Who was Saint Paul?
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27-11-2012, 09:44 PM
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
Free, you wrote

"It's 100% true. A contemporary is someone who lived during a specific time, and in this case, Iraneus lived- and was an adult- at the time of Justin Martyr's death."

Ok. I didn't explain myself very well. You were claiming that because Justin was a contemporary of Irenaeus, and Irenaeus knew of the four authors, Justin must have known of them too. I was pointing out that Irenaeus only first mentions these 4 in 180-190CE (different authors quote different dates), and Justin died in 160CE, 20-30 years earlier, so your argument isn't sound.
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27-11-2012, 09:51 PM (This post was last modified: 27-11-2012 09:57 PM by Mark Fulton.)
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
(27-11-2012 08:16 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  My impression is that the Paul in early Acts is not the same dude as in later Acts. The early one is abruptly dropped in a different location from where he is picked up later. I also think it's likely Paul the "core letter" writer/initiator of the "Christianity for the Gentiles", (as opposed to the Nazarene sect of the Way he left, ...or was kicked out of... back in Jerusalem), knew *of* Yeshua, but didn't really care. He was going to preach that *inspired stuff* his *experience* propelled him to, no matter what Yeshua said or did. Yeshua was far away, geographically, and temporally. Paul had to compete with the Greek Mystery cults for adherents, and he did what he thought he had to do. The Paul in Acts says he learned his stuff from the Apostles. The Letter-Writer-Paul says he got it from his "conversion experience".

The main motivation of all the writers of early Christian literature was to gain adherents to their cult, and to persuade followers, and potential challengers that what were the opinions of the writers was true. None of the writings in no way "recounted" an historical "search for objective" truth, as we would think of that today.

Before the suppression of many, of what are now considered as "non-canonical" gospels, (by Eseubius), there were many circulating gospels. In general, the Apostles were illiterate, and the occupation of being a "scribe", was a specific occupation, and one which was specifically trained for. They all had their own "point of view". None were written to be "historical" accounts, or "personal memoirs", as we would see that today. The gospel writers were were not historians, in any way. They all had agendas. They wrote their texts for specific purposes, and addressed them to specific audiences. While they are seemingly similar, they are
also remarkably different. The differences are not only interesting, but also telling, as the development of some of the ideas in the Christian cult can be seen, and "located" as to dating priority.

We know that in the earliest gospel, (Mark), Yeshua was not considered a "pre-existant" *divine* being. His identity as "Messiah" was hidden from his followers, and revealed later. Mark was written with a Roman, (non-Jewish) audience in mind, for use in Roman liturgies, and it takes pains to explain many details and things which Jews would know, but Romans would not. The (relative) "divinity" of Yeshua, was presented, (as the very early church thought of it), as an "exalted"
status, (ie "raised up" as in "resurrected"), which was granted AFTER his death, (in the Jewish martyr tradition .. which I have explained in the http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...surrection
thread. secondary to his having accepted the duty of being the "suffering servant", and as such, was presented to the Romans, as a "servant". The suffering servant in Mark was a giant leap forward in Christian theology, as it says "For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45). In Mark, Yeshua is presented as the ideal servant. Mark does not bother with a genealogy, as a genealogy of a servant is not important. Thus in Mark, the "exaltation", (and revelation of Yushua as "raised up" to be the Exalted One) is seen as granted to the followers AFTER his death.
The "exalted" status was never ever considered as equivalent to that of Yahweh. That was inconceivable. Also the traditional Jewish concept of a political messiah had now shifted, to a "cosmic" one, as the temple had been destroyed, and there was a need to think in other terms, and another major paradigm. We know from what the "shade" of Samuel was said to be, when seen by the witch of Endor, (a "divine" being), it in no way equated to a "Yahweh" (or god) equivalent. It simply meant "other than" natural.

