מָעֻזַּים Sept. Μαωζείμ v. r. Μαωζεί, Vulg. Maozim). The marginal note to the A. V. of Da 11:38, "the God of forces," gives, as the equivalent of the last word, "Mauzzim, or gods protectors, or munitions." The Geneva version renders the Hebrew as a proper name both in Da 11:38-39, where the word occurs again (marg. of A. V. "munitions"). In the Greek version of Theodotion, given above, it is treated as a proper name, as well as in the Vulgate. The Sept., as at present printed, is evidently corrupt in this passage, but ἰσχυρά (Da 11:37) appears to represent the word in question. In Jerome's time the reading was different, and he gives "Deum fortissimum" for the Latin translation of it, and "Deum fortitudinum" for that of Aquila. He ridicules the interpretation of Porphyry, who, ignorant of Hebrew, understood by "the god of Mauzzim" the statue of Jupiter set up in Modin, the city of Mattathias and his sons, by the generals of Antiochs, who compelled the Jews to sacrifice to it, "the god of Modin." Theodoret retains the reading of Theodotion (Μαζωείμ being evidently for Μαωζείμ), and explains it of Antichrist, "a god strong and powerful." The Peshito-Syriac has "the strong god," and Junius and Tremellius render it "Deum summi roboris," considering the Hebrew plural as intensive, and interpreting it of the God of Israel. There can be little doubt that "Mauzzim" is to be taken in its literal sense of "fortresses," just as in Da 11:19,39, "the god of fortresses" being then the deity who presided over strongholds. But beyond this it is scarcely possible to connect an appellation so general with any special object of idolatrous worship. Grotius conjectured that Mauzzim was a modification of the name ῎Αζιζος, the war-god of the Phoenicians, mentioned in Julian's hymn to the sun (Beyer, Addit. ad Seldenii "De Dea Syria," p. 275). Calvin suggested that it denoted "money," the strongest of all powers. By others it has been supposed to be Mars, the tutelary deity of Antiochus Epiphanes, who is the subject of allusion. The only authority for this supposition exists in two coins struck at Laodicea, which are believed to have on the obverse the head of Antiochus with a radiated crown, and on the reverse the figure of Mars with a spear. But it is asserted, on the contrary, that all known coins of Antiochus Epiphanes bear his name, and that it is mere conjecture which attributes these to him; and, further, that there is no ancient authority to show that a temple to Mars was built by Antiochus at Laodicea. The opinion of Gesenius is more probable, that "the god of fortresses" was Jupiter Capitolinus, for whom Antiochus built a temple at Antioch (Livy, 41:20). By others it is referred to Jupiter Olympius, to whom Antiochus dedicated the Temple at Jerusalem (2 Macc. 6:2). SEE JUPITER. Furst (Handw. s.v.), comparing Isa 33:4, where the reference is to Tyre, "the fortress of the sea," makes מָעֻזַּים equivalent to מָעוֹז הִיָּם, or even proposes to read for the former מָעֹז יָם, the god of the "stronghold of the sea," i.e. Melkart, the Tyrian Hercules. A suggestion made by Mr. Layard (Nineveh, 2:456, note) is worthy of being recorded, as being at least as well founded as any already mentioned. After describing Hera, the Assyrian Venus, as "standing erect on a lion, and crowned with a tower or mural coronet, which, we learn from Lucian, was peculiar to the Shemitic figure of the goddess," he adds in a note, "May she be connected with the 'El Maozem,' the deity presiding over bulwarks and fortresses, the 'god of forces,' of Da 11:38?" Pfeiffer (Dub. Vex. cent. 4, loc. 72) will only see in it "the idol of the mass!"

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

Topical Outlines Nave's Bible Topics International Standard Bible Encyclopedia Online King James Bible King James Dictionary

Verse reference tagging and popups powered by VerseClick™.