Exodus 34:13

Hebrew Bible

11 “Obey what I am commanding you this day. I am going to drive out before you the Amorite, the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite. 12 Be careful not to make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land where you are going, lest it become a snare among you. 13 Rather you must destroy their altars, smash their images, and cut down their Asherah poles. 14 For you must not worship any other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God. 15 Be careful not to make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, for when they prostitute themselves to their gods and sacrifice to their gods, and someone invites you, you will eat from his sacrifice;

1 Maccabees 2:24


22 We will not obey the king's words by turning aside from our religion to the right hand or to the left." 23 When he had finished speaking these words, a Jew came forward in the sight of all to offer sacrifice on the altar in Modein, according to the king's command. 24 When Mattathias saw it, he burned with zeal and his heart was stirred. He gave vent to righteous anger; he ran and killed him on the altar. 25 At the same time he killed the king's officer who was forcing them to sacrifice, and he tore down the altar. 26 Thus he burned with zeal for the law, just as Phinehas did against Zimri son of Salu.

 Notes and References

"... We may imagine Mattathias as theorizing that a Jew might dare to resist a pagan ruler who had overstepped the mandate of God. If the persecution was merely an excessive act of God's unruly whip, it would do no good to study prophecies of the Last Days. If the present persecution posed unprecedented problems, it would do no good to look in the laws of the Bible for solutions. But the heroes of the biblical narratives had also had to face problems that for those heroes were unprecedented. Mattathias' religious approach as presented by the Hasmonaean propagandist was revolutionary in its time: Follow the glorious examples of the heroes of the past! No law, no prophecy justified rebelling against Antiochus. If Mattathias had based his acts upon a scriptural law or prophecy, the careful author of 1 Maccabees surely would have quoted it. Instead, the author does everything possible to portray Mattathias' act of zeal as equivalent to Phineas' act of zeal in Numbers 25. Just as Phineas showed 'zeal' and acted on behalf of the 'anger' of the Lord (Numbers 25:11) and stabbed the sinful couple in their illicit bedroom, the place of their sin (Numbers 25:8), so Mattathias was 'filled with zeal and anger' and slew the idolater on the altar, the place of his sin (1 Maccabees 2:24-26) ..."

Goldstein, Jonathan A. "How the Authors of 1 and 2 Maccabees Treated the 'Messianic' Promises" in Neusner, Jacob, et al. (eds.) Judaisms and Their Messiahs at the Turn of the Christian Era (pp. 69-96) Cambridge University Press, 1987

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