The Life & Times of Jesus of Nazareth: Did You Know?
Image courtesy of Trevor Hurlbut on Flickr. Sign up for Christianity Today and you’ll get instant access to back issues of Christian History! In Jesus’ day, the population of Palestine ranged from roughly 500,000 to 600,000 people (about that of Vermont, Boston, or Jerusalem today). Approximately 18,000 of these inhabitants were clerics, priests, and Levites, according to census data. Jerusalem was a metropolis of around 55,000 people, but at big feasts, the population may grow to as many as 180,000.
Archaeologists have discovered whistles, rattles, toy animals on wheels, hoops, and spinning tops, among other things.
The game of checkers was very popular at the time.
Carpenters put wood chips behind their ears, tailors had needles tucked into their tunics, and dyers used brightly colored rags to protect their skin from the sun.
- Because “graven images” were prohibited by the second commandment, there are few Jewish portraits depicting women in period clothing.
- The masonry and carpentry of the time appear to be purely functional.
- Bread was the primary dietary item at each of the two daily meals.
- A more substantial dinner consisted of vegetable (lentil) stew, bread (made from either barley, or wheat, depending on one’s socioeconomic status), fruit, eggs, and/or cheese.
- Locusts were considered a delicacy and were said to taste similar to shrimp.
- Subscribe today if you want to continue reading.
- Already a member of the CT community?
Jerusalem in the days of Christ
When Jesus and his followers arrived at the Holy City of Jerusalem during the Feast of the Passover, it was undoubtedly a beautiful city in its own right. During his 33-year rule, King Herod revolutionized the city, transforming it into a contemporary metropolis with his vast building projects. Palaces, an outdoor theater, bridges, and public monuments may be found in the city. Even though some of these initiatives were not completed until after Herod’s death, he was focused on making a positive impression on the Roman Empire throughout his life.
- The King’s soldiers exiled nearly all of Israel’s Jewish population to Babylon, where they remained for hundreds of years.
- One of the first things they did was begin the process of restoring the sacred temple.
- It was located in such a prominent location that it could be seen for kilometers around.
- As they circled the Mount of Olives, they were greeted with the sight of the lovely city of Jerusalem, which stretched over the Kidron Valley in front of them.
- The Lower City, located to the south of the temple, was a collection of limestone yellowish dwellings connected by tiny dirt streets and lanes.
- The Upper City, also known as Zion, sprang up to the west of the temple complex.
- Jerusalem had a population of around 25,000 people on an average during Jesus’ day.
For the sake of safety, a high gray stone wall encircled the city.
The fact that there was a customs post at each gate, where publicans or tax collectors collected taxes on all items entering or leaving the city, may appear peculiar at first.
Craftsmen such as tailors, carpenters, and weavers would be the ones who sold their wares.
Mondays and Thursdays were the busiest days for the market.
As in ancient Greece and Rome, the streets and homes of the Upper City were built out in an ordered design, similar to that of those cities.
It was possible to acquire items like as ivory, incense, expensive foreign meals, and items made of gold and silver, in addition to the freshest food on the market.
In truth, this was the location of the Jewish high priest, Caiaphas, who had his residence here.
In the Upper City, Herod the Great had constructed a vast open-air theater for public performances.
Most orthodox Jews, on the other hand, considered this, as well as other aspects of Roman society, to be sinful.
Some chose to stay within the city walls with family or friends, while the vast majority chose to camp outside the city limits in tents.
Extinction of violence and anti-Roman uprisings peaked around these huge gatherings, like as the Passover Feast, which took place every year around this time.
At the time of Christ’s trial and death, the Romans were concerned about a Jewish insurrection.
While on the way to Golgotha, also known as “Place of the Skull,” Jesus was in agony from the thrashing He had experienced, yet He was forced to carry His own cross, was spit upon, and crowds cried “Crucify him!
How can this historical lesson serve me?
I’d like us all to take a moment to pause and consider a few things: do you believe that we as a people have evolved in two thousand years, or do you believe that we reject Christ in our day as the early Jews did?
Jesus died on the cross in order to pay the penalty for all of humanity’s sins, or only a few?
Even in the midst of this epidemic, we should express our gratitude to Him for his sacrifice and implore Him to please cure our nation.
Bolton is the author of “Just Passing Time,” co-author of “Just Passing Time Together,” and author of the just released book “Southern Fried.” He lives in New York City. You may reach him at J.A. Bolton is a storyteller who lives in New York City. The Storyteller from Bolton
Jerusalem in Christianity – Wikipedia
Jerusalem’s significance in first-century Christianity, during the ministry of Jesus and the Apostolic Age, as documented in the New Testament, makes it a must-see destination for visitors. Jerusalem is often regarded as the spiritual birthplace of Christianity.
