075 Silent Years - Welcome to Hellenism


For the first time in history, Greeks redefined worldfiew to be cenetered around the individual. Prior to Hellenism, worldviews centered around pleasing the gods

Alexander the Great had his own gospel (εὐαγγέλιον - euangelion: predates biblical authors. "Good news to share" as an idea is not uniquely biblical)

He conqoured the world, not with a huge army but with 4 things:

  1. Education
  2. Healthcare
  3. Entertainment
  4. Athletics

These 4 things pull on basically all people's values, Andrew the Great used them to control people...

  1. Education - control what people know
  2. Healthcare - make people dependent on the state's provision
  3. Entertainment - control what people do with their time (theater was invented in this time)
  4. Athletics - similar to entertainment - this becomes a pillar of culture

Jewish History

year event
586 BC Babylonian captivity of Judah
538 BC Return to Israel (Decree of Cyrus)
332 BC Alexander the Great conquers Palestine
330–198 BC Rule of Hellenistic Ptolemies over Jews
198–167 BC Oppression under Hellenistic Seleucids
167 BC Maccabean revolt
167–63 BC Hasmonean (Maccabean) kingdom
63 BC Roman conquest of Judea
37 BC Reign of Herod begins
c. 6 BC Birth of Jesus
4 BC Herod’s death
4 BC–AD 6 Rule of Archelaus
4 BC–AD 39 Rule of Antipas
c. AD 27–30 Jesus’s public ministry
c. AD 30 Crucifixion of Jesus
AD 66–73 First Jewish revolt against Rome
AD 70 Destruction of Jerusalem/Temple
AD 73 Masada falls
AD 131–135 Bar Kochba Revolt (Second Jewish revolt)

Post-Alexander the Great's death

4 rulers take over the Greek kingdom

  1. Synichus
  2. ?
  3. Seleucis
  4. Ptolemy

Ptolemy rules the Jewish region

Leadership style - very Hellenistic

Some Jews dove in, others remained faithful to Judaism... Psolemy made it just simply ahrd to not be Greek

Selucids take over Psolemies and Jewish region

Selucis sacrifices a pig on the altar in Judea - ruthless take over of Jewish land which leads to the Maccabean revolt (Hanukkah)


Jews wins the Maccabean revolts, story of Hanukkah arises

Hasmonean rule

Maccabean's are people of the text and see that Yahweh wanted priests to rule, not kings. So they hand the kingdom over to the Hasmoneans (priests), and their Yahweh-centric rule eventually turns back to Hellenism

Josephus (perhaps a little hyperbolically) said at this time there weren't enough priests to run Sabbath services cause they were all at the naked mud wrestling tournaments


Maccabeans who leave the Hasmonean group, go north, and build a fundamentalist Jewish culture in Galilee which is where Jesus grew up and did his ministry

They split into 2 groups - Zealots who use the sword, Pharisees who obedience to the text


Jews (Saducees) persue Herod the Great in order to work things in light of Roman conquest, to remain good for the Jews

Herod and Ceasar end up having a tight political relationship

Herod's kingdom

Herod split his kingdom to his sons after his death

  1. Herod Archelaus (rules for a short time and is replaced by Pontius Pilot)
  2. Herod Philip 2
  3. Herod Antipad

Sometime in this period, Jesus was born


Jesus' public ministry is during this time

Jews eventually revolt against Rome which leads to destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple