Anti-Semitism: Hitler’s Rise to Power
First Newsreel Pictures Of The Liberation Of The Nazi Death Camps
Women & Children in the holocaust
Yes! There was a holocaust! Six million Jews murdered!
The Holocaust was the systematic, bureaucratic, state-sponsored persecution and murder of six million Jews by the Nazi regime and its collaborators. Holocaust is a word of Greek origin meaning “sacrifice by fire.” The Nazis, who came to power in Germany in January 1933, believed that Germans were “racially superior” and that the Jews, deemed “inferior,” were an alien threat to the so-called German racial community.
Hatikva at Bergen-Belsen
Any non-Jew would normally wonder what it is that keeps the emotional drive of Jews so strong, especially after they have viewed the preceding videos of the Jews who were so brutally treated during the time of the Holocaust. Any normal person should also wonder how one group of people could be so brutal to another group of people. Many people have denied the fact of the Holocaust; but, the videos of this article don’t lie. Consider the following reports of other articles that discuss how Jews were treated during their time of dominance by the Roman World Empire.
Israel In The Roman Empire
In order for anyone to have a clear understanding of the culture of Israel, and the Jewish people, it is an imperative that the religious aspects of the Jews be considered. In order for a news reporting agency to properly report on the nation of Israel, and Jews around the world, there must be an honest sensitivity to things that are important to Jews, and must be shown in that reporting. In order for businesses to effectively incorporate Jewish businesses into their overall corporate scheme, the sensitivities and beliefs of Jews and Israel must be taken into account. Before this post is read it is advised that the prior posts be read, in their order of being published:
1. Israel, A Look Within, From Without
2. Israel 931-586 BC
3. Israel 586-445 BC
4. Israel 444 BC To The Roman Empire
Consider the following breakdowns of Jewish history.
The history of the Jews in the Roman Empire traces the interaction of Jews and Romans during the period of the Roman Empire (27 BC – AD 476). Their cultures began to overlap in the centuries just before the Christian Era. Jews, as part of the Jewish diaspora, migrated to Rome and Roman Europe from the Land of Israel, Asia Minor, Babylon and Alexandria in response to economic hardship and incessant warfare over the land of Israel between the Ptolemaic and Seleucid empires. In Rome, Jewish communities enjoyed privileges and thrived economically, becoming a significant part of the Empire’s population (perhaps as much as ten percent).
The Roman general Pompey in his eastern campaign established the Roman province of Syria in 64 BC and conquered Jerusalem in 63 BC. Julius Caesar conquered Alexandria c. 47 BC and defeated Pompey in 45 BC. Under Julius Caesar, Judaism was officially recognised as a legal religion, a policy followed by the first Roman emperor, Augustus. Herod the Great was designated ‘King of the Jews’ by the Roman Senate in c. 40 BC. The Roman province of Egypt was established in 30 BC, and Judea proper, Samaria and Idumea (biblical Edom) were converted to the Roman province of Iudaea in 6 AD. Jewish-Roman tensions resulted in several Jewish–Roman wars, 66-135 AD, which resulted in the destruction of Jerusalem and the Second Temple and institution of the Jewish Tax in 70 and Hadrian’s attempt to create a new Roman colony named Aelia Capitolina c. 130.
Around this time, Christianity developed from Second Temple Judaism. In 313, Constantine and Licinius issued the Edict of Milan giving official recognition to Christianity as a legal religion. Constantine the Great moved the Roman capital from Rome to Constantinople (‘New Rome’) c. 330, sometimes considered the start of the Byzantine Empire, and with the Edict of Thessalonica in 380, Christianity became the state church of the Roman Empire. The Christian emperors persecuted their Jewish subjects and restricted their rights.
To the Romans, the Greek civilization was a source of inspiration, and as Athens prospered under the Emperor Hadrian, Rome prospered from the ideas of the ancient Athenians.
