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Author Topic:   Using the Bible as fact...
gene90
Member (Idle past 1263 days)
Posts: 1610
Joined: 12-25-2000


Message 93 of 113 (14877)
08-05-2002 10:19 PM
Reply to: Message 92 by John
08-05-2002 9:57 PM


[QUOTE][B]The Bible doesn't give a non-believer much to go on. Most of it is unsupported by external evidence whether written or archeological, and what is supported is pretty trivial-- meaning it is well within human ability to observe and record.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

Biblical apologetics does not interest me, it never seems to accomplish anything. Really the best indicator is the Holy Spirit, a highly personal form of revelation that is easily explained away by non-believers as us believers simply trying to trick ourselves into believing through wishful thinking. I believe in the Holy Spirit but I can certainly respect and understand the opinion of nonbelievers on the matter.

[QUOTE][B]While an internally inconsistent book doesn't prove anything, an internally consistent book would.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

Depending on the quality of the paper trail, if we could use the original manuscripts it would help a great deal. I allow that a consistent book is better than an inconsistent one. I don't think a consistent book with no paper trail would "prove" anything though, except perhaps good editing.

[QUOTE][B]Agreed, but I was raised with exactly the opposite dogma, and I cannot tell you how many times I have heard the phrase repeated "There is not one single contradiction in the entire book"
[/QUOTE]

[/B]

When you haven't had a prophet in 2000 years and your professors of religion get their divine authority in Bible colleges, this is the result.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 92 by John, posted 08-05-2002 9:57 PM John has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 94 by John, posted 08-05-2002 11:29 PM gene90 has not yet responded

  
John
Inactive Member


Message 94 of 113 (14880)
08-05-2002 11:29 PM
Reply to: Message 93 by gene90
08-05-2002 10:19 PM


quote:
Originally posted by gene90:
Really the best indicator is the Holy Spirit, a highly personal form of revelation that is easily explained away by non-believers as us believers simply trying to trick ourselves into believing through wishful thinking.

If you're going to be religious, might as well 'fess up to the Holy Spirit.

quote:
When you haven't had a prophet in 2000 years and your professors of religion get their divine authority in Bible colleges, this is the result.

Yeah, no kidding.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 93 by gene90, posted 08-05-2002 10:19 PM gene90 has not yet responded

  
Tranquility Base
Inactive Member


Message 95 of 113 (14883)
08-06-2002 12:06 AM
Reply to: Message 91 by gene90
08-05-2002 9:34 PM


Gene90

The depressing context of the compilation of the Bible is no more depressing than the early life of Joseph, Egypt, the captivity in Babylon or the crucifiction of Jesus. We are in the world not of it - so is the Bible. The dead sea scrolls and numerous other evidence suggest that tthe Bibl we have is in pretty good nick. And which books do you want to remove from the canon? I hardly think any teaching of scripture would be compromised if you threw away 25%.

As food for thought I will repeat my two littel hints that we might have the right Bible:

1. 66 book Isaiah appears to be a picture of the entire word. The 40th chapter begins with 'a new coveant' as does the 40th book of the Bible (Matthew, 1st book of NT). The 66th chapter discusses the 'new heavens and the new earth' as does the 66th book of the Bible (Revelations).
2. The 7-sticked candlestick was the source of light (cf the word) in the Tabernacle. It had 66 pieces. When broken in 'half' (4/3 sticks) it breaks into 39 and 27 part components.

But I agree with you that the 'letter of the law' killeth whilst the Holy Sprit brings the word of God alive.

There is no reason to suspect that the Bible we have is not essentially the direct word of God.

Have a look at Jesus' use of the Old Testament.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 91 by gene90, posted 08-05-2002 9:34 PM gene90 has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 96 by John, posted 08-06-2002 12:28 AM Tranquility Base has not yet responded
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John
Inactive Member


Message 96 of 113 (14885)
08-06-2002 12:28 AM
Reply to: Message 95 by Tranquility Base
08-06-2002 12:06 AM


quote:
Originally posted by Tranquility Base:
1. 66 book Isaiah appears to be a picture of the entire word. The 40th chapter begins with 'a new coveant' as does the 40th book of the Bible (Matthew, 1st book of NT). The 66th chapter discusses the 'new heavens and the new earth' as does the 66th book of the Bible (Revelations).
2. The 7-sticked candlestick was the source of light (cf the word) in the Tabernacle. It had 66 pieces. When broken in 'half' (4/3 sticks) it breaks into 39 and 27 part components.

