Part 26 out of 29
throne of my ancestors, and have gotten the dominion, and have
overthrown Demetrius and possessed our country,
10:53. And have joined battle with him, and both he and his army have
been destroyed by us, and we are placed in the throne of his kingdom:
10:54. Now, therefore, let us make friendship one with another: and
give me now thy daughter to wife, and I will be thy son in law, and I
will give both thee and her gifts worthy of thee.
10:55. And king Ptolomee answered, saying: Happy is the day wherein
thou didst return to the land of thy fathers, and sattest in the throne
of their kingdom.
10:56. And now I will do to thee as thou hast written but meet me at
Ptolemais, that we may see one another, and I may give her to thee as
thou hast said.
10:57. So Ptolemee went out of Egypt, with Cleopatra his daughter, and
he came to Ptolemais, in the hundred and sixty-second year.
10:58. And king Alexander met him, and he gave him his daughter,
Cleopatra: and he celebrated her marriage at Ptolemais with great
glory, after the manner of kings.
10:59. And king Alexander wrote to Jonathan, that he should come and
10:60. And he went honourably to Ptolemais, and he met there the two
kings, and he gave them much silver, and gold, and presents: and he
found favour in their sight.
10:61. And some pestilent men of Israel, men of a wicked life,
assembled themselves against him, to accuse him: and the king gave no
heed to them.
10:62. And he commanded that Jonathan's garments should be taken off,
and that he should be clothed with purple: and they did so. And the
king made him sit by himself.
10:63. And he said to his princes: Go out with him into the midst of
the city, and make proclamation, that no man complain against him of
any matter, and that no man trouble him for any manner of cause.
10:64. So when his accusers saw his glory proclaimed, and him clothed
with purple, they all fled away.
10:65. And the king magnified him, and enrolled him amongst his chief
friends, and made him governor, and partaker of his dominion.
10:66. And Jonathan returned into Jerusalem with peace and joy.
10:67. In the year one hundred and sixty-five, Demetrius, the son of
Demetrius, came from Crete into the land of his fathers.
10:68. And king Alexander heard of it, and was much troubled, and
returned to Antioch.
10:69. And king Demetrius made Apollonius his general, who was governor
of Celesyria: and he gathered together a great army, and came to
Jamnia: and he sent to Jonathan, the high priest,
10:70. Saying: Thou alone standest against us, and I am laughed at and
reproached, because thou shewest thy power against us in the mountains.
10:71. Now, therefore, if thou trustest in thy forces, come down to us
into the plain, and there let us try one another: for with me is the
strength of war.
10:72. Ask, and learn who I am, and the rest that help me, who also say
that your foot cannot stand before our face, for thy fathers have twice
been put to flight in their own land:
10:73. And now how wilt thou be able to abide the horsemen, and so
great an army in the plain, where there is no stone, nor rock, nor
place to flee to?
10:74. Now when Jonathan heard the words of Apollonius, he was moved in
his mind: and he chose ten thousand men, and went out of Jerusalem, and
Simon, his brother, met him to help him.
10:75. And they pitched their tents near Joppe, but they shut him out
of the city: because a garrison of Apollonius was in Joppe, and he laid
siege to it.
10:76. And they that were in the city being affrighted, opened the
gates to him: so Jonathan took Joppe.
10:77. And Apollonius heard of it, and he took three thousand horsemen,
and a great army.
10:78. And he went to Azotus, as one that was making a journey, and
immediately he went forth into the plain: because he had a great number
of horsemen, and he trusted in them. And Jonathan followed after him to
Azotus, and they joined battle.
10:79. And Apollonius left privately in the camp a thousand horsemen
10:80. And Jonathan knew that there was an ambush behind him, and they
surrounded his army, and cast darts at the people from morning till
10:81. But the people stood still, as Jonathan had commanded them: and
so their horses were fatigued.
10:82. Then Simon drew forth his army, and attacked the legion: for the
horsemen were wearied: and they were discomfited by him, and fled.
10:83. And they that were scattered about the plain fled into Azotus,
and went into Bethdagon, their idol's temple, there to save themselves.
10:84. But Jonathan set fire to Azotus, and the cities that were round
about it, and took the spoils of them and the temple of Dagon: and all
them that were fled into it, he burnt with fire.
10:85. So they that were slain by the sword, with them that were burnt,
were almost eight thousand men.
10:86. And Jonathan, removed his army from thence and camped against
Ascalon: and they went out of the city to meet him with great honour.
10:87. And Jonathan returned into Jerusalem with his people, having
10:88. And it came to pass, when Alexander, the king heard these words,
that he honoured Jonathan yet more.
10:89. And he sent him a buckle of gold, as the custom is, to be given
to such as are of the royal blood. And he gave him Accaron, and all the
borders thereof, in possession.
1 Machabees Chapter 11
Ptolemee invades the kingdom of Alexander: the latter is slain: and the
former dies soon after. Demetrius honours Jonathan, and is rescued by
the Jews from his own subjects in Antioch. Antiochus the younger
favours Jonathan. His exploits in divers places.
11:1. And the king of Egypt gathered together an army, like the sand
that lieth upon the sea shore, and many ships: and he sought to get the
kingdom of Alexander by deceit, and join it to his own kingdom.
11:2. And he went out into Syria with peaceable words and they opened
to him the cities, and met him: for king Alexander had ordered them to
go forth to meet him, because he was his father in law.
11:3. Now when Ptolemee entered into the cities, he put garrisons of
soldiers in every city.
11:4. And when he came near to Azotns, they shewed him the temple of
Dagon that was burnt with fire, and Azotus, and the suburbs thereof,
that were destroyed, and the bodies that were cast abroad, and the
graves of them that were slain in the battle, which they had made near
11:5. And they told the king that Jonathan had done these things, to
make him odious: but the king held his peace.
11:6. And Jonathan came to meet the king at Joppe with glory, and they
saluted one another, and they lodged there.
11:7. And Jonathan went with the king as far as the river, called
Eleutherus: and he returned into Jerusalem.
11:8. And king Ptolemee got the dominion of the cities by the sea side,
even to Seleucia, and he devised evil designs against Alexander.
11:9. And he sent ambassadors to Demetrius, saying: Come, let us make a
league between us, and I will give thee my daughter whom Alexander
hath, and thou shalt reign in the kingdom of thy father.
11:10. For I repent that I have given him my daughter: for he hath
sought to kill me.
11:11. And he slandered him, because he coveted his kingdom,
11:12. And he took away his daughter, and gave her to Demetrius, and
alienated himself from Alexander, and his enmities were made manifest.
11:13. And Ptolemee entered into Antioch, and set two crowns upon his
head, that of Egypt, and that of Asia.
11:14. Now king Alexander was in Cilicia at that time: because they
that were in those places had rebelled.
11:15. And when Alexander heard of it, he came to give him battle: and
king Ptolemee brought forth his army, and met him with a strong power,
and put him to flight.
11:16. And Alexander fled into Arabia, there to be protected: and king
Ptolemee was exalted.
11:17. And Zabdiel the Arabian took off Alexander's head, and sent it
11:18. And king Ptolemee died the third day after: and they that were
in the strong holds were destroyed by them that were within the camp.
11:19. And Demetrius reigned in the hundred and sixty-seventh year.
11:20. In those days Jonathan gathered together them that were in
Judea, to take the castle that was in Jerusalem: and they made many
engines of war against it.
11:21. Then some wicked men that hated their own nation, went away to
king Demetrius, and told him that Jonathan was besieging the castle.
11:22. And when he heard it, he was angry: and forthwith he came to
Ptolemais, and wrote to Jonathan that he should not besiege the castle,
but should come to him in haste, and speak to him.
11:23. But when Jonathan heard this, he bade them besiege it still: and
he chose some of the ancients of Israel, and of the priests, and put
himself in danger
11:24. And he took gold, and silver, and raiment, and many other
presents, and went to the king to Ptolemais and he found favour in his
11:25. And certain wicked men of his nation made complaints against
11:26. And the king treated him as his predecessors had done before:
and he exalted him in the sight of all his friends.
11:27. And he confirmed him in the high priesthood and all the honours
he had before, and he made him the chief of his friends.
11:28. And Jonathan requested of the king that he would make Judea free
from tribute, and the three governments, and Samaria, and the confines
thereof: and he promised him three hundred talents.
11:29. And the king consented: and he wrote letters to Jonathan of all
these things, to this effect.
11:30. King Demetrius to his brother, Jonathan, and to the nation of
the Jews, greeting.
11:31. We send you here a copy of the letter which we have written to
Lasthenes, our parent, concerning you, that you might know it.
11:32. King Demetrius to Lasthenes, his parent, greetings.
