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Sale's translation of the Qur'an text became the standard English version at that time; and through its dissemination, and that of the Preliminary Discourse, an awareness of the Gospel of Barnabas spread widely in scholarly circles; prompting many fruitless attempts to find the Arabic original to which Sale referred.
However, in his description of the Gospel in the Preliminary Discourse, Sale was relying entirely on second-hand accounts.
The Gospel of Barnabas is a book depicting the life of Jesus, which claims to be by the biblical Barnabas who in this work is one of the twelve apostles.
Two manuscripts are known to have existed, both dated to the late 16th or early 17th centuries, with one written in Italian and the other in Spanish.
In some key respects, it conforms to the Islamic interpretation of Christian origins and contradicts the New Testament teachings of Christianity.
The text of this Gospel is late and pseudepigraphical.), redacted to bring it more in line with Islamic doctrine.
Some Muslims consider the surviving versions as transmitting a suppressed apostolic original.
Barnabas is about the same length as the four canonical gospels put together, with the bulk being devoted to an account of Jesus' ministry, much of it harmonized from accounts also found in the canonical gospels.There’s probably no other book that sparks as much continuing controversy as the Bible.It pits believers against nonbelievers and biblical scholars against themselves.For example, contrary to Sale's notice, the words paraclete or periclyte are not explicitly found in the text of either the Spanish or Italian versions; although the Greek term periclyte is transliterated into Arabic in one of the marginal notes to the Italian manuscript at Chapter 44, as a gloss to the Italian 'uno splendore' which is indeed there applied to Muhammad by name.Subsequent to the preparation of the Preliminary Discourse, Sale was able to borrow the Spanish manuscript itself and had a transcript made.