The Gospel of Matthew was written for a Jewish audience, for use in the liturgies of the (still) Jewish sub-sect, which came to be called "Christians", in the Jewish world. Matthew was written to Jews who had come to understand "prophesy" as a "foretelling", (which it was not originally), but Matthew thought that Yeshua was a fulfillment of Jewish scripture, and took pains to present Yeshua as such. It would have made no sense to a Greek hearing it, as they had no idea about Jewish "messiahs". and "prophesy". There are at least 40 specific local additional details purposely added by Matthew to make things appear to "fulfill" the Jewish prophecies to a Jew. He/they purposely added things to make the story make sense to a Jew. Matthew is rife with contradictions. The impossible
lineage is done through Mary's husband, even while maintaining that Joseph was not the father. Here also, in Matthew, the "literal" *son* as an actual "filial" relationship of Yeshua to Yahweh was impossible. No one was equal to Yahweh. That was 1000 % impossible in Hebrew culture. When prophetic, (or martyr) figures were "exalted", (ie *raised up*) they were seen as equivalent to Elijah and Moses. Never an actual "divinity", as they were in Roman mythology. That would have a been a threat to monotheism. The Doctrine of the Trinity was unknown at this time. This was seen in Matthew 17, when the writer puts them up on the mountain, and sets up the "Transfiguration", where Yeshua is seen as equivalent to Elijah, NOT YAHWEH.

The Gospel of Luke was written apparently to a man named Theophilus and intended as a "complete story", and represents a more developed theology than the first two gospels, and a later understanding of "redemption". It is not possible that Luke was written before the letters of Paul, as it contains the "salvation" paradigm, which had not developed in the cult, until Paul introduced it. The salvation paradigm, (the purpose of the coming of the messiah to cleanse, (purify) an individual soul from sin, is a Zoroastrian idea which did not exist in Hebrew culture. (Paul took it from Mithraism, which got it from Zoroaster). The Hebrews had a concept of "ritual purity" (for preparation purposes of sacrifices), NOT OBTAINED by ritual sacrifices. Sacrifices for the Hebrews were done to repair a ruptured cosmic relationship with Yahweh, NOT to purify an "individual" soul. The Hebrews did not believe in immortal souls. (Neither did Paul. Paul thought only the saved obtained eternal life).

The Gospel of John was intended for a Greek audience, in which Gnosticism was well developed. He presents a different concept of "Word" (of God) from the Hebrews. The Hebrews thought the "word of Yahweh" was the active component of the power of their god. In John the "Word" is presented as actually *being* a part of the actual deity. In John, the Word always maintained a divine status, temporarily "took on a human form", (while maintaining a divine status), and then went back to just being a divine being. In John, Yeshua has placed in his mouth the words, "The Father and I are one". Something Mark would have not been able to conceive of. It represents a later and completely non-Hebrew idea. With the advent of Gnosticism, which thought the flesh was corrupt", and evil, and not deserving of the *divine* there arose a number of gospels which preached that Jesus just "appeared" to be human, but actually did not *suffer* the corruption of the flesh, and there were huge fights about this. This is reflected in a number of places, including in John 1:7 which says : "Many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the Antichrist." The heresies were actively suppressed, (just as in the Old Testament), for purposes of political unity and PR.

There was no "orthodoxy", in the early church. The communities were geographically diverse, and with no easy communication, they developed independently, with many variants, and "heresies".

So what does this have to do with Paul ? Since the gospels are radically different portrayals, if Paul had any of them in mind, he would have had (to pick) a certain point of view. Paul, the letter writer, most clearly matches the earliest forms of gospel, ( "good news" ) of Mark. But it has elements of Luke also. "Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped," (Philippians 2:6). Is is not possible a Hebrew would have had such a blasphemous
idea, and proves Paul-the-letter-writer, was not actually thinking of Yeshua ben Joseph, the human son of Galilee. He obviously had in mind an "Exalted One", or an "Anointed One", who was the being he had experienced as "exalted" in his conversion experience. Whatever he had in mind, it was not the pre-exalted Yeshua. Paul thought his "Christ" was an "other than natural" being, (FORMERLY Yeshua), who gave up "divine status", took on human form, (that of Yeshua), and took the divine status back, after being exalted.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNuwDg8B...plpp_video
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christianit...nd_century
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.v.vi.vi.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Shepherd_of_Hermas
https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=en...npnLdwdjUU

So in the end, whether Paul of Tarsus references what may or may not have been the Yeshua from the Galilee, incidentally or not, Marks Fulton's essential point, that his, (Paul's) gospel, ("good news"), is not essentially the message which was preached by Yeshua. Yeshua, who was an apocalyptic, and did not preach that he himself was the content of his good news. He said "Come follow me", not "Come worship me". By the time Paul was writing his letters, he has come to understand the good news as having Yeshua being at least in part the content of the good news.