11:33. We have determined to do good to the nation of the Jews, who are
our friends, and keep the things that are just with us, for their good
will which they bear towards us.
11:34. We have ratified, therefore, unto them all the borders of Judea,
and the three cities, Apherema, Lydda, and Ramatha, which are added to
Judea, out of Samaria, and all their confines, to be set apart to all
them that sacrifice in Jerusalem, instead of the payments which the
king received of them every year, and for the fruits of the land, and
of the trees.
Apherema. . .is found only in the Greek version.
11:35. And as for other things that belonged to us of the tithes, and
of the tributes, from this time we discharge them of them: the saltpans
also, and the crowns that were presented to us.
11:36. We give all to them, and nothing hereof shall be revoked from
this time forth and for ever.
11:37. Now, therefore, see that thou make a copy of these things, and
let it be given to Jonathan, and set upon the holy mountain, in a
11:38. And king Demetrius, seeing that the land was quiet before him,
and nothing resisted him, sent away all his forces, every man to his
own place, except the foreign army, which he had drawn together from
the islands of the nations: so all the troops of his fathers hated him.
11:39. Now there was one Tryphon who had been of Alexander's party
before: who seeing that all the army murmured against Demetrius, went
to Emalchuel, the Arabian, who brought up Antiochus, the son of
11:40. And he pressed him much to deliver him to him, that he might be
king in his father's place: and he told him all that Demetrius had
done, and how his soldiers hated him. And he remained there many days.
11:41. And Jonathan sent to king Demetrius, desiring that he would cast
out them that were in the castle in Jerusalem, and those that were in
the strong holds: because they fought against Israel.
11:42. And Demetrius sent to Jonathan, saying: I will not only do this
for thee, and for thy people, but I will greatly honour thee, and thy
nation, when opportunity shall serve.
11:43. Now, therefore, thou shalt do well if thou send me men to help
me: for all my army is gone from me.
11:44. And Jonathan sent him three thousand valiant men to Antioch: and
they came to the king, and the king was very glad of their coming.
11:45. And they that were of the city assembled themselves together, to
the number of a hundred and twenty thousand men, and would have killed
11:46. And the king fled into the palace: and they of the city kept the
passages of the city, and began to fight.
11:47. And the king called the Jews to his assistance: and they came to
him all at once, and they all dispersed themselves through the city.
11:48. And they slew in that day a hundred thousand men, and they set
fire to the city, and got many spoils that day, and delivered the king.
11:49. And they that were of the city saw that the Jews had got the
city as they would: and they were discouraged in their mind, and cried
to the king, making supplication, and saying
1:50. Grant us peace, and let the Jews cease from assaulting us, and
11:51. And they threw down their arms, and made peace, and the Jews
were glorified in the sight of the king, and in the sight of all that
were in his realm, and were renowned throughout the kingdom, and
returned to Jerusalem with many spoils.
11:52. So king Demetrius sat in the throne of his kingdom: and the land
was quiet before him.
11:53. And he falsified all whatsoever he had said, and alienated
himself from Jonathan, and did not reward him according to the benefits
he had received from him, but gave him great trouble.
11:54. And after this Tryphon returned, and with him Antiochus, the
young boy, who was made king, and put on the diadem.
11:55. And there assembled unto him all the hands which Demetrius had
sent away, and they fought against Demetrius who turned his back and
11:56. And Tryphon took the elephants, and made himself master of
11:57. And young Antiochus wrote to Jonathan, saying: I confirm thee in
the high priesthood, and I appoint thee ruler over the four cities, and
to be one of the king's friends.
11:58. And he sent him vessels of gold for his service, and he gave him
leave to drink in gold, and to be clothed in purple, and to wear a
11:59. And he made his brother, Simon, governor, from the borders of
Tyre even to the confines of Egypt.
11:60. Then Jonathan went forth, and passed through the cities beyond
the river, and all the forces of Syria gathered themselves to him to
help him, and he came to Ascalon, and they met him honourably out of
11:61. And he went from thence to Gaza: and they that were in Gaza shut
him out: and he besieged it, and burnt all the suburbs round about, and
took the spoils.
11:62. And the men of Gaza made supplication to Jonathan, and he gave
them the right hand: and he took their sons for hostages, and sent them
to Jerusalem: and he went through the country, as far as Damascus.
11:63. And Jonathan heard that the generals of Demetrius were come
treacherously to Cades, which is in Galilee, with a great army,
purposing to remove him from the affairs of the kingdom.
11:64. And he went against them: but left his brother, Simon, in the
11:65. And Simon encamped against Bethsura, and assaulted it many days,
and shut them up.
11:66. And they desired him to make peace, and he granted it them: and
he cast them out from thence, and took the city, and placed a garrison
11:67. And Jonathan and his army encamped by the water of Genesar, and
before it was light they were ready in the plain of Asor.
11:68. And behold the army of the strangers met him in the plain, and
they laid an ambush for him in the mountains: but he went out against
11:69. And they that lay in ambush rose out of their places, and joined
11:70. And all that were on Jonathan's side fled, and none was left of
them, but Mathathias, the son of Absalom, and Judas, the son of Calphi,
chief captain of the army.
11:71. And Jonathan rent his garments, and cast earth upon his head,
11:72. And Jonathan turned again to them to battle, and he put them to
flight, and they fought.
11:73. And they of his part that fled saw this, and they turned again
to him, and they all with him pursued the enemies, even to Cades, to
their own camp, and they came even thither.
11:74. And there fell of the aliens in that day three thousand men: and
Jonathan returned to Jerusalem.
1 Machabees Chapter 12
Jonathan renews his league with the Romans and Lacedemonians. The
forces of Demetrius flee away from him. He is deceived and made
prisoner by Tryphon.
12:1. And Jonathan saw that the time served him, and he chose certain
men, and sent them to Rome, to confirm and to renew the amity with
12:2. And he sent letters to the Spartans, and to other places,
according to the same form.
12:3. And they went to Rome, and entered into the senate house, and
said: Jonathan, the high priest, and the nation of the Jews, have sent
us to renew the amity, and alliance, as it was before.
12:4. And they gave them letters to their governors in every place, to
conduct them into the land of Juda with peace.
12:5. And this is a copy of the letters which Jonathan wrote to the
12:6. Jonathan, the high priest, and the ancients of the nation, and
the priests, and the rest of the people of the Jews, to the Spartans,
their brethren, greeting.
12:7. There were letters sent long ago to Onias the high priest, from
Arius, who reigned then among you to signify that you are our brethren,
as the copy here underwritten doth specify.
12:8. And Onias received the ambassador with honour and received the
letters, wherein there was mention made of the alliance, and amity.
12:9. We, though we needed none of these things having for our comfort
the holy books that are in our hands,
12:10. Chose rather to send to you to renew the brotherhood and
friendship, lest we should become stranger to you altogether: for there
is a long time passed since you sent to us.
12:11. We, therefore, at all times without ceasing, both in our
festivals, and other days wherein it is convenient, remember you in the
sacrifices that we offer, and in our observances, as it is meet and
becoming to remember brethren.
12:12. And we rejoice at your glory.
12:13. But we have had many troubles and wars on every side; and the
kings that are round about us have fought against us.
12:14. But we would not be troublesome to you, nor to the rest of our
allies and friends, in these wars.
12:15. For we have had help from heaven, and we have been delivered,
and our enemies are humbled.
12:16. We have chosen, therefore, Numenius the son of Antiochus, and
Antipater, the son of Jason, and have sent them to the Romans, to renew
with them the former amity and alliance.
12:17. And we have commanded them to go also to you, and salute you,
and to deliver you our letters, concerning the renewing of our
12:18. And now you shall do well to give us an answer hereto.
12:19. And this is the copy of the letter which he had sent to Onias:
12:20. Arius, king of the Spartans, to Onias, the high priest,
12:21. It is found in writing concerning the Spartans, and the Jews,
that they are brethren, and that they are of the stock of Abraham.
12:22. And now since this is come to our knowledge, you do well to
write to us of your prosperity.
12:23. And we also have written back to you, That our cattle, and our
possessions, are yours: and yours, ours. We, therefore, have commanded
that these things should be told you.
12:24. Now Jonathan heard that the generals of Demetrius were come
again with a greater army than before to fight against him.
12:25. So he went out from Jerusalem, and met them in the land of
Amath: for he gave them no time to enter into his country.
12:26. And he sent spies into their camp, and they came back, and
brought him word that they designed to come upon them in the night.
12:27. And when the sun was set, Jonathan commanded his men to watch,
and to be in arms all night long ready to fight, and he set sentinels
round about the camp.
