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that he spared neither his people, nor the richest and most powerful of his subjects, not even his very friends. . It is not at all surprising that such a conduct should procure Herod the hatred of his subjects, especially of the Pharisees, who engaged in various plots against him : and so suspicious did these conspiracies render him, that he put the innocent to the torture, lest the guilty should escape. These circumstances sufficiently account for Herod and all Jerusalem with him being troubled at the arrival of the Magi, to enquire where the Messiah was born. (Matt. ii. 1–3.) The Jews, who anxiously exected the Messiah “the Deliverer,” were moved with an anxiety made up of hopes and fears, of uncertainty and expectation, blended with a dread of the sanguinary consequences of new tumults; and Herod, who was a foreigner and usurper, was apprehensive lest he should lose his crown by the birth of a rightful heir. Hence we are furnished with a satisfactory solution of the motive that led him to command all the male children to be put to death, who were under two years of age, in Bethlehem and its vicinity. (Matt. ii. 16.) No very long time after the perpetration of this crime, Herod died, having suffered the most excruciating pains, in the thirty-seventh year of his being declared king of the Jews by the Romans. The tidings of his decease were received by his oppressed subjects with universal joy and satisfaction. Herod had a numerous offspring by his different wives, although their number was greatly reduced i. his unnatural cruelty in putting many of them to death: but, as few of his descendants are mentioned in the sacred volume, we shall notice only those persons of whom it is requisite that some account should be given for the better understanding of the New Testament. The annexed table will perhaps be found useful in distinguishing the particular persons of this family, whose names occur in the Evangelical histories.
loved wife, the beautiful and virtuous Mariamne, had a public execution, and her mother Alexandra followed soon after. Alexander and Aristobulus, his two sons by Mariamne, were strangled in prison by his order upon groundless suspicions, as it seems, when they were at man's estate, were married and had children. I say nothing of the death of his eldest son Antipater. If Josephus's character of him be just, he was a miscreant, and deserved the worst death that could be inflicted ; in his last sickness, a little before he died, he sent orders throughout Judaea, requiring the presence of all the chief men of the nation at Jericho. His orders were obeyed, for they were enforced with no less penalty than that of death. When these men were come to Jericho, he had them all shut up in the circus, and calling for his sister Salome, and her husband Alexas, he told them, My life is now but short: I know the dispositions of the Jewish people, and nothing will please them more than my death. “You have these men in your custody; as soon as the breath is out of my body, and before my death can be known, do you let in the soldiers upon them and kill them. All Judaea and every family will then, though unwillingly, mourn at my death.' Nay, Josephus says, “That with tears in his eyes he conjured them by their love to him, and their fidelity to God, not to fail of doing him this honour; and they promised they would not fail; these orders indeed were not executed. But as a modern historian of very good sense observes, ‘the history of this his most wicked design takes off all objection against the truth of murdering the innocents, which may É. from the incredibility of so barbarous and horrid an act. For this thoroughly shows, that there can ...; be imagined so cruel, barbarous and horrid, which this man was not capable o doing." It may also be proper to observe, that almost all the executions I have instanced, were sacrifices to his state jealousy, and love of empire.” Josephus, Ant, Jud. lib. xiv. c. 23. 25, 26.28, lib. xvi. c. 7, 8, 11, 12, lib. xvii. c. 6. Lardner's Credibility, part i. book ii. e. ii. § 1,
ANTIPAS or ANTIPATER, an Idumean, appointed prefect of Judaea and Syria by Julius Caesar. |
'herod the GREAT, king of Judea,
ARistobulus, Archelaus, Philip, or. iii. 1. strangled by -- -- §. 3. order of (Matt. ii.22) (Luke iii. 1.) L Mark vi. 14. - uke iii. 19, 20. & his father xxiii. 11.)
HERod, HERod Agrippa, HERodias, king of Chalcis. the elder, married to Horod Philip, (Acts xii.) (Matt. xiv. 3.) BERENice, Agrippa, junior, Drusilla, Acts xxv. 13.) (Acts xxv. 13. (Acts xxiv. 24.)
HERod, misnamed the Great, by his will divided his dominions among his three sons, Archelaus, #. Antipas, and Herod Philip.
III. To Archelaus he assigned Judaea, Samaria, and Idumaa, with the regal dignity, subject to the approbation of Augustus, who ratified his will as it respected the territorial division, but conferred on Archelaus the title of Ethnarch or chief of the nation, with a promise of the regal dignity, if he should prove himself worthy of it. Archelaus entered upon his new office amid the loud acclamations of his subjects, who considered him as a king; hence the evangelist says that he reigned. (Matt. ii. 22.) His reign, however, commenced inauspiciously: for, after the death of Herod and before Archelaus could go to Rome to obtain the confirmation of his father's will, the Jews having become very tumultuous at the temple in consequence of his refusing them some demands, Archelaus ordered his soldiers to attack them; on which occasion upwards of three thousand were slain." On Archelaus going to Rome to solicit the regal dignity, (agreeably to the practice of the tributary kings of that age, who received their crowns from the Roman emperor,) the Jews sent an embassy, consisting of fifty of their principal men, with a petition to Augustus that they might be permitted to live according to their own laws, under a Roman governor. To this circumstance our Lord evidently alludes in the parable related by Saint Luke. (xix. 12– 27.) A certain nobleman (evyevns, a man of birth or rank, the son of Herod) went into a far country (Italy), to receive for himself a kingdom lo of Judaea) and to return. But his citizens (the Jews) hated him, and sent a message (or embassy) after him (to Augustus Caesar), saying, “We will not have this man to reign over us.” The Jews however failed in their request, and Archelaus, having received the kingdom (or ..".) on his return inflicted a severe veneance on those who would not that he should reign over them." he application of this parable is to Jesus Christ, who foretells that, on his ascension, he would go into a distant country, to receive the kingdom from his father; and that he would return, at the destruction of Jerusalem, to take vengeance on those who rejected him.” The subsequent reign of Archelaus was turbulent, and disgraced by insurrections of the Jews against the Romans, and also by banditti and pretenders to the crown: at length, after repeated complaints against his tyranny and mal-administration, made to Augustus by the principal Jews and Samaritans who were joined by his own brothers, Archelaus was deposed and banished to Vienne in Gaul, in the tenth year of his reign; and his territories were annexed to the Roman province of Syria.” IV. HERod ANTIPAs (or Antipater), another of Herod's sons, received from his father the district of Galilee and Peraa, with the title of Tetrarch.” He is described by Josephus as a crafty and incestuous prince, with which character the narratives of the evangelists coincide; for, having deserted his wife, the daughter of Aretas king of Arabia, he forcibly took away and married Herodias the wife of his brother Herod Philip, a proud and cruel woman, to gratify whom he caused John the Baptist to be beheaded (Matt. xiv. 3. Mark vi. 17. Luke iii. 19.), who had provoked her vengeance by his faithful reproof of their incestuous nuptials; though Josephus ascribes the Baptist's death to Herod's apprehension, lest the latter should by his influence raise an insurrection among the people. It was this Herod that laid snares for our Saviour; who detecting his insidious intentions, termed him a for (Luke xiii. 32.), and who was subsequently ridiculed by him and his soldiers. (Luke xxiii. 7–11.) Some years afterwards, Herod aspiring to the regal dignity in Judaea was banished together with his wife, first to Lyons in Gaul, and thence into Spain." V. Philip, tetrarch of Trachonitis, Gaulonitis, and Batanaea, is mentioned but once in the new Testament. (Luke iii. 1.) He is represented by Josephus as an amiable prince, beloved by his subjects whom he governed with mildness and equity:” on his decease without issue, after a reign of thirty-seven years, his territories were annexed to the province of Syria.” VI. AGRIPPA, or Herod Agrippa, was the son of Aristobulus, and grandson of Herod the Great, and sustained various reverses of fortune previously to his attaining the royal dignity. At first he resided at Rome as a private person, and ingratiated himself into the favour of the emperor Tiberias; but, being accused of wishing him dead that Caligula might reign, he was thrown into prison by order of Tiberias. On the accession of Caligula to the empire, Agrippa was created king of Batanaea and Trachonitis, to which Abilene, Judaea, and Samaria were subsequently added by the emperor Claudius. Returning home to his dominions, he governed them much to the satisfaction of his subjects (for whose gratification he put to death the apostle James, and meditated that of St. Peter, who was miraculously delivered, Acts xii. 2–17.), but, being inflated with pride on account of his increasing power and grandeur, he was struck with a noisome and painful disease of which he died at Caesarea in the manner related by St. Luke. (Acts xii. 21—23.)" VII. AGRIPPA junior was the son of the preceding Herod Agrippa: being only seventeen years of age at the time of his father's death, he was judged to be unequal to the task of governing the whole of his dominions. These were again placed under the direction of a Roman procurator or governor, and Agrippa was first king of Chalcis, and afterwards of Batana'a, Trachonitis, and Abilene, to which other territories were subsequently added. It was before this Agrippa and his two sisters Berenice and Drusilla the wife of the Roman governor Felix, that St. Paul delivered his masterly defence.” (Acts xxvi.)
