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Passions over 'prosperity gospel': Was Jesus wealthy? (*BARF ALERT*)
CNN ^ | 12/25/2009 | John Blake

Posted on 12/26/2009 6:09:29 AM PST by markomalley

Each Christmas, Christians tell stories about the poor baby Jesus born in a lowly manger because there was no room in the inn.

But the Rev. C. Thomas Anderson, senior pastor of the Living Word Bible Church in Mesa, Arizona, preaches a version of the Christmas story that says baby Jesus wasn't so poor after all.

Anderson says Jesus couldn't have been poor because he received lucrative gifts -- gold, frankincense and myrrh -- at birth. Jesus had to be wealthy because the Roman soldiers who crucified him gambled for his expensive undergarments. Even Jesus' parents, Mary and Joseph, lived and traveled in style, he says.

"Mary and Joseph took a Cadillac to get to Bethlehem because the finest transportation of their day was a donkey," says Anderson. "Poor people ate their donkey. Only the wealthy used it as transportation."

Many Christians see Jesus as the poor, itinerant preacher who had "no place to lay his head." But as Christians gather around the globe this year to celebrate the birth of Jesus, another group of Christians are insisting that Jesus' beginnings weren't so humble.

They say that Jesus was never poor -- and neither should his followers be. Their claim is embedded in the doctrine known as the prosperity gospel, which holds that God rewards the faithful with financial prosperity and spiritual gifts.

A clash of gospels?

The prosperity gospel has attracted plenty of critics. But popular televangelists such as the late Oral Roberts, Kenneth Hagin and, today, Creflo Dollar have built megachurches and a global audience by equating piety with prosperity.

(Excerpt) Read more at edition.cnn.com ...


TOPICS: Religion & Culture; Religion & Politics; Theology
KEYWORDS: antichristian; moapb; propsperitygospel; wwjd
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To: Venturer

Carpentry in a tiny hamlet of less than 100 families in an isolated valley was hardly a lucrative job. Wood was scarce in the area, and St. Joseph would have had to pay a good amount for the little wood available just to make it into something. He would have been in no position to mark up his costs a lot to turn a handsome profit. Besides, carpentry was somewhat looked-down upon as a profession: necessary, sure, but kind of like “leftovers” as far as honorable work would go. St. Joseph would have been able to provide in his day, at best, what we would today call a lower-middle-class lifestyle.


51 posted on 12/26/2009 11:13:55 AM PST by magisterium
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To: markomalley

Forget the source of this posting, and forget the prosperity gospel crap.

Joseph of Arimathea was Jesus’ uncle - a very rich man. Wealth was in the family. Jesus was born into a wealthy family.


52 posted on 12/26/2009 11:20:59 AM PST by GGpaX4DumpedTea (I am a tea party descendant - steeped in the Constitutional legacy handed down by the Founders)
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To: Partisan Gunslinger

Alta Vista? Tried a search of The Bible and nothing of the kind noted. It does say several things — he was a rich man, from Arimathea, a disciple of Christ... but nothing about him being Mary’s uncle.

Hoss


53 posted on 12/26/2009 11:32:32 AM PST by HossB86
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To: Arthur McGowan
I don’t think the gospels mention any donkey.

Nope. Not for the journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem, and not for the journey Egypt. The Gospels don't mention a stable, either. "But where else would a manger be?" you might ask. Ask today's poor husbandmen: the animals, and their food supply, are often in the family living (dining, cooking, sleeping) room. That way they don't get stolen by thieves or eaten by predators.

54 posted on 12/26/2009 11:37:40 AM PST by Tax-chick (For those who seek, there must be seen a little Child, God before the ages.)
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
Do an Alta Vista search on "joseph arimathea uncle" and you'll find plenty.

None of the sources I'm seeing look very credible.

55 posted on 12/26/2009 12:38:37 PM PST by Lee N. Field (Dispensational exegesis not supported by an a-, post- or historic pre-mil scholar will be ignored.)
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To: HossB86
Alta Vista? Tried a search of The Bible and nothing of the kind noted. It does say several things — he was a rich man, from Arimathea, a disciple of Christ... but nothing about him being Mary’s uncle. Hoss

You see what you want to see.

56 posted on 12/26/2009 6:49:28 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Lee N. Field
None of the sources I'm seeing look very credible.

