While it appears to be a "fringe" idea (think Eisenman and Cresswell), I buy the Saul/Paul part of the argument (I at least think that what Josephus says about Saul does sound a lot like Paul), and now I want to take a look at these Philips, just to see what there is to see.
So, if Paul is there in Josephus [as Saul], Philip should be there also. What is needed to demonstrate the case is someone called Philip who fulfils all the requirements demonstrated in the gospels and Acts.
And there is indeed such a character, Philip son of Jacimus and grandson of Zamaris. This Philip was from what Josephus describes as a colony of 'Babylonian Jews' established by King Herod in the hills east of the Sea of Galilee (not far from Bethsaida, where the gospel Philip is said to have originated). Herod's purpose was to establish a buffer zone between outside forces, specifically the Babylonians, and Jerusalem, the core of his kingdom. These colonists were not ordinary Jews in Israel but people whose ancestors had been exiled and who had in exile absorbed some of the ways of their hosts. They were loyal to the Herodians: Herod 'the Great' and then later Agrippa I and Agrippa II.
So this fits with Philip as someone who straddled two cultures and acted as a broker. He should also have been a person of substance, as indeed Philip Jacimus was. His grandfather and father before him had been placed in charge of the Babylonian Jewish community, governing the city of Bathyra.
Philip should have been, as in Acts, a compatriot of Paul. In Josephus' Jewish War, he is just that, fleeing Jerusalem with Saul and Saul's brother Costobar to join the Roman commander Cestius Gallus.
https://books.google.com/books?id=aX42x ... us&f=false
That this Philip was pro-Herodian would be in keeping with Saul (and with Paul, e.g., Rom. 13 and 16:10-11), since Josephus says he was related to them.
And the Jewish Virtual Library notes something curious about Philip:
That gets my attention because of the reference to the NT Philip having daughters in Acts 21:9:Two of his brother's daughters were the only inhabitants of Gamala who escaped death by hiding from the Romans.
It's not the same thing of course, but it's curious that both Philips are associated with remarkable daughters.He had four unmarried daughters who prophesied.
According to the above link (and for my further reference), Philip is mentioned in War 2.421, 556; 4.81; Ant. 17.30 and Life 46ff., 59-60, 177, 179-84 and 407.
And it looks like the NT Philip (aside from the list of disciples and some references in John) is mainly mentioned in Acts 8, and I will assume (if this is Josephus' Philip) that Acts gives him the same treatment that it gives to Peter (who I think is the Simon Josephus mentions in Ant. 19.7.4, which Ben and I have discussed here: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=3784&hilit=do+you+t ... h&start=40). As Ben wrote regarding the similarity of Josephus' Simon and Peter in Acts 12:
In other words, I assume there could similarly be some whitewashing going on regarding Philip in Acts (if they are the same person; but if there's nothing to it then there's nothing to it, for all I care).Do you think that this Simon's brush with Agrippa [in Josephus] could be what lies behind Peter's imprisonment by him in Acts 12? After Peter's escape it is mentioned (in verse 19) that Agrippa spent time in Caesarea, as Josephus mentions, too. Could the prison escape be a cover story for Peter's unseemly acquiescence to Agrippa? (Nooooo, he did not crumble under pressure; he was put in prison and an angel helped him to escape!)
And it's curios that the account of Philip in Acts 8 is bookended with references to Saul (if you factor in Acts 9).
And I wouldn't mind taking a closer look at the extra-biblical references to the daughters of Philip. Wikipedia says:
Eusebius writes in EH 3.39.8-9:Further details of these women are given in various early histories including Eusebius and Papias. It is possible that they were informants for both Luke in their youth and the early Christian historian Papias in their latter years. Eusebius quoting Papias tells us that two daughters remained with Philip in his old age, when he had moved to the Phrygian city of Hierapolis and even relates a tale where one was miraculously rose from the dead.” Eusebius' source for these tales was Papias, who he extensively quoted, and who was a young Bishop of Hierapolis. It is plausible that Papias knew these women.
Eusebius held the women as examples of the right living and refers to them as “great lights” or “mighty luminaries” People would travel long distances to consult them. Furthermore, Eusebius regarded Philip’s daughters and their ministry as the benchmark for prophetic ministry in the early church.
Eusebius also writes in EH 3.31.2-4:8. But it is fitting to subjoin to the words of Papias which have been quoted, other passages from his works in which he relates some other wonderful events which he claims to have received from tradition.
9. That Philip the apostle dwelt at Hierapolis with his daughters has been already stated. But it must be noted here that Papias, their contemporary, says that he heard a wonderful tale from the daughters of Philip. For he relates that in his time one rose from the dead. And he tells another wonderful story of Justus, surnamed Barsabbas: that he drank a deadly poison, and yet, by the grace of the Lord, suffered no harm.
And Papias says regarding Philip in EH 3.39.4:2. The time of John's death has also been given in a general way, but his burial place is indicated by an epistle of Polycrates (who was bishop of the parish of Ephesus), addressed to Victor, bishop of Rome. In this epistle he mentions him together with the apostle Philip and his daughters in the following words:
3. “For in Asia also great lights have fallen asleep, which shall rise again on the last day, at the coming of the Lord, when he shall come with glory from heaven and shall seek out all the saints. Among these are Philip, one of the twelve apostles, who sleeps in Hierapolis, and his two aged virgin daughters, and another daughter who lived in the Holy Spirit and now rests at Ephesus; and moreover John, who was both a witness and a teacher, who reclined upon the bosom of the Lord, and being a priest wore the sacerdotal plate. He also sleeps at Ephesus.”
4. So much concerning their death. And in the Dialogue of Caius which we mentioned a little above, Proclus, against whom he directed his disputation, in agreement with what has been quoted, speaks thus concerning the death of Philip and his daughters: “After him there were four prophetesses, the daughters of Philip, at Hierapolis in Asia. Their tomb is there and the tomb of their father.” Such is his statement.
I'm just trying to get my mind around who these two Philips were and see if they could be the same person. In the big picture, it wouldn't bother me if they weren't and I don't think it would be a big deal if they were (no more than the idea that the James in Josephus is James the Just). The association with someone named Saul in both cases is what is intriguing me.4. If, then, any one came, who had been a follower of the elders, I questioned him in regard to the words of the elders — what Andrew or what Peter said, or what was said by Philip, or by Thomas, or by James, or by John, or by Matthew, or by any other of the disciples of the Lord, and what things Aristion and the presbyter John, the disciples of the Lord, say.