You are beginning to sound like a Kabbalist....

------------------
www.hells-handmaiden.com


This message is a reply to:
 Message 95 by Tranquility Base, posted 08-06-2002 12:06 AM Tranquility Base has not yet responded

  
gene90
Member (Idle past 1263 days)
Posts: 1610
Joined: 12-25-2000


Message 97 of 113 (14886)
08-06-2002 12:32 AM
Reply to: Message 95 by Tranquility Base
08-06-2002 12:06 AM


[QUOTE][B]The depressing context of the compilation of the Bible is no more depressing than the early life of Joseph, Egypt, the captivity in Babylon or the crucifiction of Jesus.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

The teachings of the Christian religion were chosen by a Pagan to accomplish a political end. Now there are those factions in the Christian world that believe that book is inerrant?

[QUOTE][B]The 66th chapter discusses the 'new heavens and the new earth' as does the 66th book of the Bible (Revelations).[/QUOTE]

[/B]

The order of the books of the Bible was decided by the Council of Nicea. This goes back to editing. If this is not coincidence, it is not divine either.

[QUOTE][B]The 7-sticked candlestick was the source of light (cf the word) in the Tabernacle. It had 66 pieces. When broken in 'half' (4/3 sticks) it breaks into 39 and 27 part components.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

George W Bush = 11 letters.
New York City = 11 letters.
Afghanistan = 11 letters.
The Pentagon = 11 letters.
Air Force One = 11 letters.
Colin Powell = 11 letters.
Shakesville (Pennsylvania) = 11 letters.
"It's Bull****" = 11 letters.
Flight 11, first to strike WTC, had 92 passengers, 9+2 = 11
65 passengers on Flight 77, 6+5 = 11
WTC Building 7, 47 stories, 4+7 = 11
http://www.greaterthings.com/News/911/Eleven/

(By the way, I'm not religiously affiliated with the link above)

[QUOTE][B]Have a look at Jesus' use of the Old Testament.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

Jesus frequently spoke in metaphors. The incidents he refered to did not necessarily have to happen for them to be useful in teaching.

[QUOTE][B]And which books do you want to remove from the canon?[/QUOTE]

[/B]

I don't feel qualified to remove any books from the canon, but I would like to suggest the possible additions of Acts of Solomon (1 Kings 11:41) and The Book of the Wars of the LORD (Numbers 21:14).

[This message has been edited by gene90, 08-06-2002]


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
 Message 98 by w_fortenberry, posted 08-07-2002 2:01 AM gene90 has responded

  
w_fortenberry
Member (Idle past 3547 days)
Posts: 178
From: Birmingham, AL, USA
Joined: 04-19-2002


Message 98 of 113 (14939)
08-07-2002 2:01 AM
Reply to: Message 97 by gene90
08-06-2002 12:32 AM


quote:
However the Bible is not perfectly internally consistent (for example, the eternal salvation of the thief crucified which Jesus).

Please explain how your example is an proof of a lack of consistency. I am not aware of any Scripture which is contradicted by the salvation of the said thief.

quote:
The teachings of the Christian religion were chosen by a Pagan to accomplish a political end. Now there are those factions in the Christian world that believe that book is inerrant?

That is incorrect. Constantine established what was to become known as the Catholic Church, but the teachings of Christianity were established long before his rise to power. Please read the on-line booklet, The Trail of Blood found at, http://www.biblepreaching.com/trailofblood.html

I have read biographies of Constantine by both Catholic and secular historians and have found that they agree that Constantine only established a denomination not the teachings of Christianity itself. They agree that those teachings were in existence even before his birth.

quote:
The order of the books of the Bible was decided by the Council of Nicea. This goes back to editing. If this is not coincidence, it is not divine either.