Nothing looks credible if you don't want to open your ears and eyes. It's the same thing with liberals and the bible...I used to think they were too stupid to realize the bible is true. Now I know that they don't want it to be true...they refuse to believe the bible is credible.

57 posted on 12/26/2009 6:55:21 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Partisan Gunslinger

Maybe I should reexamine geocentricism, while I’m at it.


58 posted on 12/26/2009 8:15:44 PM PST by Lee N. Field (Dispensational exegesis not supported by an a-, post- or historic pre-mil scholar will be ignored.)
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To: Lee N. Field

You’re the one subscribing to the simplistic.


59 posted on 12/26/2009 11:18:55 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: markomalley

I don’t think he was rich or poor. He had what he needed for the time he was here. His focus was not the accumulation of earthly wealth. He owned the universe and knew it. Anyone who could call up a fish to deliver a gold coin to pay his taxes was not poor.


60 posted on 12/27/2009 5:02:29 AM PST by Library Lady
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To: Partisan Gunslinger

Well, if you would care to show me chapter and verse where he is shown to be the uncle, I’ll be happy to “see.”

Your reply is just as easily applied to you — you may be seeing what you want to see; but I’d rather stick to scripture.

Hoss


61 posted on 12/27/2009 6:14:39 AM PST by HossB86
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To: magisterium

The Gospel’s don’t actually call Joseph a carpenter. That’s just a translation, and a rather poor one at that.

St. Joseph was a “tekton”, which means an artisan in wood, stone, and iron. He was a builder.


62 posted on 12/27/2009 7:14:54 AM PST by Heliand
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To: monkapotamus

I find a lot of these “was Jesus poor or rich” arguements are really concerned with ensuring Christians suport modern welfarism and socialism out of a false sense of concern for the poor.


63 posted on 12/27/2009 7:29:27 AM PST by Heliand
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To: monkapotamus

I find a lot of these “was Jesus poor or rich” arguements are really concerned with ensuring Christians suport modern welfarism and socialism out of a false sense of concern for the poor.


64 posted on 12/27/2009 7:29:34 AM PST by Heliand
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To: Partisan Gunslinger; Lee N. Field
None of the sources I'm seeing look very credible.

Lee - your observation is correct. MOST of the links state that the story is MYTH, with not physical or other evidence to show that ever occurred. Story began in England during the middle ages - no other documentation prior to that. IF sources like that are credible, then we have to say Jesus went to India as well and was married.

65 posted on 12/27/2009 8:29:32 AM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: HossB86
Well, if you would care to show me chapter and verse where he is shown to be the uncle, I’ll be happy to “see.” Your reply is just as easily applied to you — you may be seeing what you want to see; but I’d rather stick to scripture. Hoss

I have never believed the bible is that simple. I believe God wants us to have the joy of discovery as we spend our 72 years of flesh life studying his Word. He could have had the bible written lawyerly-like where everything is spelled out in detail to where we would never have to think for ourselves, but it seems to me the Word is written so that He gives us just enough information to where we can be steered toward the truth and eventually find the truth if we really care enough to know the truth. It separates the workers from those that want to be spoon-fed.

66 posted on 12/27/2009 10:00:05 AM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Partisan Gunslinger; HossB86

Joy of discovery is one thing. Joy of imagination is another.


67 posted on 12/27/2009 10:02:51 AM PST by Mr Rogers (I loathe the ground he slithers on!)
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To: Godzilla
Lee - your observation is correct. MOST of the links state that the story is MYTH, with not physical or other evidence to show that ever occurred. Story began in England during the middle ages - no other documentation prior to that. IF sources like that are credible, then we have to say Jesus went to India as well and was married.

That where work and discernment comes in, separate the truth from the fiction. Discernment is a very important part of wisdom.

Joseph of Arimathea was Jesus' uncle. He was the legal guardian of Jesus as he grew up. Being around Jesus all of Jesus' boyhood and raising him, he knew Jesus' mission and he didn't interfere as some the disciples tried to do (as with Peter's knife-ear incident), and that's why he was Johnny-on-the-spot to quickly retrieve the body from Pilate so the miracle of transfiguration could take place 3 days later in the tomb. The disciples got the heck out of there, but not Joseph. He knew exactly what he was doing.

68 posted on 12/27/2009 10:12:50 AM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Mr Rogers
Joy of discovery is one thing. Joy of imagination is another.

