Flavius Josephus (37 - 100 AD) was a Jewish historian and soldier initially fighting Roman occupation of Judaea, but later became a favored and prominent writer. His historical works are among the most valuable sources for the study of early Judaism and Christianity. At the beginning of the war between the Romans and Jews, he was made commander of Galilee, despite the fact that he had opposed the uprising.
He surrendered to the Romans instead of committing suicide when the stronghold was taken. He won the favor of the Roman general Vespasian (Titus Flavius Vespasianus) and took his name, Flavius. He lived in Rome under imperial patronage, where he wrote his now vital historical treatments. He is often referenced as being one of the earliest contemporary sources to discuss Jesus Christ, and the subject of much debate on theology and historical perspective.
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Josephus is the only first century non-Christian writer who makes reference to Jesus' life, teachings and death.