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Ladder of Jacob

c. First Century A.D.

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James Charlesworth writes: "The date, provenance, and original language of this work have not been researched. The Jewish character and similarities to the Apocalypse of Abraham, the Odes of Solomon, the Gospel of Thomas, and the Epistle of Barnabas raise the possibility that it is not a medieval composition by Slavs but rather a pseudepigraphon from the second century A.D. Moreover, chapters four and five may refer respectively to the destruction of Jerusalem and the persecution under Domitian. A Palestinian provenance might be reflected in the emphasis upon the land (chp. 1) and the choice of a base text (esp. Gen 28:13-15). It is improbable (see James, LAOT, pp. 102f.; contrast A. Vassiliev, Anecdota Graeco-Byzantina. Moscow: Universitatis Caesareae, 1893. Vol. 1, pp. xxix f.; and H. Weinel in Gunkel Festchrift, pp. 172f.) that the Ladder of Jacob is identical with the Ascents of Jacob (anabathmoi Jakobou) which Epiphanius (Haer. 30.16) reported was used by the Ebionites. H. Weinel argued that the work is a combination of Jewish, gnostic, and Christian traditions (p. 173)." (The Pseudepigrapha and Modern Research, pp. 130-131)

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