The Drawbridge

BIblical Controversies and Discord

Josephus and His Footprints

Wiki: Josephus problem

The problem is named after Flavius Josephus, a Jewish historian living in the 1st century. According to Josephus’ account of the siege of Yodfat, he and his 40 comrade soldiers were trapped in a cave, the exit of which is blocked by Romans. They chose suicide over capture and decided that they would form a circle and start killing themselves using a step of three. Josephus states that by luck or maybe by the hand of God (modern scholars point out that Josephus was a well educated scholar and predicted the outcome), he and another man remained the last and gave up to the Romans.

Using a step of three?  What does this mean?

Alter steps?


Steps to Sainthood: the third being a martyr?

Third Step: To be beatified and recognized as a “Blessed,” one miracle acquired through the candidate’s intercession is required in addition to recognition of heroic virtue (or martyrdom in the case of a martyr).

Wiki: Siege of Yodfat

The Siege of Yodfat (Hebrew: יוֹדְפַת‎, also Jotapata, Iotapata, Yodefat) was a 47 day siege by Roman forces of the Jewish town of Yodfat which took place in 67 CE, during theGreat Revolt. Led by Roman General Vespasian and his son Titus, both future emperors, the siege ended with the sacking of the town, the deaths of most of its inhabitants and the enslavement of the rest. It was the second bloodiest battle of the revolt, surpassed only by the sacking of Jerusalem, and the longest bar Jerusalem and Masada. The siege was chronicled by Josephus, who had personally commanded the Jewish forces at Yodfat and was subsequently captured by the Romans. [2]

I have a big problems with the story

told by Flavius Josephus!

1) My first concern is why does Josephus not tell how the people committed suicide or killed each other EXCEPT that they cut each others neck.

2) Who decided that it would be every third person?

3) Who decided where each person would stand?

4) and who decided where to start the circle!

It sounds to me like a cruel joke!

If I were there I would be switching places a bunch.  It makes no sense! I cannot imagine that all 41 of those soldiers (“forty persons of eminency that had concealed themselves”) would all be desiring the same fate of death! What kind of military people were they, or were they a different kind of army? Was this cave actually a choking point?

IF they were going to kill each other so that they would not commit suicide, why not fight the enemy to the death?

This story is full of holes!

I thought Flavius Josephus was a general, but as he says he was assisted by

a certain supernatural providence!

Interesting choice of words!

The next link is a simulation game of the Josephus dilemma!

Please click on the title below:

Josephus Flavius game

Josephus Flavius was a famous Jewish historian of the first century at the time of the Second Temple destruction. During the Jewish-Roman war he got trapped in a cave with a group of 40 soldiers surrounded by romans. The legend has it that preferring suicide to capture, the Jews decided to form a circle and, proceeding around it, to kill every third remaining person until no one was left. Josephus, not keen to die, quickly found the safe spot in the circle and thus stayed alive.

If Josephus was trapped in a cave with 40 other soldiers or eminent persons, then there were a total of 41 people in the cave, including himself. He says that two people survived this suicide pact, Josephus and some other person.

Why doesn’t he include the name of the other person that survived with him?

And as he was very desirous neither to be condemned by the lot, nor, if he had been left to the last, to imbrue his right hand in the blood of his countrymen, he persuaded him to trust his fidelity to him, and to live as well as himself.

Basically, Josephus bribed the other guy (obviously in a private way) so that the others would not hear and which must have been in his concscience,

which means that Josephus acted as a Devil!

How did Josephus persuade this other man to go along to get along? The other men were there…did they not notice Josephus offering “his fidelity” and “the good life” to this other fellow?

Sounds like a bribe to me!

IN the simulation game in the link above Josephus would have been the 16th person or the 31st person in the circle to survive!

What a difference it makes where he stood in that circle!

Did he arrange the soldiers (eminent persons)? Wasn’t he in charge?

Josephus says that they drew lots!

How do you draw lots to kill every third person ?

Here is what Josephus says happened, but it still does not make any sense since his 40 fellow cavemen were EXTREMELY desirous that he die with them, so he says!

Why in the world would they (his fellow cavemen) wait for him to be second to the last, or the last?