Paul wrote his earliest letters in the 50's. The earliest gospel knows of the temple's destruction. Therefore we know it was not written before that happened, in the 70's. Canon formation was a messy process, and continued for many centuries. Just because one early writer says that at any given moment that some texts were considered as "canonical" at one date, does not mean it remained that way, or was considered a valid by anyone else, or in any other locality. Luke could not have been written, (as it was addressed to non-Jews), and before Saul, the cult was not seeking followers among the "Gentiles". Paul appointed himself as
"Apostle to the Gentiles", as he was a megalomaniac, and he wanted a special position, and he could not get along with the the other leaders of the cult. He got himself run out of town for constantly causing trouble in Jerusalem, possibly purposely, between the Romans and the Jews.






Bucky...you wrote " The Paul in Acts says he learned his stuff from the Apostles. The Letter-Writer-Paul says he got it from his "conversion experience".

This is so true. It is the crux of the issue. A catholic Christian penned Acts so as to create the false impression that Paul's Christ was Jeebus, and that Paul's message (including the 'new covenant') had been taught by Jeebus. Acts was one big fabrication. Yeshua was a Jew, never a Christian.

PS This is why the author of Act's has Jeebus' ghost appearing to Paul on the road to Damascus. Paul never mentions such a silly event in any of his letters.

Acts attempted to portray a cordial relationship between the followers of Yeshua and Paul. That was bullshit too. They hated each others guts! LOL
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27-11-2012, 10:12 PM (This post was last modified: 27-11-2012 11:20 PM by Free.)
RE: Who was Saint Paul?

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27-11-2012, 11:05 PM (This post was last modified: 28-11-2012 02:44 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
John was certainly not the only one to mention Cleophas.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09748b.htm

Papias was a student, along with Justin Martyr., of Polycarp. Polycarp was a student of John's.
THAT is the most likely way he knew about the Johannine traditions, and literature if there were any.
It does not mean he had a completed gospel in his possession, necessarily.
He easily was "in the line" of John's students/followers, even if not directly his student.

If after an introduction and discussion of the concept of pious fraud, and it's general acceptance by the Fathers, with examples, there is evidence that they were lying, then by all means say so. It's your book. Don't dilute it's impact. The intent is not to be an academic discussion. It's intended for the public. If they're liars, they're liars. The intended audience is not the "scholarly" world. They certainly won't be changing their minds about anything, and actually Mark is not really saying anything they don't already know.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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27-11-2012, 11:30 PM
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
(27-11-2012 11:05 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  John was certainly not the only one to mention Cleophas.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09748b.htm

Papias was a student, along with Justin Martyr., of John.
He easily was "in the line" of John's students, even if not directly.

If after an introduction and discussion of the concept of pious fraud, and it's general acceptance by the Fathers, there is evidence that they were lying, then by all means say so. It's your book. Don't dilute it's impact. The intent is not to be an academic discussion. It's intended for the public. If they're liars, they're liars.


I agree. They were liars. It's probably true that lying wasn't looked upon as negatively then as it is today (possibly because it was hard to get caught out, so more people did it) yet that doesn't change the fact that they lied.
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27-11-2012, 11:36 PM
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
(27-11-2012 11:05 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  John was certainly not the only one to mention Cleophas.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09748b.htm

Papias was a student, along with Justin Martyr., of John.
He easily was "in the line" of John's students, even if not directly.

