“In his malice toward the Jewish citizens, King Antiochus sent Apollonius, the captain of the Mysians, with an army of twenty-two thousand. The king commanded him to kill all the grown men. They were to sell the women and boys as slaves. When this man arrived in Jerusalem, he pretended to be peaceably disposed. He waited until the holy Sabbath day. Then, finding the Jews not at work, he ordered his men to parade under arms. He put to the sword all those who came out to see them. Then he rushed into the city with his armed warriors. He killed great numbers of people.”
As in 1 Maccabees, chapter 1, King Antiochus IV sent a “chief collector” to Jerusalem. There it was 2 years later, but here there is no exact time period. There he was unnamed tax collector, but here it is Apollonius, who was a Mysian of Asia Minor with a huge army. However, in both stories there is the idea that he came peacefully, but then struck the people of the city. Here there is the added dimension that he did this destruction on the Sabbath when the Jews were not working. In both cases, he killed many people and took others into slavery.
“A man named Simon, of the tribe of Benjamin, who had been made captain of the temple, had a disagreement with the high priest about the administration of the city market. When he could not prevail over the high priest Onias, he went to Apollonius of Tarsus. He at that time was the governor of Coele-syria and Phoenicia. He reported to him that the treasury in Jerusalem was full of untold sums of money. The amount of the funds could not be reckoned. They did not belong to the account of the sacrifices. It was possible for them to fall under the control of the king. When Apollonius met the king, he told him of the money about which he had been informed. The king chose Heliodorus, who was in charge of his affairs. He sent him with commands to effect the removal of the reported wealth. Heliodorus at once set out on his journey, ostensibly to make a tour and inspection of the cities of Coele-syria and Phoenicia, but in fact to carry out the king’s purpose.”
Simon, a Benjaminite and not a Levite, was a grandson of Tobias, who married a sister of the high priest Onias II. Thus this captain of the Temple position was somehow hereditary. He had a disagreement with the high priest Onias III about how the city market was run. He did not prevail. Instead, he went to the governor of that area of Coele-syria and Phoenicia. The capital of this area was in Tarsus with Apollonius as the governor. Apollonius was the governor of Samaria in 1 Maccabees, chapter 10, when he had a dispute with Jonathan, the brother of Judas Maccabeus. Simon told Apollonius that there were large sums of money unaccounted for in Jerusalem that did not belong to the sacrifices but should have gone to the king. Apollonius then told King Seleucus IV who then sent his man in charge of these affairs, Heliodorus, to look into these charges.