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fourth year of the captivity, was released from an imprison- | prince from their own number. Jehoiachin, and after him
POLITICAL STATE OF THE JEWS, FROM THEIR RETURN FROM THE BABYLONISH CAPTIVITY TO THE
SUBVERSION OF THEIR CIVIL AND ECCLESIASTICAL POLITY.
POLITICAL STATE OF THE JEWS UNDER THE MACCABEES, AND THE SOVEREIGNS OF THE HEROVIAN FAMILY.
1. Brief account of the Maccabees.-II. Sovereigns of the Herodian family :-1. Herod the Great.-St. Matthere's narrative
of the murder of the infants at Bethlehem confirmed.—2. Archelaus.—3. Herod Antipas.-4. Philip.-5. Herod Agrippa. -6. Agrippa junior.-7. Bernice and Drusilla.
I. On the subversion of the Babylonian empire by Cyrus tained a religious war for twenty-six years with five successive the founder of the Persian monarchy (B. c. 543), he author- kings of Syria; and after destroying upwards of 200,000 of ized the Jews by an edict to return into their own country, their best troops, the Maccabees finally established the indewith full permission to enjoy their laws and religion, and pendence of their own country and the aggrandizement of caused the city and temple of Jerusalem to be rebuilt. In their family. This illustrious house, whose princes united the following year, part of the Jews returned under Zerub- the regal and pontifical dignity in their own persons, admibabel, and renewed their sacrifices: the theocratic government, nistered the affairs of the Jews during a period of one hunwhich had been in abeyance during the captivity, was re- dred and twenty-six years; until, disputes arising between sumed; but the re-erection of the city and temple being in Hyrcanus II. and his brother Aristobulus, the latter was deterrupted for several years by the treachery and hostility of feated by the Romans under Pompey, who captured Jerusathe Samaritans or Cutheans, the avowed enemies of the Jews, lem, and reduced Judæa to a tributary province of the republic. the completion and dedication of the temple did not take place (B. c. 59.) until the year 511 B. C., six years after the accession of Cy- II. SOVEREIGNS OF THE HERODIAN FAMILY.-1. Julius rus. The rebuilding of Jerusalem was accomplished, and Cæsar, having defeated Pompey, continued Hyrcanus in the the reformation of their ecclesiastical and civil polity was ef- high-priesthood, but bestowed the government of Judæa upon fected by the two divinely inspired and pious governors, Ezra Antipater, an Idumæan by birth, who was a Jewish proseand Nehemiah. After their death the Jews were governed | lyte, and the father of Herod surnamed the Great, who was by their high priests, in subjection however, to the Persian subsequently king of the Jews. Antipater divided Judæa kings, to whom they paid tribute (Ezra iv. 13. vii. 24.), but between his two sons Phasael and Herod, giving to the for. with the full enjoyment of their other magistrates, as well mer the government of Jerusalem, and to the latter the proas their liberties, civil and religious. Nearly three centuries vince of Galilee; which being at that time greatly infested of uninterrupted prosperity ensued, until the reign of Anti- with robbers, HEROD signalized his courage by dispersing ochus Epiphanes, king of Syria, when they were most cruelly them, and shortly after attacked Antigonus the competitor of oppressed, and compelled to take up arms in their own de- Hyrcanus in the priesthood, who was supported by the Tyfence.
rians. In the mean time, the Parthians having invaded JuUnder the able conduct of Judas, on account of his heroic dæa, and carried into captivity Hyrcanus the high-priest and exploits surnamed Maccabæus, (13,90 MakaBI the Hammerer)Phasael the brother of Herod; the latter fled to Rome, where the son of Mattathias, surnamed Asmon (from whom is de- Mark Antony, with the consent of the senate, conferred on rived the appellation Asmoneans, borne by the princes de him the title of king of Judæa. By the aid of the Roman scended from him), and his valiant brothers, the Jews main-arms Herod kept possession of his dignity; and after three
years of sanguínary and intestine war with the partisans of 1 1 Esdras iii. iv. Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xi. c. 3. . He is, however, most generally supposed to have derived this name
Antigonus, he was confirmed in his kingdom by Augustus. from a cabalistical word, formed of M. C. B. I. the initial letters of the He.
This prince is characterized by Josephus as a person of brew Text, Mi Chamoka Baelim Jehovah, i.e. who among the gods is like singular courage and resolution, liberal and even extravagant unto thee, O Jehovah? (Exod. xv. 11.) which letters might have been displayed on his sacred standard, as the letters 8. P.Q. R. (Senatus, Populus · Jahn's History of the Hebrew Commonwealth, vol. i. pp. 161. 163. Que Romanus), were on the Roman ensigus. Dr. Hales's Analysis of Chro. • Beausobre, Introd. to the New Test. (Bp. Watson's Tracts, vol. iii. p. nology, vol. i. p 599.
order of his father.
