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    Re: The Star of Bethlehem and Navigation
    From: Andrew Corl
    Date: 2008 Dec 31, 07:31 -0800

    The most compelling argument for me as a Christian was found in a NOVA program 
    on the American PBS network from several years ago, I believe it was simply 
    titled "The Star of Bethlehem."  In that show an astronomer argued, quite 
    convincingly, that the three Wise Men discussed in Matthew were in fact 
    Babylonian astrologers and noblemen but not kings.  Additionally Venus in 
    astrology is not the planet of a king but Jupiter is, so the "star" they were 
    following was Jupiter not Venus.  Also in Ptolomey "The Almangest" each 
    nation of that time period was assigned a different constellation.  The 
    nation of Isreal was assigned the consteallation of Aries the Ram, which 
    makes sense due to the long history of the use of sheep in early Hebrew 
    worship.  This astronomer, rightly concluded, that Jesus was born when 
    Jupiter appeared in Aries the Ram which was somewhere around 4 A.D. 
    As to the Wise travelling there was a very lucrative trade between the 
    Babylonians/Persians, and the Roman Empire.
    So it would have most likely played out like this.  The Wise Men see Jupiter 
    in Aries and realize this heralds the arrival of a new powerful king, they 
    assemble their gifts which would have taken some time to complete since 
    francencense and myhhr grown are found on the Arabian Peninsula and are not 
    readily available, so that would have taken some time. They then set out on a 
    several month journey to the capital of Isreal at the time which would have 
    been Jerusalem.  They present themselves to Herod to find out where this new 
    king is to be found.  Herod finds out that Jesus was born in Bethlehem and 
    sends the Wise Men out to find Jesus and let him (Herod) know where he is to 
    be found.  The rest is history.
    The Star of Bethlehem was Jupiter in Aries in my opinion.
    --- On Wed, 12/31/08, Geoffrey Kolbe  wrote:
    > From: Geoffrey Kolbe 
    > Subject: [NavList 6860] Re: The Star of Bethlehem and Navigation
    > To: NavList@fer3.com
    > Date: Wednesday, December 31, 2008, 3:41 AM
    > This is a translation of the blurb for the book from the
    > author Dieter 
    > Koch's website http://www.gilgamesh.ch/default_stvb.htm
    > ===========================
    > For the star of Bethlehem, numerous astronomical
    > explanations have been 
    > proposed, but none have been so convincing that it has
    > become generally 
    > accepted. Is there anything more to be said on the subject?
    > Anyone who does 
    > not think so should read this book!  A careful and unbiased
    > reading of the 
    > Star of Bethlehem story in Matthew 2 suggests a rather
    > unspectacular 
    > heliacal rising of Venus to have been the star.  This
    > suggestion is 
    > supported by Revelations 22:16, where Jesus is called
    > "the shining morning 
    > star".  The virgin birth of Jesus seems to indicate
    > that the rising of the 
    > morning star happened when it was was in the constellation
    > of  Virgo. The 
    > apocalyptic woman in Revelations 12 indicates that this
    > happened near the 
    > time of a new moon and if possible on the day of the Jewish
    > New 
    > Year.  Stunningly, around 2 B.C.  there is actually a date
    > that fulfills 
    > all these requirements.  The author studies the symbolic
    > power of this 
    > astronomical event.  He also examines the meaning of the
    > birth star legend 
    > in the context of Jewish, Greek, Persian and Mesopotamian
    > astrological 
    > traditions.
    > ===========================
    > Marcel Tschudin wonders how the Three Wise Men navigated
    > their way to 
    > Bethlehem by "following a star"? First of all, it
    > is clear from Matthew 
    > that the Wise Men came "from the East". So the
    > implication is that in 
    > following a star to take them West, the star must have been
    > in the West. 
    > The heliacal rising of Venus would have been in the East,
    > wherever they 
    > came from, so they were not "following" Venus in
    > the way we might simply 
    > expect.
    > Without having read the book, Dieter Kock's explanation
    > seems to be that 
    > the place where the heliacal rising of Venus would have
    > been observed at 
    > the exact moment when it turned from being retrograde to
    > direct, was 
    > Bethlehem. (Or more exactly, there would be an arc along
    > which the heliacal 
    > rising of Venus would have been observed at the right time
    > and this arc 
    > went through Bethlehem.) Dieter Kock appears to argue that
    > the Wise Men 
    > would have been able to pre-compute this phenomenon and
    > took themselves off 
    > to Bethlehem to see it for themselves. They were actually
    > following a 
    > virtual star in that they travelled to Judea before the 
    > phenomenon occurred.
    > However, Dieter Kock is a programmer for the "Swiss
    > Ephemeris", an 
    > ephemeris widely used by astrologers, so he has access to
    > vast computing 
    > power and the world's most sophisticated astronomical
    > programs. It may be a 
    > mistake to think that the Three Wise Men were similarly
    > equipped...
    > Geoffrey Kolbe
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