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Hanukkah History: The Maccabean Revolt


Season 2: Episode 44
Hanukkah History: The Maccabean Revolt
Date Aired: 12/04/2023

The Jewish festival of Hanukkah is based on real historical events—the Maccabean Revolt of 167–160 BCE. In today’s episode, Helen and Dave travel back to a time when Judaea was ruled by the Hellenized (Greek) Seleucid Empire. When a Jewish priest named Mattathias refused to make a sacrifice to the pagan gods, it sparked a violent revolution led by Judah “The Hammer” Maccabee.

Listen to the episode on the Biblical Time Machine website or wherever you get your podcasts.

Disclaimer: The Society of Biblical Literature is not responsible for the content of this podcast. The opinions expressed in this podcast do not necessarily reflect those of the Society of Biblical Literature, its members, or its staff.

  • The Biblical Time Machine Podcast is hosted by Helen Bond and Dave Roos. Helen Bond is professor of Christian origins at Edinburgh University. She is the author of Women Remembered: Jesus’s Female Disciples, The First Biography of Jesus: Genre and Meaning in Mark’s Gospel, and The Historical Jesus: A Guide for the Perplexed. Her research focuses on the social and political history of first century Judaea, the historical Jesus and the canonical gospels. Dave Roos is a journalist and writer who contributes to, HowStuffWorks and the popular podcast Stuff You Should Know. Dave has a degree in religious studies from Duke University.