(Luke iij. 1. Matt. xiv. 3. Mark vi. 14.
HEROD A GRIPPA,
Mark vi, 17.
in his expenditure, magnificent in his buildings, especially in
ANTIPAS or ANTIPATER, an Idumean,
appointed prefect of Judæa and Syria by Julius Cæsar. the temple of Jerusalem, and apparently disposed to promote the happiness of every one. But under this specious exterior he concealed the most consummate duplicity; studious only HEROD THE GREAT, king of Judæa, --Mariamne
(Matt. ii. 1. Luke i. 5.), how to attain and to secure his own dignity, he regarded no of whose offspring the following are to be noticed :means, however unjustifiable, which might promote that object of his ambition; and in order
to supply his lavish expenditure, he imposed oppressive burdens on his subjects. Inexorably
PHILIP, JIEROD ANTIPAS, cruel, and a slave to the most furious passions, he imbrued
strangled by his hands in the blood of his wife, his children, and the
(Matt. ii. 22.) (Luke iii. 1.) greater part of his family;' such, indeed, were the restless
Luke ini. 19, 20. and ness and jealousy of his temper, that he spared neither his
xxiii. 11.) 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,
HERODIAS, king of Chalcis,
married to Herod Philip, especially of the Pharisees, who engaged in various plots
(Matt. xiv. 3. 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 arri
AGRIPPA, junior, DRUSILLA, val of the Magi, to inquire where the Messiah was born.
(Acts xxv. 13.) (Acts xxv. 13. (Acts xxiv. 24.) (Matt. ii. 1-3.). The Jews, who anxiously expected the
xxvi. I. et seq.) Messiah “ the Deliverer,” were moved with an anxiety made
Herod, misnamed the Great, by his will divided his do. up of hopes and
fears, of uncertainty and expectation, blended minions among his three sons, Archelaus, Herod Antipas, with a dread of the sanguinary consequences of new tumults; and Herod Philip. and Herod, who was a foreigner and usurper, was apprehensive lest he should lose his crown by the birth of a rightful mæa, with the regal dignity, subject to the approbation of
2. To ARCHELAUS he assigned Judæa, Samaria, and Iduheir
. Hence we are furnished with a satisfactory solution Augustus, who ratified his will as it respected the territorial of the motive that led him to command all the male children division, but conferred on Archelaus the title of Ethnarch, or to be put to death, who were under two years of age, in chief of the nation, with a promise of the regal dignity, if Bethlehem and its vicinity. (Matt. ii. 16.)
he should prove himself worthy of it. Archelaus entered No very long time after the perpetration of this crime, Herod died, having suffered the most excruciating pains, in upon his new office amid the loud acclamations of his subthe thirty-seventh year of his being declared king of the Jews jects, who.considered him as a king; hence the evangelist
, by the Romans. The tidings of his decease were received in conformity with the Jewish idiom, says that he reigned.
reign, however, commenced inauspiby his oppressed subjects with universal joy and satisfac- ciously: for, after the death of Herod, and before Archelaus tion. Herod had a numerous offspring by his different wives, will, the Jews having become very tumultuous at the temple
could go to Rome to obtain the confirmation of his father's although their number was greatly reduced by his unnatural in consequence of his refusing them some demands, Archecruelty in putting many of them to death : but, as few of his laus ordered his soldiers to attack them; on which occasion descendants are mentioned in the Sacred Volume, we shall upwards of three thousand were slain. On Archelaus going notice only those persons of whom it is requisite that some
to Rome to solicit the regal dignity (agreeably to the pracaccount should be given for the better understanding of the tice of the tributary kings of that age, who received their New Testament. The annexed table will, perhaps, be found crowns from the Roman emperor), the Jews sent an embassy, useful in distinguishing the particular persons of this family, consisting of fifty of their principal men, with a petition to whose names occur in the evangelical histories.
Augustus that they might be permitted to live according to
their own laws, under a Roman governor. To this circum"When Herod," says the accurate Lardner," had gained possession stance our Lord evidently alludes in the parable related by of Jeruzalem by the assistance of the Romans, and his rival Antigonus was Saint Luke. (xix. 12—27.) A certain nobleman (suz evns, a taken prisoner, and in the hands of the Roman general Sosius, and by him carried to Mark Antony, Herod, by a large sum of money, persuaded An.