As recorded in the New Testament, Jerusalem was the place to which Jesus was transported as a child, where he was presented at the Temple (Luke 2:22) and where he participated in the Passover celebration (Luke 2:41). According to the gospels, Jesus Christ preached and performed miracles in Jerusalem, particularly in the Temple courts. This is also the spot where the events of Pentecost were recorded in the Acts of the Apostles. There is also an account of Jesus Christ’s “Cleansing of the Temple,” in which he was driving dealers and money changers from the hallowed confines of the temple (Mark11:15, see alsoMark 11).
- The Acts of the Apostles and the Pauline epistles both portray James the Just, Jesus’ brother, as a leader of the early Jerusalem church, and this is supported by the historical record.
- After the destruction of Jerusalem, they returned to the city to rebuild it.
- The Cenacle, according to Christian legend, is located on the second story of a structure on Mount Zion, with David’s Tombs purportedly on the first floor, and is where the Last Supper took place.
- Gethsemane, the location of Jesus’ agonizing prayer and betrayal, is most likely situated near the Church of All Nations on the Mount of Olives.
- According to popular belief, the outdoor pavement where the trial was held is located beneath the Convent of the Sisters of Zion in Jerusalem.
- The Via Dolorosa, often known as the “Way of Suffering,” is the traditional road to Golgotha, the site of Jesus’ crucifixion, and it is a significant pilgrimage route.
- The Holy Sepulchre is usually thought to be the site of Golgotha, as well as the location of Jesus’ tomb nearby.
- TheGarden Tombis, a prominent pilgrimage location near theDamascus Gate, is a renowned pilgrimage destination.
In a series of articles published in theJerusalem Christian Review, Jerusalem historian Dan Mazar described the archaeological discoveries made at this location by his grandfather, Professor Benjamin Mazar, which included the 1st-century stairs of ascent, where Jesus and his disciples preached, as well as themikvaot, which was used by both Jewish and Christian pilgrims.
The excavations carried out by the older Mazar unearthed a significant portion of this region as well.
Jews were barred from settling in the new city of Aelia Capitolina, which resulted in the appointment of Gentile bishops under power delegated by the Metropolitans of Caesarea and, eventually, the Patriarchs of Antioch. While the general significance of Jerusalem to Christians living outside of the Holy Land declined during the Persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire, this significance was restored around 325 when Emperor Constantine I and his mother, Helena, endowed Jerusalem with churches and shrines, establishing it as the world’s most important Christian pilgrimage destination.
- Jerusalem was accorded particular distinction in Canon VII of Nicaea in 325, despite the fact that it had not yet been elevated to the status of metropolis.
- This date coincided with that of the Edict of Milan, which recognized Christian faith as legitimate in the Roman Empire.
- As a result of the Byzantine political system, however, Jerusalem was simply transferred from the Syrian jurisdiction of Antioch to the Greek jurisdiction of Constantinople.
- Meanwhile, the Roman church refused to recognize the Pentarchy and instead asserted its own authority.
- On the other hand, the ancient notion of the primacy of the Church of Jerusalem was preserved in several texts, such as the ancient notion of the primacy of the Church of Rome.
It was in the year 638 that Sophronius, the Patriarch of Jerusalem, officially gave up control of the city to the Muslim armies of Caliph Umar. According to Christian sources, the Muslim authorities in Jerusalem were cruel to their Christian victims, subjecting them to a life of “discrimination, slavery, and humiliation.”
As the forces of the First Crusade approached Jerusalem, the oppression of Christians would only deteriorate worse. Angered by suspicions that the Eastern Christians were plotting with the oncoming Romans, the Muslim rulers in Jerusalem slaughtered a large proportion of the city’s Christian inhabitants, allowing only the lucky to flee the city in panic. The Crusaders came to protect Christian pilgrims who had been attacked and killed by the Turks, to protect Christian holy sites that had been destroyed by CaliphAl-Hakim bi-Amr Allah, and in fact they came in response to appeals for assistance from the Eastern ChristianByzantine EmperorAlexios I Komnenos, but no evidence exists that they were part of a conspiracy.
- With the exception of Eastern Christians, the majority of the city’s people was slaughtered.
- Jerusalem was designated as the capital of a “Latin Kingdom,” which included a Latin church and a Latin Patriarch, both of which were under the jurisdiction of the Pope.
- His humility and reverence to Jesus prompted him to decline the title of king in a city where, in his opinion, only Jesus had the right to be addressed as such; instead, he designated himself as Jerusalem’s defender, a title he believed only Jesus had the right to use.
- The title ofKing of Jerusalem was accepted by his brotherBaldwin I in the year 1100, unlike his brother Godfrey, who was unwilling to accept the title.
- Baldwin I extended an offer to the Christians of the Transjordana area of Jerusalem as early as 1115.
These Christians, who were frequently the targets of Muslim attack, were quick to embrace Baldwin’s proposition. When Saladin seized Jerusalem in 1187, the Holy Sepulchre and a number of other churches were returned to the care of the local Orthodox Christians.
