Josephus "Pharisee," though noting others

Discussion about the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint, pseudepigrapha, Philo, Josephus, Talmud, Dead Sea Scrolls, archaeology, etc.
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StephenGoranson
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Josephus "Pharisee," though noting others

Post by StephenGoranson »

Josephus claimed to be aligned with Pharisees.
Describing others was no worry.
Secret Alias
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Re: Josephus "Pharisee," though noting others

Post by Secret Alias »

Wow that was a dense OP. Dense in a good way. Not sure what you are asking. Or if this is just a statement that belonged to another thread.
andrewcriddle
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Re: Josephus "Pharisee," though noting others

Post by andrewcriddle »

StephenGoranson wrote: Sat Feb 10, 2024 11:59 am Josephus claimed to be aligned with Pharisees.
Describing others was no worry.

The late JP Meier said that the claim by Josephus to be a Pharisaic sympathizer was simply a lie.

Andrew Criddle
StephenGoranson
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Re: Josephus "Pharisee," though noting others

Post by StephenGoranson »

It may be fair to call Josephus an opportunist.
If so, it may have been his safest or most convenient choice to advertise himself as such, as Pharisee, without bothering to be, as it were, a card-carrying member, nor a former yeshiva bokher. (Or, depending on how you read that sentence, being *only* a card-carrying member.) ((Maybe compare r(h)inos, republican in name only; or even, iffy, oreos?))

As to "noting others," Josephus noted, portrayed, those rebelling against Rome as bad guys, even though he was once one of them.
And he introduced Pharisees, Sadducees, and Essenes in 146 bce. That was abrupt, without narrative cause. (I guess because he borrowed from Strabo from Posidonius who began their histories then, when the history of Polybius ended, with ethnographic intros.) In any case, Josephus could switch topics abruptly.

So, what about Christians?
They, small group, mostly then were not actively fighting Rome. (Pace some posters, up in the morning, maybe with espresso, determined to find otherwise.) If Rome had it coming, God and angels would see to that. If they were a danger to Rome, Josephus would, I suppose, have signaled that. (Or, skipped them altogether, some may try to argue?)
Wait, would Josephus have even known about Christians? By the time he wrote Antiquities, sure, you bet. Ok, I bet.
I find Alice Whealey's dissertation impressive. (Daniel Boyarin as an advisor.)

But, just because (if) he knew of Christians, it does not automatically follow that he wrote about them.
And, later, some Christians, it has indeed plausibly been argued, might have been motivated to try to hijack Josephus' text.

But, even if one had tried, it would be very hard to--completely successfully--insert an interpolation in a text that had already been circulating for two centuries.
Much less, three interpolations.
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