The early Christians were most likely aware of each portion of Scripture upon its completion. This is evidenced by II Peter 3:15-16. The complete canon of the 66 books was known to and mentioned by the church fathers of the first, second, and third centuries.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 97 by gene90, posted 08-06-2002 12:32 AM gene90 has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 99 by gene90, posted 08-07-2002 10:37 AM w_fortenberry has not yet responded
 Message 100 by John, posted 08-07-2002 10:47 AM w_fortenberry has responded

  
gene90
Member (Idle past 1263 days)
Posts: 1610
Joined: 12-25-2000


Message 99 of 113 (14958)
08-07-2002 10:37 AM
Reply to: Message 98 by w_fortenberry
08-07-2002 2:01 AM


[QUOTE][B]Please explain how your example is an proof of a lack of consistency. I am not aware of any Scripture which is contradicted by the salvation of the said thief.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

Mark 15:32, "They that were crucified with him reviled him".

[QUOTE][B]That is incorrect. Constantine established what was to become known as the Catholic Church, but the teachings of Christianity were established long before his rise to power.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

The teachings of mainstream Christianity are (supposedly) in the Bible (though not everything in the Bible is taught or practiced by mainline Christianity). The Bible was compiled by Constantine. Constantine is not infallible. Therefore the Bible is not necessarily infallible.

[QUOTE][B]They agree that those teachings were in existence even before his birth.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

By the time of Constantine those teachings had begun to change and Christianity was split into sects. He chose a particular sect and founded the universal Christian Church upon the notions that suited his purposes. Some things were lost. Other unnecessary practices
(baptism for infants) were adopted. Another problem we have here is the lack of prophecy in the Christian religion for 2000 years. Teachings are interpreted by man, they inevitably turn from the Godly into the work of man unless they are being regularly renewed through prophecy. Mainline Christianity is almost a dead faith, circulated by men according to the principles and logic as they see fit with no prophecy and very few works, and certainly none like unto old. First it was Constantine, then Martin Luther and hundreds of other people who took it upon themselves to further alter the doctrine of the Christian church to fit their own personal ideals.
This is true apostasy, and it is almost everywhere.

[QUOTE][B]The early Christians were most likely aware of each portion of Scripture upon its completion. This is evidenced by II Peter 3:15-16.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

The Scripture cite only mentions the epistles of Paul. I would expect that the Christian church would indeed be aware of a letter addressed to it. I'm concerned about other books that were lost, such as the ones mentioned in the Bible but are absent. I'm also concerned, that if everyone is so sure about the Bible being perfect and inerrant, why there has ever been uncertainty regarding the Apocrypha.

[QUOTE][B]The complete canon of the 66 books was known to and mentioned by the church fathers of the first, second, and third centuries.[/QUOTE]

[/B]

That's incorrect, because the "complete canon" consists of more than 66 books. The modern canon of mainline Christianity, as of AD 300, has 66 books. As I have pointed out, there are books referenced in the OT that were lost. Also, unless some verse in the NT actually lists the entire contents of the Holy Bible, how do you know this? Finally, if the list were known, there would have been no need for the Council of Nicea to compile the Bible in the first place.

(You realize of course that there was a time when you could just ask a prophet and not have to debate things like this.)


This message is a reply to:
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John
Inactive Member


Message 100 of 113 (14959)
08-07-2002 10:47 AM
Reply to: Message 98 by w_fortenberry
08-07-2002 2:01 AM


quote:
Originally posted by w_fortenberry:
Please explain how your example is an proof of a lack of consistency. I am not aware of any Scripture which is contradicted by the salvation of the said thief.

Different books of Gospel "quote" the characters in the story as saying different things. It is minor, but it is an inconsistency.

quote:
That is incorrect. Constantine established what was to become known as the Catholic Church, but the teachings of Christianity were established long before his rise to power.

Please read: http://bidstrup.com/bible.htm You have to skip three quarters to the end to get to the part about Constantine, but I suggest reading the whole essay.

quote:
The order of the books of the Bible was decided by the Council of Nicea. This goes back to editing. If this is not coincidence, it is not divine either.

