To high light the importance of this gospel some scholars have labeled it as the fifth Gospel.
The manuscript of the Coptic text, of the Gospel of Thomas was found in 1945, at Nag Hammadi. It was first published in a photographic edition in 1956. Three years later, in 1959, this was followed by the first critical edition (with English translation). In 1977 the James M. Robinson translation was first published, as part of The Nag Hammadi Library in English, containing all of the texts found at Nag Hammadi. The Gospel of Thomas has since then been translated and annotated in many languages.
The Holy Quran states about revelations to Jesus:
“Allah has sent down to thee (Muhammad) the Book containing the truth and fulfilling that which precedes it; and He sent down the Torah and the Gospel.” (Al Quran 3:4)
The Holy Quran also states:
“Say, ‘O People of the Book! you stand on nothing until you observe the Torah and the Gospel and what has now been sent down to you from your Lord.’ And surely, what has been sent down to thee from thy Lord will increase many of them in rebellion and disbelief; so grieve not for the disbelieving people.” (Al Quran 5:69)
This Gospel may be the closest survivor of the revelations to Jesus, may peace be on him, which the Holy Quran labels as Injil. Please read this knol along with the knol about the Q document, as there are several parallels between the two:
This Gospel does not have any stories, especially no mention of trial, passion, crucifixion or resurrection. It is a collection of the sayings of Jesus, may peace be on him. This Gospel does not link salvation to resurrection of Jesus.
Many of its sayings are also present in the synoptic Gospels. The sayings in the Gospel of Thomas are shorter and pithier, so scholars argue that they may be the original sayings and as they were copied and narrated, scribes added to them and we got the longer versions.
According to Prof. Bart Ehrman, “In a general way, Thomas appears very much like the lost source that scholars have long called ‘Q’ (for Quelle, the German word for ‘source,’ a written account of Jesus’s sayings available to Mathew and Luke).
Elaine Pagels writes that the Gospel of Thomas was written around the same time as Johns’.Unlike the Gospel of John, the Gospel of Thomas does not aim at giving divine status to Jesus. Elaine Pagels writes:
This is why some historians, having compared the Gospel of Mark (written 68 to 70 C.E.) with the gospels of Matthew and Luke (c. 80 to 90), and then with that of John (c. 90 to 100), have thought that John’s gospel represents a transition from a lower to a higher Christology-an increasingly elevated view of Jesus. These historians point out that such views developed from the first century on and culminated in phrases like those enshrined in the Nicene Creed, which proclaim Jesus to be “God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God. Yet Christian teaching about Jesus does not follow a simple evolutionary pattern. Although John’s formulations have virtually defined orthodox Christian doctrine for nearly two thousand years, they were’ not universally accepted in his own time. And while the claims of Jesus’ divinity by Paul and John surpass those of Mark, Luke, and Matthew, Thomas’s gospel, written perhaps around the same time as John’s, takes similar language to mean something quite different. Because the Gospel of Thomas diverges from the more familiar pattern found in John, let us look at it first. … According to Thomas, when Jesus asks, “Who am I?” he receives not one but three responses from various disciples. Peter first gives, in effect, the same answer as he does in the gospels of Mark and Matthew: “You are like a righteous messenger,” a phrase that may interpret the Hebrew term messiah (“anointed one”) for the Greek-speaking audience whom Thomas addresses. The disciple Matthew answers next: “You are like a wise philosopher”-a phrase perhaps intended to convey the Hebrew term rabbi (“teacher”) in language any Gentile could understand. (This disciple is the one traditionally believed to have written the Gospel of Matthew, which, more than any other, depicts Jesus as a rabbi.) But when a third disciple, Thomas himself, answers Jesus’ question, his response confounds the other two: “Master, my mouth is wholly incapable of saying whom you are like.” Jesus replies, “I am not your master, because you have drunk, and have become drunk from the same stream which I measured out.” (verse 13) Jesus does not deny what Peter and Matthew have said but implies that their answers represent inferior levels of understanding. Then he takes Thomas aside and reveals to him alone three sayings so secret that they cannot be written down, even in this gospel filled with ‘secret sayings.’
It has been stated that the Gospel of Thomas could have been very popular in Egypt but without the backing of Rome, it could not have succeeded, as later developments showed. The Gospel of Thomas like other gospels is written in a style of exaggeration and at times to make political points fordifferent followers of Jesus. For example the verse 12 states, “The disciples said to Jesus, ‘We know that you are going to leave us. Who will be our leader?’ Jesus said to them, ‘No matter where you are you are to go to James the Just, for whose sake heaven and earth came into being.'” 
