The Revelation of Peter is a Nag Hammadi Scripture text (Codex VII) also entitled by some as the Apocalypse of Peter. It was found in 1945 in the desert near Nag Hammadi, Egypt. This differs from a different text also entitled Apocalypse of Peter that was found in Upper Egypt in 1886.
The Revelation of Peter contains a direct conversation between Jesus and Peter. This lost Gospel text is thought to have been written in the late 1st Century or early 2nd Century, as were many other Nag Hammadi texts. Below is a modern-English translation.
The Revelation of Peter
1. It was three hundred years after the completion of the covenant of the tenth column. The Savior sat in the temple, being completely fulfilled with the eternal nature of the Supreme Being.
2. He told me, “Peter, blessed are those who serve the LORD, for they are greater than the heavens. Through me, He revealed life to those who live here.
3. “Then I advised those who have a strong foundation to hear my teachings regarding the difference between devotion and the negligence of scripture.
4. “This arises from the pinnacle of teachings that maintain the Absolute Truth.
5. “Those people were enlightened by the kindness of one who was hunted down by the institutions. But they didn’t find him, nor was he mentioned among any of the lineages of prophets.
6. “He then appeared among the like-minded people as the Servant of Humanity, greatly exalted in the heavens.
7. “Yet you, Peter, have become perfect on account of your relationship with me – the one who chose you. For as indicated by your name, I have formed a foundation for the vestige of whom I called to knowledge.
8. “Therefore, be strong until the semblance of devotion [text missing] by the one who initially called you. He called you to come to know Him in a practical way. Because the persecution happened to the flesh of his hands and feet. And the crowning by those of the material world against the radiance of his being, which they delivered for the reward of honor, as he admonished you three times that night.”
9. Then as he said this, I saw the priests and the people running towards us with stones, as if they would kill us. I feared we were going to die.
10. Then he told me, “Peter, I have said to you many times that they are blind, and have no guidance.
11. “If you want to understand their blindness, cover your eyes with your hands and robe, and tell me what you see.”
12. Yet when I had done this, I didn’t see anything. I said, “No one can see this way.”
13. Then he told me, “Do it again.”
14. Then within me came reverence with joy, because I saw a new light greater than the daylight. The light then descended upon the Savior.
15. Then I told him what I saw. He instructed me again, “Put your hands to your ears and hear what the priests and the people are saying.”
16. Then I heard the priests as they sat with the scribes. The crowd began shouting loudly.
17. After he heard me say these things, he told me, “Perk your ears and listen to what they are saying.”
18. Then I listened again, “They are praising you outwardly.”
19. Then after I said this, the Savior said, “I have told you they are blind and deaf.
20. “Now listen to what I am saying to you privately, and remember it. Don’t tell this to the people of this society. For in this society they will blaspheme you due to their being in ignorance. Yet if they were aware, they would glorify you.
21. “For there are many who accept our teachings from the beginning. Then they will turn from the error of their ways by doing the will of the LORD because they want to please Him.
22. “Then in His wisdom, He will reveal them to be the servants of the Teaching.
23. “Yet those who become entwined with them will become their captives because they do not see. Then the innocent pure person will be turned over to the merchant of death and the sanctuary of those who glorify the anointed of a future restoration. And they will glorify those who propagate lies, and they will chase you.
24. “Then they will attach themselves to the account of a dead man in hopes of becoming purified.
25. “Yet they will become overwhelmingly polluted. They will fall on account of their misdeeds into the embrace of a wicked cheating man with a stifling dogma. And they will follow without scripture.
26. “For some of them will denounce the Truth and put forth a wicked teaching. Then they will say wicked things about each other.
27. “Some will be accounted for by those who take refuge in the rulers – of a man and naked woman of many forms and varieties of suffering.
28. “And those who speak about these things will inquire about dreams. Then if they say a dream came from the wicked to accommodate their misdeeds, they will receive affliction instead of virtue.
29. “For wickedness cannot produce good fruit. Because what is produced is like its source. Not every soul is of the truth nor of immortality.
30. “For every soul in this society has, in our perspective, been ordained to die because it is enslaved eternally, as such a soul was created to serve its own desires. These souls are destined for the eternal destruction from which they have come. They love the material creatures that arose with them.
31. “Yet Peter, the immortal souls are not like them. But certainly, until the time of death comes, the immortal will resemble the mortal. Yet it won’t reveal its immortal nature, being focused upon immortality, and with faith, wanting to reject these things.”
32. “Because a wise person knows that one can’t harvest figs from thorn bushes, nor grapes from thistles. A thing will always remain in the state from which it comes. Something in an abominable state will become destructive for the soul – resulting in death.
33. “Yet one who takes shelter in the Eternal One who is the Source of Life and the Tree of Immortality will become like that.
34. “Thus, everything that exists won’t dissolve into something that doesn’t exist. For the deaf and the blind will join their own kind.
35. “The others can depart from wicked words and secrets that mislead. Those who do not know the secrets will speak of what they don’t know. Yet they will brag that the secret of Truth is solely theirs.
