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The book of 2 Maccabees is the 54th book of the Holy Bible.

2 Maccabees focuses on the Jews’ revolt against Antiochus IV Epiphanes and concludes with the defeat of the Syrian general Nicanor in 161 BC by Judas Maccabeus, the hero of this book.

Unlike 1 Maccabees, 2 Maccabees was written by an unknown Alexandrian Jew in Koine Greek, also known as Alexandrian dialect, common amongst Hellenistic Greek Jews. It presents a revised version of the historical events recounted in the first seven chapters of 1 Maccabees, adding material from the Pharisaic tradition, including prayer for the dead and a resurrection on Judgment Day.

This Book is part of the Apocrypha and was originally part of the Septuagint translation of the Old Testament Bible in the time of Yahawashi, It was removed by Edomites in 1881 AD in an attempt to hide it. They then produced the English Revised Version (ERV) and then followed by the American Standard Version (ASV) which where the dominate bibles since the 1900s making the 14 Apocrypha books virtually unknown to the westernized world.

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1 The brethren the Iewes that bee at Ierusalem, and in the lande of Iudea, wish vnto the brethren the Iewes that are throughout Egypt, health and peace.

2 God be gracious vnto you, and remember his Couenant that hee made with Abraham, Isaac, and Iacob, his faithfull seruants:

3 And giue you all an heart to serue him, and to doe his will, with a good courage, and a willing minde:

4 And open your hearts in his law and commandements, & send you peace:

5 And heare your prayers, and be at one with you, and neuer forsake you in time of trouble.

6 And now wee be here praying for you.

7 What time as Demetrius reigned, in the hundred threescore and ninth yeere, wee the Iewes wrote vnto you, in the extremitie of trouble, that came vpon vs in those yeeres, from the time that Iason and his company reuolted from the holy land, and kingdome,

8 And burnt the porch, and shed innocent blood. Then we prayed vnto the Lord, and were heard: we offered also sacrifices, and fine flowre, and lighted the lampes, and set forth the loaues.

9 And now see that ye keepe the feast of Tabernacles in the moneth Casleu.

10 In the hundreth, fourescore, and eight yeere, the people that were at Ierusalem, and in Iudea, and the counsel, and Iudas, sent greeting and health vnto Aristobulus, king Ptolomeus master, who was of the stock of the anointed priests, and to the Iewes that were in Egypt.

11 Insomuch as God hath deliuered vs from great perils, wee thanke him highly, as hauing bin in battell against a king.

12 For he cast them out that fought within the holy citie.

13 For when the leader was come into Persia, and the armie with him that seemed inuincible, they were slaine in the temple of Nanea, by the deceit of Naneas priests.

14 For Antiochus, as though hee would marrie her, came into the place, and his friends that were with him, to receiue money in name of a dowrie.

15 Which when the priests of Nanea had set forth, and he was entred with a small company into the compasse of the temple, they shut the temple assoone as Antiochus was come in.

16 And opening a priuie doore of the roofe, they threw stones like thunderbolts, and stroke downe the captaine, hewed them in pieces, smote off their heads, and cast them to those that were without.

17 Blessed be our God in all things, who hath deliuered vp the vngodly.

18 Therefore whereas we are nowe purposed to keep the purification of the Temple vpon the fiue & twentieth day of the moneth Casleu, we thought it necessary to certifie you thereof, that ye also might keepe it, as the feast of the tabernacles, and of the fire which was giuen vs when Neemias offered sacrifice, after that he had builded the Temple, and the Altar.

19 For when our fathers were led into Persia, the Priests that were then deuout, took the fire of the Altar priuily, & hid it in a hollow place of a pit without water, where they kept it sure, so that the place was vnknowen to all men.

20 Now after many yeeres, when it pleased God, Neemias being sent from the king of Persia, did send of the posteritie of those Priests that had hid it, to the fire: but when they tolde vs they found no fire, but thicke water,

21 Then comanded he them to draw it vp, and to bring it: and when the sacrifices were laid on, Neemias comanded the Priests to sprinkle þe wood, and the things laid thereupon with þe water.

22 When this was done, and the time came that the Sun shone which afore was hid in the cloude, there was a great fire kindled, so that euery man marueiled.

23 And the Priests made a prayer whilest the sacrifice was consuming, I say both the Priests, and all the rest, Ionathan beginning, and the rest answering thereunto, as Neemias did.

24 And the prayer was after this maner, O Lord, Lord God, Creatour of all things, who art fearefull, and strong, and righteous, and mercifull, and the onely, and gracious king,

25 The onely giuer of all things, the onely iust, almightie & euerlasting, thou that deliuerest Israel from al trouble, & didst choose the fathers, & sanctifie them:

26 Receiue the sacrifice for thy whole people Israel, and preserue thine owne portion, and sanctifie it.

27 Gather those together that are scattered fro vs, deliuer them that serue among the heathen, looke vpon them that are despised & abhorred, and let the heathen know that thou art our God.

28 Punish them that oppresse vs, and with pride doe vs wrong.

29 Plant thy people againe in thy holy place, as Moises hath spoken.

30 And the Priests sung psalmes of thankesgiuing.

31 Now when the sacrifice was consumed, Neemias commanded the water that was left, to bee powred on the great stones.

32 When this was done, there was kindled a flame: but it was consumed by the light that shined from the Altar.

33 So when this matter was knowen, it was told the king of Persia, that in the place, where the Priests that were led away, had hid the fire, there appeared water, and that Neemias had purified the sacrifices therewith.

34 Then the king inclosing the place, made it holy after he had tried þe matter.

35 And the king tooke many gifts, and bestowed thereof, on those whom he would gratifie.

36 And Neemias called this thing Naphthar, which is as much to say as a cleansing: but many men call it Nephi.


 

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1 It is also found in the records, that Ieremie the Prophet, commaunded them that were caried away, to take of the fire as it hath beene signified,

2 And how that the Prophet hauing giuen them the law, charged them not to forget the commaundements of the Lord, and that they should not erre in their minds, when they see images of siluer, and gold, with their ornaments.

3 And with other such speeches exhorted he them, that the law should not depart from their hearts.

4 It was also contained in the same writing, that the Prophet being warned of God, commanded the Tabernacle, and the Arke to goe with him, as he went forth into the mountaine, where Moises climed vp, and sawe the heritage of God.

5 And when Ieremie came thither, he found an hollow caue wherin he laid the Tabernacle, and the Arke, and the altar of incense, & so stopped the doore.

6 And some of those that followed him, came to marke the way, but they could not find it.

7 Which when Ieremie perceiued, hee blamed them, saying, As for that place, it shall be vnknowen vntill the time that God gather his people againe together, and receiue them vnto mercy.

