Historical background of the New Testament
Most scholars who study the Historical Jesus and Early Christianity believe that the Canonical Gospels and life of Jesus must be viewed as firmly placed within his historical and cultural context, rather than purely in terms of Christian orthodoxy. They look at the ""forces"" such as the Oral Gospel tradition which were in play regarding the Jewish culture at that time, and the tensions, trends, and changes in the region under the influence of Hellenism and the Roman occupation. Thus, the cultural and historical context of Jesus is that of 1st century Galilee and Roman Judea, and the traditions of Second Temple Judaism.By Pompey's 64 BCE siege of Jerusalem, the partially Hellenized territory had come under Roman imperial rule, with the rise of the Herodian family, as a valued crossroads to trading territories and buffer state against the Parthian Empire. Beginning in 6 CE, with the discredit and fall of Herod's son Archelaus, Roman prefects were appointed whose first duty to Rome was to maintain order through a political appointee the High Priest. After the uprising by Judas the Galilean, during the Census of Quirinius (6 CE) and before Pilate (26 CE), in general, Roman Judea was troubled but self-managed, and occasional riots, sporadic rebellions, and violent resistance were an ongoing risk. Throughout the third quarter of the first century, the conflict between the Jews and the Romans gave rise to increasing tensions. Before the end of the third quarter of the first century, these tensions culminated with the first Jewish-Roman War and the destruction of the Second Temple in Jerusalem. This war effectively flattened Jerusalem, though there is a possibility that the Cenacle survived, and the city was later renamed as a Roman settlement (Aelia Capitolina) from which Jews were forbidden to live; resulting in the loss of records that relate to early Christianity in Jerusalem.