By József Zsengellér, Géza G. Xeravits

The amount comprises essays on numerous difficulties of the early Jewish works: the Books of the Maccabees. Authors contain popular foreign experts within the literature and taking into consideration early Judaism.

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Something caused the sudden massive loss of allegiance suffered by the Maccabaean party. More significantly, this loss of allegiance was only temporary. Within a few years Jonathan and Simon were able to very successfully resist another attack by Bacchides (1 Mace 9:60-72). We suggest that the reason for the desertion from the ranks of the rebels was caused by an ever-worsening food supply situation, which reached its peak coincidentally at the time of Bacchides expedition. Furthermore, the extremity of the famine forced the masses to tum to the only institution capable of large scale famine-relief, the central government and its representatives in Judah.

84 Davies, Behind the Essenes, 116, notes that the temple (admittedly the First Temple) forms the center of the chiasm, thus pointing to the centrality of the temple imagery in the apocalypse. 85 VanderKam, "Studies in the Apocalypse of Weeks," 521-23. 30 JOHN KAMPEN 7. CONCLUSION A much more extensive analysis of these texts is required in order to develop a comprehensive understanding of the role of the temple within those works that are considered to be in a trajectory of literature documenting the development of sectarianism in the second and first centuries BC What has been demonstrated above is that reactions to the temple were one of the major means of sectarian self-identification during this time period.

First the text itself is fraught with problems. The unusual word OIJTOIlOAEW, and the use of the word xwpo (choTa) as if the Land was personified, create difficulties of understanding and of interpretation. More importantly, there are no other reliable or clear cut supporting sources. Perhaps Jubilees 23:18-19 may also refer to the famine, but it is difficult to determine the precise historical framework that was the historical background to the verses. s Josephus in his version of the Maccabaean history (AI XIII 2-3) also describes these events adding greater detail than presented in the text of Maccabees, but the historian is faced with the dilemma of deciding whether Josephus is simply embellishing on a text of 1 Maccabees, in which case he can not qualify as a corroborating document, or whether he had some supplementary source to use, in which case we have independent confirmation of this episode.

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