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of Judea through much blood, so he found it necessary to establish himself in it by the same means, and he put numbers to death. Hyrcanus continued a prisoner at Seleucia in Babylonia ; but was at length set at liberty, and was allowed to reside at Babylon, at which place were many Jews, who treated him with the reverence and respect due to their high-priest, and the -honour due to a king ; but he longed to return to his native country. Herod was equally desirous to get him into his power, and invited him with flattering promises, and sent an embassy to solicit leave, for him to return; which the Parthian monarch granted, and the unfortunate old prince was - for somé time treated by Herod with apparent kindness and respect.
During the wars which were carried on between Cæsar Octavius and Marc Antony, (of which there is a full account in the Roman History) Herod continued a steadfast friend to Antony; but, finding he was in a desperate situation, and that he would not hearken to his advice, Herod resolved to make his peace with Cæsar. He had reason to apprehend, that the conqueror, would restore Hyrcanus, who had once reigned under the protection of the Romans; to prevent this, he caused him to be put to death, after he had passed the eightieth year of his life, under pretence of his holding a treasonable correspondence with the king of Arabia.
Josephus tells us, that Hyrcanus was a man of eminent candour, justice, and moderation ; but a lover of his ease, and so conscious to himself of his own insufficiency for the offices of public administration, that he usually entrusted them to other hands, by which means Antipater and Herod made their fortunes...
Herod having obtained an audience of Cæsar, as he entered his presence, laid aside his diadem: he expressed
himself with so much intrepidity, that Cæsar, pleased with his spirit, caused him to put on his diadem again, aecepted of his friendship, and confirmed him in the kingdom of Judea; upon which he made very large and magnificent presents to Cæsar, and all his friends, and from that time had more of his favour than any other tributary prince of the Roman empire. - Pleased with his success, Herod returned to Judea; but, on his arrival, found a damp to his joy in the troubles of his own family, which were repeated, till at length he caused his beloved wife, Mariamne, to be put to death in the fury of jealousy. When Hero's rage was quenched with her blood, his love for her revived ; and the consideration of what he had done, filled his mind with agonies of remorse. These he endea. voured to stifle with feastings and diversions, but all in vain ; the idea of Mariamne was for ever present, and he was sometimes in a state of distraction. Soon after, a pestilence happened, which carried off great numbers: this was regarded as a judgment from God for the queen's death. Herod from this time was observed to act with more rigour and cruelty than he had ever done before, and so continued to do to the end of his life.
Cæsar Octavius, after the death of Mare Antony, returned to Rome in great triumph, and had the name of AUGUSTUS given to him ; which signified something above human, sacred and venerable, and by this he was afterwards called,
Herod having cut off all the Asmonean family and party, thought himself secure in his kingdom, and ventured to deviate in many things from the ancient Jewish customs. He built two stately cities: one where Samaria formerly stood, called Sebaste; the other Cæsarea. On
the latter he expended vast sums; and it became the safest and most convenient port in all the coast of Phoes nicia: be also built a magnificent palace for himself, in which were two apartments; one in honour of Augustus, and the other of Agrippa, the emperor's chief favourite.
Herod having finished his buildings, and finding the people much offended because of the many breaches he had made upon their laws, in order to recover their good opinion, and make them some amends, formed a design for rebuilding the Temple, which, by length of time, and injury from enemies, was in a very decayed and ruinous condition, having stood five hundred years In two years he got together all proper materials, when he pulled down the old Temple, to the very foundation, to make room for the new one, which in nine years and a half was so far finished as to be fit for divine service; though, to complete it, workmen were employed for many years afterwards. Thus did Herod, though he knew it not, make preparations for the reception of the true King of the Jews, whose presence was to glorify this Temple; which might still be called the second, because that was not taken away, nor suffered to lie waste, but only renewed and cleansed from the profanation of the heathen.
Whilst these things were doing in Judea, AUGUSTUS subdued all nations, and the temple of Janus was shut at Rome. In times of war the custom was to have its gates open, but shut in peace ; and it was now the fifth time, since the building of that city, that it had been shut, which was in the twenty-sixth year of the reign of AugustUS, and the thirty-third of Herod's, when a general peace prevailed for twelve years together all over the world.
During this period God sent into the world the PRINCE OF PEACE, the promised MESSIAH, whose life and doctrines are contained in the New Testament. Before we begin to read that, it will be proper to peruse the following tables, which will assist the memory in the recollection of the principal revolutions which happened in the Jewish state.
REUBEN, SIMEON, Levi, JUDAH, ISSACHAR, ZEBULUN, GAD,
} half tribes.
JEWISHLAWGIVER, AND FIRSTHIGH-PRIEST Moses,