Because it WORKED, kidnapping hostages quickly became the Sicarii’s main M.O.
Two thrilled Sicarii
THRILLED SICARIUS 1
We can make anything happen!
THRILLED SICARIUS 2
Wow! We really are God’s hands!
But they weren’t the ONLY quick learners. Judea’s elites now surrounded themselves with platoons of armed bodyguards.
Rich Judean flanked by muscular bodyguards, with several more chowing down and playing dice.
Well, sure, it works.
These terrorists don’t want a fight, they just want to get their way.
Seems a waste, though… paying for my own private army, just to have them sit around all day.
The high priest Ananias (not a nice person to begin with) put HIS goon squad to work… PLUNDERING lesser priests. Soon it seemed like every Judean who could AFFORD henchmen was USING them to grab power and wealth.
Jewish guy getting stabbed by a henchman, while a moneybags looks on smugly.
What gives you the right?
Might makes right!
Which Hebrew school taught you that?
Roman soldiers look on, befuddled
Don’t look at us. We let them enforce their own laws, remember?
‘s a hostile takeover, innit? Sophisticated financial dealings and all that. Instructive!
What is it with this place?
What they didn’t realize was, when they stopped being ACCOUNTABLE to their society, the Jewish leadership lost their legitimacy and AUTHORITY.
Government began to FAIL.
A stern guy and a snarky guy express reluctance to go along with their government.
You’re not protecting God’s law…
You’re exploiting God’s people!
So why should we do anything you say?
You want us to pay taxes?
Try and make us!
Roman centurion looks on as bandits run about carrying torches.
Gangs of BANDITS now marauded the countryside without fear of punishment. Public safety was a shambles.
Just when Judea was about to need it the most, its social order had completely BROKEN.
What is it with this place?
Many crucifixions on a nearby hill, while a jovial chubby guy passes an empty basket, his buddy tries nervously to get his attention as a sword juts in.
In 66 A.D., Roman troops marched into the temple to seize unpaid taxes.
Now PREVIOUSLY, whenever the Romans had given offense, the Jewish leaders had been able to mollify the people and keep the peace. But not THIS time! So the people openly MOCKED the Roman governor, pretending to collect donations for the poor fellow.
Many crucifixions followed.
Ha ha ha!
Pass the hat for Gessius Flores!
Armed zealots standing over many dead bodies, with a voice from nearby fortress walls.
Frustrated and furious, a NEW revolutionary movement called the “ZEALOTS” challenged Rome directly. They surrounded the small Roman garrison, and promised the soldiers safe passage if they surrendered. The troops came out unarmed, and the Zealots slaughtered every last one of them.
Inspired by this “victory,” Judea erupted in OPEN REBELLION.
Caption: [INSERT CROWD SCENE HERE]
It proved to be more a CIVIL WAR than a revolt. Instead of uniting against a common foe, Judeans spent the next four years mainly fighting EACH OTHER.
Roman army marching inexorably down the road winding up to Jerusalem. Lots of TRAMP TRAMP TRAMP
VOICE FROM THE CITY WALLS
Anyway, their revolutionary zeal EVAPORATED when a full Roman army marched in to deal with the revolt — led by the great general (and future emperor) Vespasian.
As for the Sicarii? Although their violence may have indirectly sparked the rebellion, it was only by making things WORSE. They certainly hadn’t INSPIRED it in any way.
And as for taking PART…
Roman soldier stabbing a Judean while two Sicarii look on, one shrugging, the other smirking.