Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Discussion about the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint, pseudepigrapha, Philo, Josephus, Talmud, Dead Sea Scrolls, archaeology, etc.
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jeszpt
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Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by jeszpt » Sun Nov 10, 2013 6:17 am

I would like to study and understand the conditions under which the Jews lived in the time after Herod's death up to Jesus' crucifixion, primarily if there were known organized parties with defined leaders that held insurrections or revolutionary activities. I.e., I know the 'Zealots' were around 66AD - 73AD, but who were the organized groups before? Can anyone suggest a historian or early writer who described these conditions?

Thanks! Jack

Duvduv
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Re: Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by Duvduv » Sun Nov 10, 2013 8:35 am

You mean until the time that Christian doctrine alleges the crucifixion of Jesus........don't you??

jeszpt
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Re: Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by jeszpt » Sun Nov 10, 2013 6:55 pm

No, I don't believe there is anything alleged about the crucifixion - I believe it occurred. So, do you have a suggestion? Thanks.

beowulf
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Re: Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by beowulf » Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:53 am

jeszpt wrote:I would like to study and understand the conditions under which the Jews lived in the time after Herod's death up to Jesus' crucifixion, primarily if there were known organized parties with defined leaders that held insurrections or revolutionary activities. I.e., I know the 'Zealots' were around 66AD - 73AD, but who were the organized groups before? Can anyone suggest a historian or early writer who described these conditions?

Thanks! Jack
Josephus is a favourite source for that period, but his books are tedious and he is blind about the more important: the synagogue and the widespread Jewish and Christian apocalyptic trends of his time.
Arnaldo Momigliano
On Pagans, Jews and Christians
Chapter 7. What Josephus did not see
Wesleyan University Press
Middletown, Connecticut, 1987
ISBN 0819562181


The following link is about Judea in the first century .It shows how Rabbinic Judaism made profound changes in the daily liturgy in response to Jewish-Christian heretics:
6:
Now let us consider the rabbinic attitude to the inclusion of the Ten Commandments in the daily liturgy. The Talmud of Eretz-Israel contains the following statement:
Both Rav Mattanah and Rabbi Shemu'el bar-Naĥman say that logically we should recite the Ten Commandments [liturgically] every day; why do we not do so? - [to refute] the claims of heretics that these alone were given to Moses at Sinai [Berakhot 9b].

The heretics referred to in this text are presumably the early Christians of the first century CE. So we have here an extraordinary statement to the effect that a logical Jewish liturgy was changed in order to combat heretical (and possibly missionary) claims. This statement of the Yerushalmi is also echoed by the Bavli [Berakhot 12a] –

Rav Yehudah quotes Shemu'el as saying that they wanted to recite them also outside the Bet Mikdash [the Temple in Jerusalem], but they had already been abolished because of the claims of heretics.

The Bavli goes on to record sporadic attempts to re-institute the reading of the Ten Commandments as a part of the Reading of the Shema, but these attempts were all quashed 'because they had already been abolished because of the claims of heretics'. The Talmud of Eretz-Israel admits that the Ten Commandments 'contain the essence of the Shema'.
It was the doctrine taught by Paul which made the tablets on which G-d had written the Ten Commandments nothing more than the tool of heretics!
What your informant told you is correct, and we already mentioned it in the shiur: The Talmud of Eretz-Israel contains the following statement: Both Rav Mattanah and Rabbi Shemu'el bar-Naĥman say that logically we should recite the Ten Commandments [liturgically] every day; why do we not do so? - [to refute] the claims of heretics that these alone were given to Moses at Sinai [Berakhot 9b].

On the other hand, the heretics could not possibly be the Karaites, for several reasons: the Karaite sect did not come into being until more than 600 years after the destruction of the Bet Mikdash, not did they claim that only the Ten Commandments were binding. For this latter reason we can also exclude Sadducees. The only contemporary schismatics who claimed that the Torah legislation was now defunct belonged to the Pauline branch of emergent Christianity.
http://www.bmv.org.il/shiurim/tamid/tam05.html

Missy
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Re: Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by Missy » Mon Nov 18, 2013 10:48 am

I just found this place. I wanted to know who Clement was, now I know. I am reading "Eusebius Ecclesiastical History" translated by: C.F. Cruse. The reading is ok, I understand it, he quotes Josephus often. The fighting that went on, before Nero took over, within the priest order and general people, is madding to me. The story that was told to whoever wrote this book, made me ill. If I am wrong someone correct me. A city was blocked from the outside, the food ran low. A young woman had a nursing baby. And before I realized she had eaten her child. Robbers came around looting for food. She offered some to the robbers, they ran out, and never came back, but they were caught, sent into slavery. That is one story. There are 2 James stories. One James was throw off a wing of a building by priests, then beaten to death. This James was to be Jesus brother. The other James was Johns brother, Zebedee boys. In the book, the author said that Peter and James were both killed in Rome, with a space of time between them. What I am saying is I just can't grasp the internal fighting among themselves and with each other. It seems the priests were trying to get everyone to proclaim that the religion to Jesus was fraud. So if anyone has read this book please comment. I have Josephus and Philo yet to read.

beowulf
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Re: Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by beowulf » Mon Nov 18, 2013 11:35 am

There is nothing unique about the siege of Jerusalem as narrated by Josephus in his book, the Jewish war.
During the siege of Leningrad in the months of January-February 1942 some 200.000 Leningraders died of hunger and cold...
http://www.saint-petersburg.com/history/siege.asp


The Christian Texts and History is the section where any questions about Clement, Marcion, Constantine, Damasus, Josephus, will be fully answered by experts and I suggest you post your questions there.

semiopen2
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Re: Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by semiopen2 » Tue Nov 19, 2013 6:23 am

beowulf wrote:
6:
Now let us consider the rabbinic attitude to the inclusion of the Ten Commandments in the daily liturgy. The Talmud of Eretz-Israel contains the following statement:
Both Rav Mattanah and Rabbi Shemu'el bar-Naĥman say that logically we should recite the Ten Commandments [liturgically] every day; why do we not do so? - [to refute] the claims of heretics that these alone were given to Moses at Sinai [Berakhot 9b].

The heretics referred to in this text are presumably the early Christians of the first century CE. So we have here an extraordinary statement to the effect that a logical Jewish liturgy was changed in order to combat heretical (and possibly missionary) claims. This statement of the Yerushalmi is also echoed by the Bavli [Berakhot 12a] –

Rav Yehudah quotes Shemu'el as saying that they wanted to recite them also outside the Bet Mikdash [the Temple in Jerusalem], but they had already been abolished because of the claims of heretics.

The Bavli goes on to record sporadic attempts to re-institute the reading of the Ten Commandments as a part of the Reading of the Shema, but these attempts were all quashed 'because they had already been abolished because of the claims of heretics'. The Talmud of Eretz-Israel admits that the Ten Commandments 'contain the essence of the Shema'.
It was the doctrine taught by Paul which made the tablets on which G-d had written the Ten Commandments nothing more than the tool of heretics!
What your informant told you is correct, and we already mentioned it in the shiur: The Talmud of Eretz-Israel contains the following statement: Both Rav Mattanah and Rabbi Shemu'el bar-Naĥman say that logically we should recite the Ten Commandments [liturgically] every day; why do we not do so? - [to refute] the claims of heretics that these alone were given to Moses at Sinai [Berakhot 9b].

On the other hand, the heretics could not possibly be the Karaites, for several reasons: the Karaite sect did not come into being until more than 600 years after the destruction of the Bet Mikdash, not did they claim that only the Ten Commandments were binding. For this latter reason we can also exclude Sadducees. The only contemporary schismatics who claimed that the Torah legislation was now defunct belonged to the Pauline branch of emergent Christianity.
The simplest way to handle the first century CE for Jewish texts is to assume that there are none. Assigning the heretics to Christians seems dubious not to mention the outrageous first century CE date. The two sages you mention seem obscure but I don't think they are first century.

The reason for the ten commandments not being said is reminscent of the reason we sit down for the Shema. Some dickheads said the Shema is the most important prayer so we stand or some such shit so of course the sages decided we should sit.

The Custom that Refused to Die - http://www.ou.org/torah/article/the_cus ... sed_to_die
It begins with a little-known fact. There was a time when there were not three paragraphs in the prayer we call the Shema, but four. The Mishnah in Tamid (5: 1) tells us that in Temple times the officiating priests would say, first, the Ten Commandments and then the three paragraphs of the Shema.
Have to admit I didn't know that.
So the custom of including the Ten Commandments as part of the Shema was once widespread, but from a certain point in time it was systematically opposed by the sages. Why did they object to it? Both the Babylonian and Jerusalem Talmuds say it was because of the “claim of the sectarians.”

Jewish sectarians – some identify them as a group of early Christians but there is no compelling evidence for this – argued that only the Ten Commandments were binding, because only they were received by the Israelites directly from God at Mount Sinai. The others were received through Moses, and this sect, or perhaps several of them, held that they did not come from God. They were Moses’ own invention, and therefore not binding.
I don't trust Sachs all that much but this seems reasonable. I'm not sure what the Conservative thing means in the link you give - I wrote some diatribes on American Reform bullshit about the first century and wonder if this is related.

Regarding the OP, I don't think we can seriously talk of over one million people in Jerusalem etc, but the question seems a little too Christian to me. Always amazes me, if I thought there is something divine going on I'd be fucking studying it night and day as opposed to asking about it.

