Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings attributed to Josephus

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MrMacSon
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Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings attributed to Josephus

Post by MrMacSon » Sat Nov 03, 2018 12:27 pm



1. ... by my mother I am of the royal blood; for the children of A..., from whom that family was derived, had both the office of the high priesthood, and the dignity of a king, for a long time together.

2. ... when I was a child, and about fourteen years of age, I was commended by all for the love I had to learning; on which account the high priests and principal men of the city came then frequently to me together, in order to know my opinion about the accurate understanding of points of the law. And when I was about sixteen years old, I had a mind to make trim of the several sects that were among us ...

... when I was informed that one, whose name was B..., lived in the desert, and used no other clothing than grew upon trees, and had no other food than what grew of its own accord, and bathed himself in cold water frequently, both by night and by day, in order to preserve his chastity, I imitated him in those things, and continued with him three years ...

4. ... that there were a great many very much elevated in hopes of a revolt from the Romans. I therefore endeavored to put a stop to these tumultuous persons ...

5. ... I abode among the high priests and the chief of the Pharisees ...

8. ... But I delivered them all out of the fear they were in, and persuaded the multitude to deal kindly with them...

29. "O my countrymen! I refuse not to die, if justice so require. However, I am desirous to tell you the truth of this matter before I die ..."

Flavius Josephus, Life

Does some of that come across as similar to passages or themes in the NT?
Last edited by MrMacSon on Fri Nov 09, 2018 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Ethan
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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings of Josephus

Post by Ethan » Mon Nov 05, 2018 8:59 am

I wrote on this subject with a theory that Flavius Josephus was the historical 'Jesus Christ' , Here are all my notes on this subject.
Josephus
1. At "about fourteen years of age,"
he (Josephus) was commanded by all
for the love I had to learning (Vita 9)
2. 12 Jews of Caesaria are sent as a
delegation to Ecbatana (Vita 54-55)
3. 70 messengers are sent from Ecbatana to Caesarea (Vita 56)
4. During this time, before his purported surrender to the Romans, "I
was now about thirty years old" (Vita
8O)
5. Josephus’ quarters were in a
Galilean village named Cana (Vita 86)
6. Josephus told his friends that "in
three days time" he would "quit the
district and go home" (Vita 205)
7. Jesus, chief magistrate of Tiberias,
accuses Josephus of embezzling 20
pieces of gold (Vita 294-297). They
laid hands on him and attempted to
kill him (Vita 302)
8. Josephus notices three of his acquaintances had been crucified, so he
entreats Titus to take them down; two
of them die but one recovers (Vita
420-421

Gospels:
1. When Jesus was twelve years old his
parents found him after three days in
the Temple conversing with the
teachers (Mat 2.46)
2. Jesus appoints and sends out 12
apostles to preach and heal (Mat.
10.2,5)
3. Jesus appointed 70 others and sent
them ahead of him (Luke 10.1)
4. Jesus commenced his ministry when
he was 30 years of age (Luke 3.23)
5. Jesus attended a wedding in Cana
(John 2.1-2) then came to Cana
again (John 4.46)
6. Jesus prophecies he will be raised up
on the third day (Mat. 16.21)
7. Judas goes to the priests and obtains
30 pieces of silver for betraying Jesus
(Mat. 26.14-16)
8. Two robbers were crucified on
either side of Jesus (Mat. 18.38). Only
Jesus rises (Mat. 28.6)

Josephus & Plutarch wrote the New Testament

Flavius Josephus Ben Matthew
|
(Donates his work to "Epaphrodites")
|(Either) (Provides historical framework for Gospels)
(Tiberius Claudius / Marcus Mettius Epaphroditus)
|
Marcus Mettius Epaphroditus (Born. Chaeronea, died Aged 75)
|
_Lucius Plutarch (Born. Chaeronea(Boetia), Died Aged 74)
|
Lucius (Luke) the Evangelist (Lived and Died in Boetia)
|--Born. Antioch
|>> Ignatius Theophorus (Born. in Antioch)
|