Please read what Josephus said happened below:

7. However, in this extreme distress, he was not destitute of his usual sagacity; but trusting himself to the providence of God, he put his life into hazard [in the manner following]: “And now,” said he, “since it is resolved among you that you will die, come on, let us commit our mutual deaths to determination by lot. He whom the lot falls to first, let him be killed by him that hath the second lot, and thus fortune shall make its progress through us all; nor shall any of us perish by his own right hand, for it would be unfair if, when the rest are gone, somebody should repent and save himself.” This proposal appeared to them to be very just; and when he had prevailed with them to determine this matter by lots, he drew one of the lots for himself also. He who had the first lot laid his neck bare to him that had the next, as supposing that the general would die among them immediately; for they thought death, if Josephus might but die with them, was sweeter than life; yet was he with another left to the last, whether we must say it happened so by chance, or whether by the providence of God. And as he was very desirous neither to be condemned by the lot, nor, if he had been left to the last, to imbrue his right hand in the blood of his countrymen, he persuaded him to trust his fidelity to him, and to live as well as himself.

There is nothing about the third step in this account!

Josephus lied and connived for his cavemen to kill each other instead of suicide or fighting the Romans, if you believe Josephus!

“let us commit our mutual deaths to determination by lot

It was Josephus that made up this brilliant plan to draw lots!

These guys must have been out of their minds, definitely deceived,  perhaps from fasting, exhaustion, or something else.

I don’t believe it!

I think he murdered them, probably with poison!

Remember Mithradatism?

The mustard seed was used for anecdotes for many things including scorpian bites and poison in Egypt!

Botanical: Thlaspi arvense

—Part Used—Seeds.

Mithridate Mustard, Thlaspi arvense, grows higher than Treacle Mustard; the leaves are small and narrower, smooth, toothed, arrow-shaped at the base. The flowers are small and white, growing on long branches, the seed-vessels form a round pouch, flat, with very broad wings, earning for the plant its other name of Pennycress.

Recall Cephas in the BIBLE?  Josephus is Cephas.


Remember that Paulus said:

1 Corinthians 3:22

22Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are your’s;

Another bribe!

Whereupon Vespasian sent immediately and zealously two tribunes, Paulinus and Gallicanus, and ordered them to give Josephus their right hands as a security for his life, and to exhort him to come up.

Galatians 2:9
And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision


I have never heard of a general in any military who would get his men to commit suicide or murder their fellow soldier beside them, but instead would hold off the enemy as long as possible, or fight the enemy to the death, or surrender! But it depends on what kind of army we are speaking of. I have a feeling these men were priests!

Wasn’t murdering each other a sin, to the Jews?

This does not make sense!

Josephus Problem

He did try to abandon them early on in “his own account”, because he was the false shepherd, the false christ (of the gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke), the instigator, and the destroyer!

Josephus seems to know everything and even what people thought

miles and miles away.

He “set up” the Jews for destruction.

I think he is the devil!

The EYE of Horus!

The Prince of this world that Jesus spoke about that was coming! (In the Gospel of John)

“Thou, O Vespasian, thinkest no more than that thou hast taken Josephus himself captive; but I come to thee as a messenger of greater tidings; for had not I been sent by God to thee, I knew what was the law of the Jews in this case?

Now Josephus is bribing Vespasian!

(He sounds like the fallen angel Lucifer!)

IN fact, he sounds like the Gospel of Luke’s angel that visited Mary!

Even Paul’s angel in the book of Acts!

And then Josephus continues his bribe to Vespasian:

….and how it becomes generals to die. Dost thou send me to Nero? For why? Are Nero’s successors till they come to thee still alive? Thou, O Vespasian, art Caesar and emperor, thou, and this thy son. Bind me now still faster, and keep me for thyself, for thou, O Caesar, are not only lord over me, but over the land and the sea, and all mankind; and certainly I deserve to be kept in closer custody than I now am in, in order to be punished, if I rashly affirm any thing of God.”


Sounds very slithery!

Siege of Yodfat

Yosef Ben-Matityahu had hidden in one of the caves that litter the site, along with 40 other prominent citizens of Yodfat. Although Ben-Matityahu was in favour of surrendering to the Romans, the majority of his comrades opted to kill themselves rather than fall into Roman hands. [4] As suicide is considered sinful, they decided to draw lots to kill each other. Ben-Matityahu and another man, however, were the last to survive, and both resolved to give themselves up. [18] Taken to see the Roman general, Ben-Matityahu prophesied that Vespasian would one day become emperor. Vespasian subsequently spared the rebel leader, who began collaborating with the Romans. At first a slave, he would later be freed and be granted Roman citizenship as Flavius Josephus. [4][19]


I looked up what happened in history in 1631 to see if anything pertaining to that number of the Josephus JOTAPATA survivors which were # 16 and  # 31 of the infamous circle suicide had occurred (just for the heck of it) and I found a few interesting facts WHICH I believe ARE related …..



King James Bible, 1631 edition –
One Word Makes a World of Difference
In the 1631 edition printing of the King James Bible, in Exodus 20:14, a very small word was forgotten by the printers. The word “not”. This changed the 7th commandment to say Thou shalt commit adultery!