Early modern and modern
The Ottoman Empire was petitioned for authority of the ‘holy sites’ by different Catholic European states from the 17th through the 19th centuries, and the request was granted. The Franciscanshave traditionally served as the Catholic Church’s caretakers of the sacred sites. Throughout this time period, the balance of power shifted back and forth between the western and eastern churches. It is possible that SultanAbd-ul-Mejid I (1839–1861) released an afirman in the midst of his despair, which lay out in detail the specific rights and responsibilities of each group at the Holy Sepulchre.
Jordan and the British Mandate both worked together to maintain the status quo.
The Greek Patriarchate, the Latins (Western Rite Roman Catholics), the Armenians, the Copts, and the Syrian Orthodox are the five Christian denominations that now enjoy rights in the Holy Sepulchre.
Jerusalem as an allegory for the Church
In Christianity, Jerusalem is sometimes seen as an allegory or type for the church of Christ, and this interpretation is not uncommon. Rather of focusing on the actual and historical city of Jerusalem, there is a wide apocalyptic tradition that concentrates on the heavenly city of Jerusalem. Among the most famous proponents of this viewpoint is Augustine of Hippo’s The City of God, a prominent 5th-century philosophical masterwork published amid the collapse of the Roman Empire.
- Evangelical Zionism
- Christian–Jewish rapprochement
- Christian Zionism Jesus Trail
- The Five Patriarchates
- The Council of Jerusalem (1672)
- The significance of Jerusalem in Judaism and Islam
- The establishment of a New Jerusalem
- The primacy of the Five Patriarchates
- Rachel Beckles Willson and Beckles Willson (2013). Isbn: 1107036567
- Orientalism and Musical Mission: Palestine and the West
- III. HISTORY OF JERUSALEM (PRIOR TO A.D. 71) in the Catholic Encyclopedia Archived on the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine on December 15, 2018. D. During the Roman Empire’s dominion, from A.D. 70 until the present: “Jesus Christ was captured and executed while under the reign of Pontius Pilate. The Passion, Resurrection, and Ascensionof the Divine Saviour have elevated Jerusalem, which was already a lovely city, to the status of the most renowned city on the face of the earth. Acts 6: 8–15 describes how the zeal with which multitudes of Jews called themselves followers of Jesus Christ on the Day of Pentecost sparked a violent persecution of Christians that resulted in the death of the deaconStephen, the first martyr.”
- s^ The author, Rachel Beckles Willson, published Orientalism and Musical Mission: Palestine and the West in 2013 by Cambridge University Press, p.146, ISBN 9781107036567. In preparation for the flight to Pella, consider the following: Bourgel, Jonathan, ” The Jewish Christians’ Move from Jerusalem as a pragmatic choice “, in Dan JAFFÉ (ed. ),Studies in Rabbinic Judaism and Early Christianity, (Leyden: Brill, 2010), p. 107-138
- AbBargil Pixner, “The Church of the Apostles found on Mount Zion,”Biblical Archaeology Review 16.3 May/J At CCEL.org, you may read about Socrates’ Church History in Book I, Chapter XVII: The Emperor’s Mother Helena travels to Jerusalem and seeks for and discovers the Cross of Christ, after which she constructs a church
- Schaff’s Seven Ecumenical Councils are as follows: Nicaea I: Canon VII: The First Nicaea “”Because custom and ancient tradition have prevailed that the Bishop of Aeliashould be honored, let him have the next place of honour, while preserving the dignity due to the Metropolis.”
- “It is extremely difficult to determine exactly what “precedence” was granted to the Bishop of Aelia, nor is it clear which metropolis is referred to in the last clause.” The majority of writers, including Hefele, Balsamon, Aristenus, and Beveridge, believe it is Csarea
- Zonaras, on the other hand, believes it is Jerusalem, a position that has lately been endorsed and supported by Fuchs
- And some believe it is Antioch.”
- s^ “The Settlement of the Latins in Jerusalem,” Speculum27.4 (1952): 491
- “The Settlement of the Latins in Jerusalem,” Speculum27.4 (1952): 492
- “The Settlement of the Latins in Jerusalem,” Speculum27.4 (1952): 493
- And “The Motives of the Earliest Crusaders and the Settlement of Latin Palestine,” Speculum27.4 (1952): 494
- “The Settlement of A study of the settlement of the Latins in Jerusalem published in Speculum 27.4 (1952): 496
- A study of the imagery of the heavenly Jerusalem (Revelation 21:9-22:5) published in Neotestamentica Vol. 22, No. 1 (1988), pp. 65-86
- A study by Lawrence Hull Stookey, The Gothic Cathedral as the Heavenly Jerusalem: Liturgical and Theological Sources, Gesta Vol. 8, p. 35
- A study by Lawrence
- Catholic Encyclopedia: Jerusalem (Before A.D. 71)
- Catholic Encyclopedia: Jerusalem (A.D. 71-1099)
- Catholic Encyclopedia: Crusades (A.D. 1095-1270)
- Catholic Encyclopedia: Jerusalem (After A.D. 1291)
- Wikisource (Greek): v v v v
- Wikisource (English): v v v
- Wikisource (Greek): v v v
- Wikisource (Gr
Jerusalem in the New Testament Period
During the first century C.E. By any definition, Jerusalem was a breathtaking destination. It was the biggest city in Palestine, with a population of tens of thousands of people—some estimates put the figure as high as 100,000 or more. Pliny the Elder, a Roman scientist who lived from 23 to 79 C.E., identified it as “the most famous city in the East, not alone inJudea,” according to him (Natural History5.70). The Second Temple, the holiest location in all of Judaism and the only place where biblical tradition permitted animal sacrifice, served as the city’s principal source of prestige.
