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II Maccabees

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II Maccabees continues the chronicle of the “Time of the Troubles” (167–64 BC), begun in I Maccabees. It recounts the stories of conflict between militant Jews, led by Judas Maccabaeus, and their Hellenistic oppressors. Aside from the story of the struggle to control the temple and the holy city of Jerusalem, though, II Maccabees shares little in common with I Maccabees. The second volume of reflections of Jewry in the generation following the Maccabaean revolt presents and evaluates the experience from its own unique perspective.

How these events came to be written, who told the stories, and what reasons motivated such divergent yet parallel interpretations are the questions Jonathan A. Goldstein, translator and commentator on both Maccabaean histories, addresses here. Goldstein utilizes the full array of scholarly tools to examine the critical issues raised by II Maccabees. By examining its language and style, its Hellenic yet Jewish flavor, its comparison and relationship to I Maccabees, its use of sacred writings (Torah and Prophets), its historical context, and the role of the miraculous, Goldstein thoroughly elucidates this powerful account of a pivotal period in Jewish history.

As the commentary makes clear, II Maccabees focuses on certain themes: miracles as God’s tools for shaping history; the holiness of the Jerusalem temple; the dynamic relationship between the Hasmonaean rulers and their pious opponents; praise of martyrdom; the doctrine of resurrection. An abridgment of Jason of Cyrene’s work, II Maccabees advances its own theological perspective to its Greek-speaking audience, refuting the Hasmonaean partisan’s view that pervades I Maccabees.

Logos Bible Software gives you the tools you need to use this volume effectively and efficiently. With your digital library, you can search for verses, find Scripture references and citations instantly, and perform word studies. Along with your English translations, all Scripture passages are linked to Greek and Hebrew texts. What’s more, hovering over a Scripture reference will instantly display your verse! The advanced tools in your digital library free you to dig deeper into one of the most important contributions to biblical scholarship in the past century!

  • Offers original translations, including alternative translations, annotations, and variants
  • Provides verse-by-verse commentary on the text
  • Presents the reader with historical background, including analysis of authorship and dating
  • Features an extensive bibliography of primary and secondary literature
  • Epistle 1: A Call to the Jews of Egypt to Repent and Observe the Festival of Tabernacles in the Month of Kislev (1:1–10a)
  • Epistle 2: A Forged Letter to the Egyptian Jews Purporting to Have Been Written in 164 BCE (1:10b–2:18)
  • The Abridger’s Preface (2:19–32)
  • The Miraculous Thwarting of Heliodorus (3:1–40)
  • The Atrocious Sins of the Hellenizing Usurpers (4:1–50)
  • How Jason Rebelled and Antiochus Punished Jerusalem (5:1–27)
  • The Imposed Cult and the Persecution (6:1–17)
  • The Martyrdom of Eleazar (6:18–31)
  • The Martyrdom of the Mother and Her Seven Sons (7:1–42)
  • Judas’ First Victories (8:1–36)
  • The Death of Antiochus IV (9:1–29)
  • The Festival of Purification (10:1–8)
  • Troubles Early in the Reign of Antiochus V (10:9–38)
  • The First Expedition of Lysias and the End of the Persecution (11:1–38)
  • Local Wars (12:1–45)
  • The Expedition of Antiochus V and Lysias (13:1–26)
  • The Reign of Demetrius I: The High Priest Alcimus and the Career and Fall of the Governor Nicanor (14:1–15:36)
  • The Abridger’s Epilogue (15:37–39)
  • Title: II Maccabees
  • Author: Jonathan A. Goldstein
  • Series: Anchor Yale Bible (AYB)
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Pages: 624

Jonathan A. Goldstein studied at Jewish Theological Seminary and received a doctorate at Columbia University, where he was an instructor in history for two years. He was a professor of ancient history and classics at the University of Iowa from 1962 until his retirement in 1997. In addition to many scholarly articles, Goldstein is the author of the definitive commentary on the First and Second Books of Macabbees for the Anchor Yale Bible.

Save on select resources for April's Publisher Spotlight!


Print list price: $45.00
Regular price: $40.99
Save $16.40 (40%)