a Jewish political party who sympathized with ( Mark 3:6 ; 12:13 ; Matt, 22:16 ; Luke 20:20 ) the Herodian rulers in their general policy of government, and in the social customs which they introduced from Rome. They were at one with the Sadducees in holding the duty of submission to Rome, and of supporting the Herods on the throne. (Compare Mark 8:15 ; Matthew 16:6 .)
(from Herod). ( Matthew 22:15 ) ff.; Mark 12:13 ff. Canon Cook describes these persons as "that party among the Jews who were supporters of the Herodian family as the last hope of retaining for the Jews a fragment of national government, as distinguished from absolute dependence upon Rome as a province of the empire. Supporters of the family of Herod, who held their dominions by the grant of the Roman emperor, would be in favor of paying tribute to the supreme power. ( Matthew 22:16 )
A party twice mentioned in the Gospels (Matthew 22:16 parallel Mark 12:13; 3:6) as acting with the Pharisees in opposition to Jesus. They were not a religious sect, but, as the name implies, a court or political party, supporters of the dynasty of Herod. Nothing is known of them beyond what the Gospels state. Whatever their political aims, they early perceived that Christ's pure and spiritual teaching on the kingdom of God was irreconcilable with these, and that Christ's influence with the people was antagonistic to their interests. Hence, in Galilee, on the occasion of the healing of the man with the withered hand, they readily joined with the more powerful party of the Pharisees in plots to crush Jesus (Mark 3:6); and again, in Jerusalem, in the last week of Christ's life, they renewed this alliance in the attempt to entrap Jesus on the question of the tribute money (Matthew 22:16). The warning of Jesus to His disciples to "beware of the leaven of Herod" (Mark 8:15) may have had reference to the insidious spirit of this party.
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