Polycarp & Plutarch

POLYCARP
Gk. Πολύκαρπος

PLUTARCH
Gk. Πλούταρχος

(Same no. of Letters)

Gametria Value of "Polycarpus" is [1051]

(Biblical "1051")

φαυλον (1051) (Phaulos) (Evil) (PAULOS)
καρπων (1051) (Karpos) (Fruit)

(Phaulo-Karpos) (Polycarpus)

others

παφου (1051) (Paphos)
ναρκισσου (1051) (Narcissus)
οπωρα (1051) (Opora) (Fruit)
χαρισματων (1051) (Charisma) (Gift)
παφου (1051) (Paphos)
________________
1335 (Nikopolis) (284 "Theos" + 1051)
_______________
Jesus + Theophilus = 1782 (Aristarchus) (Plut-archus)
_____
Μέττιος (925) (Mettius) (Latin-Matthew) (Mettius Epaphrodites)
Μέστριος (925) (Mestrius) (Me(s)t(r)ius) (Mestrius Plutarch)

LUKE Plutarch = Epaphordites (whom Josephus donated work too)
----Luke uses Josephus' history for Gospel of Luke and Acts
_______
1355 (Polycarp) + 284 (Theos/God) = 1335 (Nikopolis)
( Paul planned to spend the winter at Nicopolis where, in his Epistle to Titus, he invited his co-worker Titus)
*I wrote this 7 years ago.
https://vivliothikiagiasmatos.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/joseph-yahuda-hebrew-is-greek.pdf

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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings of Josephus

Post by FransJVermeiren » Mon Nov 05, 2018 12:13 pm

IMO Jesus son of Saphat, the Galilean rebellion leader who is mentioned several times by Josephus (in War and in Life), is the same person as Jesus of the gospels. Mark has antedated the gospel story and concealed the war circumstances to make his story acceptable in a world dominated by the Romans.

Jesus and Josephus were not the same person, but they have known each other well, as Josephus and Jesus worked side by side in Galilee in the first half of 67 CE organizing the defense against the Romans. Therefore it is not surprising that there are points of contact between Josephus’s writings and the gospels.

From their common Galilean time the most obvious similarities are the following:
• The feeding of the 5000 in the gospels and 5000 soldiers with provisions in Life 212
• The feeding of the 4000 in the gospels and 4 companies (of 1000 soldiers each?) with provisions In Life 242
• The sending of the 70 in the gospels and the 70 Galilean authorities in Life 79.

The most profound parallel is to be found between the description of Jesus’ crucifixion in the gospels (‘with the criminals, one on his right and one on his left') and Josephus’s Life 420-421 (‘Two of them died in the physicians’ hands; the third survived.’), Ethan’s parallel number 8 above. If this third, surviving man is Jesus son of Saphat, and IMO he is, than Josephus, as Jesus’ savior, is in a certain way the ‘founder’ of Christianity, because exactly Jesus’ survival (changed into a ‘resurrection’, an impossible becoming alive again after death, in the gospels) turned this charismatic rebellion leader into the messiah.

In my opinion Hebrews 5:7 recounts how exactly Jesus yelled for Josephus’s attention when the latter approached the execution site outside the walls of Jerusalem in the last days of the war: In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard for his godly fear.

Saved from death; the third survived.
www.waroriginsofchristianity.com

The practical modes of concealment are limited only by the imaginative capacity of subordinates. James C. Scott, Domination and the Arts of Resistance.

John2
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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings of Josephus

Post by John2 » Tue Nov 06, 2018 8:20 am

Does some of that come across as similar to passages or themes in the NT?
Sure, and I think it's because Jesus and Josephus were Fourth Philosophers (and moderate ones at that), so they talk a similar talk. Both of them liked Daniel, for example (as did other Fourth Philosophers), and believed that "one from their country should become governor of the habitable earth" (with Jesus applying it to himself and Josephus applying it to Vespasian). And Josephus' summary of the consequences of the Fourth Philosophy in Ant. 18.1.1 (and NIger of Perea, another moderate Fourth Philosopher, in War 4.6.1) and the signs that he says were seen before the 66-70 CE war sounds just like Jesus in Mk. 13.

