“Triple Hardened” What’s In A Name?

From Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet, Juliet says,
“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet.”

There is No Other Name Sweeter than the name of Yeshua, Jesus. His name means Salvation. He IS Salvation to All that come under His Lordship. Someday, those who call Him LORD and those who don’t will “bend their knee, bow and confess Jesus IS LORD to the Glory of Father God.

Philippians 2:9-11 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

There are other names in the Bible that have less appealing meanings and often reflect that person’s character, the essence of that person.

While reading daily devotionals from the Book of Acts recently I thought about checking the Strong’s meaning of an unusual name.
Acts 24:1-2a And after five days Ananias the high priest descended with the elders, and with a certain orator named Tertullus, who informed the governor against Paul. 2 And when he was called forth, Tertullus began to accuse him,

The name Tertullus is used only these 2 times in scripture,
Strong’s – Tertullus – G5061 a Roman: – Tertullus
Thayer’s Definition – “triple hardened”

Triple Hardened??? When I see anything about “THREE” in scripture I pay close attention for clues of deeper revelation. Tertullus is a triply hardened, hard nosed prosecuting attorney, a hired gun, out to get the Apostle Paul. Tertullus is an ‘orator.” You might say he’s a “Silver Tongued Devil,” having or exhibiting the power of fluent and persuasive speech; very eloquent. Google had next to nothing about him but “Orator” also is used only 2 times in scripture, this time and in Isaiah 3:3

KJV – 3 The captain of fifty, and the honourable man, and the counsellor, and the cunning artificer, and the eloquent orator. Orator – H3908 – in (a bad sense) an incantation; concretely an amulet

The NKJV makes it more evident that an orator is not always a good thing,  v3b The counselor and the skillful artisan,
And the expert enchanter.

Brown-Driver-Briggs’ Definition of Orator- whispering, charming a. serpent-charming b. charms, amulets (worn by women) c. whisper (of prayer)

Then as I read further along a 2nd name caught my attention and I wanted to know more about Drusilla mentioned in Acts 24:24

The Bible is the MOST edited book ever written. All scripture is inspired by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit Himself is that Editor. Nothing is in it by chance. Jewish rabbis say that in Heaven, even the spaces between the letters will be explained to us. So precisely is the use and placing of each letter, it’s provable. The genealogy of King David to Ruth & Boaz is hidden in Genesis chapter 38, written hundreds of years before. Hidden at a spacing of 49 (7×7) letter intervals and in chronological order. This 1 minute 38 second video shows that. Coincidence??? They DON”T Exist. In the parable of the “Good Samaritan” in verse 31, Jesus says, “And by Chance” Chance here is G4795 – From a compound of G4862 to light or happen; from the base of G2962

G4862 – that is by association companionship process resemblance possession – beside with
G2962 – kurios (supremacy); supreme in authority that is (as noun) controller;

Things always happen in sight of the eyes of God, the “Supreme Authority”

Acts 24:24-25 And after certain days, when Felix came with his wife Drusilla, which was a Jewess, he sent for Paul, and heard him concerning the faith in Christ. 25 Now as he reasoned about righteousness, self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix was afraid and answered, “Go away for now; when I have a convenient time I will call for you.” 26 Meanwhile he also hoped that money would be given him by Paul, that he might release him. Therefore he sent for him more often and conversed with him.

It sounds like through Paul’s preaching, the Holy Spirit ministered exactly as Jesus said He would in John’s gospel, revealing to Felix his need for repentance, redemption and salvation. The KJV says, “Felix trembled” at the revelation brought to him by the Holy Spirit but his “love of money” got in the way of repentance, redemption and salvation.

John 16:8-11 8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9 Of sin, because they believe not on me; 10 Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; 11 Of judgment,because the prince of this world is judged.

The Holy Spirit ministered in 3 ways to him but Felix refused the 3 Gifts of The Holy Spirit and chose greed instead.