man of birth or rank, the son of Herod), went into a far tooy to pat him to death. Herod's great fear was, that Antigonus might country (Italy), to receive for himself a kingdom (that of JuInbulus, brother of his wise Mariamne, was murdered by his directions at and' sent a message (or embassy) ofler him (tó Augustus some ume revive his pretensions, as being of the Asmonaan family. Ačis: dæa) and to return. But his citizens (the Jews) hated him affection for his person. In the seventh year of his reign from the death Cæsar), saying, “We will not have this man to reign over us.” of Antigonus, he put to death Hyrcanus, grandfather of Mariamne, then The Jews, however, failed in their request, and Archelaus, ented by the Sanhedrin; a man who, in his youth and in the vigour of his having received the kingdom (or ethnarchy), on his return life, and in all the revolutions of his fortune, had shown a mild and peaceable inflicted a severe vengeance on those who would not that he disposition. His beloved wife, the beautiful and virtuous Marianne, had a should reign over them. The application of this parable is to der and Aristobulus, his two sons by Mariamne, were strangled in prison by Jesus Christ, who foretells, that, on his ascension, he would fis order upon groundless suspicions, as it seems, when they were at man's go into a distant country, to receive the kingdom from his estate, were married, and had children. I say nothing of the death of his Father; and that he would return, at the destruction of Jerucreant, and deserved the worst death that could be inflicted; in his last sick salem, to take vengeance on those who rejected him. The besa, a little before he died, he sent orders throughout Judæa, requiring subsequent reign of Archelaus was turbulent, and disthe presence of all the chief men of the
nation at Jericho. His orders were graced by insurrections of the Jews against the Romans, and When these men were come to Jericho, he had them all shut up in the also by banditti and pretenders to the crown : at length, after circus, and calling for his sister Salome, and her husband Alexas, he told repeated complaints against his tyranny and mal-administrathem, My life is now but short; I know the dispositions of the Jewish tion, made to Augustus by the principal Jews and Samarimen in your custody; as soon as the breath is out of my body, and before tans, who were joined by his own brothers, Archelaus was my death can be known, do you let in the soldiers upon them and kill them. deposed and banished to Vienne in Gaul, in the tenth year of an Juclea and every family will then, though unwillingly, mourn al my his reign; and his territories were annexed to the Roman them bę their love to him, and their fidelity to God, not to fail of doing bim province of Syria. this honour; and they promised they would not fail;' these orders, indeed, 3. HEROD ANTIPAS (or Antipater), another of Herod's were not executed. But as a modern historian of very good sense observes sons, received from his father the district of Galilee and the history of this his most wicked design takes off all objection against the truth of murdering the innocents, which may be made from the incredi. : This circumstance probably deterred the Holy Family from settling in bility of so barbarous and horrid 'an act. For this thoroughly shows, that Judæa on their return from Egypt; and induced them by the divine admo. there can nothing be imagined so cruel, barbarous, and horrid, which this nition to return to their former residence at Nazareth in Galilee. (Matt. ii. man was not capable of doing. It may also be proper to observe, that almost 22, 23.) Dr. Hales's Analysis of Chronology, vol. ii. p. 717. all the executions I have instanced, were sacrifices to his staie jealousy, Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xvii. c. 9. $ 3. c. 11. Harwood's Introduction, and love of empire." Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xiv. c. 23. 25, 26. 28. lib. vol. i. p. 294. IV. c. 7, 8.11, 12. lib. xvii. c. 6. Lardner's Credibility, part i. book ii. c. 251
• There is an impressive application of this parable in Mr. Jones's Lec.
tures on the figurative Language of Scripture, lect. y. near the beginning · From Schulz's Archäologia Hebraica, p. 54. Reland has given a gene. (Works, vol. iii. pp. 35, 36.) alogical table of the entire Herodian family. (Palæstina, tom. 1. p. 174.) • Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xvii. c. 11. (al. xii.) $2. c. 13. (al. xiv.)
TORS, TO THE SUBVERSION OF THEIR CIVIL AND ECCLESIAS-
Peraa, with the title of Tetrarch. He is described by Jose- | returned to her brother, and became the mistress, first of phus as a crafty and incestuous prince, with which character Vespasian, and then of Titus, who would have married her, the narratives of the evangelists coincide; for, having de- but that he was unwilling to displease the Romans, who serted his wife, the daughter of Aretas king of Arabia, he were averse to such a step.? forcibly took away and married Herodias the wife of his (2.) Drusilla, her sister, and the youngest daughter of brother Herod Philip, a proud and cruel woman, to gratify Herod Agrippa, was distinguished for her beauty, and was whom he caused John the Baptist to be beheaded (Matt. xiv. equally celebrated with Bernice for her protligacy. She 3. Mark vi. 17. Luke iii. 19.), who had provoked her ven- was first espoused to Epiphanes, the son of Antiochus, king geance by his faithful reproof of their incestuous nuptials ; of Comagena, on condition of his embracing the Jewish though Josephus ascribes the Baptist's death to Herod's religion ; but as he afterwards refused to be circumcised, she apprehension, lest the latter should by his influence raise an was given in marriage, by her brother, to Azizus king of insurrection among the people. It was this Herod that laid Emessa, who submitted to that rite. When Felix came into snares for our Saviour; who, detecting his insidious inten- Judæa, as procurator or governor of Judæa, he persuaded her tions, termed him a fox (Luke xiii. 32.), and who was sub- to abandon her husband and marry him. Josephuss says that sequently ridiculed by him and his soldiers. (Luke xxiii. 7— she was induced to transgress the laws of her country, and 11.) Some years afterwards, Herod, aspiring to the regal become the wife of Felix, in order to avoid the envy of her dignity in Judæa, was banished together with his wife, first sister Bernice, who was continually doing her ill offices on to Lyons in Gaul, and thence into Spain.2
account of her beauty.' 4. Philip, tetrarch of Trachonitis, Gaulonitis, and Batanæa, is mentioned but once in the New Testament. (Luke ii. 1.) He is represented by Josephus as an amiable prince, beloved by his subjects, whom he governed with mildness
SECTION II. and equity :3 on his decease without issue, after a reign of thirty-seven years, his territories were annexed to the POLITICAL STATE OF THE JEWS UNDER THE ROMAN PROCURAprovince of Syria.
