Herod the Great died in the Year 1 BC

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Through much erroneous information it has often been believed that Herod the Great died in the year 4 BC sometime between the partial Luna eclipse and the Passover 29 days later. However much new evidence concerning his death and the reigns of his sons has come to light showing conclusively that Herod died in the year 1 BC and not 4 BC. Without getting into the printing error found among certain copies of Flavius Josephus concerning the twentieth year of Tiberius in regards to the reign of Herod's son Phillip who supposedly died in what would have been year 33/34 but in reality was years 35/36 AD after reigning for 37 years, I will only concentrate on the other information supplied by the writings of Flavius Josephus.
Most of the information we know about concerning Herod the Great is taken from the writings of Flavius Josephus. There is much information especially concerning that period of time surrounding the declaration when Herod was made king by the Roman Senate and confirmed by Marc Antony. In the Jewish Antiquities chapter 14 section 5 we are told that Herod was first declared king by Marc Antony in the hundred and eighty-fourth olympiad when Caius Domitius Calvinus was consul for the second time and Caius Asinius Pollio was ruling for the first time. This was in 40/39 BC but Herod did not actually begin to reign in Jerusalem until June or more likely in September of 37 BC. Just because he was assigned the title of King of the Jews by the Roman Senate and Marc Antony does not mean he was king according to the custom and traditons of the Jewish people. From the very first king, King Saul, until the final king of the first temple period, King Zedekiah, the Jewish people of the southern kingdom maintained a strict method following the accession year rules for new kings. The outgoing king would get credit for the complete year of his final year regardless of the fact that he may have ruled for only one day after the start of the Hebrew civil New Year. The astronomical new moon of the seventh month marked the Feast of Trumpets and the beginning of the Hebrew civil New Year. Therefore each time the king made it past this day he would be credited with reigning for the entire year. When a king died the newly named king would then begin his accession period but his first official year would not begin until the next Feast of Trumpets which typically began in late August or early September during the period surrounding the first temple.
For the first three years Herod was king in name only according to the designation assigned by the Roman Senate and Marc Antony. In order for anyone to be king of the Jews then one must not only have a throne to sit on but also a city to reign over. Jerusalem was the designated capital of Judea since the time of King David. The first temple erected during the reign of King Solomon established Jerusalem as the permenant home and official capital city for the sacrificial system under the Levites. When the combined armies of Herod and Rome finally sacked Jerusalem after a five month seige we are told this happened in the 3rd month on the anniversary of a solemn fast day (In 63 BC after Pompey sacked Jerusalem, the 9th of Ab fell on June 21/22nd and tradition tells us the ninth of Ab was the very day the first temple was burned and destroyed). Also, Marcus Agrippa and Caninius Gallus were consuls of Rome and it was during the 185 olympiad. It is also noted that Herod's sacking of Jerusalem happened exactly 27 years from the very day that Pompey had sacked Jerusalem in 63 BC. Are these Jewish years or Luna years? If these are Jewish years then it points to the 9th of Ab in the year 36 BC ( one year too late - Herod sacked Jerusalem in 37 BC). However if Luna years then according to the Elijah calendar if one measures exactly 27 Luna years starting at the 10th day of Ab in 63 BC it brings the calculation to the evening of the 9th day of Tishri in the year 37 BC (the traditional Day of Atonement). The irony of these two important days fulfilling these described events seems divinely appointed. Above I note that Herod's reign did not begin until either June 22 which marked the 9th day of Ab but this date can be eliminated because it places Herod's sack in the year 36 BC. The most likely scenario was exactly 27 Luna years measured from the 10th day of Ab in 63 BC which brings the calculation to the eve of Tishri 9 when the traditional Day of Atonement would have begun. After King Antigonus was deposed from the throne in Jerusalem he was sent to Marc Antony to see what punishment was awaiting him. Herod was anxious to have King Antigonus killed because he feared Rome would hear his case as being the last of the Royal Jewish lineage. It is also said that Herod paid Antony a large sum on hush money to quicken that particular matter. The text indicates that Antony may have kept Antigonus in custody for a period (possibly 3 years) of time before he had him beheaded at Antioch. Concerning the death of Antigonus the writings of Josephus tell us that since Herod obtained the throne from Antigonus it was thiry four years until Herod died. However we are also told in the same paragraph that Herod reigned for 37 years since the Roman declaration. The Roman declaration had to be from that point in time when Herod was the sole reigning king in the city of Jerusalem. For we are also told in Josephus' Antiquities book xv chapter v section 2.(121) ; "At this time it was that the fight happened at Actium, between Octavius Caesar and Antony, in the seventh year of the reign of Herod and then it was also that there was an earthquake in Judea...". This undoubtedly puts Herod's reign beginning in the year 37 BC because the battle of Actium was in September in 31 BC. Last but not least is the time of year when Herod died. There are many events narrated in Josephus writings between the day of a Lunar eclipse when Herod had a number of people killed for stealing the gold Roman eagle and five days after the death of his son Antipater whom Herod had murdered and then Herod also died. The events narrated by Josephus took place between a Lunar eclipse and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. In the year 1 BC there was a total eclipse of the moon on January 9/10 but the Passover according to the Elijah calendar took place 57 Days later. I believe this would have been sufficient time for Herod to travel twice to Jericho to find relief from his rapidly deteriorating condition. He is said to have had worms in his gentials and putrid breath. It is also apparent his mental health was warped by his sickness. He so desired to be lamented upon his own death that he tried to arrange for the murder of many innocent and notable peoples within Judea. He tried this because he knew the people despised him as King of the Jews. Furthermore most of the early church fathers place the birth of Jesus in the year 3/2 BC in keeping with Herod's decree to kill all the babies in Bethlehem 2 years old and under. Correctly placing Herod's death in the year 1 BC with the birth of Jesus in 3/2 BC makes the alignment of both the solar and Luna year lengths of Daniel's 70 weeks prophecy fit perfectly when it is correctly interpreted with the Elijah calendar.

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