Antiochus Epiphanes became king in the year one hundred and thirty seven of the kingdom of the Greeks. We tend to forget that the Bible stories are part of world history, that the action and plan of God does not occur in a vacuum but in the real situations in which people find themselves. The Book of Maccabees reports on incidents that followed the death of Alexander the Great. His generals split up his empire and, in what we refer to as 175BC, a new king ruled over the area that included Judea. When the Persians ruled, they practiced religious toleration. This new king wanted everyone to practice the same religious — his — as a source of national unity. This plan proved anything but unifying. It provoked a revolt. I wonder if this Biblical example can serve as a warning to us in the United States. Separation of Church and State has helped to keep our nation united. Calls to impose someone’s idea of true religion will lead to a similar fracturing of society.