It wasn't just the order that was editted. Huge numbers of books were thrown out and/or altered.

------------------
www.hells-handmaiden.com


This message is a reply to:
 Message 98 by w_fortenberry, posted 08-07-2002 2:01 AM w_fortenberry has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 102 by w_fortenberry, posted 08-12-2002 2:04 PM John has responded

  
Peter
Member (Idle past 1363 days)
Posts: 2160
From: Cambridgeshire, UK.
Joined: 02-05-2002


Message 101 of 113 (15274)
08-12-2002 7:35 AM
Reply to: Message 88 by w_fortenberry
08-03-2002 1:52 AM


quote:
When the Bible is being USED AS FACT, it is AN interpretation
of some passage or other that is used, not the word sequence
of that passage.


In other words, you are not questioning whether the Bible is a fact but whether any one interpretation can be said to be a factual account of the events stated?

Peter:: Exactly.

quote:
The interpretation is not fact


Are you denying the possibility that an interpretation can be 100% factual?

Peter:: No. But since we cannot know that without extra biblical
confirmation we are stuck.

quote:
You state that King James bible is The One ... and this is the
one that contains ELS ... and yet another poster has said
that the Massoretic text upon which KJV is based is the least
likely candidate for THE bible ... and the English text of KJV
has been claimed as modified for political reasons.


You must have me confused with another poster; I have not said nything about ELS.

Peter:: I wasn't suggesting that it was you who had raised ELS,
sorry if that was unclear. I was simply pointing that there is
a dispute even amongst biblical scholars over which version may
be considered the most correct/accurate.


My acceptance of the KJV as the Bible is based primarily on the fact that it is completely internally consistent. It does not contradict itself.

Peter::
Is it a fact that it is internally consistent?

Is internal consistency sufficient to suggest that something is
factual?

If a work of fiction is internally consistent does that make it fact?

Which is more likely to have internal consistency; fact (which
relates events that have transpired as interpreted through the
filter of the author) or fiction (which is designed to suspend
disbelief and is therefore designed to be internally consistent)?

{Edited it to add some formatting .... should have previewed }

[This message has been edited by Peter, 08-12-2002]


This message is a reply to:
 Message 88 by w_fortenberry, posted 08-03-2002 1:52 AM w_fortenberry has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 103 by w_fortenberry, posted 08-12-2002 2:31 PM Peter has responded

    
w_fortenberry
Member (Idle past 3547 days)
Posts: 178
From: Birmingham, AL, USA
Joined: 04-19-2002


Message 102 of 113 (15297)
08-12-2002 2:04 PM
Reply to: Message 100 by John
08-07-2002 10:47 AM


John, we have each referenced on-line material in defense of our different positions on the history of Christianity. I would like to point out two glaring differences between the two sites mentioned.

I) The site you referred to presented twelve books used in the research of the material.
In contrast the site I referenced presented a partial listing of sources which mentioned seventy-nine books.

II) I also noticed that while the site you presented refers to historical events to support its conclusion, the other site refers to traceable historical documents to support its conclusion.

For these two reasons, as well as many others that I could mention were we to debate the contents of the essay, I do not accept the material you have referenced as a valid record of the history of the Bible and Christianity.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 100 by John, posted 08-07-2002 10:47 AM John has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 104 by John, posted 08-12-2002 10:30 PM w_fortenberry has responded

  
w_fortenberry
Member (Idle past 3547 days)
Posts: 178
From: Birmingham, AL, USA
Joined: 04-19-2002


Message 103 of 113 (15298)
08-12-2002 2:31 PM
Reply to: Message 101 by Peter
08-12-2002 7:35 AM


Peter, let me make sure that we understand each other.

