Originally posted by marg6043
Hum, they have been excavating since 2002? will the church allow scientist to do the dating?
Probably. The RCC has gotten over its dark age hangups and embraced science, at least as much as a faith based church can do. Pope John Paul the 2nd
had an astronomical observatory installed in his Papal Apartments, and held annual scientific conferences.
Or they will use their own experts.
The RCC can hire qualified researchers for these purposes, it doesn't mean that they are in the churche's pocket.
Still doesn't explain the 390 ad. Silly if you ask me.
All that means is that the material they have so far can only be reliably dated as around 390 ad. It could be that the remains were held in another
location, or in another receptacle, until placed into the one they found now, in 390 ad. Infact, it'd make sense that the materials were moved around
that time, when christianity would've been bigger and more popular.
Honestly, there's really no reason to think that the apostles didn't exist. Whether or not they were divinely inspired is a matter of faith. But the
evidence that we have does seem to suggest they did exist. They might've been jibbering whackadoos or con-artists, but that doesn't mean that they
didn't exist, or that their followers, be they faithful or deluded dupes, preserved their remains.
As far as testing the remains, we of course don't have anything authentically known to be paul. We could, perhaps, find out if the remains have the
genetic markers indicative of people from tarsus, or at least asia minor, at the time of the proported events. But, realistically, even if they
don't, it could simply mean that he was from tarsus, but not a tarsian.
It might help us clear some things up though. SOme have suggested that Paul wasn't a jew living in asia minor, that he was perhaps a pagan, perhaps
specifically a follower of the cult of Mithras. So perhaps, if the church beleives that these are infact his bones, and they don't have hebrew
markers, but rather have native asia minor markers, or italic markers, than that might settle the jew or not issue. That'd have implications for
Pauls theology. Even if we still accept paul as 'the gospel truth', so to speak, the fact that he came from a pagan, and not a jewish, context would