Tuesday, 20 January 2015
Jews had their versions of AlQaeda and ISIS (Extremists)
Professor Reza Aslan describes a group of Jews who used terrorism and assassinations for furthering their cause. I doubt anybody American Christian fundamentalist will be accusing Judaism responsible for groups such as the Sicarii.
Perhaps the Jewish revolutionary Menahem will be seen as the Bin Laden or Al Baghdadi of the Jewish people in the first century.
The Sicarii were zealots fuelled by an apocalyptic worldview and a fervent devotion to establishing God's rule on earth. They were fanatical in their opposition to the Roman occupation, though they reserved their vengeance for those Jews, particularly among the wealthy priestly aristocracy, who submitted to Roman rule. Fearless and unstoppable, the Sicarii murdered their opponents with impunity: in the middle of the city, in broad daylight, in the midst of great hordes, during feast days and festivals...
...The leader of the Sicarii at the time was a young Jewish revolutionary named Menahem, the grandson of none other than the failed messiah Judas the Galilean. Menahem shared his grandfather's hatred for the wealthy priestly aristocracy in general, and the unctuous high priests in particular. To the Sicarii, Jonathan son of Ananus was an imposter: a thief and a swindler who had grown rich exploiting the suffering of the people...
..In the year 56 CE, the Sicarii under Menahem's leadership were finally able to achieve what Judas the Galilean could only dream of accomplishing. During the feast of Passover, a Sicarii assassin pushed his way through the mass of pilgrims packed into the Temple Mount until he was close enough to the high priest Jonathan to pull out a dagger and swipe it across his throat.
...the Sicarii had only just begun their reign of terror. Shouting their slogan "No lord but God" they began attacking the members of the Jewish ruling class, plundering their possessions, kidnapping their relatives, and burning down their homes. Zealot, The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth, Reza Aslan, The Westbourne Press p51-53
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