern faith, Jenkins restores the “Lost Gospels” to their proper place in history and in belief.