Thought you said you read Eisenman? Eisenman equates Saul/Paul with Saulus in Josephus, who is a major actor at the beginning of the Revolt in Jerusalem in 66 A.D. He debates whether or not Silas of Acts is one and the same as Silas "the Babylonian" in Josephus and one of the leaders of the Revolt. Eisenman doesn't come to any definite conclusion on that association, but I think it is fairly probable the two are the same. And if so, that places the relationship between Silas and Paul in a different light.
For my take on Saul/Paul and Saulus there are one or more recent posts on the subject. Should come up if you search on "Saulus".
Ron asked if I thought Paul was a self-abuser. Well he did say that he buffetted his body daily and boasted of receiving the 40 lashes less one on five occasions. I'm no psychoanalyst but sounds to me like he was into S&M (with Rome being the "Master" and he as the "Slave")! But maybe still too soon to making judgments.
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