Sadducees

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Next to the Pharisees, the Sadducees were the most prominent sect of the Jews. The Pharisees made proselytes, but the Sadducees were much more exclusive, and therefore remained fewer in number. They did not believe in the resurrection, nor in angels, nor in spirits: they held that the soul perished with the body (Matt. 22:2323The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him, (Matthew 22:23); Acts 4:1-21And as they spake unto the people, the priests, and the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees, came upon them, 2Being grieved that they taught the people, and preached through Jesus the resurrection from the dead. (Acts 4:1‑2); Acts 23:88For the Sadducees say that there is no resurrection, neither angel, nor spirit: but the Pharisees confess both. (Acts 23:8)). Though strict in regard to the written law of Moses, they repudiated the traditions of the elders, or what is called the oral law. They believed that God punished a man’s sins during his life, and that man’s will was free, and he had power to restrain his passions. In consequence of this they were severe judges. The Lord Jesus warned His disciples against their doctrines, and denounced them as the “offspring of vipers.” The tenets of the modern rationalists have much in common with the Sadducees.