Encyclopedia Britannica paints an ambiguous picture of the Gospel of Thomas, I am quoting the materials that are helpful, in getting a unified image, looking through the lens of Islamic understanding. It states:
“The Gospel of Thomas, has attracted much attention. A ‘sayings’ gospel (114 sayings attributed to Jesus, without narrative), it is grounded in Gnosticism, the philosophical and religious movement of the 2nd century ad that stressed the redemptive power of esoteric knowledge acquired by divine revelation. For Thomas, salvation consists of self-knowledge, and baptism results in restoration to the primordial state—man and woman in one person, like Adam before the creation of Eve (saying 23). Spiritual reversion to this state meant that nakedness need not result in shame; one passage (saying 37) allows us to suspect that the early Christian followers of the Gospel of Thomas took off their garments and trampled on them as part of their baptismal initiation.” 
The main highlight of the Gospel of Thomas is that knowledge is what is needed for salvation and not a belief in the resurrection of Jesus, may peace be on him. The very first two lines of Gospel of Thomas, lead us away from the resurrectionmyth of present day Christianity and gives a concept of salvation that is very much in keeping with the Islamic ideals and principles.These read:
“These are the secret sayings that the living Jesus spoke and Didymos Judas Thomas recorded.And he said, ‘Whoever discovers the interpretation of these sayings will not taste death.'”
Elaine Pagels writes in the introduction section of her book, the Gnostic Gospels:
Orthodox Jews and Christians insist that a chasm separates humanity from its creator: God is wholly other. But some of the gnostics who wrote these gospels contradict this: self knowledge is knowledge of God; the self and the divine are identical. Second, the ‘living Jesus’ of these texts speaks of illusion and enlightenment, not of sin and repentance, like the Jesus of the New Testament. Instead of coming to save us from sin, he comes as a guide who opens access to spiritual understanding. But when the disciple attains enlightenment, Jesus no longer serves as his spiritual master: the two have become equal–even identical. Third, orthodox Christians believe that Jesus is Lord and Son of God in a unique way: he remains forever distinct from the rest of humanity whom he came to save. Yet the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas relates that as soon as Thomas recognizes him, Jesus says to Thomas that they have both received their being from the same source: Jesus said, ‘I am not your master. Because you have drunk, you have become drunk from the bubbling stream which I have measured out. … He who will drink from my mouth will become as I am: I myself shall become he, and the things that are hidden will be revealed to him.’ (the Gospel of Thomas13 & 108) Does not such teaching-the identity of the divine and human, the concern with illusion and enlightenment, the founder who is presented not as Lord, but as spiritual guide–sound more Eastern than Western? Some scholars have suggested that if the names were changed, the ‘living Buddha’ appropriately could say what the Gospel of Thomas attributes to the living Jesus. 
Many of the verses of the Gospel of Thomas rhyme with the teachings of Islam and sufism, for example:
“Jesus said, ‘… I found them all drunk, and I did not find any of them thirsty. My soul ached for the children of humanity, because they are blind in their hearts and do not see, for they came into the world empty, and they also seek to depart from the world empty.
But meanwhile they are drunk. When they shake off their wine, then they will change their ways.'” (Verse 28)
There is no implication for original sin or salvation through faith alone in any suicidal mission of Jesus Christ. The author of Gospel of Thomas does not mention a single word about resurrection of Jesus but emphasizes salvation in enlightenment by understanding the teachings and sayings of Jesus.
I am self appointed ambassador to all Christians in the West and have a collection of100 knols on different aspects of Christianity. Why to those only in the West?The short answer is that those in the East are not free to think for themselves, they will follow the lead from the West:
Some of the following description is from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, my commentaryand highlights arein red:
Scholars generally fall into one of two main camps: an “early camp” favoring a date for the “core” of between the years 50 and 100, before or approximately contemporary with the composition of the canonical gospels and a “late camp” favoring a date in the 2nd century, after composition of the canonical gospels. 
The early camp
Those who argue that Thomas dates from the first century use a variety of arguments. In my Judgment the early camp has better arguments.
