An exciting new discovery has been made of a very early image of Jesus in Egypt,
The depiction of Christ was found in a tomb wearing what appears to be the crown of thorns.
"Painted on the walls of a mysterious underground stone structure in the ancient Egyptian city of Oxyrhynchus, about 100 miles south of Cairo, the image shows a young man with curly hair and dressed in a short tunic.
“He raises his hand as if making a blessing,” said Egyptologist Josep Padró, who has spent over 20 years excavating sites in the area." This is a very ancient image that has been painted over for thousands of years and could be the Earliest image of Jesus as a Theraputae (Physician) in Egypt .
Philo records that they were "philosophers" (cf. I.2) and speaks specifically about a group that lived on a low hill by the Lake Mareotis close to Alexandria in circumstances resembling lavrite life (cf. III.22), and were "the best" of a kind given to "perfect goodness" that "exists in many places in the inhabited world" (cf. III.21). Philo was unsure of the origin of the name and derives the name Therapeutae/Therapeutides from Greek θεραπεύω in the sense of "cure" or "worship" (cf. I.2).
The term Therapeutae (plural) is Latin, from Philo's Greek plural Therapeutai (Θεραπευταί). The term therapeutes means one who is attendant to the gods although the term, and the related adjective therapeutikos carry in later texts the meaning of attending to heal, or treating in a spiritual or medical sense. The Greek feminine plural Therapeutrides (Θεραπευτρίδες) is sometimes encountered for their female members. The term therapeutae may occur in relation to followers of Asclepius at Pergamon, and therapeutai may also occur in relation to worshippers of Sarapis in inscriptions, such as on Delos. (See Therapeutae of Asclepius)
The author described the Therapeutae in De vita contemplativa ("On the contemplative life"), written in the first century A.D. (C.E.) The origins of the Therapeutae were unclear, and Philo was even unsure about the etymology of their name, which he explained as meaning either physicians of souls or servants of God. The opening phrases of his essay establish that it followed one that has been lost, on the active life. Philo was employing the familiar polarity in Hellenic philosophy between the active and the contemplative life, exemplifying the active life by the Essenes, another severely ascetic sect, and the contemplative life by the desert-dwelling Therapeutae.
They lived chastely with utter simplicity; they "first of all laid down temperance as a sort of foundation for the soul to rest upon, proceed to build up other virtues on this foundation" (Philo). They were dedicated to the contemplative life, and their activities for six days of the week consisted of ascetic practices, fasting, solitary prayers and the study of the scriptures in their isolated cells, each with its separate holy sanctuary, and enclosed courtyard:
....the entire interval from dawn to evening is given up by them to spiritual exercises. For they read the holy scriptures and draw out in thought and allegory their ancestral philosophy, since they regard the literal meanings as symbols of an inner and hidden nature revealing itself in covert ideas. — De Vita Contemplativa, para. 28
The 3rd-century Christian writer Eusebius of Caesarea (c. 263–339), in his Ecclesiastical History, identified Philo's Therapeutae as the first Christian monks, identifying their renunciation of property, chastity, fasting, and solitary lives with the cenobitic ideal of the Christian monks.
The 4th-century Christian heresiologist Epiphanius of Salamis (c. 315–403), bishop of Salamis in Cyprus, author of the Panarion, or Medicine Chest against Heresies, misidentified Philo's Therapeuate as "Jessaens" and considered them a Christian group.
The 5th-century Christian writer Pseudo-Dionysius, following Philo, interprets that "Some people gave to the ascetics the name 'Therapeutae' or servants while some others gave them the name monks". Pseudo-Dionysius interprets Philo's group as a highly organized Christian ascetic order, and the meaning of the name "Therapeutae" as "servants".
Among the Christian texts found at Oxyrhynchus, were fragments of early non-canonical Gospels, Oxyrhynchus 840 and Oxyrhynchus 1224 (1st Century). Other Oxyrhynchus texts preserve parts of Matthew 1 (3rd century: P2 and P401), 11–12 and 19 (3rd to 4th century: P2384, 2385); Mark 10–11 (5th to 6th century: P3); John 1, and 20 (3rd century: P208); Romans 1 (4th century: P209); the First Epistle of John (4th-5th century: P402); the Apocalypse of Baruch (chapters 12–14; 4th or 5th century: P403); the Gospel according to the Hebrews (3rd century AD: P655); The Shepherd of Hermas (3rd or 4th century: P404), and a work of Irenaeus, (3rd century: P405). There are many parts of other canonical books as well as many early Christian hymns, prayers, and letters also found among them.
The earliest Gospel Fragment from 30-40AD: Oxyrhynchus 1224 (P. Oxy. X 1224), now at the Bodleian Library, MS. Gr. th. e. 8 (P), consists of two small papyrus fragments. It contains six passages, each about a sentence. Two of the longer ones are parallel to Mark 2:17 and Luke 9:50, but the differences in phrasing show they are textually independent of the Gospels. A precise date for composition is unknown; John Dominic Crossan notes that the fragmentary text "does not seem to be dependent on the New Testament gospels.... As an independent gospel, it belongs, insofar as its fragmentary state allows us to see, not with discourse gospels involving the risen Jesus (e.g., the Secret Book of James and the Gospel of Mary), but with sayings gospels involving the earthly Jesus (e.g., Q document and the Gospel of Thomas). Crossan suggests that the document might have been written as early as the mid-first century.
Luke 9:49 “Master,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we tried to stop him, because he is not one of us. 50 “Do not stop him,” Jesus said, “for whoever is not against you is for you.”