- As part of his expansion of the Temple Mount, Herod created the biggest temple complex in all of Roman history.
- The temple was a popular pilgrimage destination for Jews from all over the Roman world, with many of them traveling there to celebrate the festivals of Passover (Pesach), Weeks (Shavuot), and Booths (Sukkot).
- The city’s aristocracy benefited the most from the economic effect of pilgrimage, as evidenced by the discovery of sumptuous mansions with frescoed walls, mosaic floors, imported pots and plates, and other luxury items during archaeological digs.
- When the city of Jerusalem expanded southward, it included area beyond the Old City’s current walls, which were built only in the 1500s C.E.
- The impact of Greek and Roman architecture could be seen everywhere.
- Herod the Great also built an amphitheater “on the plain,” and a theater was established in the city by the 60s C.E.
- Jerusalem, on the other hand, was distinct from the other great Roman towns in several crucial ways.
- Over the years, the city’s government administration has undergone a number of changes.
- ), his son Archelaus was appointed as his successor.
- These appointed officials were known as ” procurators” or ” prefects,” and they were responsible for the administration of the city.
- Because of this rebellion, the temple and the rest of the city were destroyed, and archaeological investigations have uncovered abundant evidence of the devastation caused.
The ruins of the city became the headquarters of a Roman army, and Emperor Hadrian refounded it as the Romancolonyof Aelia Capitolina in 130 C.E., a city in which Jews were not permitted to reside.
Professor of religious studies in the Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Mark A. Chancey is a member of the American Academy of Religion. In addition to the historical Jesus, archaeology and the Bible, and the political and social history of Roman-period Palestine, his research interests also include questions of church-state relations as well as religion and modern public education. He is the author of two books published by Cambridge University Press: The Myth of a Gentile Galilee (2002) andGreco-Roman Culture and the Galilee of Jesus (2005), as well as the coauthor of Alexander to Constantine: Archaeology of the Land of the Bible (Cambridge University Press, 2008).
- Along with the Old Testament, the Christian Bible is comprised of a collection of works from the first century that were written by Jews and Christians.
- It was also used to refer to the inhabitants of the ancient Mesopotamian city of Babylon, as well as the inhabitants of the larger geographical designation of lower Mesopotamia.
- Gods or goddesses are strong supernatural entities who are worshiped by humans and are revered.
- a person who does not identify as Jewish It was from 66 and 73 C.E.
- An adjective denoting or referring to the reign of the Herodian dynasty, who ruled Palestine from 55 BC until the end of the first century C.E., or to the family’s descendants.
- His writings describe the Jewish uprisings against the Romans, providing historical context for early Jewish and Christian rituals.
- Is the descendent of ancient Israelite religion, and is defined by monotheism and devotion to the commandments contained in both the Written Torah (the Bible) and the Oral Torah (the Talmudic and Rabbinic tradition).
about or connected to Moses or the writings attributed to him under the divided monarchy, or what eventually became the greater region under imperial administration, during the divided monarchy Part of Jerusalem that is now encircled by an Ottoman-era wall and contains the Temple Mount is referred to as the Old City.
- Another name for the region of Israel and Judah that is frequently heard is Palaestina, which is taken from the Latin title for the Roman province of the same name; ultimately, the name comes from the name of the Philistine people.
- inscription Roman soldier, jurist, and writer who was interested in nature and the physical world and who wrote about it.
- The Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 C.E.
- The biblical pilgrimage holiday known as “Weeks” is observed in the spring, seven weeks following the Passover feast.
Booths, which means “booths” in English, is one of the biblical pilgrimage feasts that takes place in the fall. According to the Bible, this is the location of the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem.
Jerusalem in Jesus’ Time Map
SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences is home to Professor Mark A. Chancey, who teaches religious studies and is based in Dallas. In addition to the historical Jesus, archaeology and the Bible, and the political and social history of Roman-era Palestine, his research interests also include themes of church-state relations as well as religion and public education in the modern day. The Myth of a Gentile Galilee (2002) andGreco-Roman Culture and the Galilee of Jesus (2005), both published by Cambridge University Press, as well as the coauthor of Alexander to Constantine: Archaeology of the Land of the Bible (Cambridge University Press) (Yale University Press, 2012).
