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Zeus

ZEUS

zus (Zeus, the Revised Version margin; the Revised Version (British and American) and the King James Version Jupiter):

The supreme god of Hellenic theology, "king of gods and of men." In 168 BC Antiochus Epiphanes, "who on God's altars danced," bent upon the thorough Hellenization of Judea and Jerusalem, sent "an old man of Athens" (or "Geron an Athenian," the Revised Version margin) to pollute the sanctuary in the temple at Jerusalem and to call it by the name of Jupiter Olympius, and that at Gerizim by the name of Jupiter Xenius (2 Macc 6:1). Olympius, from Mt. Olympus, the home of the gods, is the favorite epithet of Zeus, Zeus Olympius being to the Greek world what Jupiter Capitolinus was to the Roman. The same Antiochus commenced the splendid temple of Zeus Olympius, finished under Hadrian. Zeus is also frequently styled Xenius or "Protector of strangers" (Juppiter hospitalis) in classical literature. The epithet is here applied because the people of Gerizim--the Samaritans--were hospitable, probably an ironical statement of the author (compare Luke 9:52 f). Zeus is also in Acts 14:12 f the Revised Version margin for JUPITER (which see).

S. Angus


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Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. "Entry for 'ZEUS'". "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". 1915.