The question as it now stands is that of whether a specific translation or interpretation of the Bible exists which maintains internal consistency and which presents a factual account of historical events.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 101 by Peter, posted 08-12-2002 7:35 AM Peter has responded

Replies to this message:
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John
Inactive Member


Message 104 of 113 (15326)
08-12-2002 10:30 PM
Reply to: Message 102 by w_fortenberry
08-12-2002 2:04 PM


quote:
Originally posted by w_fortenberry:
I) The site you referred to presented twelve books used in the research of the material.
In contrast the site I referenced presented a partial listing of sources which mentioned seventy-nine books.

You did notice that only a handfull of those references actually dealt with the very early church? The rest deal with the history of the Waldenses, the Baptists,.... etc. This is a very lame way to add credentials to a paper or to a point.

quote:
II) I also noticed that while the site you presented refers to historical events to support its conclusion, the other site refers to traceable historical documents to support its conclusion.

I have just reread the the site you posted with your comments in mind. The part of the online essay dealing with the early church -- 30-500ad-- lists not one traceable historical document (unless of course, you count any document published prior to today as a traceable historical document) except for verses of the Bible itself. The Bible can't verify the Bible. This is silly. Your link is a compendium of two thousand years worth of christian apologetics. This is not the same as providing historical fact.

------------------
www.hells-handmaiden.com

[This message has been edited by John, 08-12-2002]


This message is a reply to:
 Message 102 by w_fortenberry, posted 08-12-2002 2:04 PM w_fortenberry has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 105 by w_fortenberry, posted 08-13-2002 2:14 AM John has responded

  
w_fortenberry
Member (Idle past 3547 days)
Posts: 178
From: Birmingham, AL, USA
Joined: 04-19-2002


Message 105 of 113 (15336)
08-13-2002 2:14 AM
Reply to: Message 104 by John
08-12-2002 10:30 PM


quote:
Originally posted by John:
You did notice that only a handfull of those references actually dealt with the very early church? The rest deal with the history of the Waldenses, the Baptists,.... etc. This is a very lame way to add credentials to a paper or to a point.

Have you ever studied the histories of the Waldenses, the Baptists, or the Albigenses? All three of these groups trace their history back to the early Church. The Catholic church does the same. However, even if we did not include the histories of these groups, we would still be left with 26 books whose titles indicate a possible focus on early church history.

quote:
I have just reread the the site you posted with your comments in mind. The part of the online essay dealing with the early church -- 30-500ad-- lists not one traceable historical document (unless of course, you count any document published prior to today as a traceable historical document) except for verses of the Bible itself. The Bible can't verify the Bible. This is silly. Your link is a compendium of two thousand years worth of christian apologetics. This is not the same as providing historical fact.

I also have reread the portion in question and found six direct references to historical documents. They are as follows.

quote:
in A.D. 251, the loyal churches declared non-fellowship for those churches which accepted and practiced these errors.

Hence Galerius, the emperor, sent out a direct edict of more savage persecution. This occurred Feb. 24, 303 A.D.

this same emperor, Galerius, just eight years thereafter (A.D. 311) passed another edict recalling the first and actually granting toleration

In A. D. 313, a call was made for a coming together of the Christian churches

though all the fathers of the first four ages, down to Jerome (A.D. 370), were of Greece, Syria and Africa, and though they give great numbers of histories of the baptism of adults, yet there is not one of the baptism of a child till the year 370

By this new law, "Infant Baptism" becomes compulsory. This was done A.D. 416.


In each reference, the author presented a description of the contents of the document and the date of publication.

I also found several indirect references to historical documents. For instance...

quote:
The name appears, as first applied to the Bishop of Rome 296-304.

The word "appears" indicates that the author is refering to an actual historical document even though he chose not to reference that document directly.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 104 by John, posted 08-12-2002 10:30 PM John has responded

Replies to this message:
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Peter
Member (Idle past 1363 days)
Posts: 2160
From: Cambridgeshire, UK.
Joined: 02-05-2002


Message 106 of 113 (15341)
08-13-2002 3:23 AM
Reply to: Message 103 by w_fortenberry
08-12-2002 2:31 PM


quote:
Originally posted by w_fortenberry:
Peter, let me make sure that we understand each other.

The question as it now stands is that of whether a specific translation or interpretation of the Bible exists which maintains internal consistency and which presents a factual account of historical events.


