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Chronicles of Jerahmeel, by M. Gaster [1899], at

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LXXXV. (1) In the first year of his reign, Cyrus tried to build the temple, but when Ahasuerus arose he prohibited it, and attempted to uproot the vineyard (of the Lord), but God exterminated him and the wicked Haman from the world, and he died. His son succeeded him. These are the kings mentioned, 'Darius,' 'Cyrus,' and 'Artaxerxes.' Then the people believed the prophets and were prosperous. In the second year of his reign he allowed the Jews to return to Jerusalem to erect the holy temple and repair Jerusalem without let or hindrance. This was, indeed, a complete redemption. Then did Ezra, Zerubbabel, and his company for the second time go up to Jerusalem with another generation of the captivity, and they rebuilt Jerusalem and its walls. The towers they erected were very high and strong, and the temple contained more than did the first one, so that the first temple was deemed insignificant in comparison to it. The people on this account served Cyrus loyally for thirty-four years.

(2) After the rebuilding of the temple, Zerubbabel returned to Babylon and there died. His son, Meshullam, succeeded him, and in his days, in the fifty-second year of the kingdom of the Medes and Persians, the kingdom was formed. The last prophets, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi, died at that time, and from that day prophecy ceased to exist in Israel, and the Echo of the Heavenly Voice (Bath Kol) took its place, and after that they had to consult the sages, until the Messiah will come and show us the right way.

(3) Thirty-four years after the rebuilding of the temple, Darius, the son of Ahasuerus, reigned, until Alexander the Macedonian, and first King of Greece, rose up against him in battle, and having killed him, took his kingdom. He reigned over Israel two years and captured every kingdom; he made the whole world subservient to him, for at that time, thirty-four years after the rebuilding of the temple, Alexander the Great was crowned, the son of Philippus,

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[paragraph continues] King of Macedon, for he made the name of the Macedonian nation great, and smote the whole country. When he waged war against Darius he smote the land of Egypt, and slew in Alexandria double as many Jews as went out of Egypt. After conquering Edom, he marched along the sea-shore until he came to Acco, which he conquered, as well as Ashkalon and ‘Aza. He then turned to go up to Jerusalem to smite it, because the Jews had made a covenant with Darius. After journeying with all his camp some distance, he arrived at a lodge, where he and his army encamped.

(4) On the same night, while he was lying in his bed in his tent, he opened his eyes and beheld a man standing over him, clothed in white linen, and with a drawn sword in his hand. The appearance of the sword was like lightning on a rainy day. When he lifted the sword over the head of the king, he was greatly afraid, and said, 'Why will my lord smite his servant?' And the man replied, 'God hath sent me to conquer kings and many nations before thee, and I will go before thee to render thee assistance, but know now that thou shalt surely be slain, because thy heart is bent upon going to Jerusalem in order to injure God's priests and God's people.' 'I beseech thee, O lord,' replied the king, 'pardon the sin of thy servant, and if it is evil in thine eyes, I will return to my home.' 'Do not be afraid,' said the man; 'go thy way to Jerusalem, and when thou comest before the gate of the city and seest a man clothed in white like me, having an appearance and form like mine, do thou immediately make thy obeisance to him and bow thyself to the ground before him; do whatever he bids thee and do not transgress his word, for the very day that thou rebellest against his word thou shalt be slain.'

(5) The king accordingly arose and went on his way to Jerusalem. When the High Priest heard that the king was coming against Jerusalem in great anger, he was exceedingly afraid, as were all the people, and he with the people went out at the gate of the city, and he stood

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before them clothed in white linen. As soon as Alexander beheld the priest, quickly dismounting from his chariot, he fell upon his face and bowed down to him. But the generals of Alexander became very angry at this, and said, 'Why dost thou bow down to a man who has no strength for battle?' And the king replied, 'Because the man that goeth in front of me to subdue all the nations before me is in appearance and form like this man. I therefore bow down to him.'

(6) Then, going into our holy temple, he said to the priest, 'I will have my statue erected here, and will give much gold to the workmen, that it may be a remembrance of me. And they shall erect it between the Holy of Holies and the temple, so that my image be a remembrance in this great house of God.' But the priest replied, 'Present the gold for the maintenance of God's priests and the poor of His people, and I shall cause thee to be remembered for good, as thou wishest. All the children of the priests that are born this year shall be called by thy name, Alexander, and thou shalt be remembered when they worship in this house; but it is not permitted to place a graven image or any likeness in the house of our God.' The king then gave the gold according to the priest's request.

(7) He asked him to inquire of God on his behalf whether he should go to war with Darius, or abandon the plan. And the priest replied, 'He will surely be delivered into thy hand.' Then, bringing the Book of Daniel, he showed him the passage concerning the ram that gores on all sides, and the young of the goats which runs up to him and tramples upon him. 'Thou,' added he, 'art the young of the goats and Darius is the ram. Thou shalt therefore trample upon him and seize his kingdom.' Thereupon Alexander went to battle, and having slain Darius, captured all his kingdom, so that the Persian kingdom ceased to exist. Alexandria in Egypt was made the royal city.

(8) He ruled over all the nations just as a shepherd rules over his flock. He soon went over to India, travelling right across the country to its extremity, and extended his

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dominion, as we learn from the Talmud. R. Jose said, 'For six years he reigned in Elam, and afterwards spread his kingdom over the whole world.' He reigned altogether twelve years, and when he was on his way home to his house he died. Before his death, he divided his kingdom among his four chieftains. He made Ptolemy, the son of Lagi (###), King of Egypt; Phillipos his brother King of Macedon, and Seleucus and Nicanor Kings of Syria and Babylon respectively; lastly, he made Antiochus, the great enemy of the Jews, King of Asia (###).' Daniel prophesied this event when he said that the goat would gore the rain and break down his kingdom, which would be given to the four winds of the heaven.