If after an introduction and discussion of the concept of pious fraud, and it's general acceptance by the Fathers, there is evidence that they were lying, then by all means say so. It's your book. Don't dilute it's impact. The intent is not to be an academic discussion. It's intended for the public. If they're liars, they're liars.
I can agree that it's possible that the Clopas/Cleopas/Cleophas spoken in Luke could be another mention of the name and could be the same person, but the one problem I have is that in John, Cleophas is never mentioned as a person who was ever present, but only as a person Mary was associated with.

In Luke, the person is present.

Both gospels spell the name differently from each other.

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28-11-2012, 01:55 AM (This post was last modified: 28-11-2012 03:48 PM by Mark Fulton.)
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
Re
"Are you saying that the church fathers who came after Iraneus were mistaken to use Iraneus' works as a referrence to name the 4 Gospel writers?"

No. What I'm saying is that as the four names only first appeared circa 180-190 CE. The church fathers, including Irenaeus, then started to claim all sorts of connections between these four names and Jesus' apostles. That is obviously creating history, not reporting it. They were lying.

Even the conservative and often highly imaginative Catholic Encyclopedia states


“It thus appears that the present titles of the Gospels are not traceable to the Evangelists themselves.” They use the word “evangelist” to avoid “apostle” or “disciple.” They are effectively
(and correctly) admitting that the titles of the Gospels “are not traceable” to Jesus’ apostles; Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Yet in nearly every church around the world it’s implied these apostles were the authors.



If there was even the slightest bit of goodevidence that any of the Gospel authors knew Jesus, or someone who knew Jesus, the Catholic Encyclopedia would make a big deal of it. They don’t because there isn’t.



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28-11-2012, 02:21 AM (This post was last modified: 28-11-2012 02:48 AM by Mark Fulton.)
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
Re

"If you look above, you will see that Papias lists 4 different persons
with the name of Mary as being found in a Gospel. What does this tell
us?



1. There was a written Gospel.

2. The only known Gospel that lists 4 different person's named Mary is the Gospel of John.

3. Notice the words of "whom John names of Cleophas"

4. In respect of the words "whom John names of Cleophas," The Gospel of
John says: Joh_19:25 Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother,
and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene.

5. Only the Gospel of John uses the word "Cleophas" in the entire canon.



What does this indicate Mark?"

Firstly, it means that someone, not necessarily honest, claimed to be quoting Papias.

It means that "Papias" had access to some written literature, which could be anything in the second century.

What is far more likely is that whoever is "quoting" Papias is trying to provide some legitimate foundation to John's gospel.

Dear Free and anyone else reading this, stop and have a breather. Consider this. Millions of people have spent trillions of hours trying to work out when the fucking gospels were written and by whom. The goddam authors, if they were real first century characters who had a genuine connection to a Jesus, would have said so, just like their contemporaries and today's authors. They don't.


It is sad, wrong and ironic that generations oftrusting Christians have wasted their time dissecting the New Testament,expecting to be enlightened, when the characters who created it were socavalier with the truth. Priests have always insisted people believe the biblewas divinely inspired. By forcing faith on children and adults too busy tocarefully consider it, they’ve ruled over human reason. What balderdash!


Times have changed. We mustn’t let these writings have an authority they don’t deserve. It is high time bibliolatry and ecclesiology were replaced with open-mindedness, pragmatic thought, and genuine empathy. The era in which uninformed people blindly believe dogma and bow down to those promoting it should now beover.

End of little rant.
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28-11-2012, 02:32 AM
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
"Q: Since Paipas never met John the Apostle, how then could he be a disciple of John the Apostle?



Best Answer: He used the writings of John the Apostle- The Gospel of John- as his educational materials."

Huh? Please tell me you don't think the author of John's gospel was a disciple of Jesus!

You'd have to be a goddam......Christian!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!......to believe something that stupid.
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28-11-2012, 02:47 AM
RE: Who was Saint Paul?
Re

"That disciple who leaned on the bosom of Christ is gernerally thought to be John. "

Yeah....that's what people say. I don't know why. The disciple Jesus loved was far more likely to be his brother James, not named because the gospel authors didn't want to emphasize Jesus' Jewishness.
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