Intertextuality with John’s gospel
One of the mainarguments for the early date is that there seems to be a strong interplay between the Gospel of Johnand the
logiaof Thomas. Numerous parallels between the two suggest that Thomas’logiapreceded John’s work, and the latter is making a point-by-point riposte to Thomas, either in real or mock conflict. This seeming dialectic has been pointed out by several researchers, including Richard Valentasis, and later by the popular writer Elaine PagelsinBeyond Belief The Secret Gospel of Thomas. Several verses in the Gospel of John seem best understood as responses to a Thomasine community and its beliefs. Pagels argues, for example, that John’s gospel makes two references to the inability of the world to recognize the divine light.  In contrast, several of Thomas’ sayings refer to the light born ‘within’.  John 1:9 (“…Light that lights every man born into the world”) acknowledges Thomas’ idea of the Light within. John also follows Thomas by personifying the Light as Jesus. John 14:16 (“I am the way, the truth, and the life…) and chapter 17, which emphasizes salvation via thelogosof Christ, expands on Thomas’ logion 1. Intertextuality and acknowledgment of Thomas’ priority seems to be in play.
John’s gospel is the only canonical one that gives Thomas a dramatic role and spoken part. In the famous story of
Doubting Thomas, for example, John seems to denigrate or ridicule a rival text and author; however, this may be entirely tongue-in-cheek, as a sort of inside joke. In another apparent contrast, John’s text matter-of-factly presents a bodily resurrection as if this is asine qua nonof the faith; in contrast, Thomas’ insights about the spirit-and-body are more nuanced.  For Thomas, resurrection seems more a cognitive event and spiritual attainment, one even involving a certain discipline or asceticism. Again, an apparently denigrating portrayal in the “Doubting Thomas” story may either be taken literally, or as a kind of mock “comeback” to Thomas’ logia: not as an outright censuring of Thomas, but an improving gloss. After all, Thomas’ thoughts about the spirit and body are really not so different from those which John has presented elsewhere.  John portrays Thomas as physically touching the risen Jesus, inserting fingers and hands into his body, and ending with a shout. Pagels interprets this as signifying one-upmanship by John, who is forcing Thomas to acknowledge Jesus’ bodily nature. She writes that “…he shows Thomas giving up his search for experiential truth – his ‘unbelief’ – to confess what John sees as the truth…”.  The point of these examples is that the text of Thomas must have existed and have gained a following at the time of the writing of John’s Gospel, and the importance of Thomasine logia was great enough that John felt the necessity of weaving them into his own narrative.
According to Elaine Pagels:
Those who wrote stories about various apostles–including John, as well as Peter, Matthew, Thomas, and Mary Magdalene-would often promote their groups’ teachings by claiming that Jesus favored their patron apostle, so that, while John acknowledges Peter as a leader, he insists that ‘the beloved disciple’ surpassed Peter in spiritual understanding. He is aware that other groups make similar claims for other disciples. He seems to know, for example, of Thomas Christians, who claim that their patron apostle, Thomas, understood more than Peter. Though John’s gospel begins by seeming to agree with Thomas about God’s presence in Jesus, by the end John tells three anecdotes about Thomas to show how wrong these Thomas Christians are. John’s gospel begins by recalling, as Thomas does, the opening of the first chapter of Genesis-saying that, since the beginning of time, divine light, ‘the light of all people,’ has shone forth: In the beginning [Gen. 1 :1] was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God. . . what came into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. (John 1:1-4) But John’s next lines suggest that he intends not to complement but to reject Thomas’s claim that we have direct access to God through the divine image within us, for John immediately adds-three times!-that the divine light did not penetrate the deep darkness into which the world has plunged. Though he agrees that, since the beginning of time, the divine light ‘shines into the darkness.’ 
Mark, Matthew, and Luke mention Thomas only as one of ‘the twelve.’ John singles him out as ‘the doubter’-the one who failed to understand who Jesus is, or what he is saying, and rejected the testimony of the other disciples. John then tells how the risen Jesus personally appeared to Thomas in order to rebuke him, and brought him to his knees. From this we might conclude, as most Christians have for nearly two millennia, that Thomas was a particularly obtuse and faithless disciple-though many of John’s Christian contemporaries revered Thomas as an extraordinary apostle, entrusted with Jesus’ ‘secret words.’ The scholar Gregory Riley suggests that John portrays Thomas this way for the practical-and polemical-purpose of deprecating Thomas Christians and their teaching. According to John, Jesus praises those ‘who have not seen, and yet believed’ without demanding proof, and rebukes Thomas as ‘faithless’ because he seeks to verify the truth from his own experience. 
In the third episode Jesus even returns after his death to rebuke Thomas. Luke specifies that, after the crucifixion, the risen Jesus appeared to ‘the eleven,’ and Matthew agrees that he appeared to ‘the eleven disciples’ all but Judas Iscariot-. and conferred the power of the holy spirit upon ‘the eleven.’ But John’s account differs. John says instead that Thomas, called ‘the twin’ . . . was not with them when Jesus came. 
