A Time for Judas

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A Time for Judas
Author Morley Callaghan
Cover artist Brant Cowie
Country Canada
Language English
Genre Novel
Publisher Macmillan of Canada
Publication date
September 1983
Media type Print (Hardback & Paperback)
Pages 247 pp
ISBN ISBN 0-7715-9772-X (hardback edition) & ISBN 0-312-80513-6 (paperback edition)
OCLC 10211755
813/.52 19
LC Class PR9199.3.C27 T55 1983
Preceded by No Man's Meat and the Enchanted Pimp
Followed by Our Lady of the Snows

A Time for Judas is a novel by Canadian author Morley Callaghan, published by Macmillan of Canada in 1983. It tells the story of a man in modern times who discovers tablets written by a scribe named Philo of Crete or Philo the Greek. In the story, these tablets are from the time of Jesus and are Philo's telling of Jesus' last days and the aftermath, including his resurrection. This modern-day man writes a novel based on these tablets. The bulk of the real novel is the fictional novel, i.e. a retelling of sorts of Philo's story.

Plot introduction[edit]

The title refers to the friendship between the scribe, Philo, and Judas Iscariot, the disciple who betrayed Jesus. The premise is that Judas was actually Jesus' most trusted disciple, and chose him for the important job of "betraying" him to the authorities. In other words, Judas was following Jesus' instructions. He tells his story to Philo, who writes it all down on papyrus, seals it up in a Greek jar, and hides it until it is discovered in the 20th century. The story goes that Judas hanged himself, not because he was ashamed of betraying Jesus, but because he had not kept the secret as Jesus had made him promise to do.


This resembles the content of the controversial Gospel of Judas, found in the 1970s.