Botched 1631 King James Bible


Archaeology of Yodfat

One find of particular interest is an 8 by 11 cm stone slab, found in the residential area on the eastern slope of Yodfat, [9] covered on both sides with scratched drawings made by a pointed tool. One side depicts a building with a triangular roof upon a podium, a small tree and a harp, and is thought to portray a Nefesh (a traditional Judean mausoleum). The other side of the stone features a crab, the astrological symbol of the Hebrew month of Tammuz, on the first day of which Yodfat fell. The stone is believed to have been the work of a besieged Jew anticipating his own impending doom, [7] [22] and its likeness has been etched on a modern memorial to the defenders of Yodfat placed at the foot of the Roman siege ramp.

made by a pointed tool

Perhaps an aul?

I mean, an awl!


“One side depicts a building with a triangular roof upon a podium”

Psalm 118:22
The stone the builders rejected has become the

Zechariah 4:7

“What are you, O mighty mountain? Before Zerubbabel you will become level ground. Then he will bring out the capstone to shouts of ‘God bless it! God bless it!’ “

Matthew 21:42
Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: ” ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the
capstone ; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes’ ?

Mark 12:10
Haven’t you read this scripture: ” ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the
capstone ;

Luke 20:17
Jesus looked directly at them and asked, “Then what is the meaning of that which is written: ” ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the

Acts 4:11
He is ” ‘the stone you builders rejected, which has become the

1 Peter 2:7
Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe, “The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone, “

Funny, the Gospel of John says nothing about a capstone!

But the Gospel of Luke says:

Luke 20:18
Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.

a small tree

Probably the mustard tree which is small and is told about via parables in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke,

but not in the gospel of John!

and a harp

More than likely referring to Nero or

maybe a fallen angel!


Maybe HAARP is the meaning to this sign?

a Nefesh

and is thought to portray a Nefesh (a traditional Judean mausoleum)

A Crab

a crab, the astrological symbol of the Hebrew month of Tammuz, on the first day of which Yodfat fell

It looks more like an eye to me!


Then there looks to be a picture of a scarab which does not seem to be mentioned?

It is voice from the past which could have been a warning, a message,

or could be a footprint,


A signatureA possible premonition?


In June, we found the water cisterns completely full of water

but Josephus said in chapter 7 of Book 3:

12. Now the besieged had plenty of corn within the city, and indeed of all necessaries, but they wanted water, because there was no fountain in the city, the people being there usually satisfied with rain water; yet is it a rare thing in that country to have rain in summer, and at this season, during the siege, they were in great distress for some contrivance to satisfy their thirst;


Book 3 of

The Wars Of The Jews


The History Of The Destruction Of Jerusalem

Interesting !!

In Number 3 of Chapter 2 of Book 3 Josephus talks about Niger which I have linked.

Remember Niger of the Bible?

Acts 13:1
Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called
Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.

But their former ill fortune followed them, as the consequence of their unskilfulness, and other deficiencies in war; for Antonius laid ambushes for them in the passages they were to go through, where they fell into snares unexpectedly, and where they were encompassed about with horsemen, before they could form themselves into a regular body for fighting, and were above eight thousand of them slain; so all the rest of them ran away, and with them Niger, who still did a great many bold exploits in his flight. However, they were driven along together by the enemy, who pressed hard upon them, into a certain strong tower belonging to a village called Bezedeh However, Antonius and his party, that they might neither spend any considerable time about this tower, which was hard to be taken, nor suffer their commander, and the most courageous man of them all, to escape from them, they set the wall on fire; and as the tower was burning, the Romans went away rejoicing, as taking it for granted that Niger was destroyed; but he leaped out of the tower into a subterraneous cave, in the innermost part of it, and was preserved; and on the third day afterward he spake out of the ground to those that with great lamentation were searching for him, in order to give him a decent funeral; and when he was come out, he filled all the Jews with an unexpected joy, as though he were preserved by God’s providence to be their commander for the time to come.

4. And now Vespasian took along with him his army from Antioch, (which is the metropolis of Syria,

How does Josephus know these particulars?

Joseph of Arimathea (A JUST MAN)

Salute No Man




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September 1, 2010 Posted by | bible, Bible Contradictions, Bible Controversies, BIBLE PROPHECY, Gospel of John, Gospel of Luke, Gospel of Mark, Gospel of Matthew, JOSEPHUS, Mustard Seeds, Parables, Synoptic Gospels, THE ABOMINATION THAT CAUSES DESOLATION, The Antichrist, THE FALSE MESSIAH, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment