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People's Dictionary of the Bible


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Annas (ăn'nas), answer, response. The son of Seth, and a high priest of the Jews. He was appointed by Quirinus, governor of Syria, a.d. 7, and was removed by Valerius Gratus, procurator of Judæa, a.d. 23.

The office was originally held for life, but in Judæa's degenerate and dependent position it was one of the spoils of office, to be given to the ruler's favorite, and to be taken away upon the loss of favor. After his deposition Annas continued to hold the title; and although Caiaphas, his son-in-law, was the actual high priest, he was the ruling power. This explains the reference in Luke 3:2. This power he retained for nearly fifty years, having had five sons in succession in the high priest's office. Our Lord was brought first before Annas on the night of his seizure. John 18:13; John 18:24. The guilt of Christ's crucifixion rests most upon Annas, since Pilate tried to shield him, and Caiaphas was but Annas' tool. Annas is mentioned as the president of the Sanhedrin, before whom Peter and John were brought. Acts 4:6.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Rice, Edwin Wilbur, DD. Entry for 'Annas'. People's Dictionary of the Bible. 1893.

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