self, he saw an angel sitting above his head. This he immediately perceived was the cause of evils, as it had once been the cause of his successes. And he felt a pain through his heart, and a sudden pang seize his bowels, which began to torment him with great violence. Turning, then, to his friends, he said, "I, your god, am now commanded to depart this life, and fate will soon disprove your false assertions respecting me. He whom you have called an immortal, is now compelled to die, but we must receive our destiny as it is determined by God. Neither have we passed our life ingloriously, but in that splendour which is so much extolled." Saying this, he laboured much with the increase of pain. He was then carried with great haste into the palace, while the report spread throughout the people, that the king at all events would soon die. But the multitude with their wives and children, after their country's custom, sitting in sackcloth, implored God in behalf of the king; all places were filled with lamentation and weeping. But the king, as he lay reclining in an elevated chamber, and looking down upon them falling prostrate to the ground, could not refrain from tears himself. At length, overpowered by the pain of his bowels, for four days in succession, he ended his life, in the fifty-fourth year of his age and seventh of his reign. He reigned, therefore, four years under Caius Cesar, had the tetrarchy of Philip three years, and received that of Herod in the fourth year, reigning subsequently three years under Claudius Cesar." Thus far Josephus: in which statement, as in others, so in this, I cannot but admire his agreement with the divine Scriptures. But if he should appear to any to differ, in regard to the epithet of the king; yet the time and the fact show that it was the same individual, whether it happened by an error in writing that the name was changed, or in consequence of a double name applied to him; such as was the case with many.
Page:Ecclesiastical History of Eusebius Pamphilus, 1842.djvu/92
Jump to navigation Jump to search