« PreviousContinue »
castle, and kept guard in the porticoes of the temple. It may be questioned what was 'Lysias's post at Jerusalem. Grotius supposed that he was captain of a cohort that kept guard at the feast time. I cannot at present assent to this. It does not appear to have been feast time when Paul was seized, (though Pentecost was near, Acts xx. 6, 16.) It seems plain to me, that Lysias was not upon duty at the temple at this time. “ They laid hands upon Paul. And all the city was moved, and the people ran together; and they took Paul, and drew him out of the temple, and forthwith the doors were shut. And as they went about to kill Paul, tidings came to the chief captain of the band, that all Jerusalem was in an uproar. Who immediately took soldiers, and centurions, and ran down unto them," ch. xxi. 30–32. If Lysias had been in the porticoes of the temple, he would have perceived the disturbance himself; whereas he knew nothing of it but by tidings brought to him, and that not till “ all Jerusalem was in an uproar.” It is observable also, that Lysias afterwards summoned the whole council of the Jews. The word which we render · band,' is used with considerable latitude: the word we have rendered chief captain,' signifies properly a captain of a thousand, and is often used particularly for a tribune. I suppose therefore, that Lysias was the oldest tribune at Jerusalem, and that he was the commanding officer at the castle of Antonia, and was entrusted by Felix with what power he thought fit to give to the chief officer under him at Jerusalem.
XV. We may now proceed to another particular. St. John says, ch. xviii, 12, " Then the band, and the captain [vai o xecapxos] and officers of the Jews, took Jesus and bound him.” I am inclined to think the captain here mentioned was a Jewish officer ; but I do not insist upon it. I add, therefore, two or three other texts. “ And as they spake to the people, the priests, and the captain of the temple, (o otpatnyos To iepr] and the sadducees came upon them, Acts iv. 1. Now when the high priest, and the captain of the temple, and the chief priests heard these things, ver. 28. Then went the captain with the officers," ver. 26. I believe most persons will suppose, that this captain of the temple' was a Jewish officer. There is in Josephus such an officer mentioned, who is evidently a Jew.
• Præfecto ejus cohortis, quæ temporibus festis, ac proinde etiam in Pentecoste, præsidium habebat in porticibus templi ad prohibendos tumultûs, si qui orirentur, in Act. xxi. 31. Σπειρα, συναξις, πληθος τρατευμάτων. Phavorinus.
Whilst the above-named Cumanus was procurator of Judea, there happened a dreadful difference between the Jews and Samaritans. Cumanus not being able to put an end to it, Ummidius Quadratus, president of Syria, came into Judea, and punished several Jews and Samaritans upon the spot, and sent others to Rome. This last part of his conduct is thus expressed by Josephus in his Antiquities : • Having bound the high priest Ananias, and the captain
Ananus, s he sent them to Rome to give an account of their conduct to Claudius Cæsar,'t In bis War of the Jews it is thus : • And moreover he sent away to Cæsar the high • priests Jonathan and Ananias, and Ananus the son of this • last mentioned.'u Ananus, who in the former passage has the title of captain, is in this latter said to be the son of the high priest.
When Josephus is reckoning up the causes of offence which the Jews gave the Romans, he says: “ And at the temple · Eleazar, the son of Ananias the high priest, a young man • of a bold and resolute disposition, then captain,' per• suaded those who performed the sacred ministrations, not : to receive the gift or sacrifice of any stranger (or man of • another nation). This was the foundation of the war with • the Romans ; for they rejected the sacrifice of Cæsar for • them. And though the high priests, and many of the • chief men, entreated them not to omit the ancient custom of • sacrificing for their governors, they would not be per
suaded; relying upon the multitude they had on their • side,-and especially being much at the direction of the
captain Eleazar.' Xere is another captain, who is a son of an high priest; and he appears to have an authority over those who were in waiting at the temple.
