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The Relationship of ‘The Odes of Solomon’ to Jesus

A Bible and Beyond Discussion

Monday, October 26, 2020
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Presenter: Dr. Hal Taussig
Host: Shirley Paulson, PhD

The Relationship of ‘The Odes of Solomon’ to Jesus

Date: Monday, October 26, 2020
Facebook Event Page
Presenter: Dr. Hal Taussig

This Monday Textual Study introduces a moving and fascinating set of documents, closely connected to Jesus, from the first and second centuries.  While the documents, discovered for the first time in the early 20th century, are capable of deepening our understanding, they also promise to be wildly confusing.  Despite being called ‘The Odes of Solomon,’ implying directly that the songs (odes) are from King Solomon of Israel about a thousand years before Jesus, many of the songs in this text (if not all of them) are clearly about Jesus.  Both carbon dating and historical examination indicate that the songs are from the early years of the Christ people in the first centuries CE. One of the strangest riddles and some of the most beautiful poems are at hand as we study five of them. Click here to access a page with translations of odes 16, 36, 19, and 8.

Ode 16

Just as the labor of the farmer is the plowshare and the labor of the helmsman is the steering of the boat, so also is my labor the praise of the Lord through his psalms.

My trade and my service are in his odes, because his love has fed my heart and he has poured forth his fruits upon my lips.

Indeed, my love is the Lord; because of this, I sing to him.

For I am fortified by his hymns, and I have faith in him.

I will open my mouth and his Spirit will relate through me: the glory and beauty of the Lord.

The work of his hands and the plowing of his fingers to the multitude of his mercies and the truth of his word.

For the word of the lord examines whatever is invisible, and which reveals his thought.

He is the one who expanded the earth, confined the waters in the sea, extended the heaven, and fixed the stars, established creation and set her up and then rested from his labors.

He created them to run according to their courses, and to perform their deeds, and they do not know to cease or to fail.

And the store of darkness is the night.

Therefore he made the sun for the day, so that there would be light and night brings darkness over the face of the earth.

So their reception, one of the other, fulfills the beauty of God.

There is nothing outside of the Lord, because the Lord was before anything else was.

Even the generations were already in his word, and the thought of his heart.

Splendor and honor to this name.


Ode 36

I rested on the Spirit of the Lord, and she raised me up to the high place and she caused me to stand on my feet in the high place of the Lord before his fullness and splendor, while I was proclaiming in the preparation of his odes.

She gave birth to me before the face of the Lord.

And while I was the Child of Humanity, I was called the Light, the Child of God, because I was glorified among the glorious, and the first among the great ones.

For she made me according to the greatness of the Most High and he renewed me according to his renewal, and anointed me from his fullness.

I became one of those who are near him and my mouth was opened like a cloud of dew and my heart gushed forth a fountain of justice.

And my access was through peace, and I was set up in the Spirit of Instruction.


Ode 19

A cup of milk was offered to me, and I drank it in the sweetness of the joy of the Lord.

The cup is the Son, and the Father is the one who has been milked, and the holy Spirit milked him.

Because his breasts had become full, and it was not desired that his milk would be released without purpose.

The holy Spirit opened her chest, and mixed the milk of the two breasts of the Father.

She gave the mixture to the generation when they were ignorant, and the ones who received it, they are in the fullness of the Right Hand.

The womb of the virgin caught it, and she conceived and gave birth so the virgin became a Mother with much love.

And she brought forth and bore a child, but without pain for her.

Because she was, it was not without purpose.

And she did not seek a midwife, because he sustained her.

She gave birth like a strong person with will, she bore according to the manifestation, and acquired through much majesty.

She loved with redemption, guarded in kindness, and demonstrated in greatness.


Ode 8

Open; open your hearts to the dancing joy of the Lord and let your love abound from heart to lips: in order to bring forth fruits for the Lord, a holy life, and to speak with attention in his light.

Stand and be restored, all of you who were once flattened.

Speak, you who were silent, because your mouth has been opened.

From now on be lifted up, you who were destroyed  since your justice has been raised.

For the Right Hand of the Lord is with you all, and she will be a helper for you all.

Peace was prepared for you, before what may be your war.

[Christ speaks]

Here the word of truth, and receive the knowledge of the Most High.

Your flesh may not understand what I say to you, nor your clothing what I show to you.

Keep my mystery, you who are kept by it.

Keep my faith, you who are kept by it.

Recognize my knowledge, you who, in truth, know me.

Love me with gentleness, those who love.

For I do not turn my face from my own, because I recognize them

Even from before, when they did not yet exist, I knew them, and I imprinted a seal on their faces.

I fashioned their members, and I presented my own breasts for them, so they could drink my own consecrated milk, that through it they might live.

I am delighted by them, and am not confused by them.

For they are my own creation, the force of my thoughts.

Who therefore will stand against my creation?

Moreover, who is defiant to them?

I willed and formed both mind and heart, and they are my own, by my own Right Hand I have written my chosen things.

My justice goes before them, they will not be separated from my name because it is with them.

[Odist speaks]

Seek and satiate them, and remain in the compassion of the Lord, those who are loved by the beloved, and those who are protected by the one who lives, and who are released by the one who was broken.

You shall be found without corruption in all the generations, on account of the name of your Father.