5. Agrippa, or Herod Agrippa I., was the son of Aristobulus, and grandson of Herod the Great, and sustained various reverses of fortune previously to his attaining the I. Powers and functions of the Roman procurators.-II. Poroyal dignity. At first he resided at Rome as a private per- litical and civil state of the Jews under their administration. son, and ingratiated himself into the favour of the emperor —III. Account of Pontius Pilate.-IV. And of the procuraTiberius: but being accused of wishing him dead that tors Felix and Festus. Caligula might reign, he was thrown into prison by order of Tiberius. On the accession of Caligula to the empire, in favour of Herod the Great, was of short duration ; expir
I. The Jewish kingdom, which the Romans had created Agrippa was created king of Batanæa and Trachonitis, to which Abilene, Judæa, and Samaria were subsequently added ing on his death, by the division of his territories, and by by the emperor Claudius. Returning home to his dominions, the dominions of Archelaus, which comprised Samaria, he governed them much to the satisfaction of his subjects Judæa, and Idumæa, being reduced to a Roman province (for whose gratification he put to death the apostle James, annexed to Syria, and governed by the Roman Procurators. and meditated that of St. Peter, who was miraculously
These officers not only had the charge of collecting the delivered, Acts xii. 2–17.); but, being inflated with pride on imperial revenues, but also had the power of life and death in account of his increasing power and grandeur, he was struck capital causes: and on account of their high dignity they are with a noisome and painful disease, of which he died at sometimes called governors (Hyqucves). They usually had a Cæsarea in the manner related by St. Luke. (Acts xii. 21 council, consisting of their friends and other chief Romans in -23.)
the province; with whom they conferred on important ques6. Herod Agrippa II., or Junior, was the son of the prea was very unusual for the governors of provinces to take
tions.10 During the continuance of the Roman republic, it ceding Herod Agrippa, and was educated under the auspices their wives with them. Augustus disapproved of the introof the emperor Claudius : being only seventeen years of age; duction of this practice, which, however, was in some at the time of his father's death, he was judged to be unequal instances permitted by Tiberius. Thus Agrippina accompato the task of governing the whole of his dominions. These nied Germanicusiz into Germany and Asia, and Plancina was were again placed under the direction of a Roman procurator or governor, and Agrippa was first king of Chalcis, and after-1 with Piso, whose insolence towards Germanicus she conwards of Batanæa, Trachonitis, and Abilene, to which other tributed to infiame :13 and though Cæcina Severus afterwards territories were subsequently added, over which he seems to offered a motion to the senate, to prohibit this indulgence have ruled, with the title of king. It was before this (on account of the serious inconveniences,-not to say Agrippa and his sister Bernice that St. Paul delivered his abuses, that would result from the political influence which masterly defence (Acts xxvi,), where he is expressly tenned the wives might exercise over their husbands), his motion a king. He was the last Jewish prince of the Herodian was rejected, and they continued to attend the procurators to family, and for a long time survived the destruction of Jeru- for Pilate's wife' being at Jerusalem. (Matt. xxvii. 19.) The
their respective provinces. This circumstance will account salem.
7. Besides Herodias, who has been mentioned above, procurators of Judæa resided principally at Cæsarea,1s which the two following princesses of the Herodian family are
was reputed to be the metropolis of that country, and occumentioned in the New Testament; viz.
pied the splendid palace which Herod the Great had erected (1.) Bernice, the eldest daughter of king Herod Agrippa apprehended, they repaired to Jerusalem, that, by their
there. On the great festivals, or when any tumults were I. and sister to Agrippa II. (Acts xxv. 13. 23. xxvi. 30.) was first married to her uncle Herod king of Chalcis; after whose presence and influence, they might restore order. For this death, in order to avoid the merited suspicion of incest with purpose they were accompanied by cohorts (176p21, Acts x. her brother Agrippa, she became the wife of Polemon, king 1.), or bands of soldiers, not legionary cohorts, but distinct of Cilicia. This connection being soon dissolved, she companies of military : each of them was about one thousand
strong.16 Six of these cohorts were constantly garrisoned in mand the temple, and part in the prætorium or governor's III. Of the various procurators that governed Judæa under palace.
