Jesus and Mary had met him before; Does this ancient document show the real reason why Jesus forgave the “Good thief” ?
“One of the criminals who hung there heaped abuse on Him. ‘Are You not the Christ?’ he said. ‘Save Yourself and us!’ But the other one rebuked him, saying, ‘Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same judgment? We are punished justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our actions. But this man has done nothing wrong.’ Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when You come into Your kingdom!’ And Jesus said to him, ‘Truly I tell you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.'” – Luke 23:39-43
Before we begin:
The reason Jesus forgave the Good theif, is because of his infinite mercy and love. He is always willing to save all men who sincerely seek him.
What is St Thief’s name (lol):
Luke’s unnamed penitent thief was later assigned the name Dismas in the Gospel of Nicodemus, portions of which may be dated to the 4th century. The name “Dismas” was adapted from a Greek word meaning “sunset” or “death”. The other thief’s name is given as Gestas.
In Syriac Infancy Gospel’s Life of the Good Thief (Histoire Du Bon Larron French 1868, English 1882), Augustine of Hippo said; the thief said to Jesus, the child: ” O most blessed of children, if ever a time should come when I shall crave Thy Mercy, remember me and forget not what has passed this day.” Anne Catherine Emmerich saw the Holy Family “exhausted and helpless”; according to Augustine of Hippo and Peter Damian, the Holy Family met Dismas, in these circumstances. Pope Theophilus of Alexandria (385–412) wrote a Homily on the Crucifixion and the Good Thief, which is a classic of Coptic literature.
In Coptic Orthodoxy, he is named Demas. This is the name given to him in the Narrative of Joseph of Arimathea.
The apocryphal Syriac Infancy Gospel calls the two thieves Titus and Dumachus, and adds a tale about how Titus (the good one) prevented the other thieves in his company from robbing Mary and Joseph during their Flight into Egypt. See below:
Number 23 of the Syriac Infancy Gospel:
And turning away from this place, they came to a desert; and hearing that it was infested by robbers, Josephand the Lady Mary resolved to cross this region by night. But as they go along, behold, they see two robberslying in the way, and along with them a great number of robbers, who were their associates, sleeping. Now those two robbers, into whose hands they had fallen, were Titus and Dumachus. Titus therefore said to Dumachus: I beseech you to let these persons go freely, and so that our comrades may not see them. And as Dumachusrefused, Titus said to him again: Take to yourself forty drachmas from me, and hold this as a pledge. At the same time he held out to him the belt which he had about his waist, to keep him from opening his mouth or speaking. And the Lady Mary, seeing that the robber had done them a kindness, said to him: The Lord God will sustain you by His right hand, and will grant you remission of your sins. And the Lord Jesus answered, and said to His mother: Thirty years hence, O my mother, the Jews will crucify me at Jerusalem, and these two robbers will be raised upon the cross along with me, Titus on my right hand and Dumachus on my left; and after that day Titusshall go before me into Paradise. And she said: God keep this from you, my son. And they went thence towards a city of idols, which, as they came near it, was changed into sand-hills.