This ancient papyrus codex , written in Coptic around the year 100,  is composed of 114 sayings attributed to Jesus . Almost half of these sayings are equal to or resemble those found in the Canonical Gospels , while the other sayings were previously unknown. Its place of composition may have been Syria , where Thomasine traditions were strong.  .
The introduction states:
These are the hidden words that the living Jesus spoke and Didymos Judas Thomas wrote them down. Didymus ( Greek ) and Thomas ( Aramaic ) both mean “twin”. Scholars suspect this reference to the Apostle Thomas to be false and the true writer remains unknown.  The document probably originated within a school of early Christians , possibly Gnostics , who claimed Thomas as their founder.
The Gospel of Thomasis very different in tone and structure from other New Testament apocrypha and the four Canonical Gospels . Unlike the canonical Gospels, it is not a narrativeaccount of the life of Jesus; instead, it consists oflogia(wisdom sayings) attributed to Jesus that are often accompanied by short dialogues .  The document lacks references to the crucifixion of Jesus, his resurrection , or the final judgement ; nor does it mention a messianic understanding of Jesus.  The Early Church believed it to be a false gospel. Eusebiuswrote that theGospel of Thomas, is at variance with Apostolicusage, both in the thoughts and the purpose of the things that are related in it. Eusebius also wrote that theGospel of Thomas“is so completely out of accord with true orthodoxy ” that it clearly shows itself to be a “fiction of heretics”. He would not even place it in his category of rejected writings, and said it should be “cast aside” as “absurd” and “impious”. 
Finds and publication
The manuscript of the Coptic text, found in 1945, at Nag Hammadi, is dated at around 340. It was first published in a photographic edition in 1956  . Three years later, in 1959, this was followed by the first critical edition (with English translation).  In 1977 the James M. Robinson translation was first published, as part of The Nag Hammadi Library in English  , containing all of the texts found at Nag Hammadi. The Gospel of Thomas has since then been translated and annotated in many languages. 
The original Coptic manuscript is now the property of the Coptic Museum in Cairo, Egypt, Department of Manuscripts. 
In February, 2010, reproduction of the first hand-written calligraphic manuscript in 1,600 years was completed. This book is derived from a thesis project from California State University at Dominguez Hills.  The reproduction is titled “An Illustrated and Illuminated Manuscript of the Gospel of Thomas.” Written in Uncial and Italic letterforms in both English and Coptic, the manuscript, its gold illuminations and watercolor illustrations were completed in the style of a medieval manuscript by artist and calligrapher, Carol W. Nichols, Quincy, IL. The translation is by Dr. Marvin Meyer of Chapman University.  The reproduced manuscript is the first of its kind since the discovered text circa 350 CE.
Oxyrhynchus papyri fragments
After the Coptic version of the complete text was discovered in 1945 at Nag Hammadi, scholars soon realized that three different Greek text fragments previously found at Oxyrhynchus , also in Egypt, were part of the Gospel of Thomas.  These three papyrus fragments of Thomas date to between 130 – 250 CE. Prior to the Nag Hammadi library discovery, the sayings of Jesus found in Oxyrhynchus were known simply as Logia Iesu . The corresponding Koine Greek fragments of the Gospel of Thomas, found in Oxyrhynchus are:
P.Oxy. 1: fragments of logia 26 through 33, and logia 77 (ordered: 26-30, 77, 31-33).
P.Oxy. 655: fragments of logia 36 through 39. 8 fragments named a through h , whereof f and h have since been lost.
The wording of the Coptic version is not always an exact representation of the earlier Greek Oxyrhynchus texts, and the sayings are ordered differently in one fragment. This fact, along with the quite different wording Hippolytus uses when apparently quoting it (see below), suggests that the Gospel of Thomas “may have circulated in more than one form and passed through several stages of redaction.” 
Although it is still generally assumed that the “Gospel of Thomas” was first composed in Greek, there is growing evidence that the Coptic Nag Hammadi text is a translation from Syriac . On comparing the Greeks fragments from Oxyrhynchus with the fuller Coptic version, Nicholas Perrin argues that the differences can be attributed to the reliance of both on a common Syriac source. 
The earliest surviving written references to the
“[The Naassenes] speak…of a nature which is both hidden and revealed at the same time and which they call the thought-for kingdom of heaven which is in a human being. They transmit a tradition concerning this in the Gospel entitled “According to Thomas,” which states expressly, “The one who seeks me will find me in children of seven years and older, for there, hidden in the fourteenth aeon, I am revealed.”