That's where discernment comes in.

69 posted on 12/27/2009 10:13:44 AM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
Joseph of Arimathea was Jesus' uncle. He was the legal guardian of Jesus as he grew up.

Where are your proofs?

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08520a.htm says that:

"All that is known for certain concerning him is derived from the canonical Gospels. He was born at Arimathea — hence his surname — "a city of Judea" (Luke 23:51), which is very likely identical with Ramatha, the birthplace of the Prophet Samuel, although several scholars prefer to identify it with the town of Ramleh. He was a wealthy Israelite (Matthew 27:57), "a good and a just man" (Luke 23:50), "who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God" (Mark 15:43). He is also called by St. Mark and by St. Luke a bouleutes, literally, "a senator", whereby is meant a member of the Sanhedrin or supreme council of the Jews. He was a disciple of Jesus, probably ever since Christ's first preaching in Judea (John 2:23), but he did not declare himself as such "for fear of the Jews" (John 19:38). On account of this secret allegiance to Jesus, he did not consent to His condemnation by the Sanhedrin (Luke 23:51), and was most likely absent from the meeting which sentenced Jesus to death (cf. Mark 14:64).

The Crucifixion of the Master quickened Joseph's faith and love, and suggested to him that he should provide for Christ's burial before the Sabbath began. Unmindful therefore of all personal danger, a danger which was indeed considerable under the circumstances, he boldly requested from Pilate the Body of Jesus, and was successful in his request (Mark 15:43-45). Once in possession of this sacred treasure, he — together with Nicodemus, whom his courage had likewise emboldened, and who brought abundant spices — wrapped up Christ's Body in fine linen and grave bands, laid it in his own tomb, new and yet unused, and hewn out of a rock in a neighbouring garden, and withdrew after rolling a great stone to the opening of the sepulchre (Matthew 27:59, 60; Mark 15:46; Luke 23:53; John 19:38-42). Thus was fulfilled Isaiah's prediction that the grave of the Messias would be with a rich man (Isaiah 53:9). The Greek Church celebrates the feast of Joseph of Arimathea on 31 July, and the Roman Church on 17 March. The additional details which are found concerning him in the apocryphal "Acta Pilati", are unworthy of credence. Likewise fabulous is the legend which tells of his coming to Gaul A.D. 63, and thence to Great Britain, where he is supposed to have founded the earliest Christian oratory at Glastonbury. Finally, the story of the translation of the body of Joseph of Arimathea from Jerusalem to Moyenmonstre (Diocese of Toul) originated late and is unreliable. "

No uncle, no guardian, no secret missions to Britain or Gaul, no beaming of his corpse around the galaxy. A nice story, an attractive legend, but the extra-Scriptural allegations are simply myth.

70 posted on 12/27/2009 10:28:08 AM PST by MarkBsnr ( I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so.)
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To: Godzilla; Partisan Gunslinger
Lee - your observation is correct. MOST of the links state that the story is MYTH, with not physical or other evidence to show that ever occurred. Story began in England during the middle ages - no other documentation prior to that. IF sources like that are credible, then we have to say Jesus went to India as well and was married.

Most times I've seen this bit of legend/speculation/special pleading about J. of A. it's been hitched to the British Israel-ite wagon. That can range from mildly crackpotish, to stuff like Herbert W. Armstrong's sect that's completely beyond the pale.

This is the first time I've seen it used to support the prosperity "gospel".

71 posted on 12/27/2009 10:40:20 AM PST by Lee N. Field (Dispensational exegesis not supported by an a-, post- or historic pre-mil scholar will be ignored.)
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To: markomalley
When are people going to understand it's not about “stuff”. "My kingdom is not of this world."
72 posted on 12/27/2009 10:41:10 AM PST by stayathomemom (Beware of cat attacks while typing!)
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To: Partisan Gunslinger

I do believe the Bible, however. Again, if you can point to chapter and verse that indicates this relationship, I’ll “see” and believe. But, until then, it’s nothing but superstition as shown by Lee N. Field — he is using discernment.

He doesn’t “give us just enough” — he gives us all we need: Christ, and Him crucified.

I still cannot find J. of A.’s lineage, so....

Hoss.


73 posted on 12/27/2009 11:33:15 AM PST by HossB86
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
That where work and discernment comes in, separate the truth from the fiction. Discernment is a very important part of wisdom.