St. Luke, in one place, speaks of the captains in the plural number, chap. xxii. 52, " Then Jesus said unto the chief priests and captains w of the temple, and the elders which were come to him.” As there was
As there was a great variety of ministrations at the temple, and a great number of priests and Levites always in waiting, but especially at the feasts, 8 Τον σρατηγoν Ανανoν δησας.
· Lib. xx. cap. 5. sect. 2. “Kai Avaviav, TOVTE TYT8 taiða Avavov. De Bell. lib. ii. cap. 12. sect 6.
Ελεάζαρος υιος Ανανια τ8 αρχιερεως, νεανιας θρασύτατος, σρατηγων τοτε, τας κατα την λατρειαν λειτοργοντας αναπειθει, μηδενος αλλοφυλο δωρον η θυσιαν προσδεχεσθαι τετο δε ην τ8 προς Ρωμαιος πολεμε καταβολη την γαρ υπερ τ8των θυσιαν Καισαρος απερριψαν και πολλα των τε αρχιερεων και των γνωριμων παρακαλαντων, μη παραλιπειν το υπερ των ηγεμονων εθος, εκ ενεδoσαν πολυ μεν και τη σφετερω πληθει πεποιθοτες-μαλισα δε αφορωντες ELS TOV Elzačapov spatnyovra. De B. J. ii. cap. 17. sect. 2. * See Whitby upon the place.
it is very likely there was an officer who presided over each division, and that there was one who had a command above all the rest.
XVI. I have but one thing more to take notice of here. When St. Paul had appealed to Cæsar, « Then Festus, when he had consulted with the council, answered, Hast thou appealed unto Cæsar ? Unto Cæsar shalt thou go," Acts
The reason of the thing will induce us to suppose this was not the Jewish sanhedriin, but some council whicb the governor had with him.
It was always usual for the presidents to have a council consisting of their friends, and other chief Romans in the province. Philo says, when the Jews waited upon Petronius, and entreated him to defer his march to Jerusalem till they had sent an embassy to Rome, Petronius was moved by their tears and lamentations, and consulted with his
assessors what was proper to be done.'y Josephus speaks of Cumanus's acting with the advice of his friends,' in the sentence he pronounced upon a Roman soldier, who had tore a book of the law of Moses. In the year of our Lord 66, Florus, who was then procurator of Judea, sent Cestius Gallus, president of Syria, false accounts (as Josephus says) of the Jewish behaviour. • And the chief men of Jerusa• lem were not silent. For they, and Bernice, wrote to • Cestius an account of Florus's mal-administrations in the * city. He, therefore, having read the informations he bad ‘ received from both parties, consulted with his captains.'a It is one of Cicero's complaints against Verres, that when he was in Sicily, he condemned a person without asking the advice of the council, which his predecessor, and he bimself had been wont to advise with.b
* Τας δε δη παρεδρος αυτος εαυτω εκαςος αιρειται. κ. τ. λ. Dio. p. 505. Ε.
Υ Επεξανασας δε μετα των συνεδρων εβολευετο τα πρακτεα. De legat. ad Cai. p. 1027. B.
* Και ο Κεμανος--συμβελευσαντων και των φιλων, τον ενυβρισαντα τοις νομους σρατιωτην πελεκισας. Αnt. lib. XX. cap. 4. sect. 4.
* Mera nyepovwv eßeleveto. De Bell. lib. ii. cap. 16. sect. 1.
negare posses, aut nunc negabis; te consilio tuo dismisso, viris primariis, qui in consilio C. Sacerdotis fuerant, tibique esse solebant, remotis de re judicatâ judicâsse? In Verrem, lib. ii. n. 81.
OF THE STATE OF THE JEWS OUT OF JUDEA.
I. The Jews numerous in divers parts out of Judea. II.
The twelve Tribes in being. III. Prayer wont to be made [at Philippi] by the river side. IV. The Synagogue of the Libertines. V. Of Jewish Proselytes.
