Jewish Apocalyptic Writings:
The "Dead Sea Scrolls"
OF THE JERUSALEM
TEMPLE, ZEALOTS & PELLA-BOUND CHRISTIANS
Dead Sea Scroll 4Q169
"Kittim" As Romans
Where the lion went, a lion's cub to come there [with none
to disturb] (Nahum
[Its pesher refers to
Deme]trius king of Greece who
sought to enter Jerusalem on the counsel of the
seekers-of-smooth-things. [And he did not enter, for God did not give
Jerusalem] into the hand of the kings of Greece, from Antiochus until
the appearance of the rulers of the Kittim. And afterwards the
city shall be trampled …
"Ephraim" As Jerusalem
Woe to the city of blood, all full of [treachery and plunder] (Nahum
Its pesher refers to the city of
Ephraim, the seekers-of-smooth-things for the Afterwards of Days, who
walk in treachery and deceit.
WHAT OTHERS HAVE SAID
"Also similar to what we witnessed in the Pesher on Habakkuk
is the mention of the "congregation of traitors" who have strayed from
the path under the influence of one who "spread lies."
As in the Pesher, the group affected by the liar is designated as
"the last generation," but also as Israel, whom the "scoffer" has led
The description of this group as "seeking
easy interpretations" - literally, "they inquired about smooth things" [dareshu
bechalaqoth] - is significant, because this language appears
frequently in another of the Pesharim, the Pesher on Nahum.
For instance, column 2 of that work contains commentary on Nahum
3.1, which is cited first: "'Alas, the bloody city,
all of it [treachery,] stuffed with loot!' Its
interpretation: it is the city of Ephraim, those
looking for easy interpretations [doreshey hachalaqoth] in the
final days, since they walk in treachery and lies." (4Q169 fragments
3-4, 2.1-2) As in the Damascus Document the wicked
are those seeking "smooth things" or "easy interpretations."
Notice, also, that their behavior is also characterized as
"walking in treachery and lies."
Just a few lines later, following another
condemnation of those "looking for easy interpretations," we find a
comment on Nahum 3.4, which is cited first: "'On
account of the many fornications of the prostitute, full of elegance and
mistress of enchantment, who misleads nations with her sorceries. [Its] interpretation concerns those who misdirect Ephraim, who
with their fraudulent teaching and lying tongue and perfidious lip
misdirect many." (4Q169 fragments 3-4, 2.7-8) Once
again the notion of those who mislead others with lies surfaces."
What do YOU think ?
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Date: 02 Jul 2013
It’s quite probable that the words in the second square brackets should be
not ‘and he didn’t enter, for God did not give Jerusalem’ but ‘for Jerusalem
more than once found itself’ (in the hands of the kings of Greece from
Antiochus up to appearance of the rulers of Kittim, and afterwards it shall
be trampled…). These words would agree with those in line 1 of the same
column, ‘residence for the wicked of the nations’, meaning Jerusalem.
Antiochus in the commentary is Antiochus III the Great, of course, because
he was the first Seleucid king to annex Judea. It is this king exactly whom
a considerable part of Dan 11 is devoted to (11:10-19). And his action is
described in a similar manner as Demetrius’ in the commentary: ‘He shall
also set his face to enter (Jerusalem) with the strength of his whole
kingdom, and upright ones with him; thus shall he do…’ (11:17, KJV).
Sergei E. Rysev