Yes, and fiction is fiction, a story developed in the middle ages.

74 posted on 12/27/2009 1:20:37 PM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
That where work and discernment comes in, separate the truth from the fiction. Discernment is a very important part of wisdom.

Yes, and fiction is fiction, a story developed in the middle ages.

75 posted on 12/27/2009 1:20:38 PM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: Lee N. Field
Most times I've seen this bit of legend/speculation/special pleading about J. of A. it's been hitched to the British Israel-ite wagon. That can range from mildly crackpotish, to stuff like Herbert W. Armstrong's sect that's completely beyond the pale.

That was my impression too - Anglo-Israel range of wackos.

76 posted on 12/27/2009 1:29:25 PM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: MarkBsnr
"All that is known for certain concerning him is derived from the canonical Gospels. He was born at Arimathea — hence his surname — "a city of Judea" (Luke 23:51), which is very likely identical with Ramatha, the birthplace of the Prophet Samuel, although several scholars prefer to identify it with the town of Ramleh.

Ramleh...interesting (more evidence).

A nice story, an attractive legend, but the extra-Scriptural allegations are simply myth.

Myth to you, fact to me. We'll find out soon enough.

77 posted on 12/27/2009 10:08:34 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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Comment #78 Removed by Moderator

To: HossB86
I do believe the Bible, however. Again, if you can point to chapter and verse that indicates this relationship, I’ll “see” and believe. But, until then, it’s nothing but superstition as shown by Lee N. Field — he is using discernment. He doesn’t “give us just enough” — he gives us all we need: Christ, and Him crucified. I still cannot find J. of A.’s lineage, so.... Hoss.

The truth is out there. Jesus was crucified ~2000 years ago. We've had all that history, all those people who were born and died contributing to this great story...they all meant something to God. If you're not willing to let them account for more than just time-filler then there's nothing I can show you that you would be interested in. Your friends here are starting to resort to namecalling with the prosperity gospel stuff so if you're not even willing to discuss this intellectually then it certainly isn't worth it to me muddying the waters where nothing is learned.

79 posted on 12/27/2009 10:41:25 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Godzilla
Yes, and fiction is fiction, a story developed in the middle ages.

And those people were meaningless, right?

80 posted on 12/27/2009 10:42:56 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Godzilla
That was my impression too - Anglo-Israel range of wackos.

Namecalling...how intellectual of you.

81 posted on 12/27/2009 10:44:26 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Godzilla
Yes, and fiction is fiction, a story developed in the middle ages.

Here's a few questions for you:

Where was the land of the Phoenicians?
When did the Phoenicians run their trade routes?
How far did they go in their ships?

82 posted on 12/27/2009 10:52:09 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Partisan Gunslinger; Godzilla; HossB86; Religion Moderator
Ah, so that's your hangup.

Excuse me?

The story about Joseph of Aramathea has no biblical support, and no credible extra-biblical support. Amateur crackpot websites are not credible evidence. We simply do not know much about the man.

One has to ask what believing this silly story gets one.

My personal observation that I have seen it associated with British-Israelism (another odd belief that's hard to see what the point of holding it is) is an observation others have made as well.

Ah, so that's your hangup.

You might want to review the Religion Moderator's guidelines, specifically:

" On all threads, but particularly 'open' threads, posters must never 'make it personal'. Reading minds and attributing motives are forms of 'making it personal'.” "

83 posted on 12/28/2009 4:09:25 AM PST by Lee N. Field ("evangelicals don't know Torah well enough to be theonomists." --D. G. Hart)
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To: Godzilla

Gosh! Next you’ll be saying that the holy grail and the kingdom of Prester John were just medieval legends/literary creations!


84 posted on 12/28/2009 4:58:49 AM PST by Poe White Trash (Wake up!)
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
Yes, and fiction is fiction, a story developed in the middle ages.
And those people were meaningless, right?

When wrapped up in a MYTH, yes.

85 posted on 12/28/2009 8:06:34 AM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
That was my impression too - Anglo-Israel range of wackos.
Namecalling...how intellectual of you.

Only IF you consider yourself associated with the links and those who espouse those beliefs.

86 posted on 12/28/2009 8:07:38 AM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
Here's a few questions for you:

For your questions to be valid, there needs to be reality between them. Other Myths about Jesus have him living a normal life in India

Where is India
How far did Indian trades go?
Was the tomb empty.