12:28. And the enemies heard that Jonathan and his men were ready for
battle: and they were struck with fear and dread in their heart: and
they kindled fires in their camp.
12:29. But Jonathan, and they that were with him, knew it not till the
morning: for they saw the lights burning.
12:30. And Jonathan pursued after them, but overtook them not: for they
had passed the river Eleutherus.
12:31. And Jonathan turned upon the Arabians, that are called
Zabadeans: and he defeated them, and took the spoils of them.
12:32. And he went forward, and came to Damascus, and passed through
all that country.
12:33. Simon also went forth, and came as far as Ascalon, and the
neighbouring fortresses, and he turned aside to Joppe, and took
possession of it,
12:34. (For he heard that they designed to deliver the hold to them
that took part with Demetrius) and he put a garrison there to keep it.
12:35. And Jonathan came back, and called together the ancients of the
people; and he took a resolution with them to build fortresses in
12:36. And to build up walls in Jerusalem, and raise a mount between
the castle and the city, to separate it from the city, that so it might
have no communication, and that they might neither buy nor sell.
12:37. And they came together to build up the city: for the wall that
was upon the brook, towards the east, was broken down, and he repaired
that which is called Caphetetha:
12:38. And Simon built Adiada in Sephela, and fortified it, and set up
gates and bars.
12:39. Now when Tryphon had conceived a design to make himself king of
Asia and to take the crown, and to stretch out his hand against king
12:40. Fearing lest Jonathan would not suffer him, but would fight
against him: he sought to seize upon him, and to kill him. So he rose
up and came to Bethsan.
12:41. And Jonathan went out to meet him with forty thousand men chosen
for battle, and came to Bethsan.
12:42. Now when Tryphon saw that Jonathan came with a great army, he
durst not stretch forth his hand against him.
12:43. But received him with honour, and commended him to all his
friends, and gave him presents: and he commanded his troops to obey
him, as himself.
12:44. And he said to Jonathan: Why hast thou troubled all the people,
whereas we have no war?
12:45. Now, therefore, send them back to their own houses: and choose
thee a few men that may be with thee, and come with me to Ptolemais,
and I will deliver it to thee, and the rest of the strong holds, and
the army, and all that have any charge, and I will return and go away:
for this is the cause of my coming.
12:46. And Jonathan believed him, and did as he said: and sent away his
army, and they departed into the land of Juda:
12:47. But he kept with him three thousand men: of whom he sent two
thousand into Galilee, and one thousand went with him.
12:48. Now as soon as Jonathan entered into Ptolemais, they of
Ptolemais shut the gates of the city, and took him: and all them that
came in with him they slew with the sword.
12:49. Then Tryphon sent an army and horsemen into Galilee, and into
the great plain, to destroy all Jonathan's company.
12:50. But they, when they understood that Jonathan, and all that were
with him, were taken and slain, encouraged one another, and went out
ready for battle.
12:51. Then they that had come after them, seeing that they stood for
their lives, returned back.
12:52. Whereupon they all came peaceably into the land of Juda and they
bewailed Jonathan, and them that had been with him, exceedingly: and
Israel mourned with great lamentation.
12:53. Then all the heathens that were round about them, sought to
destroy them. For they said:
12:54. They have no prince, nor any to help them: now therefore, let us
make war upon them, and take away the memory of them from amongst men.
1 Machabees Chapter 13
Simon is made captain general in the room of his brother. Jonathan is
slain by Tryphon. Simon is favoured by Demetrius: he taketh Gaza, and
the castle of Jerusalem.
13:1. Now Simon heard that Tryphon was gathering together a very great
army to invade the land of Juda, and to destroy it.
13:2. And seeing that the people was in dread and in fear, he went up
to Jerusalem, and assembled the people,
13:3. And exhorted them, saying: You know what great battles I and my
brethren, and the house of my father, have fought for the laws, and the
sanctuary, and the distresses that we have seen:
13:4. By reason whereof all my brethren have lost their lives for
Israel's sake, and I am left alone.
13:5. And now far be it from me to spare my life in any time of
trouble: for I am not better than my brethren.
13:6. I will avenge then my nation and the sanctuary, and our children,
and wives: for all the heathens are gathered together to destroy us out
of mere malice.
13:7. And the spirit of the people was enkindled as soon as they heard
13:8. And they answered with a loud voice, saying: Thou art our leader
in the place of Judas, and Jonathan, thy brother:
13:9. Fight thou our battles, and we will do whatsoever thou shalt say
13:10. So gathering together all the men of war, he made haste to
finish all the walls of Jerusalem, and he fortified it round about.
13:11. And he sent Jonathan, the son of Absalom, and with him a new
army, into Joppe, and he cast out them that were in it, and himself
13:12. And Tryphon removed from Ptolemais with a great army, to invade
the land of Juda, and Jonathan was with him in custody.
13:13. But Simon pitched in Addus, over against the plain.
13:14. And when Tryphon understood that Simon was risen up in the place
of his brother, Jonathan, and that he meant to join battle with him, he
sent messengers to him,
13:15. Saying: We have detained thy brother, Jonathan, for the money
that he owed in the king's account, by reason of the affairs which he
had the management of.
13:16. But now send a hundred talents of silver, and his two sons for
hostages, that when he is set at liberty he may not revolt from us, and
we will release him.
13:17. Now Simon knew that he spoke deceitfully to him; nevertheless,
he ordered the money and the children to be sent, lest he should bring
upon himself a great hatred of the people of Israel, who might have
13:18. Because he sent not the money and the children therefore is he
13:19. So he sent the children and the hundred talents and he lied, and
did not let Jonathan go.
13:20. And after this, Tryphon entered within the country, to destroy
it: and they went about by the way that leadeth to Ador: and Simon and
his army marched to every place whithersoever they went.
Simon and his army marched to every place whithersoever they
went. . .That is, whithersoever Tryphon and his horsemen went in order
to oppose them.
13:21. And they that were in the castle, sent messengers to Tryphon,
that he should make haste to come through the desert, and send them
13:22. And Tryphon made ready all his horsemen to come that night; but
there fell a very great snow, and he came not into the country of
13:23. And when he approached to Bascama, he slew Jonathan and his sons
13:24. And Tryphon returned, and went into his own country.
13:25. And Simon sent, and took the bones of Jonathan, his brother, and
buried them in Modin, the city of his fathers.
13:26. And all Israel bewailed him with great lamentation: and they
mourned for him many days.
13:27. And Simon built over the sepulchre of his father and of his
brethren, a building lofty to the sight, of polished stone, behind and
13:28. And he set up seven pyramids, one against another, for his
father, and his mother, and his four brethren:
13:29. And round about these he set great pillars; and upon the
pillars, arms, for a perpetual memory; and by the arms, ships carved,
which might be seen by all that sailed on the sea.
13:30. This is the sepulchre that he made in Modin, even unto this day.
13:31. But Tryphon, when he was upon a journey with the young king,
Antiochus, treacherously slew him.
13:32. And he reigned in his place, and put on the crown of Asia: and
brought great evils upon the land.
13:33. And Simon built up the strong holds of Judea, fortifying them
with high towers, and great walls, and gates and bars: and he stored up
victuals in the fortresses.
13:34. And Simon chose men, and sent to king Demetrius, to the end that
he should grant an immunity to the land; for all that Tryphon did, was
13:35. And king Demetrius, in answer to this request, wrote a letter in
13:36. King Demetrius to Simon, the high priest, and friend of kings,
and to the ancients, and to the nation of the Jews, greeting:
13:37. The golden crown, and the palm, which you sent, we have
received: and we are ready to make a firm peace with you, and to write
to the king's chief officers to release you the things that we have
13:38. For all that we have decreed in your favour shall stand in
force. The strong holds that you have built, shall be your own.
13:39. And as for any oversight or fault committed unto this day, we
forgive it: and the crown which you owed: and if any other thing were
taxed in Jerusalem, now let it not be taxed.
13:40. And if any of you be fit to be enrolled among ours, let them be
enrolled, and let there be peace between us.
13:41. In the year one hundred and seventy, the yoke of the Gentiles
was taken off from Israel.
13:42. And the people of Israel began to write in the instruments, and
public records, The first year under Simon, the high priest, the great
captain, and prince of the Jews.
13:43. In those days Simon besieged Gaza, and camped round about it,
and he made engines, and set them to the city, and he struck one tower,
and took it.
13:44. And they that were within the engine leapt into the city: and
there was a great uproar in the city.
13:45. And they that were in the city went up, with their wives and
children, upon the wall, with their garments rent, and they cried with
a loud voice, beseeching Simon to grant them peace.
13:46. And they said: Deal not with us according to our evil deeds, but
according to thy mercy.
