By David Arthur deSilva
This observation examines four Maccabees as a contribution to the continued reformulation of Jewish identification and perform within the Greek-speaking Diaspora. It analyzes the Jewish author’s interplay with, and facility in, Greek rhetorical conventions, moral philosophy, and literary tradition, giving recognition additionally to his use and interpretation of texts and traditions from the Jewish Scriptures and different Hellenistic Jewish writings. The statement indicates the author’s skillful weaving jointly of a majority of these assets to create a textual content that translates the Torah-observant lifestyles because the fullest embodiment of the easiest Greek moral beliefs. a particular characteristic is the exam of ways the event of studying four Maccabees in Codex Sinaiticus differs from the adventure of studying the eclectic textual content.
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Extra resources for 4 Maccabees: Introduction And Commentary on the Greek Text in Codex Sinaiticus (Septuagint Commentary Series,)
In both, dying in obedience to God means “conquering” and “victory” (Rev 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21; 12:11; 15:2; 4 Macc 1:1; 6:10; 7:4; 9:30; 11:20). Both texts elevate the value of “endurance” (ὑπoμovή, Rev 1:9; 2:2, 3, 19; 13:10; 4 Macc 1:11; 7:9; 9:8, 30; 15:30; 17:4, 12, 17, 23), since this summarizes the path of holding onto the minority culture’s world view and ethos in the face of the coercive or marginalizing measures of the dominant culture. Both texts celebrate marginalization and even execution not as an experience of degradation, but rather as the path to eternal honor.
Setting oﬀ Eleazar’s response to the herald from the latter’s proclamation to “obey the king”; – 8:2, marking the transition from Antiochus’s “defeat” at the hands of Eleazar to the selection of other Hebrew captives for his attention; – 8:3, introducing the seven brothers whose story will dominate the middle section of the book; – 11:1b, introducing the ﬁfth brother (but breaking up a sentence); – 11:13, introducing the sixth brother; – 14:2, marking the transition from discursive reﬂection to encomium (here, an apostrophe); – 14:3, separating the ﬁrst apostrophe from a second.
As in Ignatius, who exercised a strong inﬂuence upon a younger Polycarp, the martyr’s death is a new birth (Mart. Poly. 18; 4 Macc. 16:13). In both 4 Maccabees and Martyrdom of Polycarp, the martyr takes the prize and is crowned with immortality (Mart. Poly. 17, 20; 4 Macc. 16:28; 17:12, 15). As martyrdom became a more pervasive challenge in the early church, one ﬁnds increasing attention being given to 4 Maccabees and to the resources it provides for promoting perseverance unto death and for speaking in honoriﬁc terms about the martyrs’ suﬀering and death.
4 Maccabees: Introduction And Commentary on the Greek Text in Codex Sinaiticus (Septuagint Commentary Series,) by David Arthur deSilva