Ant. 18.1.1:
... one violent war came upon us after another, and we lost our friends which used to alleviate our pains; there were also very great robberies and murder of our principal men. This was done in pretense indeed for the public welfare, but in reality for the hopes of gain to themselves; whence arose seditions, and from them murders of men, which sometimes fell on those of their own people, (by the madness of these men towards one another, while their desire was that none of the adverse party might be left,) and sometimes on their enemies; a famine also coming upon us, reduced us to the last degree of despair, as did also the taking and demolishing of cities; nay, the sedition at last increased so high, that the very temple of God was burnt down by their enemies' fire.
War 4.6.1:
Now when they were slaying him [Niger], he made this imprecation upon them, that they might undergo both famine and pestilence in this war, and besides all that, they might come to the mutual slaughter of one another; all which imprecations God confirmed against these impious men, and was what came most justly upon them, when not long afterward. they tasted of their own madness in their mutual seditions one against another.


War 2.13.4:
These were such men as deceived and deluded the people under pretense of Divine inspiration, but were for procuring innovations and changes of the government; and these prevailed with the multitude to act like madmen, and went before them into the wilderness, as pretending that God would there show them the signals of liberty.
War 6.5.3:
... a certain prodigious and incredible phenomenon appeared: I suppose the account of it would seem to be a fable, were it not related by those that saw it, and were not the events that followed it of so considerable a nature as to deserve such signals; for, before sun-setting, chariots and troops of soldiers in their armor were seen running about among the clouds, and surrounding of cities.
Mk. 13:1-12:
As Jesus was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher! What massive stones! What magnificent buildings!”

“Do you see all these great buildings?” replied Jesus. “Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.”

As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter, James, John and Andrew asked him privately, “Tell us, when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are all about to be fulfilled?”

Jesus said to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and will deceive many. When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places, and famines. These are the beginning of birth pains ... Brother will betray brother to death ...
Mk. 13:26-27:
At that time people will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. And he will send his angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of the heavens.
You know in spite of all you gained, you still have to stand out in the pouring rain.

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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings attribute to Josephus

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:58 pm

I noted in another post in another thread that Josephus had narrated Cestius as missing the opportunity to be a potential benefactor - a saviour(?) - for the city of Jerusalem (War, II, 19. 5-7) by withdrawing rather than entering the Temple - as even the people had wanted and were preparing for - thus potentially ''putting an end to the war'' (though Josephus also noted "it was, I suppose, owing to the aversion God had already 'at' the city and the sanctuary, that he [Cestius] was hindered from putting an end to the war that very day."

Several consequences of Cestius' withdrawal are noted in the next chapter of War, chapter 20, including the opportunity for Josephus "to gain the good-will of the people" of Galilee, and to "make them his fast friends" and "that he should gain the same favor from the multitude" - -

.
War, II, 20, 1-6 -

1. After this calamity had befallen Cestius, many of the most eminent of the Jews swam away from the city, as from a ship when it was going to sink; Costobarus, therefore, and Saul, who were brethren, together with Philip, the son of Jacimus, who was the commander of king Agrippa's forces, ran away from the city, and went to Cestius. But then how Antipas, who had been besieged with them in the king's palace, but would not fly away with them, was afterward slain by the seditious, we shall relate hereafter. However, Cestius sent Saul and his friends, at their own desire, to Achaia, to Nero, to inform him of the great distress they were in, and to lay the blame of their kindling the war upon Florus, as hoping to alleviate his own danger, by provoking his indignation against Florus.

2. In the mean time, the people of Damascus, when they were informed of the destruction of the Romans, set about the slaughter of those Jews that were among them; and as they had them already cooped up together in the place of public exercises, which they had done out of the suspicion they had of them, they thought they should meet with no difficulty in the attempt; yet did they distrust their own wives, which were almost all of them addicted to the Jewish religion; on which account it was that their greatest concern was, how they might conceal these things from them; so they came upon the Jews, and cut their throats, as being in a narrow place, in number ten thousand, and all of them unarmed, and this in one hour's time, without any body to disturb them.