- The ritual killing and sacrificing of animals to deities, which is usually done on an altar and is supposed to be beneficial to the gods, is called sacrifice.
- Each nation controls a territory that is typically divided into several geographic areas.
- a person who does not identify as Jewish.
- The reign of the Herodian family, which ruled Palestine from 55 B.C.E.
- It is through his writings that the Jewish revolts against Rome are documented, as well as the historical context for early Jewish and Christian traditions was provided.
- In its current form, it is a descendent of ancient Israelite religion, and it is defined by monotheism and devotion to the regulations contained in both the Written Torah (the Bible) and the Oral Torah (the Talmudic/Rabbinic tradition).
- One of the oldest continually occupied towns on the planet, Jerusalem’s Old City is one of the world’s most historic destinations.
A biblical pilgrimage celebration held in the spring that is translated as “pass over.” the act of traveling, often for religious reasons According to tradition, the first-century CE Roman soldier, jurist, and writer who was interested in nature and the physical world and explored a philosophical philosophy of nature.
The Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 C.E.
The biblical pilgrimage celebration known as “Weeks” is observed in the spring, seven weeks following the Passover holiday.
Booths is a biblical pilgrimage celebration that takes place in the fall and is translated as “Booths.” Biblically speaking, this was the location of the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem.
What did Jerusalem look like when Jesus was in the flesh and walked on this Earth?
While Herod the Great (37-4 B.C.) ruled over Israel (now called Judea) as a Roman client king, the city of Jerusalem was completely transformed as a result of the king’s numerous building projects, which included the expansion of the Second Temple, which is referred to as Herod’s Temple, the construction of palaces and citadels, a theater, a hippodrome, and bridges, as well as the development of the city’s water supplies.
The city underwent significant transformation during Herod’s 33-year rule, allowing him to earn considerable acceptance and support from the populace, despite the fact that he was not born a Jew, but rather an Edomite, a descendant of Esau, and his family had converted to the Jewish faith during that time.
- The construction of a theater and of a hippodrome, which was built to resemble a Roman circus, are examples of his efforts to win the support of the Roman authorities.
- THE TEMPLE IS AN INSTITUTION The Temple of God was built on the TEMPLE MOUNT, which rose above the CITY OF DAVID and served as a base for the development of the city.
- The temple is not referred to as the “Third Temple” because the ceremonies and animal sacrifices remained uninterrupted during the whole reconstruction operation.
- In the surrounding area of Herod’s Temple were a succession of courts, including a women’s court, a men’s court, and a gentile’s court (also called the outer court).
- The inner court was reserved for the priests who were involved in the sacrifices, and the outside court was reserved for all of the Israelites.
- Located on the south side of the building were the major staircases going up to the gates, which served as a passageway for Israelites traveling up the steps to the Temple Mount and to the court of the gentiles.
- Psalms 24:3-4 (KJV) “Who has the authority to go to the Lord’s Hill?
- Having clean hands and a pure heart, having not sacrificed his soul to an idol, nor having not swore deceitfully, is the one who qualifies.” What may they reasonably anticipate in exchange, according to Biblical Law?
- Those who seek Him, those who seek Your (God’s) face are represented by Jacob, the generation of those who seek Him.
- This was also the location where Jesus performed the cleaning of the Temple.
- 12-13; Matthew 21:12-13; “As soon as Jesus entered the Temple of God, he drove away everyone who was engaged in buying and selling there.
In response, He stated that it was written that His house would be named a House of Prayer, but they had turned it into a den of thieves instead.” The Antonia stronghold, which was part of the Temple complex and located immediately northwest of the Temple area, served as Herod’s palace fortress and was built in the first century BCE.
- Several stairways and a subterranean staircase connected the Antonia fortress to the court of the gentiles (and therefore to the Temple) during the reign of Hadrian.
- The sports hippodrome, a vast amphitheater erected by King Herod in the style of a Roman circus and used for horse and chariot racing, was located to the east, somewhere in the plain.
- THE CITY OF THE UPPER CLASSES UPPER CITY, which rose high above the Lower City to the west, was home to affluent aristocratic and priestly families who resided in white marble homes and palaces built on the site of former royal residences.
- Aside from that, the palace of Caiaphas, the high priest, was also located in this area, and it is likely that Jesus’ trial before the Sanhedrin took place in one of the huge rooms of this palace.
Located in the uppermost northwest corner of the Upper City, directly against its surrounding walls, Herod constructed a massive fortress on top of a platform that consisted of two main buildings, each with banquet halls, baths (for hundreds of guests), and accommodation for hundreds of guests, all of which were enclosed by gardens with ponds and fountains.