13:47. And Simon being moved, did not destroy them but yet he cast them
out of the city, and cleansed the houses wherein there had been idols,
and then he entered into it with hymns, blessing the Lord:
13:48. And having cast out of it all uncleanness, he placed in it men
that should observe the law: and he fortified it, and made it his
13:49. But they that were in the castle of Jerusalem were hindered from
going out and coming into the country, and from buying and selling: and
they were straitened with hunger, and many of them perished through
13:50. And they cried to Simon for peace, and he granted it to them:
and he cast them out from thence and cleansed the castle from
13:51. And they entered into it the three and twentieth day of the
second month, in the year one hundred and seventy-one, with
thanksgiving, and branches of palm trees, and harps, and cymbals, and
psalteries, and hymns, and canticles, because the great enemy was
destroyed out of Israel.
13:52. And he ordained that these days should be kept every year with
13:53. And he fortified the mountain of the temple that was near the
castle, and he dwelt there himself, and they that were with him.
13:54. And Simon saw that John, his son, was a valiant man for war: and
he made him captain of all the forces: and he dwelt in Gazara.
1 Machabees Chapter 14
Demetrius is taken by the king of Persia. Judea flourishes under the
government of Simon.
14:1. In the year one hundred and seventy-two king Demetrius assembled
his army, and went into Media to get him succours to fight against
14:2. And Arsaces, the king of Persia and Media, heard that Demetrius
was entered within his borders, and he sent one of his princes to take
him alive, and bring him to him.
14:3. And he went, and defeated the army of Demetrius: and took him,
and brought him to Arsaces, and he put him into custody.
14:4. And all the land of Juda was at rest all the days of Simon, and
he sought the good of his nation: and his power, and his glory pleased
them well all his days.
14:5. And with all his glory he took Joppe for a haven, and made an
entrance to the isles of the sea.
14:6. And he enlarged the bounds of his nation, and made himself master
of the country.
14:7. And he gathered together a great number of captives, and had the
dominion of Gazara, and of Bethsura, and of the castle: and took away
all uncleanness out of it, and there was none that resisted him.
14:8. And every man tilled his land with peace, and the land of Juda
yielded her increase, and the trees of the fields their fruit.
14:9. The ancient men sat all in the streets, and treated together of
the good things of the land, and the young men put on them glory, and
the robes of war.
14:10. And he provided victuals for the cities, and he appointed that
they should be furnished with ammunition, so that the fame of his glory
was renowned even to the end of the earth.
14:11. He made peace in the land, and Israel rejoiced with great joy.
14:12. And every man sat under his vine, and under his fig tree: and
there was none to make them afraid.
14:13. There was none left in the land to fight against them: kings
were discomfited in those days.
14:14. And he strengthened all those of his people that were brought
low, and he sought the law, and took away every unjust and wicked man.
14:15. He glorified the sanctuary, and multiplied the vessels of the
14:16. And it was heard at Rome, and as far as Sparta, that Jonathan
was dead: and they were very sorry.
14:17. But when they heard that Simon, his brother, was made high
priest in his place, and was possessed of all the country, and the
14:18. They wrote to him in tables of brass, to renew the friendship
and alliance which they had made with Judas and with Jonathan, his
14:19. And they were read before the assembly in Jerusalem. And this is
the copy of the letters that the Spartans sent.
14:20. The princes and the cities of the Spartans, to Simon, the high
priest, and to the ancients, and the priests, and the rest of the
people of the Jews, their brethren, greeting.
14:21. The ambassadors that were sent to our people, have told us of
your glory, and honour, and joy: and we rejoiced at their coming.
14:22. And we registered what was said by them in the councils of the
people, in this manner: Numenius, the son of Antiochus, and Antipater,
the son of Jason, ambassadors of the Jews, came to us to renew the
former friendship with us.
14:23. And it pleased the people to receive the men honourably, and to
put a copy of their words in the public records, to be a memorial to
the people of the Spartans. And we have written a copy of them to
Simon, the high priest.
14:24. And after this Simon sent Numenius to Rome, with a great shield
of gold, of the weight of a thousand pounds, to confirm the league with
them. And when the people of Rome had heard
14:25. These words, they said: What thanks shall we give to Simon, and
14:26. For he hath restored his brethren, and hath driven away in fight
the enemies of Israel from them: and they decreed him liberty, and
registered it in tables of brass, and set it upon pillars in mount
14:27. And this is a copy of the writing. The eighteenth day of the
month Elul, in the year one hundred and seventy-two, being the third
year under Simon, the high priest, at Asaramel,
14:28. In a great assembly of the priests, and of the people, and the
princes of the nation, and the ancients of the country, these things
were notified: Forasmuch as there have often been wars in our country,
14:29. And Simon, the son of Mathathias, of the children of Jarib, and
his brethren, have put themselves in danger, and resisted the enemies
of their nation, for the maintenance of their holy places, and the law:
and have raised their nation to great glory.
14:30. And Jonathan gathered together his nation, and was made their
high priest, and he was laid to his people.
14:31. And their enemies desired to tread down and destroy their
country, and to stretch forth their hands against their holy places.
14:32. Then Simon resisted and fought for his nation, and laid out much
of his money, and armed the valiant men of his nation, and gave them
14:33. And he fortified the cities of Judea and Bethsura that lieth in
the borders of Judea, where the armour of the enemies was before: and
he placed there a garrison of Jews.
14:34. And he fortified Joppe, which lieth by the sea: and Gazara,
which bordereth upon Azotus, wherein the enemies dwelt before, and he
placed Jews here: and furnished them with all things convenient for
14:35. And the people seeing the acts of Simon, and to what glory he
meant to bring his nation, made him their prince and high priest,
because he had done all these things, and for the justice and faith
which he kept to his nation, and for that he sought by all means to
advance his people.
14:36. And in his days things prospered in his hands, so that the
heathens were taken away out of their country, and they also that were
in the city of David, in Jerusalem, in the castle, out of which they
issued forth, and profaned all places round about the sanctuary, and
did much evil to purity.
14:37. And he placed therein Jews for the defence of the country, and
of the city, and he raised up the walls of Jerusalem.
14:38. And king Demetrius confirmed him in the high priesthood.
14:39. According to these things he made him his friend, and glorified
him with great glory.
14:40. For he had heard that the Romans had called the Jews their
friends, and confederates, and brethren, and that they had received
Simon's ambassadors with honour:
14:41. And that the Jews, and their priests, had consented that he
should be their prince and high priest for ever, till there should
arise a faithful prophet:
14:42. And that he should be chief over them, and that he should have
the charge of the sanctuary, and that he should appoint rulers over
their works, and over the country, and over the armour, and over the
14:43. And that he should have care of the holy places; and that he
should be obeyed by all, and that all the writings in the country
should be made in his name; and that he should be clothed with purple
14:44. And that it should not be lawful for any of the people, or of
the priests, to disannul any of these things, or to gainsay his words,
or to call together an assembly in the country without him: or to be
clothed with purple, or to wear a buckle of gold.
14:45. And whosoever shall do otherwise, or shall make void any of
these things, shall be punished.
14:46. And it pleased all the people to establish Simon, and to do
according to these words.
14:47. And Simon accepted thereof, and was well pleased to execute the
office of the high priesthood, and to be captain, and prince of the
nation of the Jews, and of the priests, and to be chief over all.
14:48. And they commanded that this writing should be put in tables of
brass, and that they should be set up within the compass of the
sanctuary, in a conspicuous place:
14:49. And that a copy thereof should be put in the treasury, that
Simon, and his sons, may have it.
1 Machabees Chapter 15
Antiochus son of Demetrius honours Simon. The Romans write to divers
nations in favour of the Jews. Antiochus quarrels with Simon, and sends
troops to annoy him.
15:1. And king Antiochus, the son of Demetrius, sent letters from the
isles of the sea to Simon, the priest, and prince of the nation of the
Jews, and to all the people:
15:2. And the contents were these: King Antiochus to Simon, the high
priest, and to the nation of the Jews, greeting.
15:3. Forasmuch as certain pestilent men have usurped the kingdom of
our fathers, and my purpose is to challenge the kingdom, and to restore
it to its former estate; and I have chosen a great army, and have built
ships of war.
15:4. And I design to go through the country, that I may take revenge
of them that have destroyed our country, and that have made many cities
desolate in my realm.
15:5. Now, therefore, I confirm unto thee all the oblations which all
the kings before me remitted to thee, and what other gifts soever they
remitted to thee:
15:6. And I give thee leave to coin thy own money in thy country:
15:7. And let Jerusalem be holy and free, and all the armour that hath
been made, and the fortresses which thou hast built, and which thou
keepest in thy hands, let them remain to thee.
