The New Testament contains four accounts of the life of Jesus. To some people in antiquity, four was too many. Disagreements in the Gospels over what Jesus said and did triggered debate between insiders and drew criticism from outsiders. To other people, four was not enough. As early as the first century, Christians wrote additional gospels, each with their own portrayal of Jesus and depictions of his relationships with his family, his followers, and his Father. While these gospels were not included in the New Testament canon, many continued to be important for Christian thought and practice; all these texts, moreover, are significant for the study of emergent Christianity. This short, accessible introduction draws on current scholarship on the various noncanonical (or apocryphal) gospels to present this fascinating literature to readers eager to learn more about their origins, contents, and meaning. The book begins with a discussion of the distinction between gospels that became canonical and those that came to be regarded as apocryphal. Then, the gospels are presented in chapters arranged according to Jesus' ministry: from Infancy Gospels to texts about Jesus' earthly career to his passion, resurrection, and postresurrection appearances. This book demonstrates how early Christians confronted crises in their communities through story, crafting new accounts of Jesus' life that expanded upon and sometimes challenged the Gospels that became canonical. The apocryphal gospels are not Scripture, but they are no less valuable for understanding Christianity in its formative centuries and beyond.