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Paul 8 Of 9 Is Paul’s Conversion Story In Galatians A Concoction?

May 22nd, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

Paul could not have been a Persecutor of Christians.

That was the burden of the previous post.

The point was made that the whole Conversion episode of Paul  — the Damascus road experience — was a concoction of The Church.

Now, we come up against Galatians 1:11-17.

Scholars consider Galatians to be a genuine Pauline letter.  Paul wrote it.  One of seven such.  In contradistinction to another five which were not written by Paul, but which had his name stuck on them.

In this genuine letter, Paul writes of his Persecution of The Church.

“…..how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it:…..”.  [Galatians 1:13 KJV — King James Version]

Why?

“…..being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.”  [Galatians 1:14 KJV]

Then, the Conversion.

“…..it pleased God,…..” [Galatians 1:15 KJV] “To reveal his Son in me,…..”.  [Galatians 1:16 KJV]

Why?

“…..that I might preach him among the heathen;…..”.  [Ibid]

A task that he bent to “immediately…..”. [Ibid]

So “immediately” — that he hared off into Arabia.  [Galatians 1:17 KJV]  Without bothering to inform or consult The Apostles, The Church in Jerusalem.

Despite Scholars endorsing Galatians as a genuine Pauline epistle, Galatians leaves an important question unresolved — what happened to Hillel’s and Gamaliel’s influence on Paul?  [Their philosophy has been addressed in previous posts.]

Hillel’s and Gamaliel’s Judaism was as a gentle reign.  [Remember, Israel was a theocratic state.]  How did that Compassion curdle in Paul?

Paul does not explain that in Galatians.  Nor, is it addressed in Luke-Acts 7,8,9.

So, we have Paul’s Conversion story told twice.  Neither of them satisfactory in the critical detail — what turned a magnanimous Paul — the student of Gamaliiel/Hillel — into the monster Paul.

Luke-Acts in this respect, as noted in the previous post, is a concoction of later Editors.

Now we have consider if this part of Galatians is, too.

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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Paul 7 Of 8 Is Paul’s Conversion A Concoction?

May 20th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

In Christianity, Paul’s Conversion is as momentous as The Magdalene’s.

Paul’s Conversion took place on the road to Damascus. [Luke-Acts 9:3-6]

Paul, on his way to round up Christians, met Christ, and was Changed.

AD 37 — Reese Chronology.

The Magdalene’s Conversion took place at the house of Simon the Pharisee. [Luke 7:36-50]

The Magdalene met Christ, and was Changed.

AD September 27 — Reese Chronology.

[Note: the word Magdalene means reformed prostitute.]

The Persecutor, the Prostitute, — both were Converted to Christianity after they met Christ.

This Conversion of Man after meeting Christ is the Central Theme of Christianity.  That Christ’s Unconditional Love changes the heart of Carnal Man.

And, the story of The Magdalene in Luke, and Paul in Luke-Acts, are perfect examples.

Perhaps, too perfect.

As the previous post has laid out — Paul could not have been a Persecutor.

And, if not a Persecutor, was, then, there a need for Conversion?

The whole Paul episode in Luke-Acts, like The Magdalene incident in Luke, is clearly the concoction of some later Editors to fit the emerging Doctrine.  Of the Unconditional Love of Jesus Christ.

The text may be fake; but, the underlying Gospel Message that has sustained generations across generations, is Real

Reese Chronology — Reese, Edward.  The Reese Chronological Bible.  Minnesota.  Bethany House.  1977.  Print.

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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Paul 6 Of 7 Hillel’s And Gamaliel’s Influence On Paul

May 18th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

The early Paul presented by Luke in Luke-Acts 7,8,9 is as a Persecutor of Christians.

But, that can’t be.

Paul was a student of Gamaliel.  Who, himself, was the grandson of Hillel.

Beit Hillel — the House of Hillel or the School of Hillel — is associated with liberalism.  Which liberalism rested on two principles — love of man; and, through the love of man, love of peace.  Not just among Jews, but, in Hillel’s view, among all men.

Hillel sought to bring Gentiles and Pagan to Judaism not through Proselytization, but, through Persuasion.

This is Paul.

A Persuader, not a Persecutor.

And, yet, the first we see of Paul — in Luke-Acts 7:58 — is as a Persecutor.  Of Christians.

Something is not right here.

Either, Paul went horribly wrong, suddenly.

Or, Luke went horribly wrong, deliberately.

