The tragedy of Calvary: or the minute details of Christ's life from Palm Sunday morning till the resurrection and ascension taken prophecy, history, revelations and ancient writings
by Meagher, Jas. L. (James Luke), 1848-1920
|photo from free messianic bible|
When the Apostles went forth to preach they always entered the synagogues, and preached first to the Jews, and they founded churches and dioceses on these Jewish services, changing but little. They first imposed all the rules and regulations of the Jews we have described on the pagan converts, till God showed Peter in his vision at Joppa, that the exaggerations of the Scribes and Pharisees did not bind the Church.
By its countless innocent victims, its rivers of blood, its grand ceremonial, the Temple types and figures fore told the terrible death of Christ, who was to be slain by its priests. But having fulfilled its mission, in the designs of God the Temple passed away, but the synagogue remained and its daughter the Church is eternal. By the synagogue the Rabbi has kept the Jews a separated, a peculiar people, and while they lost their nationality, they have preserved down all the ages their religious life.
The Evangelists mention the Herodians 1 acting in union with the Pharisees 3 in their endeavours to entangle Christ. They were the members of a political party, who saw in the power of the Herodian family a means of emancipating the nation from the hated Romans. They favored a combination of heathen customs and religion with the ancient faith, which the first Herod had favored. One branch of the party favored the Pharisees with all their rigorous, narrow-minded teachings, and the others adhered to the easy-going Sadducee priesthood. But the lives and examples of the He rods were so wicked that few believed in them, and the conflicting doctrines of these two sects could not be harmonized ; so that the Herodians as a political party did not flourish.
HISTORY OF THE HERODS.
To the south of Palestine lies the land of Edom : " The Red," so called from the color of the rocks or of the inhabitants. It is also called Mount Seir: " The Rugged," because of the broken desert aspect of the country. Arabia Petra the capital, was built in a deep clift of the col ored rocks as a protection against enemies. The houses, tombs and temples were carved out of the living rocks. The entrances to the city were so well fortified as to make the place impregnable. Down through the narrow gorge winds a little river running on forever.
Burckhardt, the famous German traveller, discovered the ruins in 1847, and later tourists braved the dangers of wild Bedouin tribes and told the world of the pictured mountain walls rising hundreds of feet high, carved into picturesque buildings, cut from the living rocks, still standing in all their grandeur, but deserted as the prophet foretold. 3 In the early ages it was the seat of an archbishop.
The Machabees sent Joshua son of Eleazar, called in Greek, Jesus, or Jason, to Rome, to make an alliance of friendship between the Jews and Romans. 4 This Jason became very friendly with the Romans, and on his re turn he settled in Edom, where he married the daughter of a rich merchant, by whom he had a son called Antipater, 5 who married a Jewess, Cypros, who bore him four sons, the second being called Herod. 6
John Hyrcanus about 120 B. C. had sent missionaries to Edom 7 and nearly the whole nation professed the Jewish religion at the time of Christ.
Pompey with his own funds raised three legions of soldiers in Italy, defeated M. Brutus, effected a junction with Sulla, reduced the revolt in Sicily, crossed to Africa, conquered Egypt and Numidia, then marched against Edorn. The Edumeaus trusted in their impregnable fort ress filled with provisions, and in the everlasting spring of pure water. But Antipater, with his son Herod, showed the Romans a secret way of entering the deep clift or ravine in the desert, and thus the Romans cap tured Arabia Petra. 8
Turning his face to the north, Pompey marched against Judea, reduced the towns of the south, invested Jeru salem, took the Holy City. 9 In this expedition Antipater and his son Herod acted as his guides and advisers.
In the year B. C. 47, Julius Caesar made Antipater procurator of Judea as a reward for his services to the Roman army, and his son Herod, then but fifteen years old, 10 he appointed governor of Galilee.11 From that time Roman customs and the Latin language began to still more flourish in Judea. When in the year B. C. 41, Antony came to Judea, he appointed Herod and his elder brother Phasael, tetrarchs of Judea, 12 and a little after wards he gave them the government of Ccelo-Syria. But the next year an invasion of the Parthians forced Herod to relinquish this northern part of his dominions. These Parthians supported the claims of the sons of the Machabees, the dispute disturbed the country, and Herod fled to Rome, where he was well received by Antony and Octavia. Having laid his claim before the Roman Senators, they appointed him king of all Judea, to the exclusion of the members of the Machabean family.
1 Matt. xxii. 16 ; Mark iii. 6 ; xii. 18.
2 Matt. xxii. 16 ; Mark iii. 6.
3 Abdias i. etc.,
4 I Mach. viii. 17 ; Smith's Dictionary of Bible, etc., Josephus, Antiqu. xii. v. i. 10. 6.
5 I. Mach. viii. 17.
6 I. Mach. xi.i 16 ; xiv. 22.
7 Antiq. xiv., vii. 3 ; War. I., viii. 9.
8 Josephus Antiq. viii, 9, 1.
9 Josephus, Antiq. xiv., iv. 1. ; Wars. I., vii. 1 etc.
10 One text says he was twenty-five.
11 Josephus, Antiq. xiv., 9.
12 Ibidem, 13, 1.