Judæa; five at Cæsarea, and one at Jerusalem, part of Concerning the meaning of this term learned men are by no means which was quartered in the tower of Antonia, so as to comagreed. In its primary and original signification it implies a governor of the fourth part of a couniry; and this seeins to have been the first meaning Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xix. c. 1. $ 1. lib. xx. c. 7. $ 3. Tacitus, Hist. lib. offixed to it. But afterwards it was given to the governors of a province, ii. c. 81. Suetonius in Tito, c.7. Juvenal, Sat. vi. 155. whether their government was the fourth part of a country or not : for He: . Ant. Jud. lib. xx. c. 7. $1, 2. Acts xxiv. 24. rod divided his kingdom only into three parts. The Tetrarchs, however, 9 Schulzii Archæologia Hebraica, pp. 49–59. Pritii Introd. ad Nov. Test. were regarded as princes, and sometimes were complimented with the title pp. 4294414. Dr. Lardner's Credibility, vol. i. book i. ch. I. $$ 1-11 of king: (Matt. xiv. 9.) Beausobre's Introd. to the New Test. (Bp. Wat-|(Works, vol. i. pp. 11–30. 8vo. or vol. i. pp. 9–18. 4to.) Carpzovii Antiqui. son's Tracts, vol. iii. p. 123.) The Romans conferred this title on those iates llebre Gentis, pp. 15–19. princes whom they did not choose to elevate to the regal dignity; the 10 Josephus (Ant. Jud. lib. xx. c. 4. $ 4. and de Bell. Jud. lib. ii. c. 16. $ 1.) Tetrarch was lower in point of rank than a Roman governor of a province. mentions instances in which the Roman procurators thus took council with Schulzii, Archeol. Hebr. pp. 18, 19. Jahn, Archæol. Bibl. $ 40. , Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xviii. c. 7.
11 Suetonius, in Augusto, c. 24. • Ibid. lib. xvii. c. 8. $1. lib. xviii. c. 5. 64. De Bell. Jud. lib. i. c. 33. $8. 19 Tacitus, Annal. lib. ii. cc. 54, 55. lib. i. cc. 40, 41.
11 Ibid. lib. iii. cc. 33, 34. 18 Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xviii. c. 3. § 1. lib. xx. c. 5. 9 4. De Bell. Jud.
lib. ii. c. 9. $ 2. Tacit. Hist. lib. ii. c. 79. • Ibid. lib. xix. c. 9. De Bell. Jud. lib. ii. cc. 12, 13.
16 Biscoe on the Acts, vol. 1. pp. 330-335.
13 Ibid. lib. i, c.40.
lib. ii. c. 6. $3.
• Ibid. Ant. Jud. lib. xviii. c. 4. $6. s Ibid. lib. xviij. cc. 5–8.
the Romans, Pontius Pilate is the best known, and most These procurators were Romans, sometimes of the eques- frequently mentioned in the sacred writings.-He is supposed trian order, and sometimes freedmen of the emperor: Felix to have been a native of Italy, and was sent to govern Judæa (Acts sxiii. 24-26. xxvi. 3. 22–27.) was a freedman of the about the year a. D. 26 or 27. Pilate is characterized by emperor Claudius,' with whom he was in high favour. Josephus as an unjust and cruel governor, sanguinary, obstiThese governors were sent, not by the senate, but by the nate, and impetuous; who disturbed the tranquillity of Judæa Cæsars themselves, into those provinces which were situated by persisting in carrying into Jerusalem the effigies of Tibeon the confines of the empire, and were placed at the empe- rius Cæsar that were upon the Roman ensigns, and by other ror's own disposal. Their duties consisted in collecting and acts of oppression, which produced tumults among the Jews.5 remitting tribute, in the administration of justice, and the Dreading the extreme jealousy and suspicion of Tiberius, he repression of tumults; some of them held independent juris- delivered up the Redeemer to be crucified, contrary to the dictions, while others were subordinate to the proconsul or conviction of his better judgment: and in the vain hope of governor of the nearest province. Thus Judæa was annexed conciliating the Jews whom he had oppressed. After he had to the province of Syria.