This appears to be a reference to saying 4 of Thomas, although the wording differs significantly.
Hom. in Luc.1).
Catechesis: “The Manichæans also wrote a Gospel according to Thomas, which being tinctured with the fragrance of the evangelic title corrupts the souls of the simple sort.”  and “Let none read the Gospel according to Thomas: for it is the work not of one of the twelve Apostles, but of one of the three wicked disciples of Manes.” The 5th centuryDecretum Gelasianumincludes “A Gospel attributed to Thomas which the Manichaean use” in its list of heretical books. 
Richard Valantasis writes:
Assigning a date to the Gospel of Thomas is very complex because it is difficult to know precisely to what a date is being assigned. Scholars have proposed a date as early as AD 60 or as late as AD 140, depending upon whether the Gospel of Thomas is identified with the original core of sayings, or with the author’s published text, or with the Greek or Coptic texts, or with parallels in other literature. 
Valantasis and other scholars argue that it is difficult to date Thomas because, as a collection of
logiawithout a narrative framework, individual sayings could have been added to it gradually over time. 
Robert E. Van Voorst states:
Most interpreters place its writing in the second century, understanding that many of its oral traditions are much older. 
Form of the gospel
Theissen and Merz argue the genre of a collection of sayings was one of the earliest forms in which material about Jesus was handed down.  They assert that other collections of sayings, such as the Q document and the collection underlying Mark 4 , were absorbed into larger narratives and no longer survive as independent documents, and that no later collections in this form survive.  Meyer also asserts that the genre of a “sayings collection” is indicative of the first century,  and that in particular the “use of parables without allegorical amplification” seems to antedate the canonical gospels. Maurice Casey has strongly questioned the argument from genre: the “logic of the argument requires that Q and the Gospel of Thomas be also dated at the same time as both the book of Proverbsand the
Independence from Synoptic Gospels
Stevan L. Davies argues that the apparent independence of the ordering of sayings in Thomas from that of their parallels in the synoptics shows that Thomas was most likely not reliant upon the canonical Gospels and probably predated them.  A number of authors argue that when the logia in Thomas do have parallels in the synoptics the version in Thomas often seems closer to the source. Theissen and Merz give sayings 31 and 65 as examples of this.  Koester agrees, citing especially the parables contained in sayings 8, 9, 57, 63, 64 and 65.  In the few instances where the version in Thomas seems to be dependent on the Synoptics, Koester suggests, this may be due to the influence of the person who translated the text from Greek into Coptic. 
Koester also argues that the absence of narrative materials (such as those found in the canonical gospels) in Thomas makes it unlikely that the gospel is “an eclectic excerpt from the gospels of the New Testament”.  He also cites the absence of the eschatological sayings characteristic of Q to show the independence of Thomas from that source. 
Role of James
Albert Hogeterp argues that the Gospel’s saying 12, which attributes leadership of the community to James the Just rather than to Peter, agrees with the description of the early Jerusalem church by Paul in Galatians|2:1-14,  and may reflect a tradition predating AD 70.  Meyer also lists “uncertainty about James the righteous, the brother of Jesus” as characteristic of a first century origin. 
Depiction of Peter and Matthew
In saying 13, Peter and Matthew are depicted as unable to understand the true significance or identity of Jesus. Patterson argues that this can be interpreted as a criticism against the school of Christianity associated with the Gospel of Matthew, and that “[t]his sort of rivalry seems more at home in the first century than later”, when all the apostles had become revered figures. 
Parallel with Paul
According to Meyer, Thomas’s saying 17: “I shall give you what no eye has seen, what no ear has heard and no hand has touched, and what has not come into the human heart”, is strikingly similar to what Paul told the Corinthians he criticizes in 1Corinthians 2:9 . 
Joseph B. Lumpkin makes reference to Thomas’ journey into India. In the books
The Tao of ThomasandThe Gospel of ThomasLumpkin states that the flavor ofThe Gospel of Thomasmay not be Gnostic at all but may instead be a list of sayings penned after Thomas was exposed to the Eastern wisdom found in Asia Minor. If exposure to Eastern mysticism influenced Thomas’ understanding of Jesus’ words the result could be interpreted as Gnosticism. Lumpkin believes that the Gospel of Thomas could have been written prior to the Gospel of Mark. Mark’s writings are seen as the seed document to the other gospels found in the New Testament, but the fact that Thomas does not follow Mark’s pattern may suggest it was written prior to or in isolation from Mark. 