The name Drusilla is used only this 1 time in all scripture,
Strong’s – Drusilla – G1409 a feminine of Drusus (a Roman name), a member of the Herodian family:
Thayer’s Definition –1. “watered by the dew” a. the daughter of Agrippa the elder, wife of Felix, the governor of Judaea, a most licentious woman
(Licentious – promiscuous and unprincipled in sexual matters).

So my interest was to find out more about this Jewish woman, Drusilla, who was married to Felix, was known as a promiscuous woman, and that for 2 years probably spoke to the Apostle Paul frequently, (Acts 24:26-27).

Most Christians will remember Herod in the Bible spoken of at Jesus’ birth and after His resurrection. A little history of the Herodian dynasty was helpful in putting together the pieces of this puzzle. There are a number of Herod’s in this dynasty and easy to mix them up.

The names “Herod and Agrippa” have similar Strong’s and Thayer’s definitions, and show a huge measure of “Pride,” ALWAYS a sin in the Bible.
Herod is Strong’s – G2264 – Compound of “a hero and heroic”
Agrippa is Strong’s – G67 – “wild-horse tamer”
Thayer’s Definition – “Hero Like”

The Herodian dynasty, beginning with Herod the Great, was a royal dynasty of Idumaean (Edomite) descent, they ruled the Herodian Kingdom and later the Herodian Tetrarchy, when it was divided between his sons as a Tetrarchy, which lasted for about 10 years as vassals (a holder of land on conditions of homage and allegiance) of the Roman Empire.

After Israel and Judah split as one nation in 930 BCE, about 2900 years ago, Judah was as an independent kingdom for only about 300 years. Judah was sometimes called Judaea, it’s original Latin form, by the Romans, who entered Jerusalem in 63 BC. It was to distinguish it from the geographical region of Judea (blue on map), which incorporated the regions of Judea, Samaria and Idumea, and extended over parts of the former regions of the Hasmonean and Herodian kingdoms of Judea.

Herodian_Kingdom

The Herodian dynasty lasted for about 129 years, beginning with Herod the Great at 37 BCE to 92 CE when the last Herodian monarch, Herod Agrippa II died and Rome assumed full power over his “de jure” (lawful) domain.

The ones related to this subject I’m writing are about the last two lines of this family tree.

Herod Family Tree 1

Herod Agrippa I, also known as Herod or Agrippa I (b.11 BC – d.44 AD), was a King of Judea from 41 to 44 AD, the Apostle Paul’s time, (Not the Herod that killed all the boy childs at Jesus’ birth). Probably close to 3 YEARS because of the way the length of kings reigns are determined. He was the last ruler with the royal title reigning over Judea and the father of Herod Agrippa II, the last King from the Herodian dynasty. He was the grandson of Herod the Great (who had 5 wives) and son of Aristobulus IV and Berenice, Herod Agrippa I is mentioned in the Acts of the Apostles 12:1 who died a violent death as described in this verse,

Acts 12:21-23 21 So on a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat on his throne and gave an oration to them. 22 And the people kept shouting, “The voice of a god and not of a man!” 23 Then immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he did not give glory to God. And he was eaten by worms and died.

The wife of Herod Agrippa I was Cyprus (Cypros), by her he had a son and three daughters. They were:

Herod Agrippa II [b. 27/28 AD?-d. 93 AD?] became the eighth and final ruler from the Herodian family, but without any control of Judea. He was the fifth member of this dynasty to bear the title of king, but he reigned over territories outside of Judea only as a Roman client.

This Agrippa had a great intimacy with the historian Josephus, having supplied him with information for his history, Antiquities of the Jews. Josephus preserved two of the letters he received from him. According to Photius, Agrippa II died childless, at the age of seventy. He was the last prince from the House of Herod. He is the Agrippa Paul almost convinced to become a Christian.

Berenice [b. 28-after d. 81 AD], who first married Marcus Julius Alexander. After Marcus Julius died, she married her uncle Herod, king of Chalcis. She later lived with her brother Agrippa II, reputedly in an incestuous relationship. Finally, she married Polamo, king of Cilicia. Berenice also had a relationship with the Roman emperor Titus. A most licentious woman also.