held his office for ten years, having caused a number of inII. The Jews endured their subjection to the Romans with nocent Samaritans to be put to death, that injured people great reluctance, on account of the tribute which they were sent an embassy to Vitellius, proconsul of Syria; by whom obliged to pay: but in all other respects they enjoyed a large he was ordered to Rome, to give an account of his mal-admimeasure of national liberty. It appears from the whole tenor nistration to the emperor. But Tiberius being dead before of the New Testament (for the particular passages are too he arrived there, his successor Caligula banished him to numerous to be cited), that they practised their own reli- Gaul, where he is said to have committed suicide about the gious rites, worshipped in the temple and in their synagogues, year of Christ 41.6 followed their own customs, and lived very much according IV. On the death of king Herod Agrippa, Judæa being to their own laws. Thus they had their high-priests, and again reduced to a Roman province, the government of it council or senate; they inflicted lesser punishments; they was confided to Antonius Felix; who had originally been could apprehend men and bring them before the council; and the slave, then the freedman of Nero, and, through the influif a guard of soldiers was necessary, could be assisted by ence of his brother Pallas, also a freedman of that emperor, them, on requesting them of the governor. Further, they was raised to the dignity of procurator of Judæa. He libecould bind men and keep them in custody; the council could rated that country from banditti and impostors (the very likewise summon witnesses and take examinations; they worthy deeds alluded to by 'Tertullus, Acts xxiv. 2.); but he could excommunicate persons, and they could inflict scourg- was in other respects a cruel and avaricious governor, inconing in their synagogue (Deut. xxv. 3. Matt. x. 17. Mark tinent, intemperate, and unjust. So oppressive at length did xiii. 9.); they enjoyed the privilege of referring litigated his administration become, that the Jews accused him before questions to arbitrators, whose decisions in reference to them Nero, and it was only through the powerful interposition of the Roman prætor was bound to see put in execution. Pallas that Felix escaped condign punishment. His third? Beyond this, however, they were not allowed to go; for, wife, Drusilla, has already been mentioned. It was before when they had any capital offenders, they carried them before these persons that St. Paul, with singular propriety, reasoned the procurator, who usually paid a regard to what they of righteousness, temperance, and a judgment to come. (Acts stated, and, if they brought evidence of the fact, pronounced xxiv. 25.) On the resignation of Felix, A. D. 60, the governsentence according to their laws. He was the proper judge ment of Judæa was committed to Portius Festus, before in all capital causes; for, after the council of the Jew's had whom Paul defended himself against the accusations of the taken under their consideration the case of Jesus Christ, Jews (Acts xxv.), and appealed from his tribunal to that of which they pretended was of this kind, they went with it Cæsar. Finding his province overrun with robbers and murimmediately to the governor, who re-examined it and pro- derers, Festus strenuously exerted himself in suppressing nounced sentence. That they had not the power of life and their outrages. He died in Judæa about the year 62.8 death is evident from Pilate's granting to them the privilege The situation of the Jews under the two last-mentioned of judging, but not of condemning Jesus Christ, and also procurators was truly deplorable. Distracted by tumults, from their acknowledgment to Pilaie-It is not lawful for us excited on various occasions, their country was overrun with to put any mun to deuih (John xviii. 31.); and likewise from robbers that plundered all the villages whese inhabitants the power
vested in Pilate of releasing a condemned criminal refused to listen to their persuasions to shake off the Roman to them at the passover (John xviii. 39, 40.),
which he could yoke. Justice was sold to the highest bidder; and even the not have done if he had not had the power of life and death, sacred office of high-priest was exposed to sale. But, of all as well as from his own declaration that he had power to the procurators, no one abused his power more than Gessius crucify and power to release Jesus Christ.“ (John xix. 10.) Florus, a cruel and sanguinary governor, and so extremely
avaricious that he shared with the robbers in their booty, and • Suetonius in Claudio, c. 28.
allowed them to follow their nefarious practices with impus see Dr. Lardner's Credibility, part i. book ii. c. 2. where the various nity. Hence considerable numbers of the wretched Jews, passages are adduced and fully considered.
with their families, abandoned their native country; while : Cin lib. i. tit. 9. 1. 8. de Judæis.--As the Christians were at first refaribed as a sect of the Jews, they likewise enjoyed the same privilege. those who remained, being driven to desperation, took up This circumstance will account for saint Paul's blaming the Corinthian arms against the Romans, and thus cominenced that war, Christians for carrying their causes before the Roman prætor, instead which terminated in the destruction of Judæa, and the taking or leasing them to referees chosen from among their brethren. (1 Cor.
