The first reading tells us that the high priest and all his companions, the Sadducees, laid hands on the Apostles. I am going to tell you who the Sadducees were, so hang on, it’s a long story.
King David had promised his crown to his son Solomon, but in 967 B.B. when David was near death, a roughneck son of his named Adonijah began acting as though the crown was his. When David heard of Adonija’s treachery, he called for the priest Zadok, telling him to anoint Solomon as king. ZadoK felt certain that if he moved to anoint Solomon Adonijah woulld kill him. Still, out of obedience to King David, Zadok anointed Solomon king. Then, the whole nation rose up, shouting.”Long live King Solomon!” And Adonijah had to flee.
Out of gratitude for Zadok’s bravery, it became a hard fixed rule of the Israelites that only a direct descendent of Zadok could be anointed high priests. The nation abided by that rule for eight hundred years; but in 152 B.C. the only living heir of Zadok was an idiot; so thr people settled on anointing Jonathan, brother of Judas Maccabeus as high priest.
A tenth of the people, unwilling to serve Jonathan, went off to the Dead Sea where they became an isolated group known as the Hassids. Another tenth of the conservative Jews stayed on in Jerusalem as a protest group called the Pharisees.
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