Or, The Church did a botch job when it edited Acts.  In order to show that a Persecutor as vicious as Paul — according to the account in Acts — is Changed into a gentle Proselytizer after he meets Christ.

What is real here?  What is fake?

That Paul was a Persecutor.

That Paul met Christ on the road to Damascus.  And, was Changed.

Luke’s account of Paul as Persecutor is certainly fake.

The life of Paul — as a student of Gamaliel, in the tradition of Hillel, — simply does not support this contention.

And, what about Paul’s Damascus Road Conversion?

Is that real?  Or, is it fake?

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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Paul 5 Of 6 Is The Gospel Account Of The Early Paul Real Or Fake?

May 16th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

The Gospel account of Paul in Luke-Acts 7,8,9 is fake.

Not having Divinity Degrees behind my name, is this too bold a statement to make?

As an Exegesist — a new word just coined — to denote a person who undertakes Exegesis — the critical evaluation of Gospel text — I think not.

The number of Christians is growing [Acts 4].  Largely because they practice Unconditional Love.  In Community.  Following Jesus’ counsel to The Apostles — “…..even as The Son Of Man came not to be served but to serve,…..”. [Matthew 20:28 ESV — English Standard Version]

But, the Apostles grow weary of Serving [Acts 6:2].  They want to Teach; not ‘serve tables” [ibid]. And, so they create the hierarchy and the bureaucracy that constipates The Church even to this day. But, these are early days in Christianity.  Love prevails, Christianity grows.

“…..and the number of the Disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly;…..”. [Acts 6:7]

Then, suddenly, in pops Paul into the Gospel account. [Acts 7:58]  Out of nowhere.

Consenting to Stephen’s stoning. [Acts 8:1]

“…..made havock of The Church,…..”. [Acts 8:3 KJV — King James Version]

Sought a firman of The High Priest to persecute “…..the Disciples of The Lord,…..[Acts 9:1 KJV] in Damascus.

And, lo and behold!, while on the road to Damascus this Persecutor of Christians meets Jesus as “…..a light from heaven:…..” [Acts 9:3 KJV].  And, is, according to The Gospels, converted.

Paul the Persecutor of Christians suddenly becomes Paul the Proselytizer for Christ. [Acts 9:20]

This is The Gospel account of the early Paul.

Is The Gospel account of Paul real or fake?

The answer lies in the life of the earlier Paul.

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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Paul 4 Of 5 Explaining Paul’s Jekyll And Hyde Personality

May 14th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

Paul was Gamaliel’s student.

And, the Hillel tradition, of which Gamaliel was a part, valued Human Beings.

Paul was a part of this tradition.  Which emphasized tolerance.

It is easy to accept that Paul was part of this liberal tradition.

And, yet, at the first, The Gospels present Paul as a Persecutor of Christians.

Present at the stoning of Stephen [Acts 7:58], the first Christian martyr.

Hell-bent on destroying Christianity in both Jerusalem and Damascus.

Then, Paul has his Damascus Road Conversion [Acts 9:4-5].

And, instead of a Persecutor, Paul becomes a Proselytizer.

To summarize Paul: a Progressive turns Persecutor, then Proselytizer.

Switching personalities much like Jekyll and Hyde.

That’s The Gospel story.

But, is it possible?

Let’s sort the real news from the fake news.

Gamaliel is real news.  His Progressive beliefs are well-attested in the literature.

Gamaliel is the father of the child, Paul.

That is real news.

What could have turned the Progressive Paul into a Prosecutor of Christians?

We know of no event that could have effected this reversal.

So, when The Gospels present Paul as a Persecutor, we are compelled to ask — is The Gospel account real, or fake?

Similarly, Paul’s conversion on the Road to Damascus — is The Gospel account real, or fake?

Some explanation has to be found — for Paul’s Jekyll and Hyde personality.

Similarly, inquiry has to be made into The Gospel’s veracity / authenticity.

And, we may, yet, have an explanation for Paul’s Jekyll and Hyde personality.

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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Paul 3 Of 4 The Two Great Contradictions In Paul’s Life

May 12th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

The first contradiction in Paul’s life was addressed in the previous post.

Paul is first presented as a Persecutor of Christians.

And, then, after The Damascus Road Conversion as a Proselytizer.

Paul’s Conversion to Christ is understandable.  Such events happen.  Though the way it happened — Jesus appearing to Paul — is debatable.

Even more debatable is Paul as Persecutor.

What made him Persecutor of Christians? — given the fact that he was a student of Gamaliel.

