The name of 2 different apocryphal, apocalyptic works reporting heavenly journeys of the Apostle Paul.
The Latin Apocalypse of Paul offers promise and warning, utilizing extensive tours of paradise and hell. Heaven is a wonderful place with rivers of honey, milk, wine, and oil for the saved, especially ascetics.Paul meets various heroes of OT and NT stories. He also tours the land of the future millennium. In hell, he witnesses the vividly described torments awaiting sinners--boiling fire, worms, torturing angels, and wild animals dismember the fallen--punishments appropriate to their particular sins. Paul successfully intercedes to allow the damned one day's exemption from their torments on Sundays. This was one of the most popular apocryphal books among early Christians.
The Coptic Apocalypse of Paul is a Christian Gnostic work recounting Paul's ascent (with the other apostles) into the tenth heaven, guided by the Holy Spirit in the form of a child. Reincarnation is the punishment of those who failed to obtain the true gnosis. The god of the OT resides in seventh heaven, whereas the true God of Spirit resides in the tenth.
Latin Apocalypse part of the New Testament Apocrypha
Coptic Apocalypse known only from a single codex found at Nag Hammadi
Written under the pseudonym of Paul
Latin Apocalypse: 3rd - 5th century
Tarsus introduction (chs. 1 & 2) claims the book was discovered in 388
Coptic Apocalypse: 2nd / 3rd century
2 Cor 12:2-4
Testament of Abraham 10
Apocalypse of Peter
Biograpical notices from the canonical Pauline epistles
Gnostic speculation (e.g., identifying the God of the OT as the Demiurge)
The Latin Apocalypse translates a lost original Greek apocalypse.
Translations exist in Greek (abridged), Armenian, Old Russian, Syriac, and Coptic
The Coptic (Achmimic) Apocalypse is not a translation of the Latin (or its original Greek) Apocalypse.
Notes prepared by Kelly Herron (Senior Communications Major)
for the Wesley Center for Applied Theology at Northwest Nazarene University
Copyright 2000 by the Wesley Center for Applied Theology
Text may be freely used for personal or scholarly purposes or mirrored on other web sites, provided the notice below the horizontal line is left intact. Any use of this material for commercial purposes of any kind is strictly forbidden without the express permission of the Wesley Center at Northwest Nazarene University, Nampa, ID 83686. Contact the webmaster for permission or to report errors.