23:35Abel . . . Zechariah. Abel was the first person to be killed for righteousness’ sake (Gen. 4:8). The identity of Zechariah is problematic, and all suggested solutions have difficulties. Zechariah the prophet was the “son of Barachiah,” but there is no evidence that he was martyred. There was a Zechariah, son of Baruch, who was killed by Zealots as mentioned by Josephus (Jewish Wars 4:334–44). He was killed in the temple area, but probably not between the sanctuary and the altar. Zechariah, son of Jehoiada, is the last martyr mentioned in the Old Testament in the Hebrew canonical order (2 Chr. 24:20–22). He was killed in the temple courtyard by command of Joash. If not for the words “son of Barachiah,” the Zechariah of 2 Chr. 24 would be most likely, since Abel and Zechariah are the first and last martyrs in the Hebrew canon. It is remotely possible that “son of Barachiah” was an insertion by an early copyist (Luke 11:51 does not have it).
whom you murdered. By persecuting Christ, the Pharisees became identified with their murderous ancestors.
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