Smith's Bible Dictionary Captivities of the Jews

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striding_lion_thumb.jpg The present article is confined to the forcible deportation of the Jew; from their native land, and their forcible detention, under the Assyrian or Babylonian kings

Nebuchadnezzar, in the first half of his reign (B.C. 606-562), repeatedly invaded Judea, besieged Jerusalem, carried away the inhabitants to Babylon, and destroyed the temple. The 70 years of captivity predicted by Jeremiah, (Jeremiah 25:12) are dated by Prideaux from B.C. 606. The captivity of Ezekiel dates from B.C. 598, when that prophet, like Mordecai the uncle of Esther (Esther 2:6) accompanied Jehoiachin. The captives were treated not as slaves but as colonists. The Babylonian captivity was brought to a close by the decree, (Ezra 1:2) of Cyrus (B.C. 536), and the return of a portion of the nation under Sheshbazzar or Zerubbabel (B.C. 535), Ezra (B.C. 458) and Nehemiah (B.C. 445). Those who were left in Assyria, (Esther 8:9,11) and kept up their national distinctions, were known as The Dispersion. (John 7:35; 1:1; James 1:1) The lost tribes. --Many attempts have been made to discover the ten tribes existing as a distinct community; but though history bears no witness of the present distinct existence, it enables us to track the footsteps of the departing race in four directions after the time of the Captivity.

 

-Some returned and mixed with the Jews. (Luke 2:36; Philemon 3:5) etc.

-Some were left in Samaria, mingled with the Samaritans, (Ezra 6:21; John 4:12) and became bitter enemies of the Jews.

-Many remained in Assyria, and were recognized as an integral part of the Dispersion; see (Acts 2:1; 26:7)

-Most, probably, apostatized in Assyria, adopted the usages and idolatry of the nations among whom they were planted, and became wholly swallowed up in them.

 

Copyright Statement

These files are public domain.

 

Bibliography Information

Smith, William, Dr. "Entry for 'Captivities of the Jews'". "Smith's Bible Dictionary". 1901.

 


Map of the Babylonian Captivity

Bible History Online