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Historic Jesus

Aug 02, 1996 10:49 AM

Jerry Ekins wrote:
>Yet Josephus does not mention the murder of the children spoken of in the Bible.
>HPB finds it improbable that Josephus would have failed to
>mention such a hideous crime yet chronicles many others of lessor
>note. This is an indirect evidence against the historicity of
>the Biblical Jesus.

Herod was increasingly more tyrannical near the end of his career (Ant. 16. 11. 8;
Jewish War 33). This may provide the background to the slaying of the children recorded in
Matthew 2:16. Herod was certainly, according to Josephus, not only capable of such a
horrible crime, but was indeed disposed toward such evil acts. Note: It appears that this
terrible event is not recorded in Josephus.

Enc. Britanicca Vol 5 page 879, writes:
Unfortunately, there was a dark and cruel streak in Herod`s character thal showed itself
increasinglv as he grow older. His mental instability moreover, was fed by the intrigue and
deception that went on wihin his own family. Deeplv in love with Mariame, he was prone
to violent attacks of jealousv, his sister Salome (not to be confused with her great-nice
Herodias' daughter Salome) made good use of his natural suspicions and poisoned his mind
against his wife in order to wreck the union. In the end Herod murdered Marianne, her two
sons, her brother, her grandfather and her mother, a woman of the vilest stamp who had
often aided his sister Salome`s schemes. Besides Doris and Mariame, Herod had eight
other wives and had children by six of them. He had 14 children. In his last years Herod
suffered frorn arteriosclerosis. He had to repress a revolt, became involved in a quarrel with
his Nabataean neighbours, and finally lost the favour of Augustus. He was in great pain and
in mental and physical disorder. He altered his will three times and finally disinherited and
killed his firsthorn, Antipater. The slaying shortly before his death, of` the infants of
Bethlehem was wholly consistent with the disarray into which he had fallen. After an
unsuccessful attempt at suicide, Herod died.


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