The late camp
The late camp dates
Thomassome time after 100, generally in the mid-2nd century. They generally believe that although the text was composed around the mid-second century, it contains earlier sayings such as those originally found in the New Testament gospels of whichThomaswas in some sense dependent in addition to inauthentic and possibly authentic independent sayings not found in any other extant text.
Dependence on the New Testament Gospels
A number of scholars have pointed out that the sayings in
Thomasreflect conflations and harmonisations dependent on the canonical gospels. For example, saying 10 and 16 appear to contain a redacted harmonisation of Luke 12:49; 51-52 and Matthew 10:34-35. In this case it has been suggested that the dependence is best explained by the author ofThomasmaking use of an earlier harmonised oral tradition based on Matthew and Luke. 
Dependency on Luke’s gospel
Another argument for the late dating of Thomas is that Saying 5 in the original Greek (Papyrus Oxyrhynchus 654) follows Luke’s redactional vocabulary (Luke 8:17) rather than Mark’s vocabulary (Mark 4:22). Since according to the Two Document Hypothesis, widely held by modern New Testament scholars, Luke used the gospel of Mark and a lost Q document to compose his gospel, Thomas, in following Luke’s rather than Mark’s vocabulary, must be subsequent to both Mark and Luke.
Belief in the priority of Thomas over the Synoptic Gospelsis incompatible with the consensus of New Testament scholarship concerning the priority of Mark’s gospel and its redactional modification by Luke. Another saying that employs Luke’s redactional vocabulary rather than following Mark’s vocabulary is Saying 31 in the original Greek (Papyrus Oxyrhynchus 1), where Luke 4:23’s term
dektos(acceptable) is employed rather than Mark 6:4’satimos(without honor). The worddektos(in all its cases and genders) is clearly typical of Luke since it is only employed by him (Luke 4:19; Luke 4:24; Acts 10:35), and never by Mark or the other canonical gospel writers. Thus the Greek Thomas has clearly been at least influenced by Luke’s characteristic vocabulary. 
John P. Meier summarizes scholarly opinion arguing Thomas’ dependence on or harmonizing of the Synoptics. 
A number of scholars argue that Thomas is dependent on Syriac writings, including unique versions of the canonical gospels. They contend that many sayings of the Gospel of Thomas are more similar to Syriac translations of the canonical gospels than their record in the original Greek. Craig A. Evansstates that saying 54 in
Thomas, which speaks of the poor and the kingdom of heaven, is more similar to the Syriac version of Matthew 5:3 than the Greek version of that passage or the parallel in Luke 6:20. 
Klyne Snodgrassnotes that saying 65-66 of
Thomascontaining the Parable of the Wicked Tenantsappears to be dependent on the early harmonisation of Mark and Luke found in the old Syriac gospels. He concludes that, “Thomas, rather than representing the earliest form, has been shaped by this harmonizing tendency in Syria. If theGospel of Thomaswere the earliest, we would have to imagine that each of the evangelists or the traditions behind them expanded the parable in different directions and then that in the process of transmission the text was trimmed back to the form it has in the Syriac Gospels. It is much more likely that Thomas, which has a Syrian provenance, is dependent on the tradition of the canonical Gospels that has been abbreviated and harmonized by oral transmission.” 
Nicholas Perrinargues that
Thomasis dependent on theDiatessaron, which was composed shortly after 172 by Tatian in Syria.  Perrin explains the order of the sayings by translating the extant Coptic translation into what he believes to be the original language, Syriac, in which, according to Perrin, catchwords connect almost every saying together. [ clarification needed ] In Coptic or Greek, catchwords only connect a few of the sayings.  Peter J. Williams analyzed Perrin’s alleged Syriac catchwords and found them implausible.  Robert Shedinger wrote that since Perrin attempts to reconstruct an Old Syriacversion of Thomas without first establishing Thomas’ reliance on theDiatessaron, Perrin’s logic seems circular. 
Lack of apocalyptic themes
Bart Ehrman argues that the historical Jesus was an apocalyptic preacher, and that his apocalyptic beliefs are recorded in the earliest Christian documents: Mark and the authentic Pauline epistles . The earliest Christians believed Jesus would soon return, and their beliefs are echoed in the earliest Christian writings. The Gospel of Thomas proclaims that the Kingdom of God is already present for those who understand the secret message of Jesus, and lacks apocalyptic themes. Because of this, Ehrman argues, The Gospel of Thomas is secondary likely composed by a Gnostic some time in the early second century. 
