Intertestamental Paper

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  • Topic: Seleucid Empire, Hasmonean, Roman Empire
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LIBERTY UNIVERSITY

THE INTERTESTAMENTAL PAPER

A PAPER SUBMITTED TO DR. CHARLES E. POWELL

IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR

THE COURSE NBST 525

LIBERTY THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY

BY

RICHARD ASOMANING

AUGUST 12TH 2012

Table of Contents

Introduction…………………………………………………………………………………….3

Grecian Period………………………………………………………………………………….4

Ptolemaic Period………………………………………………………………………………..5

Seleucid Period………………………………………………………………………………….7

Maccabean Period………………………………………………………………………………8

Hasmonean Period………………………………………………………………………………9

Roman Period……………….………………………………………………………………….10

Conclusion………………………………………………………………………………………12

Bibliography…………………………………………………………………………………….13

Introduction

For a better understanding of the Gospels, one must know more than just an understanding of the Old Testament record alone. In addition, there needs to be some understanding of the four hundred years that elapsed from the writings of the prophet Malachi to the coming of Jesus Christ, this period is known as the “Intertestamental Period.”[1] Because there was no prophetic word from God during this period, some refer to it as the “400 silent years.” During this period, was the occurrence of some major historical events and a significant amount of extra-biblical literature was printed. This had an effect on the world and accordingly influenced the religious reasoning, lifestyle, custom, government of those living in the first century era. Much of what transpired was foretold by the prophet Daniel (Daniel chp. 2, 7, 8, and 11). The Intertestamental Period is normally considered to begin when the Persians took over Babylon in B.C 537, in B.C. 536 they allowed Jews to go back to construct their temple[2] (2 Chronicles 36:22-23; Ezra 1:1-4). Prior to this time and even for a short while afterwards, the majority of Israel was in exile in Babylon. While it is not conclusively proved, it is proposed that the time of exile is considered to have influenced the construction of the synagogue.[3] The paper will walk around a brief history of the Intertestamental Period, specifically, the Grecian, Ptolemaic, Seleucid, Maccabean, Hasmonean and Roman period through Herod’s son.

Alexander the Great and Hellenization (Grecian Period 320-198 BC)

Alexander was, with slight doubt, the most influential western person to travel the highways of the ancient world. Alexander, son of Phillip, Alexander III of Macedon, or as the histories call him, Alexander the Great was born of royal lineage around the year 356 B.C. 3 around the age of 14 he studied under the philosopher Aristotle who had a profound influence upon him; instructing him not only into philosophy but also into politics as well. He came to rule Macedonia at the age of 16, after studying in Athens under Aristotle. He studied the Greek values and grew to cherish the Greek culture in a way that changed a vast portion of the ancient world. After the killing of his father in 336 B.C., Alexander was made the new Macedonian king.[4] Between the years 334 B.C. and 331 He marched his army eastward into triumph over the Persian Empire, defeating them in three major battles.[5] The ambitious young leader had effectively established himself as the ruler of the entire Middle East. In 327 B.C. Alexander touched the grounds of India and eventually died in Babylon in 323 B.C.[6] Alexander made sure he promoted and established the Greek culture everywhere he conquered. When his army took Palestine from the Persians in 332 B.C., they mandated the Jews to adapt to Greek language and customs. The new culture that emerged as a result of Alexander’s conquests became known as ‘Hellenism’ (The Greeks were called Hellens). This new culture was a mixture of Greek education and emphasis on the arts with elements from the oriental cultures which Alexander conquered—would continue even...
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