Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

SADDUCEES

A small group in Jewish society, contemporaneous with Christ, who attracted to their ranks rich, educated, and conservative Jews. In religion, they supported only doctrines that they found in written law. The Pharisees indulged in constant controversy with them over oral and unwritten tradition. The Sadducees were well treated by the Roman government because they supported the established order. Because they had substantial representation in the Sanhedrin, they exercised an influence out of proportion to their numbers in Temple affairs and ceremonies. In one significant activity the Sadducees and the Pharisees were united: ridiculing and denouncing Jesus and his teaching. Frequently they challenged or baited him in his public appearances. John the Baptist called them "a brood of vipers" (Matthew 3:7). Jesus denounced both groups, warning his followers against their false teachings (Matthew 16:12). The Sadducees persisted in their anti-Christian persecution; for instance, they had Peter and John arrested for spreading word of Jesus' resurrection (Acts 4). Their numbers and influence waned as the first century moved along. Little was heard of them after the destruction of the Temple in the year 70. (Etym. Greek saddukaioi, popular meaning "righteous.")

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Faith of the Fatherless: The Psychology of Atheism 11 hours ago
Relax; the Pope didn't change Church teaching with a phone call 13 hours ago
Round Trip to the present moment: a Catholic jazz artist's latest offering April 22
Easter with the Pope April 21
Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - April 20
Pope Francis's Easter Message 'Urbi et Orbi' (To the City and the World): full text, link to video CWN - April 20