8 Then shall the Lord shew them these things, and the glory of the Lord shall appeare, and the cloud also as it was shewed vnder Moises, and as when Solomon desired that the place might be honourably sanctified.

9 It was also declared that he being wise, offered the sacrifice of dedication, and of the finishing of the Temple.

10 And as when Moises prayed vnto the Lord, the fire came down from heauen, and consumed the sacrifices: euen so prayed Solomon also, and the fire came downe from heauen, and consumed the burnt offerings.

11 And Moises said, because the sinne offering was not to be eaten, it was consumed.

12 So Solomon kept those eight dayes.

13 The same things also were reported in the writings, and commentaries of Neemias, and how he founding a librarie, gathered together the acts of the Kings, and the Prophets, and of Dauid, and the Epistles of the Kings concerning the holy gifts.

14 In like maner also, Iudas gathered together all those things that were lost, by reason of the warre we had, and they remaine with vs.

15 Wherefore if yee haue neede thereof, send some to fetch them vnto you.

16 Whereas we then are about to celebrate the purification, we haue written vnto you, and yee shall doe well if yee keepe the same dayes.

17 We hope also that the God, that deliuered all his people, and gaue them all an heritage, and the kingdome, and the priesthood, and the Sanctuarie,

18 As he promised in the lawe, will shortly haue mercy vpon vs, and gather vs together out of euery land vnder heauen into the holy place: for he hath deliuered vs out of great troubles, and hath purified the place.

19 Now as concerning Iudas Maccabeus, and his brethren, and the purification of the great Temple, and the dedication of the altar,

20 And the warres against Antiochus Epiphanes, & Eupator his sonne,

21 And the manifest signes that came from heauen, vnto those that behaued themselues manfully to their honour for Iudaisme: so that being but a few, they ouercame the whole country, and chased barbarous multitudes,

22 And recouered againe the Temple renowned all the world ouer, and freed the citie, and vpheld the lawes, which were going downe, the Lord being gracious vnto them with al fauour:

23 All these things (I say) being declared by Iason of Cyrene in fiue books, we will assay to abridge in one volume.

24 For considering the infinite number, and the difficulty, which they find that desire to looke into the narrations of the story, for the variety of þe matter,

25 We haue beene carefull, that they that will read might haue delight, and that they that are desirous to commit to memorie, might haue ease, and that all, into whose hands it comes might haue profit.

26 Therefore to vs that haue taken vpon vs this paineful labour of abridging, it was not easie, but a matter of sweat, and watching.

27 Euen as it is no ease vnto him, that prepareth a banquet, and seeketh the benefit of others: yet for the pleasuring of many we will vndertake gladly this great paines:

28 Leauing to the authour the exact handling of euery particular, and labouring to follow the rules of an abridgement.

29 For as the master builder of a new house, must care for the whole building: but hee that vndertaketh to set it out, and paint it, must seeke out fit things for the adorning thereof: euen so I thinke it is with vs.

30 To stand vpon euery point, and goe ouer things at large, and to be curious in particulars, belongeth to the first authour of the storie.

31 But to vse breuitie, and auoyde much labouring of the worke, is to bee granted to him that will make an abridgement.

32 Here then will we begin the story: onely adding thus much to that which hath bene said, That it is a foolish thing to make a long prologue, and to be short in the story it selfe.


 

2 Maccabees 3 Icon_sound

1 Now when the holy Citie was inhabited with all peace, and the Lawes were kept very well, because of the godlinesse of Onias the high Priest, and his hatred of wickednesse,

2 It came to passe that euen the Kings themselues did honour the place, and magnifie the Temple with their best gifts;

3 Insomuch that Seleucus king of Asia, of his owne reuenues, bare all the costes belonging to the seruice of the sacrifices.

4 But one Simon of the tribe of Beniamin, who was made gouernour of the Temple, fell out with the high Priest about disorder in the citie.

5 And when he could not ouercome Onias, he gate him to Apollonius the sonne of Thraseas, who then was gouernour of Coelosyria, and Phenice,

6 And told him that the treasurie in Ierusalem was full of infinite summes of money, so that the multitude of their riches which did not pertaine to the account of the sacrifices, was innumerable, and that it was possible to bring all into the kings hand.

7 Now when Apollonius came to the king, and had shewed him of the money, whereof he was told, the king chose out Heliodorus his treasurer, and sent him with a commaundement, to bring him the foresaid money.

8 So foorthwith Heliodorus tooke his iourney vnder a colour of visiting the cities of Coelosyria, and Phenice, but indeed to fulfill the kings purpose.

9 And when he was come to Ierusalem, & had bene courteously receiued of the high Priest of the citie, hee told him what intelligence was giuen of the money, & declared wherefore hee came, and and asked if these things were so in deed.

10 Then the high Priest tolde him that there was such money layde vp for the reliefe of widowes, and fatherlesse children,

11 And that some of it belonged to Hircanus, sonne of Tobias, a man of great dignitie, and not as that wicked Simon had misinformed: the summe whereof in all was foure hundred talents of siluer, and two hundred of gold,

12 And that it was altogether impossible that such wrong should be done vnto them, that had committed it to the holinesse of the place, and to the maiestie and inuiolable sanctitie of the Temple, honoured ouer all the world.

13 But Heliodorus because of the kings commandement giuen him, said, That in any wise it must be brought into the kings treasury.

14 So at the day which hee appointed, hee entred in to order this matter, wherefore, there was no small agonie throughout the whole citie.

15 But the Priests prostrating themselues before the Altar in their Priests Uestments, called vnto heauen vpon him that made a Lawe concerning things giuen to bee kept, that they should safely bee preserued for such as had committed them to be kept.

16 Then whoso had looked the hie Priest in the face, it would haue wounded his heart: for his countenance, and the changing of his colour, declared the inward agonie of his minde:

17 For the man was so compassed with feare, and horror of the body, that it was manifest to them that looked vpon him, what sorrow hee had now in his heart.

18 Others ran flocking out of their houses to the generall Supplication, because the place was like to come into contempt.

19 And the women girt with sackecloth vnder their breasts, abounded in the streetes, and the virgins that were kept in, ran some to the gates, and some to the walles, and others looked out of the windowes:

20 And all holding their handes towards heauen, made supplication.

21 Then it would haue pitied a man to see the falling downe of the multitude of all sorts, and the feare of the hie Priest, being in such an agony.

22 They then called vpon the Almightie Lord, to keepe the things committed of trust, safe and sure, for those that had committed them.

23 Neuerthelesse Heliodorus executed that which was decreed.

24 Now as hee was there present himselfe with his guard about the treasurie, the Lord of spirits, & the Prince of all power caused a great apparition, so that all that presumed to come in with him, were astonished at the power of God, and fainted, and were sore afraid.