I INTEND not here a distinct consideration of the power or privileges, which the Jews enjoyed in foreign countries. Somewhat has been already said upon this subject in the preceding chapter, and more particulars may be found in the eighth chapter of this book. I here take notice of a few things which fall within the compass of my design, but are omitted in those other places.
I. There are frequent intimations in the New Testament, that at the time the apostles preached the gospel, after the ascension of our Saviour, there were great numbers of Jews in several parts of the world, beside those which lived in Judea.
When the disciples bad “ been filled with the Holy Ghost, (on the day of Pentecost,) and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance," it is said : “ There were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.- And they were all amazed, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans? And how hear we every man in our own tongue wherein we were born? Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judea, and Cappadocia, Pontus, and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Lybia about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God," Acts ii. 4–11.
The persons spoken of are Jews, or proselytes, chiefly the former. By dwelling at Jerusalem must be understood residing there for a time only, on account of the feast, or some other particular occasion. The word is so used sometimes, and the context obliges us to understand it so here.
In the history of St. Paul's travels, we find him preaching in Jewish synagogues in many places: when “ Paul
a Vid. Grot. Act. ii. 5.
and Barnabas came to Antioch in Pisidia, they went into the synagogue on the sabbath day,” Acts xiii. 14. They did so likewise at Iconium, ch. xiv. 1. Paul taught in a synagogue at Thessalonica, ch. xvii. 2; at Athens, ver. 17; at Corinth, ch. xviii. 4; at Ephesus, ch. xix. 8.
That the Jews were scattered abroad, and dwelt in almost all parts of the world, even before the destruction of their city and state by Titus, is evident from many passages of Philo, Josephus, and several heathen authors. "I shall select a few of them, which will be sufficient for the present design.
Philo, in his book against Flaccus, prefect of Egypt in the beginning of Caligula's reign, says, “ There were not • less than a million of Jews in Alexandria and other parts of • Egypt.” He adds, For one country does not contain the * Jewish people, they being extremely numerous; for which * reason there are of them in all the best and most flourishing countries of Europe and Asia, in the islands as well
as on the continents; all esteeming for their metropolis . the holy city, in which is the sacred temple of the most high God.
Caligula had given ordersd to Petronius, president of Syria, to erect his statue at Jerusalem. When the tidings that Petronius had published these orders came to Rome, Agrippa the elder was there. He therefore sent the
emperor a letter (for be was not then able to appear before him in person) to dissuade him from this design. In this letter, which Philo has given us an account of, among other things, Agrippa says : “ Nor can I forbear to allege in behalf
of the holy city, the place of my nativity, that it is the me• tropolis, not of the country of Judea only, but of many • others, on account of the many colonies that have been
sent out of it at different times, not only into the neigh• bouring countries, Egypt, Phenicia, both the Syrias, but • also into places more distant, to Pamphylia, Cilicia, and
many parts of Asia, as far as Bithynia, and the recesses of • Pontus. They are in the same manner in Europe, in Thes
saly, Beotia, Macedonia, Ætolia, Argos, Corinth, in the • most and best parts of Peloponnesus. Nor are the conti* nents only full of Jewish colonies, but also the most cele
Και οτι εκ αποδεισι μυριάδων εκατον την Αλεξανδρειας και την χωραν Ιεδαιοι κατοικeντες επι τα προς Λιβυην καταβαθμα μεχρι των οριων AlOlorias. In Flacc. p. 971. C.
“ Ιεδαιες γαρ χωρα μια δια πολυανθρωπιαν και χωρει' ης αιτιας ενεκα τας πλεισας και ευδαιμονεςατας των εν Ευρώπη και Ασια κατα τε νησης και ηπειρες εκνεμονται, μητροπολιν μεν την Ιεροπολιν ηγεμενοι, καθ' ήν ιδρυται και το ύψισε θεα νεως άγιος. Ιbid. Ε. d A. D. 39, or 40.