Not entirely ... internal consistency does not equate to
fact. Any good work of fiction will have an internal consistency
at least as good as any version of the Bible, mainly because a
work of fiction is designed to be internally consistent.

But yes, my contention is that the use of a particular interpretation
of the bible cannot be claimed to be fact for a number of reasons:

a) The reader will impose their own context onto anything they
attempt to interpret.

b) The writer will impose his/her context onto the events they de
scribe.

c) The writer may (or may not but we don't know) have political
motives for mis-representing events to show one side in a better
light than others (the winners write the history).

d) Translators filter the translation through their own context.

An argument I have come across in connection with this issue
is that God informed the translators and writers ... my problem
with this is that 'the Bible prooves the existence of God
becuase God wrote it' is not logical.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 103 by w_fortenberry, posted 08-12-2002 2:31 PM w_fortenberry has not yet responded

    
John
Inactive Member


Message 107 of 113 (15363)
08-13-2002 9:33 AM
Reply to: Message 105 by w_fortenberry
08-13-2002 2:14 AM


quote:
Originally posted by w_fortenberry:
Have you ever studied the histories of the Waldenses, the Baptists, or the Albigenses? All three of these groups trace their history back to the early Church.

hmmm..... "Let us start with the basic premise about Baptist History: the modern Baptist denomination originated in England and Holland in the early seventeenth century"

http://www.volstate.net/~credo/page13.html

quote:
I have just reread the the site you posted with your comments in mind. The part of the online essay dealing with the early church -- 30-500ad-- lists not one traceable historical document (unless of course, you count any document published prior to today as a traceable historical document) except for verses of the Bible itself. The Bible can't verify the Bible. This is silly. Your link is a compendium of two thousand years worth of christian apologetics. This is not the same as providing historical fact.

I also have reread the portion in question and found six direct references to historical documents. They are as follows.

quote:
in A.D. 251, the loyal churches declared non-fellowship for those churches which accepted and practiced these errors.

Here is the full text, "7. Let it be remembered that changes like these here mentioned were not made in a day, nor even within a year. They came about slowly and never within all the churches. Some of the churches vigorously repudiated them. So much so that in A.D. 251, the loyal churches declared non-fellowship for those churches which accepted and practiced these errors. And thus came about the first real official separation among the churches."

Where exactly is a reference to a HISTORICAL DOCUMENT?

quote:
Hence Galerius, the emperor, sent out a direct edict of more savage persecution. This occurred Feb. 24, 303 A.D.

"12. Persecutions have become increasingly bitter. Near the beginning of the fourth century comes possibly the first definite government edict of persecution. The wonderful growth of Christianity has alarmed the pagan leaders of the Roman Empire. Hence Galerius, the emperor, sent out a direct edict of more savage persecution. This occurred Feb. 24, 303 A.D. Up to this time Paganism seems to have persecuted without any definite laws to that effect."

How about this one? Where is the reference to a HISTORICAL DOCUMENT?

quote:
In each reference, the author presented a description of the contents of the document and the date of publication.

???????? Oh really?

{quoteI also found several indirect references to historical documents. For instance...

quote:
The name appears, as first applied to the Bishop of Rome 296-304.

][/quote]

And again:
"29. It was early in the period of the "dark ages" when real Popery had its definite beginnings. This was by Leo II, A.D. 440 to 461. This, however, was not the first time the title was ever used. This title, similar to the Catholic church itself, was largely a development. The name appears, as first applied to the Bishop of Rome 296-304. It was formally adopted by Siricius, Bishop of Rome 384-398. Then officially adopted by Leo II, 440-461. Then claimed to be universal, 707. Then some centuries later declared by Gregory VII to be the exclusive right of the papacy."

Where is the citation?

Naming dates is not enough.

quote:
The word "appears" indicates that the author is refering to an actual historical document even though he chose not to reference that document directly.

ummm.... so if I use the word "appears" a lot you'll believe me cause it will mean I have actual historical documents at my disposal?

------------------
www.hells-handmaiden.com


This message is a reply to:
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