87 posted on 12/28/2009 8:10:06 AM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: Poe White Trash
Gosh! Next you’ll be saying that the holy grail and the kingdom of Prester John were just medieval legends/literary creations!

The Weekly World News had a photo of ET shaking hands with Prester John - its gotta be true.

88 posted on 12/28/2009 8:12:17 AM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: Lee N. Field
Excuse me? The story about Joseph of Aramathea has no biblical support, and no credible extra-biblical support. Amateur crackpot websites are not credible evidence. We simply do not know much about the man. One has to ask what believing this silly story gets one. My personal observation that I have seen it associated with British-Israelism (another odd belief that's hard to see what the point of holding it is) is an observation others have made as well.

A man immediately claims the body of Jesus and you say there's no evidence they were related? Do you often claim expired bodies that aren't related to you?

You might want to review the Religion Moderator's guidelines, specifically: " On all threads, but particularly 'open' threads, posters must never 'make it personal'. Reading minds and attributing motives are forms of 'making it personal'.” "

That's a laugh...you're the guilty one there saying I belong to prosperity gospel just because I recognize that Jesus had a rich uncle.

89 posted on 12/28/2009 2:56:17 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Godzilla
When wrapped up in a MYTH, yes.

Amazing here in 2009 you knew better than the people that lived at the time exactly what was going on around them.

90 posted on 12/28/2009 2:58:16 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Poe White Trash; Godzilla
Gosh! Next you’ll be saying that the holy grail and the kingdom of Prester John were just medieval legends/literary creations!

Speaking of flasely reading minds, attributing motives and making it personal...you're the first to mention these subjects. I guess it's OK with you, eh GZ, as long as he's one of your buddies.

91 posted on 12/28/2009 3:01:44 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Godzilla
Only IF you consider yourself associated with the links and those who espouse those beliefs.

I said to do a search and discern what you find. There you go again, saying I approve of everything on the internet...attributing motives, making it personal, namecalling, and falsely reading minds.

92 posted on 12/28/2009 3:05:09 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
Amazing here in 2009 you knew better than the people that lived at the time exactly what was going on around them.

yes and there are still people who believe in the tooth fairy. You need to go back and study your history - middle ages wasn't at that time either.

93 posted on 12/28/2009 3:06:21 PM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: Godzilla
For your questions to be valid, there needs to be reality between them. Other Myths about Jesus have him living a normal life in India Where is India How far did Indian trades go? Was the tomb empty.

You know damn well what the history of the Phoenicians has to do with Joseph of Arimathea and you know how strong that evidence is and so you refuse to discuss it.

94 posted on 12/28/2009 3:09:18 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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Comment #95 Removed by Moderator

To: Partisan Gunslinger; Poe White Trash
Speaking of flasely reading minds, attributing motives and making it personal...you're the first to mention these subjects. I guess it's OK with you, eh GZ, as long as he's one of your buddies.

You know, for a 'gunslinger' your shooting blanks. Poe's comment was to me, I am capable of recognizing sarcasm - whats your problem, unless you believe in the 'holy grail' (perhaps unicorns and dragons too - they were written of in the middle ages)

Now go away or I will taunt you again.

96 posted on 12/28/2009 3:12:23 PM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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To: Godzilla
yes and there are still people who believe in the tooth fairy. You need to go back and study your history - middle ages wasn't at that time either.

You attributed the stories of Joseph to middle age historians from England. I'll say again it's amazing you know more about their land here in America in 2009 than they did about their own homeland.

97 posted on 12/28/2009 3:14:44 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
You know damn well what the history of the Phoenicians has to do with Joseph of Arimathea and you know how strong that evidence is and so you refuse to discuss it.

Must I taunt you again. The history of the Phoenicians has nothing to do with JoA. One does not address fiction as fact - didn't you learn anything in schools?

98 posted on 12/28/2009 3:14:46 PM PST by Godzilla (3-7-77)
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Comment #99 Removed by Moderator

To: Godzilla
Must I taunt you again. The history of the Phoenicians has nothing to do with JoA. One does not address fiction as fact - didn't you learn anything in schools?

Where did they sail? Tell me that. (I know you're afraid of this discussion)

100 posted on 12/28/2009 3:17:50 PM PST by Partisan Gunslinger
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