Hadrians Arch and the Temple of Olympia Zeus. In 168 BC the Romans defeat the Macedonians in the battle of Pydna. In 146 BC and 86 BC the Romans seize rebellious Corinth, killing all the men, selling the women into slavery and destroying the city as an example. When Athens joins King Mithridates in another rebellion against the Romans in Asia Minor they invade the city, destroy the walls and leave with the most valuable sculptures. When Octavion becomes emperor with his victory over Mark Antony and Cleopatra (of the line of Greek Ptolemaic Pharaohs) the period of peace which follows is known as Pax-Romana, lasting 300 years. It is the longest period of peace in the history of Greece
History of Israel
The Roman Empire was an outgrowth of the ancient Roman Republic, which had roots back as far as 500 BCE. In the first century BCE, Julius Caesar, Pompey, and Crassus formed the First Triumvirate in an attempt to gain control of the Republic. Caesar emerged as the victor, but was later assassinated. However, his chosen heir, Octavian, formed part of the Second Triumvirate, and in 31 BCE, became the undisputed ruler. Roman emperors continued to expand and conquer more territory, until the Romans ruled much of the known world. During the Pax Romana (Roman Peace), in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD, a period of relative peace, the Roman economy thrived and trade routes were established. The Romans built huge, architecturally impressive structures, like the Coliseum, and made incredible advances in infrastructure, building aqueducts, sewer systems, and the first highway system.
The Romans, in the 1st century BC, conquered much of the known world, ending the reign of the Greeks, as well as the reign of the Hasmonean dynasty in Israel. Their reign lasted until 476, when the Eastern Roman Empire, or the Byzantine Empire, gained control.
At first, the Romans granted the Jewish people some authority over their internal affairs; however, frequent rebellions by the Jews led the Romans to stamp out that autonomy. Around 40 BC, the Roman Senate proclaimed Herod the Great as “King of the Jews,” and he was appointed the governor of Judea. He married a Hasmonean princess in order to gain the favor of the Jews in the region and shore up support for his reign. Herod also embarked on a program to reconstruct the Temple, which suffered damage from invasions over the years. He returned the Temple to its former glory, as well as enclosing the Tomb of the Patriarchs and building the fortress at Masada, but never received full Jewish support.
After Herod’s death in 4 BC, the Romans took full control of Jerusalem. The Jewish revolts began in earnest, culminating in the rebellion in 66 AD, which led the eventual destruction of the Temple in 70 AD. The Jewish people had been able to fend off Roman advances for a few years, but were never a true match for the stronger and better-equipped Roman army, under the Emperor Titus.
After the destruction of the Temple and Jerusalem, the Jewish people were devastated. Hundreds of thousands were killed by the Romans, exiled, or sold into slavery. The image of the Romans triumphantly carrying off the sacred vessels from the Temple is immortalized on the famous Arch of Titus. Hope stirred again briefly during the reign of Bar Kokhba, a messianic figure and powerful military leader, who managed to reclaim Jerusalem in 132 AD. His victory, though, was short-lived; in 135 AD, his rebellion was crushed, the remaining Jews exiled, and Jerusalem was renamed Aelia Capitolina.
However, this did not end Jewish presence in Israel. The north, specifically Tiberias, became a center of Jewish learning and Torah study.
A.D. 70 – Rome’s Destruction Of Jerusalem
During the long siege a terrible famine raged in the city and the bodies of the inhabitants were literally stacked like cordwood in the streets. The toll of Jewish suffering was horrible but they would not surrender the city. Again and again they attempted to trick the Romans through guile and perfidy. When at last the walls were breached Titus tried to preserve the Temple by giving orders to his soldiers not to destroy or burn it. But the anger of the soldiers against the Jews was so intense that, maddened by the resistance they encountered, they disobeyed the order of their general and set fire to the Temple. There were great quantities of gold and silver there which had been placed in the Temple for safekeeping. This melted and ran down between the rocks and into the cracks of the stones. When the soldiers captured the Temple area, in their greed to obtain this gold and silver they took long bars and pried apart the massive stones.
A Second Exile for Israel
When the Temple was destroyed in A.D. 70 the period of the second exile began. The Jewish people were soon to be scattered throughout the earth. For the next 1900 years the Jews would have no authority in the land God gave to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. However during most of the period of this Second Exile there have always been some Jews living in Jerusalem. Although most of the nation was in exile from their land, the Jews did not forget Jerusalem or the Temple Mount. Their daily prayer was for the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem.
