Alexander the Great changed the face of Judea along with the rest of the then-known world. He reigned as emperor from 356 to 323. BCE In 336 BCE he became king of Macedonia and of the Greek city-states conquered by his father, Philip II. Within a decade he defeated the Persians and fell heir to their empire.
After the death of Herod the Great in the spring of 4 BCE, Antipas and Archelaus contested his last two wills before the emperor in Rome. Antipas favored the fifth will because in it he was sole heir; Archelaus, of course, preferred the sixth. After some delay the emperor made Archelaus ruler over Idumea, Judea, and Samaria with the title of ethnarch, promising that he could become king if he showed good leadership. He appointed Antipas tetrarch over Galilee and Perea and Philip tetrarch over Gaulanitis, Auranitis, Trachonitis, Batanea, Paneas, and Iturea.
The Heavy Hand of Antiochus IV and the Rise of the Maccabees
Combining Political and Religious Power
The Temple and the Priests Under Hasmonean Rule
The Apostles of Jesus – The Traditional Story
A few facts must be clear before starting this chapter: