Religions Dbq

971 Words4 Pages
The Jews of the Second Temple period, occurring between 538 BCE and 70 BC, were exposed to many outside cultures that threatened their existence as a political, spiritual, and peaceful people. Politically, the Jews were governed against their will by many foreign leaders such as the Roman monarch Herod Agrippa and the Greek king Antiochus. Spiritually, the Jews were deprived of many of their religious traditions and pushed towards alien beliefs and practices. The Jews who had tried beforehand to be a peaceful people, now had to resort to fighting and revolting to live in harmony. The responses of Jews in these various generations were dependent on whether they had a strong and courageous leader who led them through these challenging times…show more content…
The Bible explicitly forbids intermarriage, as it says in Deuteronomy 7:3-4: “You shall not intermarry with them; you shall not give your daughter to his son, and you shall not take his daughter for your son, for he will cause your child to turn away from after Me and they will worship the gods of others.” In Document #1, Ezra 9:1-3, which is a Jewish source, the Jews do this exactly, as it says: “The people of Israel, and the priests and the Levites, have not separated themselves from the peoples of the lands, doing according to their abominations, even of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites”. The Jews had just been taken out of exile, and failed to isolate themselves from their pagan neighbors, and this failure led the Jews to intermarry. Ezra had just brought over 40,000 people from Babylon to Israel in the 4th century BCE, and the Jews had not a proper Jewish leader. Without a leader to give them a moral compass, the Jews were doomed to sin. The reaction of Ezra was not very helpful at first. At the start, Ezra responded by mourning, and ripping his clothes and hair. But after an initial spurt of bereavement, Ezra prayed to Hashem and asked for forgiveness, which shows his ability to stand tall in a bad situation. Ezra’s reaction was indeed successful…show more content…
In 66 BC, the Jews assaulted Masada and took over it from Roman rule. The Romans were trying to make the Jews give sacrifices to their gods like the Greeks did. However, the current leader of the time, Eleazar, the son of Ananias the high priest urged the Jews to not to give any Roman sacrifices, as they did in Document #2, and the Jews obliged. The Romans did not like this, and this was the so-called beginning of the war with the Roman. This reaction of Eleazar was a great success because no foreign sacrifices were given afterwards. However, after the reclaiming of Masada, the Sicarii, assassins who were Jewish extremists, decided to take matters into their own hands. The Sicarii drove the Romans out of Jerusalem using brute strength and sheer numbers.They then set Ananias’ house on fire, set Herod’s palace on fire, and burned all of the Jew’s food, to make the Jews want to fight against the Romans because they would have nothing to lose. Later, the Romans were slaughtered by the Sicarii. Many Jews also died from starvation, which makes the reaction of the Sicarii neither a success nor a failure. A situation similar to this one happened later in Document #4, 2nd century BCE, when Antiochus was trying to force Hellenism onto the Jews. It says in the Talmud Bavli, Masechet Gittin, sheet 67 page 2 that Chanah and
Open Document