Mariamne [b. 34- d. after 65 AD], She was betrothed by her father to Julius Archelaus.  Around 65 AD she left her husband and married Demetrius of Alexandria who was its Alabarch and had a son from him named Agrippinus

Drusilla [b. 38–d. 79 AD], as a young child her father had betrothed her to Julius Archelaus Epiphanes, her brother later annulled it after their father’s death and she 1st married Gaius Julius Azizus, the King of Emesa. Her 2nd marriage was to Antonius Felix, the procurator of Judaea, The Felix of the Book of Acts chapters 23, 24, & 25. Drusilla had 2 children from Felix, Marcus and a daughter, Antonia Clementiana. Drusilla and her son Marcus Antonius Agrippa died in Pompeii during the eruption of Vesuvius on 24th of August 79.

So in my interest was to find out more about this Jewish woman, Drusilla, that was married to a Gentile, Felix, and who had possibly spoke to the Apostle Paul frequently over a 2 year period, (Acts 24:26-27)

Dursilla was six years of age at the time of her father’s violent death in 44 AD. Before his death her father had betrothed her to Gaius Julius Archelaus Antiochus Epiphanes, a Gentile, with a stipulation from her father that Epiphanes should embrace the Jewish religion, and be circumcised. The prince in the end refused to abide by his promise to do so, and the marriage had still not been contracted on her father’s death.

Jewish Antiquities, xx.7.1, Josephus writes, The death of Agrippa I:
“ …the inhabitants of Caesarea and of Sebaste forgot the kindnesses he had bestowed on them, and acted the part of the bitterest enemies; for they cast such reproaches upon the deceased as are not fit to be spoken of; and so many of them as were then soldiers, which were a great number, went to his house, and hastily carried off the statues of [Agrippa I]’s daughters, and all at once carried them into the brothels, and when they had set them on the brothel roofs, they abused them to the utmost of their power, and did such things to them as are too indecent to be related. They also laid themselves down in public places, and celebrated general feastings, with garlands on their heads, and with ointments and libations to Charon, and drinking to one another for joy that the king was expired, not only unmindful of Agrippa, who had extended his liberality to them in abundance, but also of his grandfather Herod the Great, who had himself rebuilt their cities, and had raised them havens and temples at vast expense.”

Once Drusilla’s brother, Herod Agrippa II, had been assigned the tetrachy of Herod Philip I, around 49/50, he broke off her engagement to Epiphanes and gave her in marriage to Gaius Julius Azizus, Priest King of Emesa (Emesa means “Horns”), who in order to obtain her hand, consented to be circumcised.

Marcus Antonius Felix met Drusilla, probably at her brother’s court (Berenice, the elder sister, lived with her brother at this time, and thus Drusilla probably did too). Felix was struck by the great beauty of Drusilla, and determined to make her his (second) wife. Felix’s 1st wife’s name was Drusilla also. In order to persuade Drusilla, a practicing Jew, to divorce her Jewish husband and marry him, a pagan, he took the following steps, that did not include converting to Judaism and circumcision.

Josephus, Jewish Antiquities, xx.7.2 “ While Felix was procurator of Judea, he saw this Drusilla, and fell in love with her; for she did indeed exceed all other women in beauty; and he sent to her a person whose name was Simon (Note: in some manuscripts, Atomos), a Jewish friend of his, by birth a Cypriot, who pretended to be a magician. Simon endeavored to persuade her to forsake her present husband, and marry Felix; and promised, that if she would not refuse Felix, he would make her a happy woman. Accordingly she acted unwisely and, because she longed to avoid her sister Berenice’s envy (for Drusilla was very ill-treated by Berenice because of Drusilla’s beauty) was prevailed upon to transgress the laws of her forefathers, and to marry Felix.