away of their name and nation.io • The celebrated Roman Jurist, Ulpian, states that the governors of the Roosa provinces had the right of the sword; which implied the authority even to pronounce him guilty: all which ought to have been done, if the of punishing malefactors; an authority which was personal, and not to be proceedings had been regula'r. Before Stephen could finish his defence, transferred. (Lib. vi. c. 8. de Officio Proconsulis.) And Josephus states
a sudden Cumult arose; the people who were present rushed with one (V. Bell Jud. lib. ii. c. 8. 5.1.) that Coponius, who was sent to govern Ju: accord upon him, and casting him out of the city, stoned him before the dea as a province after the banishment of Archelaus, was invested by affair could be taken before the Roman procurator. Pritii Introd. ad Nov. Augustus wiih the power of life and death. (Bp. Gray's Connection of Test. p. 592. Necred and Profane Literature, vol. 1. p. 273. See also Dr. Lardner's Cre. Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xviii. c. 3. $S 1, 2. dibility, e. 2 $6.) The case of the Jews stoning Stephen (Acis vii. 56, 57.) . Ibid. lib. xviii. c. 4. Eusebius, Hist. Eccl. lib. ij. cc. 7, 8. has been arged by some learned men as a proof that the former had the + Claudii Commentatio de Felice, pp. 62, 63. power of life and death, but the circumstances of that case do not support 8 Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. xx. c. 8. $$ 9, 10. De Bell. Jud. lib. ii. c. this assertion Stephen, it is true, had been examined before the great 14. $ 1. eo locil, who had heard witnesses against him, but nowhere do we read , Ibid. lib. xx. cc. 8. 11. Ibid. lib. ij. cc. 9, 10. thai they had collected votes or proceeded to the giving of sentence, or 10 Schulzii Archæologia Hebraica, pp. 59—66.
COURTS OF JUDICATURE, LEGAL PROCEEDINGS, AND CRIMINAL LAW OF THE JEWS.
JEWISH COURTS OF JUDICATURE AND LEGAL PROCEEDINGS.I
1. Seat of Justice.-II. Inferior Tribunale.—III. Appeals.-Constitution of the Sanhedrin or Great Council.-IV. Time of
Trials:- Form of legal Proceedings among the Jew8.—1, Citation of the Parties.—2, 3. Form of Pleading in civil and criminal Cases.-4. Witnesses.-- Oaths.-5. The Lot, in what Cases useil judicially.-6. Forms of Acquittal.-7. Summary Justice, sometimes clamorously demanded.—V. Execution of Sentences, by whom and in what manner performed.
I. In the early ages of the world, the Gate of the City was or less honourable place in the synagogue. And the context the Seat of JUSTICE, where conveyances of titles and estates shows, that judges and judicial causes were the subjects of were made, complaints were heard and justice done, and the apostle's thoughts.) all public business was transacted. Thus Abraham made II.' On the settlement of the Israelites in the land of Ca. the acquisition of the sepulchre in the presence of all those naan, Moses commanded them to appoint judges and officers who entered in at the gate of the city of Hebron. (Gen. xxiii. in all their gates, throughout their tribes (Deut. xvi. 18.); 10. 18.) When Hamor and his son Shechem proposed to whose duty it was to exercise judicial authority in the neighmake an alliance with Jacob and his sons, they spoke of it bouring villages; but weighty causes and appeals were carto the people at the gate of the city. (Gen. xxxiv. 24.) In ried before the supreme judge or ruler of the commonwealth. later times Boaz, having declared his intention of marrying (Deut. xvii. 8, 9.). According to Josephus, these inferior Ruth, at the gate of Bethlehem caused her kinsman to resign judges were seven in number, men zealous in the exercise his pretensions, and give him the proper conveyance to the of virtue and righteousness. To each judge (that is, to each estate. (Ruth iv. 1-10.) From the circumstance of the college of judges in every city) two officers were assigned gates of cities being the seat of justice, the judges appear to out of the tribe of Levi. These judges existed in the time have been termed the Elders of the Gate (Deut. xxii. 15. of that historian ;5 and, although the rabbinical writers are xxv. 7.); for, as all the Israelites were husbandmen, who silent concerning them, yet their silence neither does not went out in the morning to work, and did not return until can outweigh the evidence of an eye-witness and magistrate, night, the city gate was the place of greatest resort. By this who himself appointed such judges. ancient practice, the judges were compelled, by a dread of The Priests and Levites, who, from their being devoted public displeasure, to be most strictly impartial, and most to the study of the law, were, consequently, best skilled in carefully to investigate the merits of the causes which were its various precepts, and old men, who were eminent for brought before them. The same practice obtained after the their age and virtue, administered justice to the people : in captivity: (Zech. viii. 16.). The Ottoman court, it is well consequence of their age, the name of elders became attached known, derived its appellation of the Porte, from the distri- to them. Many instances of this kind occur in the New Tesbution of justice and the despatch of public business at its tament; they were also called rulers, apXOUTE. (Luke xii. 58. gates. During the Arabian monarchy in Spain, the same where ruler is synonymous