- THE CITY OF DAVID is a city in the state of Washington.
- Originally a Jebusite hamlet, it was taken by warriors under the command of King David, who, as previously stated, declared it the capital of his kingdom.
- MISHNEH ( ) (A.K.A.
- Huldah the prophetess is said to have lived in the area, according to the Bible.
- THE FORTIFIED CITY OF JERUSALEM The WALLS were a high stone wall that encircled the whole city and was approximately 4 kilometers in length.
During the time of Jesus, it defended an area of around one square mile, which had approximately 25,000 people. The wall was punctuated by massive gates, each of which included a customs post, which was manned by publicans who collected taxes on every commodities entering or leaving Jerusalem.
What happened to Jerusalem when Jesus went back to the Father?
Rome’s Judea was a successful and tranquil province throughout the first century AD, and as such, it was included in the “Pax Romana,” which literally translates as “Roman Peace” and refers to the period from 27 B.C. to 180 A.D. during which the Roman Empire was at its most peaceful and affluent. When Emperor Octavian became the ruler of the Roman Empire, the “Pax Romana” began to take hold. Everyone of Rome’s provinces had unparalleled peace and prosperity over this 200-year era, and its residents were safe since the government’s aim was to maintain law and order while also ensuring stability, safety, and protection for all.
Luke 19:41-44 (NASB) “As He went nearer, He saw the city and mourned over it, saying, ‘If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that bring you peace!’ He cried out.
‘For days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment around you, surround you, and close you in on all sides, and they will level you and your children within you to the ground; and they will not leave a stone unturned in you because you did not know when your visitation would occur.'” Following the prophecy of Jesus, the people, led by the chief priests and elders, did turn their backs on Him and repeatedly begged Pontius Pilate to crucify Him, which he duly did.
The Gospel of Matthew 27:22–25 “‘What, then, shall I do with Jesus, whom you name Christ?’ Pilate inquired of the group.
The governor then inquired, ‘Why, what wrong has He committed?’ But they yelled out even louder, crying, ‘Let Him be crucified!’ they screamed out even more.
‘You take care of it.’ “His blood be on us and on our children,” the entire crowd exclaimed in response.” However, no one in Jesus’ day would have believed that an army would have surrounded the city and brought about the kind of destruction that Jesus predicted, because all of the provinces, including Judea, had entered into an agreement with Rome in which they agreed to pay taxes to the Imperial City in exchange for guaranteed peace and protection from foreign aggression under the “Pax Romana,” and the agreement had been upheld by both parties up until that point.
- To see a larger version of the image, click on it.
- when the Jews of Judea rose up in revolt against Rome.
- These events culminated in 70 A.D.
- As part of the invasion, the city was systematically looted and leveled, and Herod’s Temple was burned and destroyed as a result of the fire.
In addition, in commemoration of that victory, the Romans struck a coin bearing the inscription “Iudaea capta,” which translates as “Judea seized.” In the end, thousands died at the hands of the Romans, and thousands more were enslaved, some being sent to work in Egyptian mines and others being transported to Rome and sold as slaves, while others were scattered throughout the Empire to be butchered for the amusement of the spectators in arenas throughout the Empire.
As Jesus had said, not a single stone was left upon another during the Roman leveling of Jerusalem, and nothing of the Temple remained except for the so-called Western Wall or Wailing Wall, where Jewish people gather today to pray, but which was actually not even a part of the Temple and is therefore still standing because it was constructed to enlarge the base of the Temple and support the enormous platform above it on Temple Mount.
It is thought that the remnants of the hippodrome were never uncovered because of the extent of the Roman destruction of Jerusalem; nevertheless, other researchers think that they were really located in the plain to the south.
with the fall of the last isolated groups of Jewish resistance, including the stronghold at Masada, where the last few Jews chose to commit suicide rather than be killed by the Roman Legions that had surrounded the city.
Known in Arabic as Iliyyah, Aelia Capitolina (also known as Aelia Capitolina) was a Roman colony that lacked “Ius Italicum,” or “Italic Law,” which meant that the city was governed by local law, that all those born in the city did not receive Roman citizenship, that people were not exempt from land taxes or poll taxes, and that they were not entitled to protection under Roman law.
Jews were barred from entering the city under penalty of death.
Despite the presence of numerous and monumental structures (temple of Jupiter Capitolino, maybe on the site of the old Temple, temple of Aphrodite, theater, baths, and so on), the political and cultural significance of the city was extremely low, and far lower than that of Caesarea.
Jesus – Jewish Palestine at the time of Jesus
Palestinein Jesus’ time period was a part of the Roman Empire, which exerted power over its many provinces in a variety of different methods. Kingdoms in the East (easternAsia Minor, Syria, Palestine, and Egypt) were either ruled by monarchs who were “friends and allies of Rome” (sometimes termed “client” kings or, more derogatorily, “puppet” kings) or by governors who had the backing of the Roman army. All of Jewish Palestine—as well as parts of the neighboring Gentile areas—was under the dominion of Rome’s capable “friend and ally,” Herod the Great, at the time of Jesus’ birth.
