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What about those "Paul is dead" rumors?

They're all true. According to scholars, Paul died about A.D. 67 or 68 ... but not before writing a large portion of the New Testament (Romans, 1 & 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 & 2 Thessalonians, 1 & 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon and possibly Hebrews, although nobody knows that last one for sure) and having a great influence on Mark, who wrote the Gospel According to Mark, and Luke, who wrote both the Gospel According to Luke & the Book of the Acts of the Apostles.

Church tradition says that Paul was beheaded in Rome during the persecutions by the Roman emperor Nero. He seems to have been released after his first Roman imprisonment (where he is last seen in Acts 28) but was later arrested again. Paul's final recorded words are preserved in 2 Timothy.

Although Paul is dead, nobody should shed any tears for him. Here are some famous quotes from Paul regarding his impending death:

From his first imprisonment:

Philippians 1:21-24
"For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body."

From his second imprisonment:

2 Timothy 4:6-8
For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day--and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.