1 This circumstance probably deterred the Holy Family from settling in Judaea en their return from Egypt; and induced them by the divine admonition to return to their former residence at Nazareth in Galilee. (Matt. ii.22, 23.) Dr. Hales's Analysis of Chronology, vol. ii. p. 717.
1 Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xvii. c. ix. § 3. c. xi.
* There is an impressive application of this parable in Mr. Jones's Lectures on the o language of Scripture, lect. v. near the beginning. (Works, vol. iii. pp. 39, 30.
3 Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xvii. c. xii. § 2.
* Concerning the meaning of this term learned men are by no means agreed. In its primary and original signification it implies a governor of the fourth part of a country; and this seems to have been the #. meaning affixed to it. But afterwards it was given to the governors of a province, whether their government was the fourth part of a country or not: for Herod divided his kingdom only into three Parts. The tetrarchs, however, were regarded as princes, and sometimes were complemented with the title of king. (Matt. xiv. 9.) Beausobre's Introd. to the New Test. (BP. Watson's Tracts, vol. iii. p. 123.) The Romans conferred this title on those princes whom they did not choose to elevate to the regal dignity; the tetrarch was lower in point of rank than a Roman governor of a province. Schulzii Archæol. Hebr. pp. 18, 19. Jahn, Archaeol. Bibl. p. 338.
1 Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xviii. c. 7.
*Ibid. lib. xvii. c. viii. § 1. lib. xviii. c. v. § 4. De Bell. Jud. lib. i. c. xxxiii. § 8. lib. ii. c. vi. § 3.
3 Ibid. lib. xviii. c. 4. S 6. 4 Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xviii. c. 5–8. 5 Ibid. lib. xix. c. 9. De Bell. Jud. lib. ii. c. 12, 13.
POLITICAL STATE OF THE JEWS UNDER THE ROMAN PROCURATORS, TO THE SUBVERSION OF THEIR CIVIL AND ECCLESIASTICAL POLITY.
I. Powers and functions of the Roman Procurators—II. Political and civil state of the Jews under their administration.—III. Account of Pontius Pilate.—IV. And of the Procurators Felix and Festus.
I. THE Jewish kingdom, which the Romans had created in favour of Herod the Great, was of short duration; expiring on his death, by the divison of his territories, and by the dominions of Archelaus, which comprised Samaria, Judaea, and Idumaa, being reduced to a Roman province annexed to Syria, and governed by the Roman procurators. These officers not only had the charge of collecting the imperial revenues, but also had the power of life and death in capital causes: and on account of their high dignity they are sometimes called governors (Hysuovsk). They usually had a council, consisting of their friends and other chief Romans in the province; with whom they conferred on important questions.” . During the continuance of the Roman republic, it was very unusual for the govermors of provinces to take their wives with them. Augustus” disapproved of the introduction of this practice, which however was in some instances permitted by Tiberius. Thus Agrippina accompanied Germanicus” into Germany and Asia, and Plancina was with Piso, whose insolence towards Germanicus she contributed to inflame:* and though Caecina Severus afterwards offered a motion to the senate, to prohibit this indulgence, (on account of the serious inconveniences, not to say abuses, that would result from the political influence which the wives might exercise over their husbands,) his motion was rejected,” and they continued to attend the procurators to their respective provinces. This circumstance will account for Pilate's wife being at Jerusalem. (Matt. xxvii. 19.)
The procurators of Judaea resided principally at Caesarea,” which was reputed to be the metropolis of that country, and occupied the splendid palace which Herod the Great had erected there. On the great festivals, or when any tumults were apprehended, they repaired to Jerusalem, that, by their presence and influence, they might restore order. For this purpose they were accompanied by cohorts (3rsipa, Acts x. 1.) or bands of soldiers, not legionary cohorts, but distinct
1 Josephus (Ant. Jud. lib. xx. c. 4. § 4. and de Bell. Jud. lib. ii. c. 16. § 1) mentions instances in which the Roman procurators thus took council with their assessors.
2 Suetonius, in Augusto. c. 24.
3 Tacitus, Annal. lib. ii. c. 54,55. lib. i. c. 40, 41.
4 Ibid. lib. i. c. 40. 5 Ibid. lib. iii. c. 33
34. 6 Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xviii. c. 3. § 1, lib. xx. c. 5. §4. De Bell. Jud. lib. ii. c. 9. § 2. Tacit. Hist. lib. ii. c. 79.