with judge.) The law of Moses practice obtained; and the magnificent gate of entrance to the contained the most express prohibitions of bribery (Exod. Moorish palace of Alhamra at Grenada to this day retains the xxii. 8.) and partiality ; enjoining them to administer jus. appellation of the Gate of Justice or of Judgment.2 To the tice without respect of persons, and reminding them, that a practice of dispensing justice at the gates of cities, there are judge sits in the seat of God, and, consequently, that no man numerous allusions in the Sacred Volume. For instance, in ought to have any pre-eminence in his sight, neither ought Job v. 4. the children of the wicked are said to be crushed in he to be afraid of any man in declaring the law. (Exod. xxiii. the gate; that is, they lose their cause, and are condemned in 3. 6, 7. Lev. xix. 15. Deut. i. 17. xvi. 18, 19.). The prothe court of judgment. The Psalmist (cxxvii. 5.), speaking phet Amos (viii. 6.) reproaches the corrupt judges of his of those whom God has blessed with many children, says time, with taking not only silver, but even so trifling an artithat they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with ihe cle of dress as a pair of (wooden) sandals, as a bribe, to enemies in the gate ; that is, those who are thus blessed shall condemn the innocent poor who could not afford to make courageously plead their cause, and need not fear the want them a present of equal value. Turkish officers and their of justice when they meet their adversaries in the court of wives in Asia, to this day, go richly clothed in costly silks judicature. Compare Prov. xxii. 22. and xxxi. 23. Lament given them by those who have causes depending before 6. 14. Amos v. 12., in all which passages the gate, and elders them. It is probable, at least in the early ages after the setof the land or of the gate, respectively denote the seat of jus- tlement of the Jews in Canaan, that their judges rode on tice and the judges who presided there. And as the gates of white asses, by way of distinction (Judges v. 10.), as the a city constituted its strength, and as the happiness of a peo- Mollahs or men of the law do to this day in Persia, and the ple depended much upon the wisdom and integrity of the heads of families returning from their pilgrimage to Mecca.9 judges who sat there, it may be that our Saviour alluded to III. From these inferior tribunals, appeals lay to a higher this circumstance, when he said, The gates of hell shall not court, in cases of importance. (Deut. xvii. 8–12.) In Jeru prevail against his church (Matt. xvi. 18.); that is, neither salem, it is not improbable that there were superior courts, in the strength nor policy of Satan or his instruments shall ever which David's sons presided. Psalm cxxii. 5. seems to be able to overcome it.
allude to them : though we do not find that a supreme triIn the time of Jesus Christ the Jews held courts of judica- bunal was established at Jerusalem earlier than in the reign ture in their synagogues, where they punished offenders by of Jehoshaphat. (2 Chron. xix. 8—11.) It was composed of scourging. (Matt. x. 17. Acts xxii. 19. xxvi. 11.). After
a Macknight on James ii. 2. their example, Dr. Macknight thinks it probable, that the
· Josephus, Ant. Jud. lib. iv. c. 14. Schulzii Prolusio de variis Judæo. first Christians held courts for determining civil causes, in rum erroribus in Descriptione Templi ii. $ xv. pp. 27–32.; prefixed to his the places where they assembled for public worship, called edition of Reland's Treatise De Spoliis Templi Hierosolymitani Trajecti ad your synagogue in the epistle of James. (ii. 2. Gr.) It is
Josephus, De Bell. Jud. lib. ii. c. 20. 85. evident, he adds, that the apostle speaks not of their assem- & Ernesti Institutio Interpretis Novi Testamenti, part iii. c. 10. $ 73. p. 356. bly, but of the place where their assembly was held, from
• Morier's Second Journey, p. 136, his mentioning the litigants as sitting in a more honourable
• Harmer's Observations, vol. ii. p. 317.
; "We met, one day, a procession, consisting of a family returning from 1 Besides the authorities incidentally cited in the course of this section, A white-bearded old man, riding on a ichite ass, led the way with patri
the pilgrimage to Mecca." Drums and pipes announced the joysul event. the following works have been consulted for it, throughout; viz. Schulzii | archal grace; and the men who met him, or accompanied him, were con. Archeologia Hebraica, pp. 66–81. ; Calmet, Dissertation sur la Police des tinually throwing their arms about his neck, and almost dismounting him Hebreux (Dissertations, tom. I. pp. 187–204.); Alber, Hermeneutica Vet. with their salutations. He was followed by his three wives, each riding Test. pp. 231-238. ; Pritii Introd. ad Nov. Test. pp. 575–594.: Brunings Antiq. Hebr. pp. 99--107.; Home's Hist. of the Jews, vol. ii. pp. 30–41. ; they occasionally stooped down to salute them. The women continually,
on a high camel; their female acquaintances running on each side, while Jahn Archæol.'
Biblica, &$ 243–248. ; Ackermann, Archæol. Bibl. ss 237 uttered a remarkably'shrill whistle. It was impossible, viewing the old » Murphy's Arabian Antir uities of Spain, plates xiv. xv. pp. 8, 9.
man who led the way, not to remember the expression in Judges v. 10" Jowett's Christian Researches, p. 163.