If I can be permitted to deal with just Jewish Revolts, we have http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kitos_War also here Wars between the Jews and Romans: the revolt against Trajan (115-117 CE) - http://www.livius.org/ja-jn/jewish_wars/jwar06.html

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DCHindley
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Re: Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by DCHindley » Tue Nov 19, 2013 7:45 am

Jack,

Probably the best place to get a feel for 1st century CE Judaism (for "common/Christian era" or more commonly "AD" = Anno Domini = "year of the Lord") in English, short of wading through William Whiston's 1737 translations of Josephus' Jewish War (7 rolls, pub. ca. 75 CE) and Jewish Antiquities (20 rolls, pub. ca. 95 CE), is to read the English translation of the First Division, volume 1, of Emil Schürer's A History of the Jewish People in the Time of Jesus Christ (five volumes total, 1885-1891). This introductory volume, covering roughly 175 BCE to 135 CE, but which is now rather dated, can be downloaded from the Internet Archive here:
https://archive.org/details/historyofjewishp18910101sch
There is a more recent edition, based on a later German edition than the above, but harder to lay hands on (and not free on the internet), The History of the Jewish people in the age of Jesus Christ, where you would want volume 1 (1973, ISBN 0567022420).

As for Jewish factions such as Zealots, there is much confusion, due to modern authors' rather loose application of that term to factions active in periods before the Jewish war of 66-70 CE, when Josephus introduces it as the name of a faction in that war. S. G. F. Brandon, in his book Jesus and the Zealots (1967), connects the "Zealots" of Josephus' War with all Jewish resistance movements active from Herod's time and even before as the leaders of them (going back to Judah the Maccabee who gained Judaea's independence from Syria around 164 BCE) were often described as "Zealous" for the Law.

Cecil Roth, in The Dead Sea Scrolls; a new historical approach (1965), while attempting (incorrectly, it later turned out) to connect the key figures mentioned in the Dead Sea Scrolls to 1st century Jewish politics, also engaged in this kind of conflation, although he did provide strong evidence that there may be a dynastic relationship between a well-known rebel mentioned in the revolt at the time of Herod the Great's death and a later rebel active decades later, just before the Jewish war. You can pick up a copy used for about US $4.00.

There is a rather interesting web page dedicated to the works of Josephus, called The Flavius Josephus
Home Page, here:
http://www.josephus.org/

Have fun, but expect to find the reading confusing and full of apparent contradictions.

DCH
jeszpt wrote:I would like to study and understand the conditions under which the Jews lived in the time after Herod's death up to Jesus' crucifixion, primarily if there were known organized parties with defined leaders that held insurrections or revolutionary activities. I.e., I know the 'Zealots' were around 66AD - 73AD, but who were the organized groups before? Can anyone suggest a historian or early writer who described these conditions?

Thanks! Jack
Last edited by DCHindley on Tue Nov 19, 2013 9:04 am, edited 2 times in total.

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DCHindley
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Re: Jewish Revolts in the Provence of Judea

Post by DCHindley » Tue Nov 19, 2013 8:11 am

Missy,

Welcome to the world of confusing and conflicting facts.

Ignoring for the moment the New Testament (the dating of the books it contains is hotly disputed, usually for rather partisan reasons), by the time we start to encounter early Christian accounts of their origins, attributed to 2nd century CE figures like Papias, Hegesippus, and even Julius Africanus, the facts are confused and have come second hand, usually through Eusebius' Church History (early 4th century CE).

Basically, they had only the murkiest idea about how Christianity developed from a Jewish movement centered on a historical human Jesus into a Gentile movement centered on a divine redeemer figure, Jesus Christ. When a group does not know the actual facts about their origins, they must resort to guessing when explaining to the authorities, who continued to associate the word "Christ" with a rebelliousness which they felt was justly suppressed (for the public good) by Pilate, why members of the mystery cult of their day (pagan examples were very common, and though technically illegal, were in fact tolerated) should not be prosecuted and punished.

DCH
Missy wrote:I just found this place. I wanted to know who Clement was, now I know. I am reading "Eusebius Ecclesiastical History" translated by: C.F. Cruse. The reading is ok, I understand it, he quotes Josephus often. The fighting that went on, before Nero took over, within the priest order and general people, is madding to me. The story that was told to whoever wrote this book, made me ill. If I am wrong someone correct me. A city was blocked from the outside, the food ran low. A young woman had a nursing baby. And before I realized she had eaten her child. Robbers came around looting for food. She offered some to the robbers, they ran out, and never came back, but they were caught, sent into slavery. That is one story. There are 2 James stories. One James was throw off a wing of a building by priests, then beaten to death. This James was to be Jesus brother. The other James was Johns brother, Zebedee boys. In the book, the author said that Peter and James were both killed in Rome, with a space of time between them. What I am saying is I just can't grasp the internal fighting among themselves and with each other. It seems the priests were trying to get everyone to proclaim that the religion to Jesus was fraud. So if anyone has read this book please comment. I have Josephus and Philo yet to read.

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