TheGospel of Thomasand the New Testament Canon
The harsh and widespread reaction to Marcion‘s canon, the first New Testament canon known to have been created, may demonstrate that, by 140, it had become widely accepted that other texts formed parts of the records of the life and ministry of Jesus. Although arguments about some potential New Testament books, such as the
Shepherd of Hermasand Book of Revelation, continued well into the 4th century, four canonical gospels, attributed to Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, were accepted among orthodox Christians at least as early as the mid-2nd century. Tatian’s widely usedDiatessaron, compiled between 160 and 175, utilized the four gospels without any consideration of others. Irenaeus of Lyons wrote in the late 2nd century thatsince there are four quarters of the earth … it is fitting that the church should have four pillars … the four Gospels(Against Heresies, 3.11.8), and then shortly thereafter made the first known quotation from a fourth gospel—the canonical version of the Gospel of John. The late 2nd-century Muratorian fragment also recognizes only the three synoptic gospels and John. Bible scholar Bruce Metzger wrote regarding the formation of the New Testament canon, “Although the fringes of the emerging canon remained unsettled for generations, a high degree of unanimity concerning the greater part of the New Testament was attained among the very diverse and scattered congregations of believers not only throughout the Mediterranean world, but also over an area extending from Britain to Mesopotamia.” 
It should be noted that information about the historical Jesus itself was not a singular criterion for inclusion into the New Testament Canon. Not all of the books that ended up in the New Testament contain information about the historical Jesus nor teachings from the historical Jesus, as evidenced by the Epistles and the book of Revelation.
Gospel of Thomasmay have been excluded from the canon of the New Testament because it was believed:
not to have been written close to the time of Jesus
not to have been written by apostolic authority or was forged in Thomas’ name
not to have been used by multiple churches over a wide geographic range
to be heretical or unorthodox 
not to have been useful or comprehensible
to be secret – or for adepts – as the first sentence of the gospel declares
The philosophy of theGospel of Thomas
In the Thomas gospel, Jesus is a spiritual teacher, and he is offering everyone the opportunity to live (Saying 4) a life that goes beyond death (Saying 1), to become the ruler of their own lives (Saying 2) and thus to know themselves (Saying 3) and their legacy of being the children of “the living Father” (Saying 3). These goals are presented in the image of “entering the Kingdom” by the methodology of insight that goes beyond duality. (Saying 22).
The Gospel of Thomasshows no concern for doctrines such as “God”, “original sin”, “Christ”, “divinity,” etc.
The Gospel of Thomas is mystical and emphasizes a direct and unmediated experience of the truth of life. In Thomas v.108, Jesus said, “Whoever drinks from my mouth will become as I am; I myself shall become that person, and the hidden things will be revealed to him.” Furthermore, salvation is personal and found through spiritual (psychological) introspection. In Thomas v.70, Jesus says, “If you bring forth what is within you, what you have will save you. If you do not bring it forth, what you do not have within you will kill you.” As such, this form of salvation is idiosyncratic and without literal explanation unless read from a psychological perspective related to Self vs. ego . In Thomas v.3, Jesus says,
…the Kingdom of God is inside of you, and it is outside of you. When you come to know yourselves, then you will become known, and you will realize that it is you who are the sons of the living Father. But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty, and it is you who are that poverty.
In the other four gospels, Jesus is frequently called upon to explain the meanings of parables or the correct procedure for prayer. In Thomas v.6, his disciples asked him, “Do you want us to fast? How should we pray? Should we give to charity? What diet should we observe?” For reasons unknown, Jesus’ answer is found in v. 14 and he emphasizes that what is encountered in the world will not defile a person but what comes out from the mouth will. This is just one example in
Thomasin which the hearer’s attention is directed away from objectified judgements of the world to knowing oneself in direct and straighforward manner, which is sometimes called being “as a child” or “a little one” through the unification of our dualistic thinking and modes of objectification. (For example, Sayings 22 and 37) To portray the breaking down of the dualistic perspective Jesus uses the image of fire which consumes all. (See, Sayings 10 and 82).
