Bandits Prophets and Messiahs: Popular Movements at the Time by Richard A. Horsley; John S. Hanson

By Richard A. Horsley; John S. Hanson

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Additional info for Bandits Prophets and Messiahs: Popular Movements at the Time of Jesus, 1st edition (New Voices in Biblical Studies)

Sample text

In order to achieve such a goal, the law had to be inter­ preted and applied to the social, economic, and religious life of the people. Thus the Pharisees continued the work of the scribes. " In one report Josephus indicates that when John Hyrcanus (135-104) broke with them, the kingdom was governed by "the laws which [the Pharisees] had set up for the people" (Ant. 296). In their work of interpretation and application of the Mosaic law, the Pharisaic scribes probably worked in continuity with earlier scribes.

ROMAN C O N Q U E S T AND HEROD'S REGIME During the course of the second and especially the first century B . C E . , the Romans conquered or fell heir to the Hel­ lenistic kingdoms in the Eastern Mediterranean. In the pro­ cess, Rome basically took over and perpetuated the already established Hellenistic civilization and imperialism in the east. Following Pompey's conquest of Palestine in 63 B . C E . , the Jewish territories were continuously under Roman con­ trol, except for a few short years of temporarily successful rebellion.

It is likely that the castigations of the "Wicked Priest" in Qumran literature are directed against the Hasmonean Jonathan or Simon. Thus Zadokite-oriented priests and others of the Hasidim, whose tradition-rooted convictions had been flouted and whose hopes for establishing a faithful and legitimate theoc­ racy (kingdom of God) centered in the Jerusalem temple 9 HISTORICAL BACKGROUND 25 had just been dashed, separated themselves from the rest of Judean society. They organized an ideal priestly theocracy in exile, a "true Israel" headed by the only "legitimate" priest­ hood.

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