Besides being a Master of Jewish Oral Law, Gamaliel was, also, a member of the Sanhedrin.

The Sanhedrin was a hard-line, conservative, body.  But, Gamaliel was known for his tolerance, his liberalism.

And, Paul was his student.

Did Gamaliel’s tolerance and liberalism rub off on Paul?

It most assuredly must have!  A teacher always influences his students.

And, yet in Acts 7:58 Paul witnesses the stoning of Stephen.  The first Christian martyr.

This is circa AD 35 [Reese Chronology].  And, Paul is aged 30.

Did Gamaliel have no influence on Paul?

Later posts will point out that, in fact, Gamaliel did.

So, are The Gospels wrong?

Similarly, the second contradiction in Paul’s life: his attitude towards Women.

Paul’s Ministry would not have flourished, but for Women.

But, in his later Letters he relegates Women to an inferior status.

Did Paul have a change of heart?

Or, are these Letters forged, fake?

Reese Chronology — Reese, Edward.  The Reese Chronological Bible.  Minnesota.  Bethany House.  1977.  Print.

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”

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Paul 2 Of 3 Why Did Paul Become A Persecutor Of Christians?

May 10th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

We first meet Paul in Luke-Acts.

At the stoning of the first Christian martyr, Stephen.

Acts 7:57-60.

Then, ravaging The Christians in Jerusalem.

Acts 8:3.

And, then, seeking a firman of The High Priest to savage The Christians in Damascus.

Acts 9:1-2.

What caused Paul to become a persecutor of Christians?

What were the influences that brought him to this state?

There is, at the present state of Gospel Research, no knowledge of these influences.

From all the information we have, Paul had a relatively stable childhood.

He was born circa AD 5 — about 10 years after Jesus’ birth — in Tarsus.

Tarsus is a city in the region of Cilicia — the south coast of Asia Minor, modern-day Turkey.

He was born of Jewish parents who had Roman citizenship.

So, Saul, the Jew, was, also, known as Paul, the Roman.

His family moved to Jerusalem shortly after his 10th birthday.

And, he enrolled as a student of Gamaliel.

Now, Gamaliel is known, besides his mastery of Jewish Oral Law, for his tolerance.

So, how did Paul [Acts 7,8,9] become so intolerant of Christians?

And, then, after his Damascus Road Conversion [Acts 9:3-6], become so tolerant?

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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Paul 1 Of 2 Who Is Paul? Did Paul Convert Himself?

May 8th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

The Church-manufactured Gospels tell us little of the early Paul.

The Gospels, whose redaction was directed by The Church, tell us only what The Church wants us to know.

What suits The Church’s narrative.

In this context please see http://www.huffingtonpost.com/william-grassie/redacting-the-bible-a-case-study-in-historical-criticism_b_1279368.html

Very little is presented in The Gospels of the young Paul; Paul growing up.

When we first meet Saul he has Christian blood on his hands.

[Saul is the Hebrew name.  Paul is the Roman name.  This two-name arrangement for the disparate audiences was quite acceptable in Jewish intelligentsia at that time.]

Stephen, the first Christian martyr, is being stoned.

“And [the crowd, the witnesses] cast him [Stephen] out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul.”  [Luke-Acts 7:58 KJV — King James Version]

This is how The Church chooses to present Paul.

The next The Church presents Paul is at his Conversion [Acts 9] on the road to Damascus.

The Gospels tell us nothing of the influences that brought Paul to Stephen’s stoning death.

Nor, the influences that led to his Conversion.

But, the question can legitimately be asked — did Jesus convert Paul?  Or, did Paul convert himself?

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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Easter 2017 The Issues Of April 10, 2017 Resolved

May 6th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

This series of Easter Reflections began with the post of Monday April 10, 2017.

Which can be found at http://www.christianity21c.com/easter-2017-issues-issues-issues/ .

And, is being brought to a conclusion today.  Because our exploration as of the last post — which please find at http://www.christianity21c.com/easter-2017-resurrection-paul-hate-women/ — has brought us to Paul.

And, love him — as the Greatest Apostle of Jesus — or hate him — as a relentless Self-Promoter, Paul requires a separate series of studies.

Here are the issues explored between Monday April 10, 2017 and today:

[1] Why did Jesus choose Judas to betray him?  Answer: to foreshadow events — namely, that Money would eventually betray His Mission.