The teaching of salvation (i.e., entering the Kingdom of Heaven) that is found in
The Gospel of Thomasis neither that of “works” nor of “grace” as the dichotomy is found in the canonical gospels, but what might be called a third way, that of insight. The overriding concern ofThe Gospel of Thomasis to find the light within in order to be a light unto the world. (See for example, Sayings 24, 26
In contrast to the Gospel of John, where Jesus is likened to a (divine and beloved) Lord as in ruler, the Thomas gospel portrays Jesus as more the ubiquitous vehicle of mystical inspiration and enlightenment. In Thomas v. 77 where Jesus said,
I am the light that shines over all things. I am everywhere. From me all came forth, and to me all return.Split a piece of wood, and I am there. Lift a stone, and you will find me there,
In many other respects, the Thomas gospel offers terse yet familiar if not identical accounts of the sayings of Jesus as seen in the synoptic gospels. 
Elaine Pagels, in her book
Beyond Belief, argues that the Thomas gospel at first fell victim to the needs of the early Christian community for solidarity in the face of persecution, then to the will of the Emperor Constantine , who at the First Council of Nicaea in 325, wanted an end to the sectarian squabbling and a universal Christian creed. She goes on to point out that in spite of it being left out of the Catholic canon, being banned and sentenced to burn, many of the mystical elements have proven to reappear perennially in the works of mystics like Jacob Boehme , Teresa of Avila and Saint John of the Cross . She concludes that the Thomas gospel gives us a rare glimpse into the diversity of beliefs in the early Christian community, an alternative perspective to the Johannine gospel .
Importance and author
Gospel of Thomasis regarded by some scholars as one of the most important texts in understanding early Christianity outside the New Testament. It is one of the earliest accounts of the teaching of Jesus outside of the canonical gospels, according to a few scholars, and so is considered a valuable text.  It is further unique in that the gospel is no more than a collection of Jesus’ sayings and parables, and contains no narrative account of his life, which is something that all four canonical gospels include.
No major Christian group accepts this gospel as canonical or authoritative. Nonetheless, it is an important work for scholars working on the Q document , which itself is thought to be a collection of sayings or teachings upon which Matthew and Luke are partly based. Although no copy of Q has ever been discovered, the fact that Thomas is similarly a ‘sayings’ Gospel is taken by some as indication that the early Christians did write collections of the sayings of Jesus, and thus they feel it renders the Q theory more credible. 
Most modern scholars do not consider Apostle Thomas the author of this document and the author remains unknown. J. Menard produced a summary of the academic consensus in the mid-1970s which stated that the gospel was likely a very late text written by a Gnostic author, thus having very little relevance to the study of the early development of Christianity. Scholarly views of Gnosticism and the Gospel of Thomas have since become more nuanced and diverse. 
Mani had three disciple: Thomas, Baddas and Hermas. Let no one read the Gospel according to Thomas. For he is not one of the twelve apostles but one of the three wicked disciples of Mani.
Most scholars consider the
Gospel of Thomasto be a gnostic text, since it was found in a library among others, it contains Gnostic themes, and perhaps presupposes a Gnostic worldview. Others reject this interpretation, becauseThomaslacks the full-blown mythology of Gnosticism as described by Irenaeus of Lyons (ca. 185), and because Gnostics frequently appropriated and used a large “range of scripture from Genesis to the Psalms to Homer, from the Synoptics to John to the letters of Paul.” 
The Gospel of Thomas and the historical Jesus
Some modern scholars believe that the Gospel of Thomas was written independently of the canonical gospels, and therefore, is a useful guide to historical Jesus research.  Scholars may utilize one of a number of critical tools in biblical scholarship , the criterion of multiple attestation, to help build cases for historical reliability of the sayings of Jesus. By finding those sayings in the
Gospel of Thomasthat overlap with Q, Mark, Matthew, Luke, John, and Paul, scholars feel such sayings represent “multiple attestations” and therefore are more likely to come from a historical Jesus than sayings that are only singly attested. 
Gospel of Thomashas been used by Christ myth theory proponents, such as Earl Doherty and Timothy Freke, as evidence that Christianity did not originate with a historical Jesus , but as a Jewish adaptation of the Greek mystery religions . [ citation needed ] The collection of teachings attributed to Jesus represent part of the initiation to the mysteries of their religion. However, this theory of Christian origins is rejected by contemporary scholarship. 
Comparison of TheGospel of Thomasto the New Testament
Gospel of Thomasdoes not refer to Jesus as “Christ”, “Lord”, or “Son of Man” as the New Testament does, but simply as “Jesus.” TheGospel of Thomasalso lacks any mention of Jesus’ birth, baptism, miracles, travels, death, and resurrection. However, over half of the sayings inThomasare similar to sayings and parables found in the canonical gospels. 
Gospel of Thomasdoes not list the canonical twelve apostles and it does not use either this expression or the terms “the twelve” or “the twelve disciples.” It does mention