The critique of the “Parting of the Ways” model of Jewish-Christian relations has paved the way for many new questions. How were the ideas of Christian “separatists” received in different locales? Can we recover other strategies of distinction? This essay explores these questions through a focus on the Gospel of Nicodemus. It argues that this apocryphal gospel functions as a counter-history that challenges the depiction of Jews in the Adversus Iudaeos tradition. Through its narrative, the Gospel of Nicodemus constructs the true “Israel” as a collective identity achieved only through reconciliation between Jews with divergent attitudes toward Jesus. By exploring the efforts of one late antique text to counter memories of Jesus’ death and resurrection that vilified Jews and claimed the church as the true Israel, this essay adds to the emerging picture of the fourth and fifth centuries as a period when interest in delineating Jewish and Christian identities intensified.


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pp. 413-444
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