3. But as to those who had pursued after Cestius, when they were returned back to Jerusalem, they overbore some of those that favored the Romans by violence, and some them persuaded [by entreaties] to join with them, and got together in great numbers in the temple, and appointed a great many generals for the war. Joseph also, the son of Gorion,31 and Ananus the high priest, were chosen as governors of all affairs within the city, and with a particular charge to repair the walls of the city; for they did not ordain Eleazar the son of Simon to that office, although he had gotten into his possession the prey they had taken from the Romans, and the money they had taken from Cestius, together with a great part of the public treasures, because they saw he was of a tyrannical temper, and that his followers were, in their behavior, like guards about him. However, the want they were in of Eleazar's money, and the subtle tricks used by him, brought all so about, that the people were circumvented, and submitted themselves to his authority in all public affairs.

4. They also chose other generals for Idumea; Jesus, the son of Sapphias, one of the high priests; and Eleazar, the son of Ananias, the high priest; they also enjoined Niger, the then governor of Idumea,32 who was of a family that belonged to Perea, beyond Jordan, and was thence called the Peraite, that he should be obedient to those fore-named commanders. Nor did they neglect the care of other parts of the country; but Joseph the son of Simon was sent as general to Jericho, as was Manasseh to Perea, and John, the Esscue, to the toparchy of Thamna; Lydda was also added to his portion, and Joppa, and Emmaus. But John, the son of Matthias, was made governor of the toparchies of Gophnitica and Acrabattene; as was Josephus, the son of Matthias, [made governor] of both the Galilees. Gamala also, which was the strongest city in those parts, was put under his command.

5. So every one of the other commanders administered the affairs of his portion with that alacrity and prudence they were masters of; but as to Josephus, when he came into Galilee, his first care was to gain the good-will of the people of that country, as sensible that he should thereby have in general good success, although he should fail in other points. And being conscious to himself that if he communicated part of his power to the great men, he should make them his fast friends; and that he should gain the same favor from the multitude, if he executed his commands by persons of their own country, and with whom they were well acquainted; he chose out seventy of the most prudent men, and those elders in age, and appointed them to be rulers of all Galilee, as he chose seven judges in every city to hear the lesser quarrels; for as to the greater causes, and those wherein life and death were concerned, he enjoined they should be brought to him and the seventy 33 elders.

6. Josephus also, when he had settled these rules for determining causes by the law, with regard to the people's dealings one with another, betook himself to make provisions for their safety against external violence; and as he knew the Romans would fall upon Galilee, he built walls in proper places about Jotapata, and Bersabee, and Selamis; and besides these, about Caphareccho, and Japha, and Sigo, and what they call Mount Tabor, and Taricheae, and Tiberias. Moreover, he built walls about the caves near the lake of Gennesar, which places lay in the Lower Galilee; the same he did to the places of Upper Galilee, as well as to the rock called the Rock of the Achabari, and to Seph, and Jamnith, and Meroth; and in Gaulonitis he fortified Seleucia, and Sogane, and Gamala; but as to those of Sepphoris, they were the only people to whom he gave leave to build their own walls, and this because he perceived they were rich and wealthy, and ready to go to war, without standing in need of any injunctions for that purpose. The case was the same with Gischala, which had a wall built about it by John the son of Levi himself, but with the consent of Josephus; but for the building of the rest of the fortresses, he labored together with all the other builders, and was present to give all the necessary orders for that purpose. He also got together an army out of Galilee, of more than a hundred thousand young men, all of which he armed with the old weapons which he had collected together and prepared for them.
.

eta: it's interesting Josephus is narrated in the third person.

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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings attribute to Josephus

Post by DCHindley » Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:23 pm

MrMacSon wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:58 pm
it's interesting Josephus is narrated in the third person.
I believe that the use of the 3rd person would come from his use of diaries in which he had recorded his official acts and decrees. This kind of diary was common, and expected, of any official with jurisdictional authority in the Greco-Roman world.