The Church has ruthlessly accumulated wealth beyond Croesus.  And, concentrating as much as it has on the accumulation of Wealth, The Church is, and, has been, profoundly deficient in carrying out His Mission.  Today, — after 2000 years of Christianity — only 32% of the World is Christian.  Shameful!

[2] The Gospels reveal that Mary Magdalene was married to Jesus.  At His Death, Burial, and Resurrection, she did everything that only a Wife is required to do.

[3] The Resurrection is not an issue.  Jesus appeared to His Apostles and Disciples after He rose from the dead.

[4] But, who raised Jesus from the dead?  Did Jesus raise Himself from the dead — as is written in The Gospels?  Or, — did God raise Jesus from the dead — as Paul asserts in so many of his Letters?

After Jesus’ Resurrection, The Apostles are prominent thru His Ascension, The First Pentecost Sunday June 5 AD 29 Reese Chronology] to The Stoning Of Stephen [AD 35 Reese].

Paul was present at Stephen’s stoning.  After all, he was a prominent persecutor of Christians.

Then, — surprise!  surprise!! — Paul takes over the story of Christianity.  And, its spread throughout The Roman Empire.

Reese Chronology — Reese, Edward.  The Reese Chronological Bible.  Minnesota.  Bethany House.  1977.  Print.

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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Easter 2017 The Resurrection Did Paul Hate Women?

May 4th, 2017 by Egbert F Bhatty

Gospel Christianity – Christianity As Preached And Practiced By Our Lord Jesus Christ, And Recorded In Matthew, Mark, Luke, And John.

Church Christianity – Christianity As Taught By Catholic, Protestant, And Evangelical Churches, And Recorded In Their Separate Catechisms.

 

Paul was drawn to Jesus by His Preaching Of Unconditional Love.

And, not just His Preaching of it, but, also, the Practice of It.

Jesus refused to discriminate against Samaritans, Romans, Syrophoenicians, lepers, the unclean.

And, Women.

Especially the Unclean Woman who was diseased with an issue of blood these many years.

A Judean would have cursed her, certainly.  Had her severely punished, absolutely.

But, not Jesus.

What did Jesus do?

Cursed her?

No.  He called her — Daughter.

Punished her?

No.  He consoled her — she, who has suffered this years’-long affliction.

But Jesus turned Him about, and when He saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy Faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.”  [Matthew 9:22 KJV — King James Version]

This incident happened December AD 27 [Reese Chronology].  Two years into His Ministry.

And, in these two years, those who followed Him knew that Jesus did not discriminate against others based on [1] race or religion or color.  Or, [2] sex.

He treated Women and Men Equally.

Treating Women and Men as Equals was Revolutionary.

In a culture that held Women in the category of Chattel.

Lesser than Land, and Buildings, and Property.  But, higher than Slaves.

And, knowing that This Man, This Jesus, This Healer, This Messiah, held Women and Men Equal — this knowledge is what made the Woman so bold as to touch the hem of His garment.

Even as she prayed — “For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole.”  [Matthew 9: 21 KJV].

Her courage, her daring, her audacity, was born of her complete and unshakable certainty — that He Loved her.

Unconditionally.

Paul knew of Jesus’ Preaching of Unconditional Love.

Hence, the greatest sermon ever on Love.  1 Corinthians 13.  Written circa AD 55 [Borg Chronology].

Paul, also, knew, of Jesus’ Practice of Unconditional Love.

Reflected, especially, in the number of Women who were His Disciples and followers.  And, who were with Him to the end — Death, Burial, and Resurrection.  Into The Pentecost.

And, yet, in the AD 80s and beyond Paul required Women to be Submissive, Subordinate, and Subject, to Man.

What a switcheroo!

Question: did Paul write these later Letters?  Or, did The Church faked them for its own purposes?

Reese Chronology — Reese, Edward.  The Reese Chronological Bible.  Minnesota.  Bethany House.  1977.  Print.

Borg, Marcus J.  Evolution Of The Word: The New Testament In The Order The Books Were Written.  New York.  NY.  HarperOne.  2012.  Print. 

Egbert F “Burt” Bhatty has worked 30 years as an Analyst at the American Embassy, New Delhi, and at British [Dunlop] and American [Chase Manhattan] multinationals.  He is a Certified Catechist. Holds a 3-year [part time] Certificate in Foundations For Christian Ministry.

Material published in christianity21c.com, unless specifically noted, may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.  Attribution, though not required, will be greatly appreciated.  “…..freely ye have received, freely give.”  [Matthew 10:8 KJV — King James Version]

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