36. “Then in their arrogance, they will embrace pride, pledging their enviousness of the immortal soul. For every authority, principality and ruler over many lifetimes seeks to join them within the dimension of the material world.
37. “As such, those who don’t will be forgotten by those that do. This is so they might glorify the demigods who are not saved and have forgotten who they are. Nor have they been guided on the path in hopes they will become immortal.
38. “For if the immortal soul is guided by speculative thought, they will immediately be accompanied by those who mislead others.
39. “Many others who oppose Truth, being messengers of wrongdoing, establish their misdeeds and rules against my pure contemplations. As if they can only see from a single understanding, that devotion and wickedness originate with the same thing.
40. “They conduct business with my Teaching. For they will create harsh consequences.
41. “A generation of immortal souls will come and go in vain, until my appearance. For they will surely remain with them.
42. “Because I have forgiven them of the transgressions into which they have fallen due to their adversaries. And I have restored them from their slavery in order to give them freedom.
43. “Some will follow by imitating the remains on the account of the dead man Hermes, the confidant of wickedness, so that the illumination that exists won’t be trusted by those who are humble.
44. “Those of this kind will be laborers who will be cast into the depths of darkness, away from the servants of illumination. For they will neither enter nor will they permit the deliverance of those who enter.
45. “There are still others who believe they will achieve perfect wisdom regarding the assembly of spiritual fellowship between those with a bond of worship. Through these, the eternal bonds are revealed.
46. “This will also reflect in the appearance of a sorority, whose members oppress their brothers as they say, ‘This will bring God’s mercy, since deliverance is achieved through this.’ They do not know the consequences of their rejoicing as they watched the humble ones being imprisoned.
47. “Then there are others who are outside of our fold who call themselves bishops and deacons – as if they received authority from God – yet they bow down before the mandate of the leaders. These people are barren conduits.”
48. Then I said, “I fear that because of what you have told me, certainly the humble are, in our perspective, fakes. After all, there are many who will mislead many others around them and ruin them as they do themselves. Yet when they speak in your name they are believed.”
49. The Savior replied, “For a specified period determined by the proportion of their misdeeds, the humble will be ruled over. But once their misdeeds have been concluded, the eternal soul of immortal knowledge will be renewed and they will rule over those who ruled them.
50. “He will pull out the root of their wrongdoing and will repudiate it in order that it will be exposed for all of its arrogance. These ones will never change, Peter.
51. “Therefore, come on and let us continue to fulfill what pleases the trustworthy LORD. Just consider that those who bring injustice will only humiliate themselves. They can’t touch me.
52. “Peter, you will remain in their midst. But though you are apprehensive, don’t be afraid. They have lost their knowledge because the Unseen One is against them.”
53. When he finished saying this, I thought I saw him being arrested by them. Then I said, “What am I seeing, Master? Is this you whom they are seizing, and are you holding on to me? And who is the one laughing joyfully up on the tree? Is this someone else whose feet and hands they hammer?”
54. The Savior replied, “The one you saw up on the tree, happy and laughing, is the living Jesus. But the one whose hands and feet they drive nails into is his fleshy component – a surrogate becoming humiliated, which became manifest in his likeness. Now look at him and see me.”
55. Then when I looked, I said, “Master, no one is watching. Let’s get out of here.”
56. Yet he replied to me, “I told you to forget about them, because they are blind, and as you see, they don’t realize what they are saying. For they have humiliated the subject of their own fame instead of my servant.”
57. Then I saw someone approaching us who looked like the one who was laughing on the tree. He was imbued with the Holy Spirit and the Savior. Then there appeared a great, transcendent light around them together with a legion of unseen transcendent angels who blessed them. Then I looked at him, and he who glorifies was revealed.
58. Then he told me, “Stay strong, for to you has been given the knowledge of these mysteries, seen through revelation: About the one whom they crucified, the intimate one; about the abode of the wicked, and the vessel of stone they dwell in; about Elohim; about the tree – which are within the scripture.
59. “Yet one who stands with Him is the living Savior, intimately His – whom they arrested but was set free – who remains happy as he sees those who assaulted him are divided among themselves.
60. “He is laughing at their lack of understanding, knowing they were born blind.
61. “That which has the capacity to suffer must remain, because the body is the surrogate. Yet it is my spiritual body that was set free. I am the wise spirit full of illumination. The One you saw approaching is the Complete Wisdom, which is linked with the perfect illumination of my Holy Spirit.
62. “You will present this understanding you have perceived to another people in a different lifetime. Because there is no glory to a person who is not eternal, but only those who were selected from that which is eternal, after showing they accept the One who gives in abundance.
63. “This is why I said, ‘Every person who receives will be given more, and they will receive in abundance. But the one who doesn’t receive – that is, a person of this world who is effectively dead, being derived from the planting of the seed and becoming born, who, if a person from the immortal realm appears, they think they own him – it will be taken away from them and given to the one who does.
64. Therefore, be of courage and don’t be afraid. For I will be with you so that none of your enemies will prevail over you. May peace be upon you – Be strong!”
65. After he spoke these words, I returned to my senses.
The Revelation of Peter