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Re: orion "damascus"

>I must admit that  FM Cross's theory becomes  quite attractive when  one
>wonders exactly WHITHER Saul of Tarsus was pursuing his quarry of "renegade
>Jews"  when his life -- and ultimately that of millions  -- was changed for
>ever by that vision on the road to  "Damascus."   One can at least imagine
>that in Paul's time, a fugitive from Jerusalem with eschatological or
>apocalyptic ideas  might be far more likely to escape through the desert
>towards  not-too-distant  Qumran  (which, however,  does NOT require a
>theory  that its inhabitants were proto-Christians) than to attempt flight
>all the way north into Syria.  Besides,  would it have been worth anybody's
>while to send Saul on a wild goose chase all that way?  BTW, does anyone
>know who exactly were the  "brothers in Damascus" to whom Paul is
>delivering letters patent from the Temple authorities?
>Judith Romney Wegner jrw@brown.edu

The whole of Judith's post is excellent- but it is the last sentence which
interests me at the moment; for if "Damascus" were Qumran, then why would
the Jerusalem leadership send Paul there with arrest warrants, if, in fact,
the Qumranites were hostile to or lived in opposition to, the Jerusalem
priesthood?  Or were Paul's warrants simply general?  If so, why would he
expect the Qumranites to honor them?


Jim West