Roman Soldier

Two brothers from the Hasmonean dynasty in 63BC, Hyrcanus and Aristobulus, vied for the throne in Jerusalem. Because neither could win they invited Rome to intervene, which they did, and the Roman overlords did not leave until the Empire fell some 500 years later.

The Romans were seen as a foreign occupying force by many of the local Jews.
The headquarters of the Roman army was at Caesarea, with a seaport called Sebastos.
In 63 BC the Roman general Pompey was only too happy to come to the assistance of the Hasmoneans.
The Jews had to pay taxes to Rome and that is why they hated the tax collectors like Matthew.
By law, a Roman soldier could force anybody to carry his equipment one mile. – Matthew 5:41.

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