International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
(1) A leader of the children of Ammon who was on several occasions severely defeated by Judas Maccabeus (1 Maccabees 5:6;, 34;; 2 Maccabees 8:30; 9:03; 10:24; 19:2, 18;) in 165-163 B.C. According to 2 Maccabees 10:37, he was slain at Gazara after having hidden in a cistern. But in 2 Maccabees 12:2 he is again at liberty as an opponent of the Jews, and in 12:24 he falls into the hands of Dositheus and Sosipater, but by representing that many Jewish captives were at his mercy and likely to suffer if he were put to death, he is again released. These discrepancies are so great-though not unusual in 2 Maccabees-that some suppose another Timotheus is referred to in 12:2;. He is most probably the same person, the careless author of 2 Maccabees making a slip in saying Timotheus was killed at Gazara. He probably escaped by hiding in the cistern. The Greek name for an Ammonite leader is striking:
(a) he may have been a genuine Ammonite with a Greek name, or
(b) a Syro-Macedonian officer placed by Syrian authority over the Ammonites, or
(c) a Greek soldier of fortune invited by the Ammonites to be their commander.
(2) See next article.