It might also foster the appearance of an unbiased narrator.

DCH

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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings attribute to Josephus

Post by Ben C. Smith » Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:09 pm

MrMacSon wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:58 pm
eta: it's interesting Josephus is narrated in the third person.
Interesting, but unsurprising. Josephus was writing within the tradition of Greek and Roman historiography, and writing about oneself in the third person was one pretty common feature of that genre. Thucydides did it. Julius Caesar did it. Herodotus at least started out his history with it. And so on.
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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings attribute to Josephus

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:18 pm

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:09 pm
Interesting, but unsurprising. Josephus was writing within the tradition of Greek and Roman historiography, and writing about oneself in the third person was one pretty common feature of that genre. Thucydides did it. Julius Caesar did it. Herodotus at least started out his history with it. And so on.
DCHindley wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:23 pm
I believe that the use of the 3rd person would come from his use of diaries in which he had recorded his official acts and decrees. This kind of diary was common, and expected, of any official with jurisdictional authority in the Greco-Roman world.
Cheers, Gents.

DCHindley wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:23 pm
It might also foster the appearance of an unbiased narrator.
Sure.


What do you think of? --

.
5. ... Josephus, when he came into Galilee, his first care was to gain the good-will of the people of that country, as sensible that he should thereby have in general good success, although he should fail in other points. And being conscious to himself that if he communicated part of his power to the great men, he should make them his fast friends; and that he should gain the same favor from the multitude, if he executed his commands by persons of their own country, and with whom they were well acquainted; he chose out seventy of the most prudent men, and those elders in age, and appointed them to be rulers of all Galilee, as he chose seven judges in every city to hear the lesser quarrels; for as to the greater causes, and those wherein life and death were concerned, he enjoined they should be brought to him and the seventy 33 elders.

6. Josephus also, when he had settled these rules for determining causes by the law, with regard to the people's dealings one with another, betook himself to make provisions for their safety against external violence; and as he knew the Romans would fall upon Galilee, he built walls in proper places about Jotapata, and Bersabee, and Selamis; and besides these, about Caphareccho, and Japha, and Sigo, and what they call Mount Tabor, and Taricheae, and Tiberias. Moreover, he built walls about the caves near the lake of Gennesar, which places lay in the Lower Galilee; the same he did to the places of Upper Galilee, as well as to the rock called the Rock of the Achabari, and to Seph, [etc] ... for the building of the rest of the fortresses, he labored together with all the other builders, and was present to give all the necessary orders for that purpose. He also got together an army out of Galilee . .
.


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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings attribute to Josephus

Post by Ben C. Smith » Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:30 pm

DCHindley wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:23 pm
It might also foster the appearance of an unbiased narrator.
I suspect that was at least part of the reason for all of the Greco-Roman historians who did it.
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Re: Jesephus (sic) - hints of a messiah/Christ in the writings attributed to Josephus

Post by DCHindley » Sat Nov 10, 2018 12:24 pm

MrmacSon,

DCH has previously posted, some years or so now in a thread about the Acta Pilati, that these note-books spoken about, called Commentarii/ὑπομνήματά, were the personal property of the office holder, and served as defensive evidence should any legal charges be filed against the person. The personal notebook would probably include some thoughts about his justification for making whatever decisions he did. DCH does not maintain such a diary, because DCH is lazy.

A separate log, Acta judiciorum/ἀπομνημονευμάτων, of the officeholder's official acts was also kept that would be posted publically to publish the day's business for anyone to read. This one would just publish the bare facts suitable for public consumption. The latter type records were likely summarized and the summary sent up the chain of command to the emperor's administrative staff for analysis. DCH does not maintain such a log, although DCH does justify DCH's decisions in the reports DCH submits.

Sounds to DCH that Josephus may have had to answer charges sometime after his capture, as these statements are phrased in a stiff legal talk.

DCH

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