15:8. And all that is due to the king, and what should be the king's
hereafter, from this present and for ever, is forgiven thee.
15:9. And when we shall have recovered our kingdom, we will glorify
thee, and thy nation, and the temple, with great glory, so that your
glory shall be made manifest in all the earth.
15:10. In the year one hundred and seventy-four, Antiochus entered into
the land of his fathers, and all the forces assembled to him, so that
few were left with Tryphon.
15:11. And king Antiochus pursued after him, and he fled along by the
sea coast and came to Dora.
15:12. For he perceived that evils were gathered together upon him, and
his troops had forsaken him.
15:13. And Antiochus camped above Dora with a hundred and twenty
thousand men of war, and eight thousand horsemen:
15:14. And he invested the city, and the ships drew near by sea: and
they annoyed the city by land, and by sea, and suffered none to come
in, or to go out.
15:15. And Numenius, and they that had been with him, came from the
city of Rome, having letters written to the kings, and countries, the
contents whereof were these:
15:16. Lucius, the consul of the Romans, to king Ptolemee, greeting.
Ptolemee. . .Surnamed Physeon, brother and successor to Philometer.
15:17. The ambassadors of the Jews, our friends, came to us, to renew
the former friendship and alliance, being sent from Simon, the high
priest, and the people of the Jews.
15:18. And they brought also a shield of gold of a thousand pounds.
15:19. It hath seemed good therefore to us, to write to the kings and
countries, that they should do them no harm, nor fight against them,
their cities, or countries: and that they should give no aid to them
that fight against them.
15:20. And it hath seemed good to us to receive the shield of them.
15:21. If, therefore, any pestilent men are fled out of their country
to you, deliver them to Simon, the high priest, that he may punish them
according to their law.
15:22. These same things were written to king Demetrius, and to
Attalus, and to Ariarathes, and to Arsaces,
Attalus, etc. . .Attalus was king of Pergamus; Ariarathes was king of
Cappadocia; and Arsaces was king of the Parthians.
15:23. And to all the countries: and to Lampsacus and to the Spartans,
and to Delus, and Myndus, and Sicyon, and Caria, and Samus, and
Pamphylia, and Lycia, and Alicarnassus, and Cos, and Side, and Aradus,
and Rhodes, and Phaselis, and Gortyna, and Gnidus, and Cyprus, and
15:24. And they wrote a copy thereof to Simon, the high priest, and to
the people of the Jews.
15:25. But king Antiochus moved his camp to Dora the second time,
assaulting it continually, and making engines: and he shut up Tryphon,
that he could not go out.
15:26. And Simon sent to him two thousand chosen men to aid him, silver
also, and gold, and abundance of furniture.
15:27. And he would not receive them, but broke all the covenant that
he had made with him before, and alienated himself from him.
15:28. And he sent to him Athenobius, one of his friends, to treat with
him, saying: You hold Joppe and Gazara, and the castle that is in
Jerusalem, which are cities of my kingdom:
15:29. Their borders you have wasted, and you have made great havoc in
the land, and have got the dominion of many places in my kingdom.
15:30. Now, therefore, deliver up the cities that you have taken, and
the tributes of the places whereof you have gotten the dominion without
the borders of Judea.
15:31. But if not, give me for them five hundred talents of silver, and
for the havoc that you have made, and the tributes of the cities, other
five hundred talents: or else we will come and fight against you.
15:32. So Athenobius, the king's friend came to Jerusalem, and saw the
glory of Simon and his magnificence in gold, and silver, and his great
equipage, and he was astonished, and told him the king's words.
15:33. And Simon answered him, and said to him: We have neither taken
other men's land, neither do we hold that which is other men's, but the
inheritance of our fathers, which was for some time unjustly possessed
by our enemies.
15:34. But we having opportunity, claim the inheritance of our fathers.
15:35. And as to thy complaints concerning Joppe and Gazara, they did
great harm to the people, and to our country: yet for these we will
give a hundred talents. And Athenobius answered him not a word.
15:36. But returning in a rage to the king, made report to him of these
words, and of the glory of Simon, and of all that he had seen, and the
king was exceeding angry.
15:37. And Tryphon fled away by ship to Orthosias.
15:38. And the king appointed Cendebeus captain of the sea coast, and
gave him an army of footmen and horsemen.
15:39. And he commanded him to march with his army towards Judea: and
he commanded him to build up Gedor, and to fortify the gates of the
city, and to war against the people. But the king himself pursued after
15:40. And Cendebeus came to Jamnia, and began to provoke the people,
and to ravage Judea, and to take the people prisoners, and to kill, and
to build Gedor.
15:41. And he placed there horsemen, and an army: that they might issue
forth, and make incursions upon the ways of Judea, as the king had
1 Machabees Chapter 16
The sons of Simon defeat the troops of Antiochus. Simon with two of his
sons are treacherously murdered by Ptolemee his son in law.
16:1. Then John came up from Gazara, and told Simon, his father, what
Cendebeus had done against their people.
John. . .He was afterwards surnamed Hircanus, and succeeded his father
in both his dignities of high priest and prince. He conquered the
Edomites, and obliged them to a conformity with the Jews in religion;
and destroyed the schismatical temple of the Samaritans.
16:2. And Simon called his two eldest sons, Judas and John, and said to
them: I and my brethren, and my father's house, have fought against the
enemies of Israel from our youth even to this day: and things have
prospered so well in our hands, that we have delivered Israel
16:3. And now I am old, but be you instead of me, and my brethren, and
go out, and fight for our nation: and the help from heaven be with you.
16:4. Then he chose out of the country twenty thousand fighting men,
and horsemen, and they went forth against Cendebeus: and they rested in
16:5. And they arose in the morning, and went into the plain: and
behold a very great army of footmen and horsemen came against them, and
there was a running river between them.
16:6. And he and his people pitched their camp over against them, and
he saw that the people were afraid to go over the river, so he went
over first: then the men seeing him, passed over after him.
He. . .Viz., John.
16:7. And he divided the people, and set the horsemen in the midst of
the footmen: but the horsemen of the enemies were very numerous.
16:8. And they sounded the holy trumpets: and Cendebeus and his army
were put to flight: and there fell many of them wounded, and the rest
fled into the strong hold.
16:9. At that time, Judas, John's brother, was wounded: but John
pursued after them, till he came to Cedron, which he had built:
Cedron. . .Otherwise called Gedon, the city that Cendebeus was
16:10. And they fled even to the towers that were in the fields of
Azotus, and he burnt them with fire. And there fell of them two
thousand men, and he returned into Judea in peace.
16:11. Now Ptolemee, the son of Abobus, was appointed captain in the
plain of Jericho, and he had abundance of silver and gold.
16:12. For he was son in law of the high priest.
16:13. And his heart was lifted up, and he designed to make himself
master of the country, and he purposed treachery against Simon and his
sons, to destroy them.
16:14. Now Simon, as he was going through the cities that were in the
country of Judea, and taking care for the good ordering of them, went
down to Jericho, he and Mathathias and Judas, his sons, in the year one
hundred and seventy-seven, the eleventh month: the same is the month
16:15. And the son of Abobus received them deceitfully into a little
fortress, that is called Doch, which he had built: and he made them a
great feast, and hid men there.
16:16. And when Simon and his sons had drunk plentifully, Ptolemee and
his men rose up, and took their weapons, and entered into the
banqueting place, and slew him, and his two sons, and some of his
16:17. And he committed a great treachery in Israel, and rendered evil
16:18. And Ptolemee wrote these things, and sent to the king that he
should send him an army to aid him, and he would deliver him the
country, and their cities, and tributes.
16:19. And he sent others to Gazara to kill John: and to the tribunes
he sent letters to come to him, and that he would give them silver, and
gold, and gifts.
16:20. And he sent others to take Jerusalem, and the mountain of the
16:21. Now one running before, told John in Gazara, that his father and
his brethren were slain, and that he hath sent men to kill thee also.
16:22. But when he heard it, he was exceedingly afraid: and he
apprehended the men that came to kill him, and he put them to death:
for he knew that they sought to make him away.
16:23. And as concerning the rest of the acts of John, and his wars,
and the worthy deeds, which he bravely achieved, and the building of
the walls, which he made, and the things that he did:
16:24. Behold, these are written in the book of the days of his
priesthood, from the time that he was made high priest after his
THE SECOND BOOK OF MACHABEES
This second book of MACHABEES is not a continuation of the history
contained in the first: nor does is come down so low as the first does:
but relates many of the same facts more at large, and adds other
remarkable particulars, omitted in the first book, relating to the
state of the Jews, as well before as under the persecution of
ANTIOCHUS. The author, who is not the same with that of the first book,
has given (as we learn from chap. 2.20, etc.) a short abstract of what
JASON of Cyrene had written in the five volumes, concerning JUDAS and
his brethren. He wrote in Greek, and begins with two letters, sent by
the Jews of Jerusalem to their brethren in Egypt.