Drusilla, a practising Jewish Princess, had to have been “bewitched” to marry a Roman procurator and a Gentile who was certainly not about to be circumcised. But how hard was it for Simon the Magician to bewitch Drusilla with her licentious upbringing since her childhood and with the perverted examples of her older brother Agrippa II and Bernice’s relationship. Simon too was probably a “Silver Tongued Devil,” having or exhibiting the power of fluent and persuasive speech; very eloquent but in a perverted sort of way. Simon claimed to be a magician, practising the art of “charming and enchanting” his target, this time it was Drusilla. Her marriage to the Roman governor must have seemed the ultimate betrayal of the hopes of a people under an increasingly severe Roman occupation.

In Acts and the letters of Paul, a major problem the disciples kept facing was the issue of circumcision for Gentile converts. Amazingly at this very time, the THREE daughters of Herod Agrippa I, Bernice, Mariamne VII, and Drusilla were experiencing the very same problem.

Drusilla was about twenty-two years of age when she appeared at Felix’s side, during St. Paul’s captivity at Caesarea – Acts 24:24 reports her thus: “Several days later Felix came [back into court] with his wife Drusilla, who was a Jewess.” Acts gives no further information on her subsequent life, though Josephus states that they had a son named Marcus Antonius Agrippa and a daughter Antonia Clementiana.

Why the name Tertullus, “Triple Hardened” drew my attention is becoming clearer to me. It was a hint of the Hard Hearted condition of 3 very prominent siblings of the Jewish culture at that time.

Many times in scripture we are told of the relationships between parents, brothers, sisters, and cousins. For some reason the Holy Spirit withholds this information in these 3 chapters of 3 royal siblings. The Apostle Paul certainly had to know this and I can only imagine the efforts Paul put forth to see these 3 siblings, children of Abraham, come to accept Yeshua Jesus Christ as their Redeemer, Savior and LORD. It’s not so long ago that Paul was spiritually blind to the truth of who Jesus Christ really was. I can almost imagine Paul, in his own way pleading the case for these children of Abraham to do as the words of this song say,

Something in your eyes I see
Reminds me of what used to be
When I was still uncertain of the truth
Sleepless nights that turned to days
Alone inside an endless space
Counting on someone to see me through
And if there’s one thing I know
It’s that you were never left alone
‘Cause you can always call on Jesus’ name
And if there’s one thing I pray
It’s that Jesus helps you find a way
To make a change and listen to your heart
God will take away your pain
If you choose to let it go
If there’s one thing I know
How can I convince your heart?
His light can find you in the dark
And only He can make your blind eyes see
For if we speak of lost things found
Or lives that have been turned around
Then tell me Who knows better child THAN ME!!!
I would never stake my life on any lesser thing
than the Cross of Christ, where He gave His life,
to ease my suffering. Sounds like Galatians 6:14

 

So after reading and learning these things about Drusilla, Acts 24 closes with Felix meeting with his successor, Porcius Festus,

Acts 24:27  But after two years Porcius Festus came into Felix’ room: and Felix, willing to shew the Jews a pleasure, left Paul bound.

When I got to Acts 25 I read this,

Acts 25: 13,23 13 And after some days King Agrippa and Bernice came to Caesarea to greet Festus.
23 So the next day, when Agrippa and Bernice had come with great pomp, and had entered the auditorium with the commanders and the prominent men of the city, at Festus’ command Paul was brought in.

Now we meet a new woman, Bernice, accompanying King Agrippa. Amazingly the Bible never says that she is the sister of King Agrippa II or elder sister of Drusilla.

Strong’s Bernice – G959 – “victorious”
Thayer’s Definition – “bring victory”

Berenice (daughter of Herod Agrippa I), Berenice of Cilicia, also known as Julia Berenice and sometimes spelled Bernice (28 AD – after 81), was a Jewish client queen of the Roman Empire during the second half of the 1st century. Berenice was a member of the Herodian Dynasty that ruled the Roman province of Judaea between 39 BC and 92 AD. She was the daughter of King Herod Agrippa I and a sister of King Herod Agrippa II.

