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Re: orion re: "Damascus"

On Sun, 4 Jan 1998 11:09:32 -7000,  dwashbur@nyx.net writes:

   [... snip ... already seen ...]

   The argument as I see it is over the nature of the population of
   Qumran during the time in question, not over the career of Paul or
   Jesus, though that might later come into it...

> it explicitly says they were addressed to the 
>Synagogues.  A letter to a Synagogue leader from the High Priest 
>would likely rate some attention, I would think.  As the text stands, 
>the political leadership of Damascus never enters the picture.  It is 
>easy to infer that the Synagogues had a fairly good working 
>relationship with the local leadership, but we don't have any 
>indications for or against this inference.  I see no reason not to 
>take the text as it stands.

   Jack had a phrase for the nature of the reation of Aretas, the
   Governor of Syria, and it fits the case.  Saul goes 150 miles from
   Jerusalem to Damascus, takes prisoners, binds them and carries them
   back another 150 miles through Syria then through Samaria into Judea? 
   Qumran was Twelve Miles from Jerusalem and a place where if Saul
   needed any assistance there were troops who'd do the High Priest's
   bidding.  In Pagan and Greek Syria?  No way.

>> Though these problems persist- more arise by attempting to define Qumran as
>> Damascus.

   What you have suggested is beginning to be viewed highly critically
   by scholars of other disciplines.  Jim asked the question, I guess,
   to focus attention on the use made of the site of Qumran up to the
   Destruction of the Temple in 70 and the occupation of the whole of
   Judea by the Romans.

>Agreed.  IMO such views give the Qumran site much more significance 
>to its contemporaries than it actually had.  Qumran is highly 
>significant to us since its discovery and the discovery of the 
>scrolls, but that is no indication that anybody in Jerusalem of 
>Paul's day gave it more than a passing glance.

   I don't agree.  Until just a short while ago the list was debating
   if the site was occupied by Essenes and such fellow travellers
   until 70 CE.  I understand there's evidence of occupation up until
   that date but I don't know its nature.  Let's talk evidence.  I'm 
   only approaching from second hand as many others are.

Tom Simms

>Dave Washburn
>If you don't know where you're going, don't lead.