2 Machabees Chapter 1
Letters of the Jews of Jerusalem to them that were in Egypt. They give
thanks for their delivery from Antiochus: and exhort their brethren to
keep the feast of the dedication of the altar, and of the miraculous
1:1. To the brethren, the Jews that are throughout Egypt; the brethren,
the Jews that are in Jerusalem, and in the land of Judea, send health
and good peace.
1:2. May God be gracious to you, and remember his covenant that he made
with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, his faithful servants:
1:3. And give you all a heart to worship him, and to do his will with a
great heart, and a willing mind.
1:4. May he open your heart in his law, and in his commandments, and
send you peace.
1:5. May he hear your prayers, and be reconciled unto you, and never
forsake you in the evil time.
1:6. And now here we are praying for you.
1:7. When Demetrius reigned, in the year one hundred and sixty-nine, we
Jews wrote to you in the trouble and violence that came upon us in
those years, after Jason withdrew himself from the holy land, and from
1:8. They burnt the gate, and shed innocent blood: then we prayed to
the Lord, and were heard, and we offered sacrifices, and fine flour,
and lighted the lamps, and set forth the loaves.
1:9. And now celebrate ye the days of Scenopegia in the month of
Scenopegia. . .Viz., the Encenia, or feast of the dedication of the
altar, called here Scenopegia, or feast of tabernacles, from being
celebrated with the like solemnity.
1:10. In the year one hundred and eighty-eight, the people that is at
Jerusalem, and in Judea, and the senate, and Judas, to Aristobolus, the
preceptor of king Ptolemee, who is of the stock of the anointed
priests, and to the Jews that are in Egypt, health and welfare.
1:11. Having been delivered by God out of great dangers, we give him
great thanks, forasmuch as we have been in war with such a king.
Such a king. . .Viz., Antiochus Sidetes, who began to make war upon the
Jews, whilst Simon was yet alive. 1 Mac. 15.39. And afterwards besieged
Jerusalem under John Hircanus. So that the Judas here mentioned, ver.
10, is not Judas Machabeus, who was dead long before the year 188 of
the kingdom of the Greeks, for he died in the year 146 of that epoch,
(see above 1 Mac. chap. 2., ver. 70, also the note on chap. 1, ver. 2,)
but either Judas the eldest son of John Hircanus, or Judas the Essene,
renowned for the gift of prophecy, who flourished about that time.
1:12. For he made numbers of men swarm out of Persia, that have fought
against us, and the holy city.
1:13. For when the leader himself was in Persia, and with him a very
great army, he fell in the temple of Nanea, being deceived by the
counsel of the priests of Nanea.
Nanea. . .A Persian goddess, which some have taken for Diana, others for
1:14. For Antiochus, with his friends, came to the place as though he
would marry her, and that he might receive great sums of money under
the title of a dowry.
1:15. And when the priests of Nanea had set it forth, and he with a
small company had entered into the compass of the temple, they shut the
1:16. When Antiochus was come in: and opening a secret entrance of the
temple, they cast stones and slew the leader, and them that were with
him, and hewed them in pieces; and cutting off their heads, they threw
1:17. Blessed be God in all things, who hath delivered up the wicked.
1:18. Therefore, whereas we purpose to keep the purification of the
temple on the five and twentieth day of the month of Casleu, we thought
it necessary to signify it to you: that you also may keep the day of
Scenopegia, and the day of the fire, that was given when Nehemias
offered sacrifice, after the temple and the altar was built.
1:19. For when our fathers were led into Persia, the priests that then
were worshippers of God, took privately the fire from the altar, and
hid it in a valley where there was a deep pit without water, and there
they kept it safe, so that the place was unknown to all men.
Persia. . .Babylonia, called here Persia, from being afterwards a part
of the Persian empire.
1:20. But when many years had passed, and it pleased God that Nehemias
should be sent by the king of Persia, he sent some of the posterity of
those priests that had hid it, to seek for the fire: and as they told
us, they found no fire, but thick water.
1:21. Then he bade them draw it up, and bring it to him: and the
priest, Nehemias, commanded the sacrifices that were laid on, to be
sprinkled with the same water, both the wood, and the things that were
laid upon it.
1:22. And when this was done, and the time came that the sun shone out,
which before was in a cloud, there was a great fire kindled, so that
1:23. And all the priests made prayer, while the sacrifice was
consuming, Jonathan beginning, and the rest answering.
1:24. And the prayer of Nehemias was after this manner: O Lord God,
Creator of all things, dreadful and strong, just and merciful, who
alone art the good king,
1:25. Who alone art gracious, who alone art just, and almighty, and
eternal, who deliverest Israel from all evil, who didst choose the
fathers, and didst sanctify them:
1:26. Receive the sacrifice for all thy people Israel, and preserve thy
own portion, and sanctify it.
1:27. Gather together our scattered people, deliver them that are
slaves to the Gentiles, and look upon them that are despised and
abhorred: that the Gentiles may know that thou art our God
1:28. Punish them that oppress us, and that treat us injuriously with
1:29. Establish thy people in thy holy place, as Moses hath spoken.
1:30. And the priests sung hymns till the sacrifice was consumed.
1:31. And when the sacrifice was consumed, Nehemias commanded the water
that was left to be poured out upon the great stones.
1:32. Which being done, there was kindled a flame from them: but it was
consumed by the light that shined from the altar.
1:33. And when this matter became public, it was told to the king of
Persia, that in the place where the priests that were led away, had hid
the fire, there appeared water, with which Nehemias and they that were
with him had purified the sacrifices.
1:34. And the king considering, and diligently examining the matter,
made a temple for it, that he might prove what had happened.
A temple. . .That is, an enclosure, or a wall round about the place
where the fire was hid, to separate it from profane uses, to the end
that it might be respected as a holy place.
1:35. And when he had proved it, he gave the priests many goods, and
divers presents, and he took and distributed them to them with his own
1:36. And Nehemias called this place Nephthar, which is interpreted
purification. But many call it Nephi.
2 Machabees Chapter 2
A continuation of the second letter. Of Jeremias' hiding the ark at the
time of the captivity. The author's preface.
2:1.Now it is found in the descriptions of Jeremias, the prophet, that
he commanded them that went into captivity, to take the fire, as it
hath been signified, and how he gave charge to them that were carried
away into captivity.
The descriptions. . .That is, the records or memoirs of Jeremias, a work
that is now lost.
2:2. And how he gave them the law, that they should not forget the
commandments of the Lord, and that they should not err in their minds,
seeing the idols of gold, and silver, and the ornaments of them.
2:3. And with other such like speeches, he exhorted them that they
would not remove the law from their heart.
2:4. It was also contained in the same writing, how the prophet, being
warned by God, commanded that the tabernacle and the ark should
accompany him, till he came forth to the mountain where Moses went up,
and saw the inheritance of God.
2:5. And when Jeremias came thither he found a hollow cave: and he
carried in thither the tabernacle, and the ark, and the altar of
incense, and so stopped the door.
2:6. Then some of them that followed him, came up to mark the place:
but they could not find it.
2:7. And when Jeremias perceived it, he blamed them, saying: The place
shall be unknown, till God gather together the congregation of the
people, and receive them to mercy.
2:8. And then the Lord will shew these things, and the majesty of the
Lord shall appear, and there shall be a cloud as it was also shewed to
Moses, and he shewed it when Solomon prayed that the place might be
sanctified to the great God.
2:9. For he treated wisdom in a magnificent manner: and like a wise
man, he offered the sacrifice of the dedication, and of the finishing
of the temple.
2:10. And as Moses prayed to the Lord, and fire came down from heaven,
and consumed the holocaust: so Solomon also prayed, and fire came down
from heaven and consumed the holocaust.
2:11. And Moses said: Because the sin offering was not eaten, it was
2:12. So Solomon also celebrated the dedication eight days.
2:13. And these same things were set down in the memoirs, and
commentaries of Nehemias: and how he made a library, and gathered
together out of the countries, the books both of the prophets, and of
David, and the epistles of the kings, and concerning the holy gifts.
2:14. And in like manner Judas also gathered together all such things
as were lost by the war we had, and they are in our possession.
2:15. Wherefore, if you want these things, send some that may fetch
them to you.
2:16. As we are then about to celebrate the purification, we have
written unto you: and you shall do well, if you keep the same days.