For the next two thousand years, the Temple Mount would lack any Jewish presence. The destruction of the Temple in A.D. 70 caused the beginning of the scattering of the Jews throughout the world. During this period, the Temple Mount was for the most part neglected and profaned. Though this time constituted a period of neglect, some significant events concerning Jerusalem and the Temple Mount did occur. More information on this time period of Temple Mount history is given in Tuvia Sagiv’s writings.
Let’s go back to the opening question of consideration of this article.
“What is it that keeps the emotional drive of Jews so strong?”
My belief is that it is because Jews hold deeply to a promise that is written in a Jewish scripture.
Deuteronomy 7:6 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
The Lord’s Chosen People
6 Israel, you are the chosen people of the Lord your God. There are many nations on this earth, but He chose only Israel to be His very own.
Any religious Jew understands that the Jews were chosen by God to bring the Messiah into the world. Such Jews also believe that during the future Kingdom of God, Jews will have a special role of service during that thousand year period of time. Beyond the Kingdom age, religious Jews look to, new heavens, a new earth and a new Jerusalem, where they will also have a place of God-ordained prominence. Many Christians hold to these same beliefs.
Hear O’ Israel
Per the Jewish prophet, Isaiah, the nation of Israel would be born in one day. The prophecy was made in 698 B.C. The day that the prophecy was fulfilled was May 14, 1948.
Isaiah 66:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
8 “Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things?
Can a land be born in one day?
Can a nation be brought forth all at once?
As soon as Zion travailed, she also brought forth her sons.
Many Jews hold to the promise of Genesis 15:18-21, which describes the land that the Jews would inherit, and is rightfully theirs today in the land that is called Israel. Many Christians also hold to that same promise that was made to the Jews in approximately 1913 B.C., as was written by Moses.
Genesis 15:18-21 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)
18 That day Adonai made a covenant with Avram: “I have given this land to your descendants — from the Vadi of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates River — 19 the territory of the Keni, the K’nizi, the Kadmoni, 20 the Hitti, the P’rizi, the Refa’im, 21 the Emori, the Kena‘ani, the Girgashi and the Y’vusi.”
Comment made by Dr. James MacArthur
15:18–21 river of Egypt to the…Euphrates. Scripture records both general (Ex. 23:31; Num. 13:21; Deut. 11:24; 1 Kin. 8:65; 2 Kin. 14:25; Is. 27:12) and specific (Num. 34:1–12; Josh. 15:1, 2; Ezek. 47:15–20; 48:1, 28) descriptions of the Promised Land, centering on the ancient land of Canaan. Such precise geographic demarcation will not allow for any redefinitions which would emasculate God’s promise of its specificity. The river of Egypt was most probably what became known as the Wadi El Arish, the southern border of Judah. Kenites…Jebusites. The various peoples who inhabited the land are named. Such precise detailing of the nations in the land of Canaan attests again to the specificity of the Promised Land in God’s promises.
Jews do not believe that their land should be used as a political bargaining chip. They do not believe that the land that was given to them by God should be reduced, “in cookie cutter fashion,” and parceled out to any other nation or group of people.
Two terms have entered the situation that affects the nation of Israel.
ISIS (The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) is a terrorist group.
The Levant is a geographic region that covers and extends in all directions beyond the borders of Israel.
The term Levant is employed to refer to peoples, states, or parts of states in the region, namely:
Soon after ISIS made is presence known to the world, most people began to use the name, “ISIS,” to relate to ISIS. But soon, thereafter, U.S. President Obama began to refer to ISIS as “ISIL,” which caused that group to be known as “The Islamic Sate of Iraq and the Levant.” Such recognition of “ISIS,” as “ISIL,” inflated its importance in the world, to include its territorial overshadowing of the nation of Israel.
Ever since the death of King Solomon in 931 B.C., Jews have come under the domination of the following world empires: Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greek and Rome. At present time, Israel is located within the geographic territory of the Old Roman Empire. Oppression never ceases to come upon the Jews. For a confirmation of the previous sentence, “check the daily news.”