Thursday, November 1, 2012

Important Maccabean Connection of Spartans to Hebrews

According to the letter sent by the king of the Spartans to the High Priest, found in the 1st book of Maccabees, the Spartans are "of stock of Abraham" ?

"19 And this is the copy of the letter which he had sent to Onias:
Arius, king of the Spartans, to Onias, the high priest, greeting.
It is found in writing concerning the Spartans, and the Jews, that they are brethren, and that they are of the stock of Abraham.
22 And now since this has come to our knowledge, you do well to write to us of your prosperity.
23 And we also have written back to you, That our cattle, and our possessions, are yours: and yours, ours. We, therefore, have commanded that these things should be told you."

Now, Steve Collins claims that they were Simeonites:
The Spartans themselves declared that they were a fellow tribe of the Jews and corresponded with an ancient Jewish High Priest about their relationship. The book of I Maccabees14:16-23 records this correspondence, which includes this statement:

"And this is the copy of the letter which the Spartans

sent: The Chief magistrates and the city of the Spartans

send greeting to Simon, the chief priest, and to the elders

and the priests and the rest of the Jewish people, our

kinsmen." (Emphasis added.)

Notice the Spartans called the Jews "our kinsmen." The Spartans did not proclaim themselves to be Jews, but rather that they were "kinsmen" to the Jews (i.e. members of one of the other tribes of Israel). That the Spartans acknowledged a common ancestry with the Jews of the tribe of Judah gives powerful weight to the assertion that they were Israelites who migrated to Greece instead of the Promised Land. The Spartan culture is most like that of the tribe of Simeon, most of which apparently left the Israelite encampment in the Wilderness after a Simeon prince was executed by a Levite.

There is a third group of wanderers in ancient history which manifested a Simeonite/Israelite ancestry, but this column is now long enough. The story of another band of Simeonites who struck out on their own in the world will be told in a future column.

Shalom and Greetings to all,

Steve Collins
Taken from:

Collins tells of these interesting points by Professor Jones:

The Book, Sparta, by A.H.M. Jones, a Professor of Ancient History at Cambridge University, noted several things about Sparta. He states the Spartans worshipped a "great law-giver" who had given them their laws in the "dim past" (page 5 of his book). This law-giver may have been Moses.

Professor Jones also noted the Spartans celebrated "the new moons" and the "seventh day" of the month" (page 13). Observing new moons was an Israelite calendar custom, and their observance of "a seventh day" could originate with the Sabbath celebration. Prof. Jones also notes, as do other authorities, that the Spartans were known for being "ruthless" in war and times of crisis. This sounds exactly like the Simeonite nature, which was given to impulsive cruelty, as the Bible confirms.

Interestingly, Prof. Jones writes that the Spartans were themselves divided into several "tribes" which constituted distinct military formations within the Spartan army (pages 31-32).

No comments:

Post a Comment