The purification. . .That is, the feast of the purifying or cleansing of
2:17. And we hope that God, who hath delivered his people, and hath
rendered to all the inheritance, and the kingdom, and the priesthood,
and the sanctuary,
2:18. As he promised in the law, will shortly have mercy upon us, and
will gather us together from every land under heaven into the holy
2:19. For he hath delivered us out of great perils, and hath cleansed
2:20. Now as concerning Judas Machabeus, and his brethren, and the
purification of the great temple, and the dedication of the altar:
2:21. As also the wars against Antiochus, the Illustrious, and his son,
2:22. And the manifestations that came from heaven to them, that
behaved themselves manfully on the behalf of the Jews, so that, being
but a few they made themselves masters of the whole country, and put to
flight the barbarous multitude:
2:23. And recovered again the most renowned temple in all the world,
and delivered the city, and restored the laws that were abolished, the
Lord with all clemency shewing mercy to them.
2:24. And all such things as have been comprised in five books by
Jason, of Cyrene, we have attempted to abridge in one book.
2:25. For considering the multitude of books, and the difficulty that
they find that desire to undertake the narrations of histories, because
of the multitude of the matter,
2:26. We have taken care for those indeed that are willing to read,
that it might be a pleasure of mind: and for the studious, that they
may more easily commit to memory: and that all that read might receive
2:27. And as to ourselves indeed, in undertaking this work of
abridging, we have taken in hand no easy task; yea, rather a business
full of watching and sweat.
No easy task, etc. . .The spirit of God, that assists the sacred penmen,
does not exempt them from labour in seeking out the matter which they
are to treat of, and the order and manner in which they are to deliver
it. So St. Luke writ the gospel having diligently attained to all
things. Luke 1. ver. 3.
2:28. But as they that prepare a feast, and seek to satisfy the will of
others: for the sake of many, we willingly undergo the labour.
2:29. Leaving to the authors the exact handling of every particular,
and as for ourselves, according to the plan proposed, studying to be
2:30. For as the master builder of a new house must have care of the
whole building: but he that taketh care to paint it, must seek out fit
things for the adorning of it: so must it be judged of us.
2:31. For to collect all that is to be known, to put the discourse in
order, and curiously to discuss every particular point, is the duty of
the author of a history:
2:32. But to pursue brevity of speech, and to avoid nice declarations
of things, is to be granted to him that maketh an abridgment.
2:33. Here then we will begin the narration: let this be enough by way
of a preface: for it is a foolish thing to make a long prologue, and to
be short in the story itself.
2 Machabees Chapter 3
Heliodorus is sent by king Seleucus to take away the treasures
deposited in the temple. He is struck by God, and healed by the prayers
of the high priest.
3:1. Therefore, when the holy city was inhabited with all peace, and
the laws as yet were very well kept, because of the godliness of Onias,
the high priest and the hatred his soul had of evil,
3:2. It came to pass that even the kings themselves and the princes
esteemed the place worthy of the highest honour, and glorified the
temple with very great gifts:
3:3. So that Seleucus, king of Asia, allowed out of his revenues all
the charges belonging to the ministry of the sacrifices.
Seleucus. . .Son of Antiochus the Great, and elder brother of Antiochus
3:4. But one Simon, of the tribe of Benjamin, who was appointed
overseer of the temple, strove in opposition to the high priest, to
bring about some unjust thing in the city.
3:5. And when he could not overcome Onias, he went to Apollonius, the
son of Tharseas, who at that time was governor of Celesyria, and
3:6. And told him, that the treasury in Jerusalem was full of immense
sums of money, and the common store was infinite, which did not belong
to the account of the sacrifices: and that it was possible to bring all
into the king's hands.
3:7. Now when Apollonius had given the king notice concerning the money
that he was told of, he called for Heliodorus, who had the charge over
his affairs, and sent him with commission to bring him the foresaid
3:8. So Heliodorus forthwith began his journey, under a colour of
visiting the cities of Celesyria and Phenicia, but indeed to fulfil the
3:9. And when he was come to Jerusalem, and had been courteously
received in the city by the high priest, he told him what information
had been given concerning the money: and declared the cause for which
he was come: and asked if these things were so indeed.
3:10. Then the high priest told him that these were sums deposited, and
provisions for the subsistence of the widows and the fatherless:
3:11. And that some part of that which wicked Simon had given
intelligence of belonged to Hircanus, son of Tobias, a man of great
dignity; and that the whole was four hundred talents of silver, and two
hundred of gold.
3:12. But that to deceive them who had trusted to the place and temple
which is honoured throughout the whole world, for the reverence and
holiness of it, was a thing which could not by any means be done.
3:13. But he, by reason of the orders he had received from the king,
said, that by all means the money must be carried to the king.
3:14. So on the day he had appointed, Heliodorus entered in to order
this matter. But there was no small terror throughout the whole city.
3:15. And the priests prostrated themselves before the altar in their
priests' vestments, and called upon him from heaven, who made the law
concerning things given to be kept, that he would preserve them safe,
for them that had deposited them.
3:16. Now whosoever saw the countenance of the high priest, was wounded
in heart: for his face, and the changing of his colour, declared the
inward sorrow of his mind.
3:17. For the man was so compassed with sadness and horror of the body,
that it was manifest to them that beheld him, what sorrow he had in his
3:18. Others also came flocking together out of their houses, praying
and making public supplication, because the place was like to come into
3:19. And the women, girded with haircloth about their breasts, came
together in the streets. And the virgins also that were shut up, came
forth, some to Onias, and some to the walls, and others looked out of
3:20. And all holding up their hands towards heaven made supplication.
3:21. For the expectation of the mixed multitude, and of the high
priest, who was in an agony, would have moved any one to pity.
3:22. And these indeed called upon almighty God, to preserve the things
that had been committed to them safe and sure for those that had
3:23. But Heliodorus executed that which he had resolved on, himself
being present in the same place with his guard about the treasury.
3:24. But the spirit of the Almighty God gave a great evidence of his
presence, so that all that had presumed to obey him, falling down by
the power of God, were struck with fainting and dread.
3:25. For there appeared to them a horse, with a terrible rider upon
him, adorned with a very rich covering: and he ran fiercely and struck
Heliodorus with his fore feet, and he that sat upon him seemed to have
armour of gold.
3:26. Moreover there appeared two other young men, beautiful and
strong, bright and glorious, and in comely apparel: who stood by him,
on either side, and scourged him without ceasing with many stripes.
3:27. And Heliodorus suddenly fell to the ground, and they took him up,
covered with great darkness, and having put him into a litter, they
carried him out.
3:28. So he that came with many servants, and all his guard, into the
aforesaid treasury, was carried out, no one being able to help him, the
manifest power of God being known.
3:29. And he indeed, by the power of God, lay speechless, and without
all hope of recovery.
3:30. But they praised the Lord, because he had glorified his place:
and the temple, that a little before was full of fear and trouble, when
the Almighty Lord appeared, was filled with joy and gladness.
3:31. Then some of the friends of Heliodorus forthwith begged of Onias,
that he would call upon the Most High to grant him his life, who was
ready to give up the ghost.
3:32. So the high priest, considering that the king might perhaps
suspect that some mischief had been done to Heliodorus by the Jews,
offered a sacrifice of health for the recovery of the man.
3:33. And when the high priest was praying, the same young men in the
same clothing stood by Heliodorus, and said to him: Give thanks to
Onias the priest: because for his sake the Lord hath granted thee life.
3:34. And thou having been scourged by God, declare unto all men the
great works and the power of God. And having spoken thus, they appeared
3:35. So Heliodorus, after he had offered a sacrifice to God, and made
great vows to him, that had granted him life, and given thanks to
Onias, taking his troops with him, returned to the king.
3:36. And he testified to all men the works of the great God, which he
had seen with his own eyes.
3:37. And when the king asked Heliodorus, who might be a fit man to be
sent yet once more to Jerusalem, he said:
3:38. If thou hast any enemy, or traitor to thy king dom, send him
thither, and thou shalt receive him again scourged, if so be he escape:
for there is undoubtedly in that place a certain power of God.
3:39. For he that hath his dwelling in the heavens, is the visitor and
protector of that place, and he striketh and destroyeth them that come
to do evil to it.
3:40. And the things concerning Heliodorus, and the keeping of the
treasury, fell out in this manner.
2 Machabees Chapter 4
Onias has recourse to the king. The ambition and wickedness of Jason
and Menelaus. Onias is treacherously murdered.