- While Rome possessed legions in both nations, they did not have any in Palestine.
- It was possible to fulfill this goal for a long period of time by enabling Herod to continue as king of Judaea (37–4 BCE) and giving him complete autonomy in managing his kingdom, so long as the prerequisites of stability and loyalty were maintained.
- Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc.
- His empire was split into five divisions after Herod died shortly after the birth of Jesus, according to the Bible.
- (In the New Testament, Antipas is often referred to as Herod, as in Luke 23:6–12; it appears that the sons of Herod adopted his name, in the same way that the successors of Julius Caesar were widely referred to as Caesar.
- Only Samaria was given to Herod’s third son, Philip, while the others were either given to Herod’s sister Salome or given to the Syrian province of Syria.
- As a result, he appointed a prefect to administer this province.
The soldiers, on the other hand, were not from Italy, but rather from nearby Gentile cities, particularly Caesarea and Sebaste; the officers, on the other hand, were almost certainly from Italy.
Despite being officially in charge of Judaea, Samaria, and Idumaea, the prefect did not have actual control over his territory.
In Caesarea, on the Mediterranean coast, roughly two days’ march from Jerusalem, the prefect and his small army were based.
Only during the pilgrimage festivals of Passover, Weeks (Shabuoth), and Booths (Sukkoth) did they come to Jerusalem, when vast numbers and nationalistic themes occasionally combined to cause turmoil or riots.
In conjunction with a council, he was given the onerous responsibility of mediating between the faraway Roman prefect and the local community, which was hostile toward pagans and desired to be free of foreign intrusion.
His political responsibilities included keeping the peace and ensuring that tribute was properly paid.
Because he and Pilate were in power together for ten years, it is reasonable to assume that they coordinated well.
Despite the fact that Judaea (including Jerusalem) was theoretically under the authority of Pilate, Caiaphas and his council were in charge of the day-to-day administration of the city.
Relations between Jewish areas and nearby Gentile areas
Galilee and Judaea, the two most important Jewish settlements in Palestine, were bordered by Gentile territory on all sides (i.e., Caesarea, Dora, and Ptolemais on the Mediterranean coast; Caesarea Philippi north of Galilee; and Hippus and Gadara east of Galilee). There were also two inland Gentile cities on the west bank of the Jordan River, near Galilee, which were mentioned in the New Testament (Scythopolis and Sebaste). In addition to trade, the proximity of Gentile and Jewish areas meant that there was some interaction between them.
There was also some population exchange: some Jews resided in Gentile cities, such as Scythopolis, and some Gentiles lived in at least one of the Jewish cities, Tiberias, and vice versa.
However, the Jews resisted pagan influences and barred temples dedicated to the worship of Greek and Roman gods from their cities, as well as the Greek educational institutions, such as theephebeia and gymnasiasion, gladiatorial contests, and other structures or institutions typical of Gentile areas.
- Only Herod the Great’s reign was an exception to this pattern, and even he distinguished between the Jewish and Gentile sections of his empire, encouraging the development of Greek and Roman culture in Gentile areas while importing only small elements of it into Jewish areas.
- Following a succession of decrees by Julius Caesar, Augustus, the Roman Senate, and other city councils, Jews were entitled to maintain their own traditions, even though they were in opposition to Greco-Roman culture of the time.
- Rome did not settle Jewish Palestine, and neither did the Ottoman Empire.
- Individual Gentiles from other countries would have been unlikely to be drawn to settle in Jewish communities since they would have been cut off from their traditional places of worship and cultural activities.
In Tiberias and other Jewish communities, most of the Gentiles who resided there were most likely citizens of surrounding Gentile cities, with many of them being Syrians who were likely able to communicate in both Aramaic and Greek.
The majority of individuals in the ancient world were farmers or artisans who produced food, clothes, or both, and could afford only the most basic of comforts. While most Palestinian Jewish farmers and ranchers earned enough to sustain their families and pay their taxes, they also made sacrifices during one or more yearly festivals and allowed their property to lay fallow during the sabbatical years, when cultivation was forbidden. Galilee in particular was particularly rich because the terrain and climate allowed for good crops and the sustaining of a large number of flocks.
Naturally, there were a huge number of landless individuals in the kingdom, but the Herodiandynasty took care to construct massive public works projects that employed thousands of men.
At the opposite end of the economic scale, few if any Palestinian Jews had amassed the large fortunes that successful merchants in port towns might amass over the course of a lifetime.
Although the disparity between rich and poor in Palestine was visible and painful to the poor, it was not particularly great when compared to the rest of the globe.
THE WORLD OF JESUS’ TIME Life in Galilee
Jesus was born into a Jewish family in Palestine. He would have grown up hearing tales of conquest and persecution from his parents and grandparents. Many waves of foreign invasion attempted to subdue the Jewish people, and these stories recorded their experiences. The Roman conquest of Israel (63 BCE) was the culmination of a lengthy series of invasions that began with the Babylonians (539 BCE) and continued with the Persians and the Greeks until coming to an end with the Romans. The legends of the Patriarchs—Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—as well as the foundational myth of the Moses-led escape from the Egyptians at the Exodus—were also important in establishing Jewish identity.
When it comes to their struggle for national sovereignty, the Jewish people have been more frequently the victims than the victorious, as history has shown us.
It was stated in terms of Covenant theology, which held that Yahweh had selected them to play a special role in the history of the world, and that they were the chosen ones.
There were a variety of interpretations of the Messiah’s purpose and function, ranging from the establishing of a Jewish political kingdom on earth to the eschatological concept of a heavenly kingdom at the end of the world, and everything in between (which many Jewish people considered to be immanent).
It was already a two-tiered political structure at the time of Jesus’ birth, with Roman overseers on the one hand and Jewish leaders on the other, who exerted rule in the name of Rome.
While only half-Jewish, the Herodian dynasty was despised by the Jewish people for its dictatorial rule and for its part in the sale of the Jewish legacy to a foreign power, despite their background being half-Jewish.
Herodias, another of the sons, was responsible for the execution of John the Baptist, as did Herod Antipas.
Galilee is a beautiful place to live.
He spent the most of his life in Nazareth, which is located inside the region of Galilee.
It was a Jewish enclave in Nazareth, as opposed to the other largely Gentile (non-Jewish) communities.
In such an environment, there was a disproportionate quantity of sickness and disease.
Jesus was born into a family of artisans or carpenters, which shows that he had a fair socio-economic status at the time of his birth.
When Jesus was a child, he would have attended the village school (up to the age of twelve) and the local synagogue, where he would have learned about the Bible.
It was also common practice at the time for young folks to form a close bond with a local instructor or sage for guidance.
Indeed, by the time of his ‘public ministry,’ Jesus was well-versed in the Scriptures as well as the traditions of the Jewish people.
Jerusalem Jerusalem served as the focal point of the Jewish world.
As a result, given that Nazareth was a three or four-day travel away from Jerusalem (approximately a hundred miles), it seems doubtful that Jesus made the voyage frequently.
During his public life, he also made a trip to Jerusalem (once or three times depending on the Gospel).
It is quite likely that this deed of Jesus had something to do with his trial and final death.
Society and politics are intertwined.
In general, we may categorize movements, philosophies, and life-options into four broad categories.
The revolutionary path was chosen by the Zealot movement.
Nothing else, they reasoned, would be able to deliver the Jewish people to a complete and final emancipation.
One can think of the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka or the Irish Republican Army’s operations during the ‘troubles’ in Northern Ireland when one considers terrorism.
Furthermore, Jesus found himself in conflict with both the Jewish temple and the Roman government.
Few, on the other hand, would contend that Jesus was a violent revolutionary.
The Sadduccees were considered to be the greatest pragmatists of their day.
From a political standpoint, this was the most feasible choice available.
In many aspects, the Sadduccees may be classified as the least religious group on the planet, as proven by their non-belief in the resurrection of the dead and other such beliefs.
As a result of their reading of the Old Testament, they were convinced that they were of Jewish religion.
In the Gospels, it is clear that the Sadduccees are the principal opponents of Jesus at the time of his trial and subsequent execution.
In many respects, the Pharisees were the idealists of Jewish culture at the time.
Pharisees, despite their ‘bad press’ in the Gospels, generally aspired to live a life of spiritual purity by adhering to the Torah to a rigorous degree (Jewish law).
There is little question that their concentration on the law may lead to legalism, which could then serve as an excuse for hypocrisy.
Those who lived during this time believed in the resurrection of the dead.
Finally, there were the Essenes, who were able to resolve the issue of Jewish identity in a Roman-occupied Israel by retiring into a monastic setting.
The Qumran community, which lived an austere existence and awaited God’s cataclysmic involvement in human history, was the most noteworthy group during Jesus’ time.
It seems improbable that Jesus had any kind of interaction with this particular group of people.
Throughout his public ministry, Jesus exhibits his willingness to connect directly with individuals of his society as a whole.
It was a position that bore some resemblance to that of his mentor, John the Baptist, despite the fact that there are significant differences between their teachings and ministries.
Both Jesus and Hillel had a deep reverence for the Jewish Torah, but they were also well-known for preaching compassion, forgiveness, and love in addition to the law of Moses.
Jesus, on the other hand, was more than a teacher.
Nonetheless, it is necessary to comprehend Jesus’ individuality in the context of his Jewish life and times. The religious and political aspects of life were connected in a far more intricate way than we are accustomed to seeing them today in our society.