Acts 26:28-32 28 Then Agrippa said to Paul, “You almost persuade me to become a Christian.”
29 And Paul said, “I would to God that not only you, but also all who hear me today, might become both almost and altogether such as I am, except for these chains.”
30 When he had said these things, the king stood up, as well as the governor and Bernice and those who sat with them; 31 and when they had gone aside, they talked among themselves, saying, “This man is doing nothing deserving of death or chains.”
32 Then Agrippa said to Festus, “This man might have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar.”

Drusilla isn’t mentioned in this passage. Maybe she is living in Pompeii. Maybe she has already died there, I didn’t search to find the years Paul spoke to them in Caesarea.

So “What’s In A Name?” A LOT if it’s the Name Above Every Other Name!!!
In John chapter 17 Jesus speaks repeatedly about “The Father’s Name.” Jesus came and revealed the character, the essence of our Dear Heavenly Father’s Name and in that, His essence and that of the Holy Spirit. The essence of something DOESN’T CHANGE!!! The God of what people called the Old Testament is the same God of the New Testament. The Bible is simply The Word of God the Holy Spirit gave to us. He didn’t need to mellow out in His old age and reform His ways like many of us humans need to do if we get to live long enough.

John 17:6-12, 25-26 “I have (made known) manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word. 7 Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You. 8 For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me.

9 “I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours. 10 And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them. 11 Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are. 12 While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name.

25 O righteous Father! The world has not known You, but I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me. 26 And I have declared to them Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”

In these words of Jesus, He speaks of praying NOT for the world but FOR THOSE given to Him by Father God. In other passages Jesus tells some they are children of the Satan. The Apostle Paul and John say such things also. In a broad sense we are ALL children of God with the potential of becoming a Son of God. This article goes deeper into that subject according to scriptures relating to it.

Jesus through the immaculate conception of the Holy Spirit in Mary took on flesh and became the “First Born Son of God”

Jesus did say clearly how we can become His brother and thus a true “Child of God”

Luke 8:21 KJVS
And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.

Romans 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

For every other human ever born on earth, the way to becoming a true Son of God hasn’t changed. The Holy Spirit brings and births the Spirit of God in that person to abide within them, work in them to conform them into the image of Jesus and work through them to accomplish God’s work on earth. Being a “Born Again with God’s Spirit Christian” is VERY MUCH a SuperNatural Event. It is a Free Gift offered to All humanity. In Sarah Liberman’s video of “Stronger,” she “Lifts Up” the name above every name, Yeshua to the faces from all around the world. It’s a touching and amazing video of the Mercy and Grace Jesus brought to the Earth.

As with Felix, Agrippa II and his sisters Bernice and Drusilla, the Holy Spirit comes to all people to minister the 3 Gifts of Repentance, Redemption and Salvation. Individually, as they had the opportunity to chose or reject these precious gifts.

If you are not there yet my prayer to you come from the words of Selah’s song. Selah means, “ponder, think about it”

I pray that Jesus helps you find a way
To make a change and listen to your heart
God will take away your pain
If you choose to let it go

Trying to repent through just our own effort is not a good thing as is anything else done without Seeking God about it or having the leading of the Holy Spirit to do it. If we could have worked or earned our redemption, Jesus would not have had to suffer and die the cruel and painful death He did. Derek Prince was a mighty man of God in teaching the Word of God. In this video posted today on Youtube, he explains what “True Repentance” is and explains that “True Faith” only comes AFTER “True Repentance.” Please listen to it until the end, he explains that the most significant moment in any person’s life is “the moment when Father God begins to deal with you about repenting. There is NO Guarantee that God will ever deal with you about repenting again.”

True vs False Repentance – Derek Prince

Salvation is NOT a thing, He is a person who’s Name IS Jesus. It’s one of the reasons that,

God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Philippians 2:9-11
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William Booth (10 April 1829 – 20 August 1912) Founder of “The Salvation Army”

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