4:1. But Simon, of whom we spoke before, who was the betrayer of the
money, and of his country, spoke ill of Onias, as though he had incited
Heliodorus to do these things, and had been the promoter of evils:
4:2. And he presumed to call him a traitor to the kingdom, who provided
for the city, and defended his nation, and was zealous for the law of
4:3. But when the enmities proceeded so far, that murders also were
committed by some of Simon's friends:
4:4. Onias, considering the danger of this contention, and that
Apollonius, who was the governor of Celesyia, and Phenicia, was
outrageous, which increased the malice of Simon, went to the king,
4:5. Not to be an accuser of his countrymen, but with view to the
common good of all the people.
4:6. For he saw that, except the king took care, it was impossible that
matters should be settled in peace, or that Simon would cease from his
4:7. But after the death of Seleucus, when Antiochus, who was called
the Illustrious, had taken possession of the kingdom, Jason, the
brother of Onias, ambitiously sought the high priesthood:
4:8. And went to the king, promising him three hundred and sixty
talents of silver, and out of other revenues fourscore talents.
4:9. Besides this he promised also a hundred and fifty more, if he
might have license to set him up a place for exercise, and a place for
youth, and to entitle them that were at Jerusalem, Antiochians.
4:10. Which when the king had granted, and he had gotten the rule into
his hands, forthwith he began to bring over his countrymen to the
fashion of the heathens.
4:11. And abolishing those things, which had been decreed of special
favour by the kings in behalf of the Jews, by the means of John, the
father of that Eupolemus, who went ambassador to Rome to make amity and
alliance, he disannulled the lawful ordinances of the citizens, and
brought in fashions that were perverse.
4:12. For he had the boldness to set up, under the very castle, a place
of exercise, and to put all the choicest youths in brothel houses.
4:13. Now this was not the beginning, but an increase, and progress of
heathenish and foreign manners, through the abominable and unheard of
wickedness of Jason, that impious wretch, and no priest.
4:14. Insomuch that the priests were not now occupied about the offices
of the altar, but despising the temple and neglecting the sacrifices,
hastened to be partakers of the games, and of the unlawful allowance
thereof, and of the exercise of the discus.
4:15. And setting nought by the honours of their fathers, they esteemed
the Grecian glories for the best:
4:16. For the sake of which they incurred a dangerous contention, and
followed earnestly their ordinances, and in all things they coveted to
be like them, who were their enemies and murderers.
4:17. For acting wickedly against the laws of God doth not pass
unpunished: but this the time following will declare.
4:18. Now when the game that was used every fifth year was kept at
Tyre, the king being present,
4:19. The wicked Jason sent from Jerusalem sinful men, to carry three
hundred didrachmas of silver for the sacrifice of Hercules; but the
bearers thereof desired it might not be bestowed on the sacrifices,
because it was not necessary, but might be deputed for other charges.
4:20. So the money was appointed by him that sent it to the sacrifice
of Hercules: but because of them that carried it was employed for the
making of galleys.
4:21. Now when Apollonius, the son of Mnestheus was sent into Egypt to
treat with the nobles of king Philometor, and Antiochus understood that
he was wholly excluded from the affairs of the kingdom, consulting his
own interest, he departed thence and came to Joppe, and from thence to
4:22. Where he was received in a magnificent manner by Jason, and the
city, and came in with torch lights, and with praises, and from thence
he returned with his army into Phenicia.
4:23. Three years afterwards Jason sent Menelaus, brother of the
aforesaid Simon, to carry money to the king, and to bring answers from
him concerning certain necessary affairs.
4:24. But he being recommended to the king, when he had magnified the
appearance of his power, got the high priesthood for himself, by
offering more than Jason by three hundred talents of silver.
4:25. So having received the king's mandate, he returned, bringing
nothing worthy of the high priesthood: but having the mind of a cruel
tyrant, and the rage of a savage beast.
4:26. Then Jason, who had undermined his own brother, being himself
undermined, was driven out a fugitive into the country of the
4:27. So Menelaus got the principality: but as for the money he had
promised to the king, he took no care, when Sostratus, the governor of
the castle, called for it.
4:28. For to him appertained the gathering of the taxes: wherefore they
were both called before the king.
4:29. And Menelaus was removed from the priesthood, Lysimachus, his
brother, succeeding: and Sostratus alas made governor of the Cyprians.
4:30. When these things were in doing, it fell out that they of
Tharsus, and Mallos, raised a sedition, because they were given for a
gift to Antiochus, the king's concubine.
4:31. The king, therefore, went in all haste to appease them, leaving
Andronicus, one of his nobles, for his deputy.
4:32. Then Menelaus supposing that he had found a convenient time,
having stolen certain vessels of gold out of the temple, gave them to
Andronicus, and others he had sold at Tyre, and in the neighbouring
4:33. Which when Onias understood most certainly, he reproved him,
keeping himself in a safe place at Antioch, beside Daphne.
4:34. Whereupon Menelaus coming to Andronicus, desired him to kill
Onias. And he went to Onias, and gave him his right hand with an oath,
and (though he were suspected by him) persuaded him to come forth out
of the sanctuary, and immediately slew him, without any regard to
4:35. For which cause not only the Jews, but also the other nations,
conceived indignation, and were much grieved for the unjust murder of
so great a man.
4:36. And when the king was come back from the places of Cilicia, the
Jews that were at Antioch, and also the Greeks, went to him:
complaining of the unjust murder of Onias.
4:37. Antiochus, therefore, was grieved in his mind for Onias, and
being moved to pity, shed tears, remembering the sobriety and modesty
of the deceased.
4:38. And being inflamed to anger, he commanded Andronicus to be
stripped of his purple, and to be led about through all the city: and
that in the same place wherein he had committed the impiety against
Onias, the sacrilegious wretch should be put to death, the Lord
repaying him his deserved punishment.
4:39. Now when many sacrileges had been committed by Lysimachus in the
temple, by the counsel of Menelaus, and the rumour of it was spread
abroad, the multitude gathered themselves together against Lysimachus,
a great quantity of gold being already carried away.
4:40. Wherefore the multitude making an insurrection, and their minds
being filled with anger, Lysimachus armed about three thousand men, and
began to use violence, one Tyrannus being captain, a man far gone both
in age and in madness.
4:41. But when they perceived the attempt of Lysimachus, some caught up
stones, some strong clubs, and some threw ashes upon Lysimachus.
4:42. And many of them were wounded, and some struck down to the
ground, but all were put to flight: and as for the sacrilegious fellow
himself, they slew him beside the treasury.
4:43. Now concerning these matters, an accusation was laid against
4:44. And when the king was come to Tyre, three men were sent from the
ancients to plead the cause before him.
4:45. But Menelaus being convicted, promised Ptolemee to give him much
money to persuade the king to favour him.
Ptolemee. . .The son of Dorymenus, a favourite of the king.
4:46. So Ptolemee went to the king in a certain court where he was, as
it were to cool himself, and brought him to be of another mind:
4:47. So Menelaus, who was guilty of all the evil, was acquitted by him
of the accusations: and those poor men, who, if they had pleaded their
cause even before Scythians, should have been judged innocent, were
condemned to death.
4:48. Thus they that persecuted the cause for the city, and for the
people, and the sacred vessels, did soon suffer unjust punishment.
4:49. Wherefore even the Tyrians, being moved with indignation, were
very liberal towards their burial.
4:50. And so through the covetousness of them that were in power,
Menelaus continued in authority, increasing in malice to the betraying
of the citizens.
2 Machabees Chapter 5
Wonderful signs are seen in the air. Jason's wickedness and end.
Antiochus takes Jerusalem, and plunders the temple.
5:1. At the same time Antiochus prepared for a second journey into
5:2. And it came to pass, that through the whole city of Jerusalem, for
the space of forty days, there were seen horsemen running in the air,
in gilded raiment, and armed with spears, like bands of soldiers.
5:3. And horses set in order by ranks, running one against another,
with the shakings of shields, and a multitude of men in helmets, with
drawn swords, and casting of darts, and glittering of golden armour,
and of harnesses of all sorts.
5:4. Wherefore all men prayed that these prodigies might turn to good.
5:5. Now when there was gone forth a false rumour as though Antiochus
had been dead, Jason taking with him no fewer than a thousand men,
suddenly assaulted the city: and though the citizens ran together to
the wall, the city at length was taken, and Menelaus fled into the
5:6. But Jason slew his countrymen without mercy, not considering that
prosperity against one's own kindred is a very great evil, thinking
they had been enemies, and not citizens, whom he conquered.
5:7. Yet he did not get the principality, but received confusion at the
end, for the reward of his treachery, and fled again into the country
of the Ammonites.
5:8. At the last, having been shut up by Aretas, the king of the
Arabians, in order for his destruction, flying from city to city, hated