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Josephus Experts--- Can You Help With This?


Kris
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I was recently looking into Josephus and the causes of the Jewish war. I ran across a Christian site that says Josephus reports that the golden candlestick was extinguished 40 years prior to the war. I could not find anything on this myself other than what is written in the Talmud (Yoma). Is the author being cited wrong about Josephus saying this? Here is the quote:

 

And now a shudder ran through Nature, as its Sun had set. We dare not do more than follow the rapid outlines of the Evangelic narrative. As the first token, it records the rending of the Temple-Veil in two from the top downward to the bottom; as the second, the quaking of the earth, the rending of the rocks and the opening of the graves. Although most writers have regarded this as indicating the strictly chronological succession, there is nothing in the text to bind us to such a conclusion. Thus, while the rending of the Veil is recorded first, as being the most significant token to Israel, it may have been connected with the earthquake, although this alone might scarcely account for the tearing of so heavy a Veil from the top to the bottom. Even the latter circumstance has its significance. That some great catastrophe, betokening the impending destruction of the Temple, had occurred in the Sanctuary about this very time, is confirmed by not less than four mutually independent testimonies: those of Tacitus,6163 of Josephus,6164 of the Talmud,6165 and of earliest Christian tradition6166. The most important of these are, of course, the Talmud and Josephus. The latter speaks of the mysterious extinction of the middle and chief light in the Golden Candlestick, forty years before the destruction of the Temple; and both he and the Talmud refer to a supernatural opening by themselves of the great Temple-gates that had been previously closed, which was regarded as a portent of the coming destruction of the Temple. We can scarcely doubt, that some historical fact must underlie so peculiar and widespread a tradition, and we cannot help feeling that it may be a distorted version of the occurrence of the rending of the Temple-Veil (or of its report) at the Crucifixion of Christ.

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If Josephus had said that, you'd actually find it debated in scholarly works about Josephus. I put the likelihood that it's a (modern) fabrication at almost completely certain.

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