Antigonus of Socho

Antigonus of Socho a Jewish teacher (about 200-170 B.C.), belonged to the earlier Tanaim, and was a disciple of Simon the Just. He was the first that bears a Greek name. He probably belonged to the Grecian party, which, by an imitation of Grecian practices, sought to bring about an intimate union with those foreign masters of Palestine who were objects of pious abhorrence to the Pharisees. It is to this tendency that the sect of. the Sadducees, which traces its origin to the successors of Antigonus, owes its rise. Unlike the Pharisees, the Sadducees were .primarily a political, and only secondarily a religious, party. Their theology, which is rather negative than positive, was modified in accordance with their political aspirations. The motto of Antigonus, which fully accords with this view, was, "Be not like servants who serve their master for the sake of a reward, but imitate servants who serve their master without looking for a reward, and let the fear of Heaven be upon you" (Pirke Aboth ,i, 3)-a motto which Pressense, in his Jesus Christ: his Times, Life, and Work (Amer. ed.:1868, p. 68 sq.), calls a n" noble and almost evangelical one, a most beautiful maxim, and one denoting a legitimate reaction from the legal formalism which was in process of development." See Hamburger, Real-Encyklop. ii, 58 sq.; Pick,

The Scribes Before and in the Time of Christ, in the Lutheran Quarterly, 1878, p. 253 sq. (B. P.)

 
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