Mattathias and his sons (1 Macc 2:1-2:6)

“In those days, Mattathias son of John, son of Simeon, a priest of the family of Joarib, moved from Jerusalem. He settled in Modein. He had five sons, John surnamed Gaddi, Simon called Thassi, Judas called Maccabeus, Eleazar called Avaran, and Jonathan called Apphus. He saw the blasphemies being committed in Judah and Jerusalem.”

This Mattathias was the son of John and grandson of Simeon, the Hasmonean, from a priestly family. He moved his family from Jerusalem to Modein, about 17 miles northwest of Jerusalem, but there is no date for this migration except the vague ‘in those days.’ His 5 sons were 1) John, 2) Simon, 3) Judas, 4) Eleazar, and 5) Jonathan. He had seen the blasphemies committed against Judah and Jerusalem. This is the introduction to the Maccabees family, although only 1 in the family used the name of Maccabeus.

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