25 For there appeared vnto them a horse, with a terrible rider vpon him, and adorned with a very faire couering, and he ranne fiercely, and smote at Heliodorus with his forefeet, and it seemed that hee that sate vpon the horse, had complete harnesse of golde.

26 Moreouer two other yong men appeared before him, notable in strength, excellent in beautie, and comely in apparell, who stood by him on either side, and scourged him continually, and gaue him many sore stripes.

27 And Heliodorus fell suddenly vnto the ground, and was compassed with great darkenesse: but they that were with him, tooke him vp, and put him into a litter.

28 Thus him that lately came with a great traine, and with all his guard into the said treasury, they caried out, being vnable to helpe himselfe with his weapons: and manifestly they acknowledged the power of God.

29 For hee by the hand of God was cast downe, and lay speechlesse without all hope of life.

30 But they praised the Lord that had miraculously honoured his owne place: for the Temple which a little afore was full of feare and trouble, when the Almightie Lord appeared, was filled with ioy and gladnesse.

31 Then straightwayes certaine of Heliodorus friends, prayed Onias that hee would call vpon the most High to graunt him his life, who lay ready to giue vp the ghost.

32 So the high Priest suspecting lest the king should misconceiue that some treachery had beene done to Heliodorus by the Iewes, offered a sacrifice for the health of the man.

33 Now as the high Priest was making an atonement, the same yong men, in the same clothing, appeared and stood beside Heliodorus, saying, Giue Onias the high Priest great thankes, insomuch as for his sake the Lord hath granted thee life.

34 And seeing that thou hast beene scourged from heauen, declare vnto all men the mightie power of God: and when they had spoken these wordes, they appeared no more.

35 So Heliodorus after he had offered sacrifice vnto the Lord, and made great vowes vnto him that had saued his life, and saluted Onias, returned with his hoste to the king.

36 Then testified hee to all men, the workes of the great God, which he had seene with his eyes.

37 And when the king asked Heliodorus, who might be a fit man to be sent yet once againe to Ierusalem, he said,

38 If thou hast any enemy or traitor, send him thither, and thou shalt receiue him well scourged, if he escape with his life: for in that place, no doubt, there is an especiall power of God.

39 For hee that dwelleth in heauen hath his eye on that place, and defendeth it, and hee beateth and destroyeth them that come to hurt it.

40 And the things concerning Heliodorus, and the keeping of the treasurie, fell out on this sort.


 

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1 This Simon now (of who wee spake afore) hauing bin a bewrayer of the money, and of his countrey, slandered Onias, as if he had terrified Heliodorus, and bene the worker of these euils.

2 Thus was hee bold to call him a traitour, that had deserued well of the citie, and tendred his owne nation, and was so zealous of the lawes.

3 But when their hatred went so farre, that by one of Simons faction murthers were committed,

4 Onias seeing the danger of this contention, and that Appollonius, as being the gouernour of Coelosyria and Phenice, did rage, and increase Simons malice,

5 He went to the king, not to be an accuser of his countrey men, but seeking the good of all, both publike, & priuate.

6 For he saw that it was impossible, that the state should continue quiet, and Simon leaue his folly, vnlesse the king did looke thereunto.

7 But after the death of Seleucus, when Antiochus called Epiphanes, tooke the kingdom, Iason the brother of Onias, laboured vnder hand to bee hie Priest,

8 Promising vnto the king by intercession, three hundred and threescore talents of siluer, and of another reuenew, eightie talents:

9 Besides this, he promised to assigne an hundred and fiftie more, if he might haue licence to set him vp a place for exercise, and for the training vp of youth in the fashions of the heathen, and to write them of Ierusalem by the name of Antiochians.

10 Which when the king had granted, and hee had gotten into his hand the rule, he foorthwith brought his owne nation to the Greekish fashion.

11 And the royal priuiledges granted of speciall fauour to the Iewes, by the meanes of Iohn the father of Eupolemus, who went Embassador to Rome, for amitie and aid, he tooke away, and putting down the gouernments which were according to the law, he brought vp new customes against the law.

12 For he built gladly a place of exercise vnder the towre it selfe, and brought the chiefe yong men vnder his subiection, and made them weare a hat.

13 Now such was the height of Greek fashions, and increase of heathenish maners, through the exceeding profanenes of Iason that vngodly wretch, and no high priest:

14 That the priests had no courage to serue any more at the altar, but despising the Temple, and neglecting the sacrifices, hastened to be partakers of the vnlawfull allowance in the place of exercise, after the game of Discus called them forth.

15 Not setting by the honours of their fathers, but liking the glory of the Grecians best of all.

16 By reason whereof sore calamity came vpon them: for they had them to be their enemies and auengers, whose custome they followed so earnestly, and vnto whom they desired to be like in all things.

17 For it is not a light thing to doe wickedly against the lawes of God, but the time following shall declare these things.

18 Now when the game that was vsed euery fift yere was kept at Tyrus, the king being present,

19 This vngracious Iason sent speciall messengers from Ierusalem, who were Antiochians, to carie three hundred drachmes of siluer to the sacrifice of Hercules, which euen the bearers therof thought fit not to bestow vpon the sacrifice, because it was not conuenient, but to be reserued for other charges.

20 This money then in regard of the sender, was appointed to Hercules sacrifice, but because of the bearers thereof, it was imployed to the making of gallies.

21 Now when Apollonius the sonne of Manastheus was sent vnto Egypt, for the coronation of king Ptolomeus Philometor, Antiochus vnderstanding him not to bee well affected to his affaires, prouided for his owne safetie: whereupon he came to Ioppe, & from thence to Ierusalem.

22 Where he was honourably receiued of Iason, and of the citie, and was brought in with torchlight, and with great shoutings: and so afterward went with his hoste vnto Phenice.

23 Three yeere afterward, Iason sent Menelaus the foresaid Simons brother, to beare the money vnto the king, and to put him in minde of certaine necessary matters.

24 But he being brought to the presence of the king, when he had magnified him, for the glorious appearance of his power, got the priesthood to himselfe, offering more then Iason by three hundred talents of siluer.

25 So he came with the kings Mandate, bringing nothing worthy the high priesthood, but hauing the fury of a cruell Tyrant, and the rage of a sauage beast.

26 Then Iason, who had vndermined his owne brother, being vndermined by another, was copelled to flee into the countrey of the Ammonites.

27 So Menelaus got the principalitie: but as for the money that he had promised vnto the king, hee tooke no good order for it, albeit Sostratus the ruler of the castle required it.

28 For vnto him appertained the gathering of the customes. Wherefore they were both called before the king.

29 Now Menelaus left his brother Lysimachus in his stead in the priesthood, and Sostratus left Crates, who was gouernour of the Cyprians.

30 While those things were in doing, they of Tharsus and Mallos made insurrection, because they were giuen to the kings concubine called Antiochis.

31 Then came the king in all haste to appease matters, leauing Andronicus a man in authority, for his deputy.

32 Now Menelaus supposing that he had gotten a conuenient time, stole certaine vessels of gold, out of the temple, and gaue some of them to Andronicus, and some he sold into Tyrus, and the cities round about.

33 Which when Onias knew of a surety, he reprooued him, and withdrew himselfe into a Sanctuarie at Daphne, that lieth by Antiochia.

34 Wherefore Menelaus, taking Andronicus apart, prayed him to get Onias into his hands, who being perswaded thereunto, and comming to Onias in deceit, gaue him his right hand with othes, and though hee were suspected (by him) yet perswaded he him to come forth of the Sanctuarie: whom forthwith he shut vp without regard of Iustice.

35 For the which cause not onely the Iewes, but many also of other nations tooke great indignation, and were much grieued for the vniust murder of the man.

36 And when the king was come againe from the places about Cilicia, the Iewes that were in the citie, and certaine of the Greekes, that abhorred the fact also, complained because Onias was slaine without cause.

37 Therefore Antiochus was heartily sorry, and mooued to pity, and wept, because of the sober and modest behauiour of him that was dead.

38 And being kindled with anger, forthwith he tooke away Andronicus his purple, and rent off his clothes, and leading him through the whole city vnto that very place, where he had committed impietie against Onias, there slew he the cursed murtherer. Thus the Lord rewarded him his punishment, as he had deserued.

39 Now when many sacriledges had beene committed in the citie by Lysimachus, with the consent of Menelaus, and the bruit therof was spread abroad, the multitude gathered themselues together against Lysimachus, many vessels of gold being already caried away.

40 Whereupon the common people rising, and being filled with rage, Lysimachus armed about three thousand men, and beganne first to offer violence on Auranus, being the leader, a man farre gone in yeeres, & no lesse in folly.

41 They then seeing the attempt of Lysimachus, some of them caught stones, some clubs, others taking handfuls of dust, that was next at hand, cast them all together vpon Lysimachus, and those that set vpon them.

42 Thus many of them they wounded, & some they stroke to the ground, and all of them they forced to flee: but as for the Churchrobber himselfe, him they killed besides the treasury.

43 Of these matters therefore there was an accusation laide against Menelaus.

44 Now when the king came to Tyrus, three men that were sent from the Senate, pleaded the cause before him:

45 But Menelaus being now conuicted, promised Ptolomee the sonne of Dorymenes, to giue him much money, if hee would pacifie the King towards him.

46 Whereupon Ptolomee taking the king aside into a certaine gallerie, as it were to take the aire, brought him to be of another minde;

47 Insomuch that hee discharged Menelaus from the accusations, who notwithstanding was cause of all the mischiefe: and those poore men, who if they had told their cause, yea, before the Scythians, should haue bene iudged innocent, them he condemned to death.

48 Thus they that followed the matter for the citie, and for the people, and for the holy vessels, did soone suffer vniust punishment.

49 Wherefore euen they of Tyrus mooued with hatred of that wicked deed, caused them to bee honourably buried.

50 And so through the couetousnesse of them that were in power, Menelaus remained still in authority, increasing in malice, and being a great traitour to the citizens.


 

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1 About the same time Antiochus prepared his second voyage into Egypt:

2 And then it happened, that through all the citie, for the space almost of fourtie dayes, there were seene horsemen running in the aire, in cloth of golde, and armed with lances, like a band of souldiers,

3 And troupes of horsemen in aray, incountring, and running one against another with shaking of shieldes, and multitude of pikes, and drawing of swords, and casting of darts, and glittering of golden ornaments, and harnesse of all sorts.

4 Wherefore euery man praied that that apparition might turne to good.

5 Now when there was gone forth a false rumour, as though Antiochus had bene dead, Iason tooke at the least a thousand men, and suddenly made an assault vpon the citie, and they that were vpon the walles, being put backe, and the citie at length taken, Menelaus fled into the castle:

6 But Iason slew his owne citizens without mercy, (not considering that to get the day of them of his owne nation, would be a most vnhappy day for him: but thinking they had bene his enemies, and not his countrey men whom he conquered.)

7 Howbeit, for all this hee obtained not the principalitie, but at the last receiued shame for the reward of his treason, and fled againe into the countrey of the Ammonites.

8 In the end therefore hee had an vnhappy returne, being accused before Aretas the king of the Arabians, fleeing from city to city, pursued of all men, hated as a forsaker of the Lawes, and being had in abomination, as an open enemie of his countrey, and countreymen, he was cast out into Egypt.

9 Thus hee that had driuen many out of their countrey, perished in a strange land, retiring to the Lacedemonians, and thinking there to finde succour by reason of his kindred.

10 And hee that had cast out many vnburied, had none to mourne for him, nor any solemne funerals at all, nor sepulchre with his fathers.

11 Now when this that was done came to the kings eare, he thought that Iudea had reuolted, whereupon remouing out of Egypt in a furious minde, he tooke the citie by force of armes,

12 And commaunded his men of warre not to spare such as they met, and to slay such as went vp vpon the houses.

13 Thus there was killing of yong and old, making away of men, women and children, slaying of virgins and infants.

14 And there were destroyed within the space of three whole daies, fourescore thousand, whereof fourty thousand were slaine in the conflict; and no fewer sold, then slaine.

15 Yet was he not content with this, but presumed to goe into the most holy Temple of all the world: Menelaus that traitour to the Lawes, and to his owne countrey, being his guide.

16 And taking the holy vessels with polluted handes, and with prophane handes, pulling downe the things that were dedicated by other kings, to the augmentation and glory and honour of the place, he gaue them away.

17 And so haughtie was Antiochus in minde, that hee considered not that the Lord was angry for a while for the sinnes of them that dwelt in the citie, and therefore his eye was not vpon the place.

18 For had they not beene formerly wrapped in many sinnes, this man as soone as hee had come, had foorthwith beene scourged, and put backe from his presumption, as Heliodorus was, whom Seleucus the king sent to view the treasurie.

19 Neuerthelesse God did not choose the people for the places sake, but the place for the peoples sake.

20 And therefore the place it selfe that was partaker with them of the aduersities that happened to the nation, did afterward communicate in the benefits sent from the Lord: and as it was forsaken in the wrath of the Almighty, so againe the great Lord being reconciled, it was set vp with all glory.

21 So when Antiochus had caried out of the Temple, a thousand and eight hundred talents, hee departed in all haste into Antiochia, weening in his pride to make the land nauigable, and the Sea passable by foot: such was the haughtinesse of his minde.

22 And he left gouernours to vexe the nation: at Ierusalem Philip, for his countrey a Phrygian, and for manners more barbarous then hee that set him there:

23 And at Garizim, Andronicus; and besides, Menelaus, who worse then all the rest, bare an heauie hand ouer the citizens, hauing a malicious minde against his countreymen the Iewes.

24 He sent also that detestable ringleader Apollonius, with an armie of two and twentie thousand, commaunding him to slay all those that were in their best age, and to sell the women and the yonger sort:

25 Who comming to Ierusalem, and pretending peace, did forbeare till the holy day of the Sabbath, when taking the Iewes keeping holy day, hee commanded his men to arme themselues.

26 And so hee slewe all them that were gone to the celebrating of the Sabbath, and running through the city with weapons, slewe great multitudes.

27 But Iudas Maccabeus, with nine others, or thereabout, withdrew himselfe into the wildernesse, and liued in the mountaines after the maner of beasts, with his company, who fed on herbes continually, lest they should be partakers of the pollution.


 

2 Maccabees 6 Icon_sound

1 Not long after this, the king sent an olde man of Athens, to compell the Iewes to depart from the lawes of their fathers, and not to liue after the Lawes of God:

2 And to pollute also the Temple in Ierusalem, and to call it the Temple of Iupiter Olympius: and that in Garizim, of Iupiter the defender of strangers, as they did desire that dwelt in the place.

3 The comming in of this mischiefe was sore and grieuous to the people:

4 For the Temple was filled with riot and reuelling, by the Gentiles, who dallied with harlots, and had to doe with women within the circuit of the holy places, and besides that, brought in things that were not lawfull.

5 The Altar also was filled with profane things, which the Law forbiddeth.

6 Neither was it lawfull for a man to keepe Sabbath dayes, or ancient Feasts, or to professe himselfe at all to be a Iewe.

7 And in the day of the kings birth, euery moneth they were brought by bitter constraint to eate of the sacrifices; and when the Feast of Bacchus was kept, the Iewes were compelled to goe in procession to Bacchus, carying Iuie.

8 Moreouer there went out a decree to the neighbour cities of the heathen, by the suggestion of Ptolomee, against the Iewes, that they should obserue the same fashions, and be partakers of their sacrifices.

9 And whoso would not conforme themselues to the maners of the Gentiles, should be put to death: then might a man hane seene the present misery.

10 For there were two women brought, who had circumcised their children, whom when they had openly led round about the citie, the babes hanging at their breasts, they cast them downe headlong from the wall.

11 And others that had run together into caues neere by, to keepe the Sabbath day secretly, being discouered to Philip, were all burnt together, because they made a conscience to helpe themselues, for the honour of the most sacred day.

12 Now I beseech those that reade this booke, that they be not discouraged for these calamities, but that they iudge those punishments not to be for destruction, but for a chastening of our nation.

13 For it is a token of his great goodnesse, when wicked doers are not suffered any longtime, but forthwith punished.

14 For not as with other nations whom the Lord patiently forbeareth to punish, till they be come to the fulnesse of their sinnes, so dealeth he with vs,

15 Lest that being come to the height of sinne, afterwards hee should take vengeance of vs.

16 And therfore he neuer withdraweth his mercie from vs: and though he punish with aduersitie, yet doeth he neuer forsake his people.

17 But let this that we haue spoken be for a warning vnto vs: And nowe will wee come to the declaring of the matter in few words.

18 Eleazar one of the principall Scribes, an aged man, and of a well fauoured countenance, was constrained to open his mouth, and to eate swines flesh.

19 But he chusing rather to die gloriously, then to liue stained with such an abomination, spit it forth, and came of his owne accord to the torment,

20 As it behoued them to come, that are resolute to stand out against such things, as are not lawfull for loue of life to be tasted.

21 But they that had the charge of that wicked feast, for the olde acquaintance they had with the man, taking him aside, besought him to bring flesh of his owne prouision, such as was lawfull for him to vse, and make as if he did eate of the flesh, taken from the sacrifice commanded by the king,

22 That in so doing hee might bee deliuered from death, and for the olde friendship with them, find fauour.

23 But he began to consider discreetly, and as became his age, and the excellencie of his ancient yeeres, and the honour of his gray head, whereunto hee was come, and his most honest education from a child, or rather the holy lawe made, and giuen by God: therefore hee answered accordingly, and willed them straightwaies to send him to the graue.

24 For it becommeth not our age, said he, in any wise to dissemble, whereby many yong persons might thinke, that Eleazar being fourescore yeres old and ten, were now gone to a strange religion.

25 And so they through mine hypocrisie, and desire to liue a litle time, and a moment longer, should bee deceiued by me, and I get a staine to mine olde age, and make it abominable.

26 For though for the present time I should be deliuered from the punishment of men: yet should I not escape the hand of the Almightie, neither aliue nor dead.

27 Wherefore now manfully changing this life, I will shew my selfe such an one, as mine age requireth,

28 And leaue a notable example to such as bee yong, to die willingly, and couragiously, for the honourable and holy lawes: and when he had said these words, immediatly he went to the torment,

29 They that led him, changing the good will they bare him a litle before, into hatred, because the foresaid speaches proceeded as they thought, from a desperate minde.

30 But when hee was readie to die with stripes, he groned, and said, It is manifest vnto the Lord, that hath the holy knowledge, that wheras I might haue bin deliuered from death, I now endure sore paines in body, by being beaten: but in soule am well content to suffer these things, because I feare him.

31 And thus this man died, leauing his death for an example of a noble courage, and a memoriall of vertue not only vnto yong men, but vnto all his nation.


 

2 Maccabees 7 Icon_sound

1 It came to passe also that seuen brethren with their mother were taken, and compelled by the king against the lawe to taste swines flesh, and were tormented with scourges, and whips:

2 But one of them that spake first said thus: What wouldest thou aske, or learne of vs? we are ready to die, rather then to transgresse the lawes of our fathers.

3 Then the king being in a rage, commanded pannes, and caldrons to be made whot.

4 Which forthwith being heated, he commanded to cut out the tongue of him that spake first, and to cut off the vtmost parts of his body, the rest of his brethren, and his mother looking on.

5 Now when he was thus maimed in all his members, he commanded him being yet aliue, to be brought to the fire, and to be fried in the panne: and as the vapour of the panne was for a good space dispersed, they exhorted one another, with the mother, to die manfully, saying thus:

6 The Lord God looketh vpon vs, and in trueth hath comfort in vs, as Moises in his song, which witnessed to their faces declared, saying, And he shall be comforted in his seruants.

7 So when the first was dead, after this maner, they brought the second to make him a mocking stocke: and when they had pulled off the skin of his head with the haire, they asked him, Wilt thou eate before thou bee punished throughout euery member of thy body?

8 But hee answered in his owne language, and said, No. Wherefore hee also receiued the next torment in order, as the former did.

9 And when hee was at the last gaspe, hee said, Thou like a fury takest vs out of this present life, but the king of the world shall raise vs vp, who haue died for his lawes, vnto euerlasting life.

10 After him was the third made a mocking stocke, and when he was required, he put out his tongue, and that right soone, holding forth his hands manfully,

11 And said couragiously, These I had from heauen, and for his lawes I despise them, and from him I hope to receiue them againe.

12 Insomuch that the king, and they that were with him marueiled at the yong mans courage, for that he nothing regarded the paines.

13 Now when this man was dead also, they tormented and mangled the fourth in like maner.

14 So when he was ready to die, he said thus, It is good, being put to death by men, to looke for hope from God to be raised vp againe by him: as for thee thou shalt haue no resurrection to life.

15 Afterward they brought the fift also, and mangled him.

16 Then looked hee vnto the king and said, Thou hast power ouer men, thou art corruptible, thou doest what thou wilt, yet thinke not that our nation is forsaken of God.

17 But abide a while, and behold his great power, how he will torment thee, and thy seed.

18 After him also they brought the sixt, who being ready to die, said, Be not deceiued without cause: for we suffer these things for our selues, hauing sinned against our God. Therefore marueilous things are done (vnto vs.)

19 But thinke not thou that takest in hand to striue against God, that thou shalt escape vnpunished.

20 But the mother was marueilous aboue all, and worthy of honorable memorie: for when shee sawe her seuen sonnes slaine within the space of one day, she bare it with a good courage, because of the hope that she had in þe Lord

21 Yea she exhorted euery one of them in her owne language, filled with couragious spirits, and stirring vp her womanish thoughts, with a manly stomacke, she said vnto them,

A Mother and Her Sons Die for Their Faith - 2 Macc 7

22 I cannot tell how you came into my wombe: for I neither gaue you breath, nor life, neither was it I that formed the mebers of euery one of you.

23 But doubtlesse the Creator of the world, who formed the generation of man, and found out the beginning of all things, wil also of his owne mercy giue you breath, and life againe, as you now regard not your owne selues for his Lawes sake.

24 Now Antiochus thinking himselfe despised, and suspecting it to be a reprochfull speach, whiles the yongest was yet aliue, did not onely exhort him by wordes, but also assured him with oathes, that he would make him both a rich, and a happy man, if hee would turne from the Lawes of his fathers, and that also he would take him for his friend, and trust him with affaires.

25 But when the yong man would in no case hearken vnto him, the king called his mother, and exhorted her, that she would counsell the yong man to saue his life.

26 And when hee had exhorted her with many words, she promised him that she would counsell her sonne.

27 But shee bowing her selfe towards him, laughing the cruell tyrant to scorne, spake in her countrey language on this maner; O my sonne, haue pitie vpon mee that bare thee nine moneths in my wombe, and gaue thee sucke three yeeres, and nourished thee, and brought thee vp vnto this age, and endured the troubles of education.

28 I beseech thee, my sonne, looke vpon the heauen, and the earth, and all that is therein, and consider that God made them of things that were not, and so was mankinde made likewise;

29 Feare not this tormentour, but being worthy of thy brethren, take thy death, that I may receiue thee againe in mercy with thy brethren.

30 Whiles she was yet speaking these words, the yong man said, Whom wait ye for? I will not obey the kings commandement: but I will obey the commandement of the Law that was giuen vnto our fathers, by Moses.

31 And thou that hast bene the authour of all mischiefe against the Hebrewes, shalt not escape the handes of God.

32 For wee suffer because of our sinnes.

33 And though the liuing Lord bee angrie with vs a little while for our chastening and correction, yet shall hee be at one againe, with his seruants.

34 But thou, O godlesse man, and of all other most wicked, be not lifted vp without a cause, nor puffed vp with vncertaine hopes, lifting vp thy hand against the seruants of God:

35 For thou hast not yet escaped the iudgement of Almightie God, who seeth all things.

36 For our brethren who now haue suffered a short paine, are dead vnder Gods Couenant of euerlasting life: but thou through the iudgement of God, shalt receiue iust punishment for thy pride.

37 But I, as my brethren, offer vp my body, and life for the Lawes of our fathers, beseeching God that he would speedily bee mercifull vnto our nation, and that thou by torments & plagues mayest confesse, that he alone is God;

38 And that in me, and my brethren, the wrath of the Almighty, which is iustly brought vpon all our nation, may cease.

39 Then the King being in a rage, handled him worse then all the rest, and took it grieuously that he was mocked.

40 So this man died vndefiled, and put his whole trust in the Lord.

41 Last of all after the sonnes, the mother died.

42 Let this be ynough now to haue spoken cocerning the idolatrous feasts, and the extreme tortures.


 

2 Maccabees 8 Icon_sound

1 Then Iudas Maccabeus and they that were with him, went priuily into the townes, and called their kinsefolkes together, and tooke vnto them all such as continued in the Iewes religion, and assembled about sixe thousand men.

2 And they called vpon the Lord, that hee would looke vpon the people that was troden downe of all, and also pitie the Temple, prophaned of vngodly men,

3 And that he would haue compassion vpon the city sore defaced and ready to be made euen with the ground, and heare the blood that cried vnto him,

4 And remember the wicked slaughter of harmelesse infants, and the blasphemies committed against his Name, and that hee would shew his hatred against the wicked.

5 Now when Maccabeus had his company about him, hee could not be withstood by the heathen: for the wrath of the Lord was turned into mercy.

6 Therefore he came at vnawares, and burnt vp townes and cities, and got into his hands the most commodious places, and ouercame & put to flight no small number of his enemies.

7 But specially tooke he aduantage of the night, for such priuie attempts, insomuch that the bruite of his manlinesse was spread euery where.

8 So when Philip sawe that this man encreased by little and little, & that things prospered with him still more and more, hee wrote vnto Ptolemeus, the gouernour of Coelosyria & Phenice, to yeeld more aide to the kings affaires.

9 Then forthwith choosing Nicanor the son of Patroclus, one of his speciall friends, he sent him with no fewer then twentie thousand of all nations vnder him, to root out the whole generation of the Iewes; and with him he ioyned also Gorgias a captaine, who in matters of warre had great experience.

10 So Nicanor vndertooke to make so much money of the captiue Iewes, as should defray the tribute of two thousand talents, which the king was to pay to the Romanes.

11 Wherefore immediatly he sent to the cities vpon the sea coast, proclaiming a sale of the captiue Iewes, and promising that they should haue fourescore and ten bodies for one talent, not expecting the vengeance that was to follow vpon him from the Almighty God.

12 Now when word was brought vnto Iudas of Nicanors coming, and he had imparted vnto those that were with him, that the army was at hand,

13 They that were fearefull, and distrusted the iustice of God, fled, and conueyed themselues away.

14 Others sold all that they had left, and withall besought the Lord to deliuer them, being solde by the wicked Nicanor before they met together:

15 And if not for their owne sakes, yet for þe couenants he had made with their fathers, and for his holy and glorious Names sake, by which they were called

16 So Maccabeus called his men together vnto the number of sixe thousand, and exhorted them not to be stricken with terrour of the enemie, nor to feare the great multitude of the heathen who came wrongfully against them, but to fight manfully,

17 And to set before their eyes, the iniury that they had vniustly done to the holy place, and the cruell handling of the city, whereof they made a mockery, and also the taking away of the gouernment of their forefathers:

18 For they, said he, trust in their weapons and boldnesse, but our confidence is in the Almightie God, who at a becke can cast downe both them that come against vs, and also all the world.

19 Moreouer, hee recounted vnto them what helps their forefathers had found, and how they were deliuered, when vnder Sennacherib an hundred fourescore and fiue thousand perished.

20 And he told them of þe battel that they had in Babylon with the Galatians, how they came but eight thousand in all to þe busines, with foure thousand Macedonians, and that the Macedonians being perplexed, the eight thousand destroyed an hundred and twenty thousand, because of the helpe that they had from heauen, & so receiued a great booty.

21 Thus when hee had made them bold with these words, and ready to die for the Lawes, and the countrey, he diuided his army into foure parts:

22 And ioyned with himselfe his owne brethren, leaders of each band, to wit, Simon, and Ioseph, & Ionathan, giuing each one fifteene hundred men.

23 Also (hee appointed) Eleazar to reade the holy booke: and when he had giuen them this watchword, The help of God; himselfe leading the first band, he ioyned battell with Nicanor:

24 And by the helpe of the Almightie, they slew aboue nine thousand of their enemies, and wounded and maimed the most part of Nicanors hoste, and so put all to flight:

25 And tooke their money that came to buy them, and pursued them farre: but lacking time, they returned.

26 For it was the day before the Sabbath, and therefore they would no longer pursue them.

27 So when they had gathered their armour together, and spoiled their enemies, they occupied themselues about the Sabbath, yeelding exceeding praise, & thanks to the Lord, who had preserued them vnto þe day, which was the beginning of mercy, distilling vpon them.

28 And after the Sabbath, when they had giuen part of the spoiles to the maimed, and the widdowes, and Orphanes, the residue they diuided among themselues, and their seruants.

29 When this was done, and they had made a common supplication, they besought the mercifull Lord to be reconciled with his seruants for euer.

30 Moreouer of those that were with Timotheus & Bacchides, who fought against them, they slewe aboue twentie thousand, and very easily got high and strong holds, & diuided amongst them selues many spoiles more, and made the maimed, orphanes, widowes, yea, & the aged also, equal in spoiles wt themselues

31 And when they had gathered their armour together, they laid them vp all carefully in couenient places, and the remnant of the spoiles they brought to Ierusalem.

32 They slew also Philarches that wicked perso who was wt Timotheus, & had annoied the Iewes many waies.

33 Furthermore at such time as they kept the feast for the victorie in their coutry, they burnt Calisthenes that had set fire vpon the holy gates, who was fled into a litle house, and so he receiued a reward meet for his wickednesse.

34 As for that most vngracious Nicanor, who had brought a thousand merchants to buy the Iewes,

35 He was through the helpe of the Lord brought downe by them, of who he made least account, & putting off his glorious apparell, and discharging his company, he came like a fugitiue seruant through the mid land vnto Antioch, hauing very great dishonour for that his hoste was destroyed.

36 Thus he that tooke vpon him to make good to the Romanes, their tribute by meanes of the captiues in Ierusalem, told abroad, that the Iewes had God to fight for them, and therfore they could not be hurt, because they followed the lawes that he gaue them.


 

2 Maccabees 9 Icon_sound

1 About that time came Antiochus with dishonor out of the countrey of Persia.

2 For he had entred the citie called Persepolis, and went about to rob the Temple, and to hold the citie, whereupon the multitude running to defend theselues with their weapons, put them to flight, & so it happened þt Antiochus being put to flight of the inhabitants, returned with shame.

3 Now when he came to Ecbatana, newes was brought him what had happened vnto Nicanor & Timotheus.

4 Then swelling with anger, hee thought to auenge vpon the Iewes the disgrace done vnto him by those that made him flie. Therfore commanded he his chariot man to driue without ceasing, and to dispatch the iourney, the iudgement of God now following him. For he had spoken proudly in this sort, þt he would come to Ierusalem, & make it a common burying place of þe Iewes.

5 But the Lord almightie, the God of Israel smote him with an incurable and inuisible plague: for assoone as hee had spoken these words, a paine of the bowels that was remediles, came vpon him, & sore torments of the inner parts.

6 And that most iustly: for hee had tormented other mens bowels with many and strange torments.

7 Howbeit hee nothing at all ceased from his bragging, but still was filled with pride, breathing out fire in his rage against the Iewes, and commanding to haste the iourney: but it came to passe that he fel downe fro his chariot, caried violently, so that hauing a sore fal, al the mebers of his body were much pained.

8 And thus hee that a little afore thought he might command the waues of the sea (so proud was hee beyond the condition of man) and weigh the high mountaines in a ballance, was now cast on the ground, and carried in an horselitter, shewing foorth vnto all, the manifest power of God.

9 So that the wormes rose vp out of the body of this wicked man, & whiles hee liued in sorrow and paine, his flesh fell away, and the filthinesse of his smell was noysome to all his army.

10 And the man that thought a little afore he could reach to the starres of heauen, no man could endure to carry for his intollerable stinke.

11 Here therefore being plagued, hee began to leaue off his great pride, and to come to the knowledge of himselfe by the scourge of God, his paine encreasing euery moment.

12 And when hee himselfe could not abide his owne smell; hee saide these wordes: It is meete to bee subiect vnto God, and that a man that is mortall, should not proudly thinke of himselfe, as if he were God.

13 This wicked person vowed also vnto the Lord, (who now no more would haue mercy vpon him) saying thus:

14 That the holy citie (to the which hee was going in haste to lay it euen with the ground, & to make it a common burying place) he would set at liberty.

15 And as touching the Iewes, whom hee had iudged not worthy so much as to be buried, but to be cast out with their children to be deuoured of the foules, and wild beasts, he would make them al equals to þe citizens of Athens,

16 And the holy Temple, which before he had spoiled, hee would garnish with goodly gifts, and restore all the holy vessels with many more, and out of his owne reuenew defray the charges belonging to the sacrifices:

17 Yea, and that also hee would become a Iew himselfe, and goe through all the world that was inhabited, and declare the power of God.

18 But for all this his paines would not cease: for the iust iudgement of God was come vpo him: therfore despairing of his health, he wrote vnto the Iewes the letter vnderwritten, containing the forme of a supplicatio, after this maner.

19 Antiochus king and gouernour, to the good Iewes his Citizens, wisheth much ioy, health, and prosperity.

20 If ye, and your children fare well, and your affaires be to your contentment, I giue very great thankes to God, hauing my hope in heauen.

21 As for mee I was weake, or else I would haue remembred kindly your honour, and good will. Returning out of Persia, and being taken with a grieuous disease, I thought it necessary to care for the common safety of all:

22 Not distrusting mine health, but hauing great hope to escape this sicknes

23 But considering that euen my father, at what time he led an armie into the hie countries, appointed a successor,

24 To the end, that if any thing fell out contrary to expectation, or if any tidings were brought that were grieuous, they of the land knowing to whom the state was left, might not be troubled.

25 Againe considering, how that the princes that are borderers, and neighbors vnto my kingdome, waite for opportunities, and expect what shalbe the euent, I haue appointed my sonne Antiochus king, whom I often comitted, and comended vnto many of you, when I went vp into the high prouinces, to whom I haue written as followeth.

26 Therefore I pray, and request you to remember the benefits that I haue done vnto you generally, and in speciall, and that euery man will be still faithfull to me, and my sonne.

27 For I am perswaded that hee vnderstanding my minde, will fauourably & graciously yeeld to your desires.

28 Thus the murtherer, and blasphemer hauing suffered most grieuously, as he entreated other men, so died he a miserable death in a strange countrey in the mountaines.

29 And Philip that was brought vp with him, caried away his body, who also fearing the son of Antiochus, went into Egypt to Ptolomeus Philometor.


 

2 Maccabees 10 Icon_sound

1 Now Maccabeus, and his company, the Lord guiding them, recouered the Temple, and the citie.

2 But the altars, which the heathen had built in the open street, & also the Chappels they pulled downe.

3 And hauing cleansed the Temple, they made another Altar, and striking stones, they tooke fire out of them, and offered a sacrifice after two yeeres, & set forth incense, & lights, and Shewbread.

4 When that was done, they fell flat downe, and besought the Lord that they might come no more into such troubles: but if they sinned any more against him, that he himselfe would chasten them with mercie, and that they might not bee deliuered vnto the blasphemous, and barbarous nations.

5 Now vpon the same day that the strangers prophaned the Temple, on the very same day it was cleansed againe, euen the fiue and twentieth day of the same moneth, which is Casleu.

6 And they kept eight dayes with gladnes as in the feast of the Tabernacles, remembring that not long afore they had helde the feast of the Tabernacles, when as they wandered in the mountaines, and dennes, like beasts.

7 Therefore they bare branches, and faire boughes and palmes also, and sang Psalmes vnto him, that had giuen them good successe in clensing his place.

8 They ordeined also by a common statute, and decree, That euery yeere those dayes should be kept of the whole nation of the Iewes.

9 And this was the ende of Antiochus called Epiphanes.

10 Now will wee declare the acts of Antiochus Eupator, who was the sonne of this wicked man, gathering briefly the calamities of the warres.

11 So when he was come to þe crowne, he set one Lysias ouer the affaires of his Realme, and appointed him chiefe gouernour of Coelosyria and Phenice.

12 For Ptolomeus that was called Macron, chosing rather to doe iustice vnto the Iewes, for the wrong that had bene done vnto them, endeuoured to continue peace with them.

13 Whereupon being accused of the kings friends, before Eupator, & called traitor at euery word, because he had left Cyprus that Philometor had comitted vnto him, & departed to Antiochus Epiphanes; and seeing that hee was in no honorable place, he was so discouraged, that he poysoned himselfe and died.

14 But when Gorgias was gouernour of the holds, hee hired souldiers, and nourished warre continually with the Iewes:

15 And therewithall the Idumeans hauing gotten into their handes the most commodious holdes, kept the Iewes occupied, and receiuing those that were banished from Ierusalem, they went about to nourish warre.

16 Then they that were wich Maccabeus made supplication, & besought God, that he would be their helper, and so they ranne with violence vpon the strong holds of the Idumeans,

17 And assaulting them strongly, they wanne the holds, and kept off all that fought vpon the wall, and slew all that fell into their hands, and killed no fewer then twentie thousand.

18 And because certaine (who were no lesse then nine thousand) were fled together into two very strong castles, hauing all maner of things conuenient to sustaine the siege,

19 Maccabeus left Simon, & Ioseph, and Zaccheus also, and them that were with him, who were enow to besiege them, and departed himselfe vnto those places, which more needed his helpe.

20 Now they that were with Simon, being led with couetousnes, were perswaded for money (through certaine of those that were in the castle) and tooke seuentie thousand drachmes, and let some of them escape.

21 But when it was told Maccabeus what was done, hee called the gouernours of the people together, and accused those men, that they had sold their brethren for money, & let their enemies free to fight against them.

22 So he slew those that were found traitors, and immediatly tooke the two castles.

23 And hauing good successe with his weapons in all things hee tooke in hand, hee slew in the two holdes, more then twentie thousand.

24 Now Timotheus whom the Iewes had ouercome before, when he had gathered a great multitude of forraine forces, and horses out of Asia not a few, came as though hee would take Iewrie by force of armes.

25 But when hee drew neere, they that were with Maccabeus, turned themselues to pray vnto God, and sprinckled earth vpon their heads, and girded their loynes with sackcloth,

26 And fell downe at the foot of the Altar, and besought him to be mercifull to them, and to be an enemie to their enemies, and an aduersarie to their aduersaries, as the Law declareth.

27 So after the prayer, they tooke their weapons, & went on further from the city: and when they drew neere to their enemies, they kept by themselues.

28 Now the Sunne being newly risen, they ioyned both together; the one part hauing, together with their vertue, their refuge also vnto the Lord, for a pledge of their successe and victorie: the other side making their rage leader of their battell.

29 But when the battaile waxed strong, there appeared vnto the enemies from heauen, fiue comely men vpon horses, with bridles of golde, and two of them ledde the Iewes,

30 And tooke Maccabeus betwixt them, and couered him on euery side with their weapons, and kept him safe, but shot arrowes & lightenings against the enemies: so that being confounded with blindnesse, and full of trouble, they were killed.

31 And there were slaine of footemen twentie thousand and fiue hundred, and sixe hundred horsemen.

32 As for Timotheus himselfe, hee fled into a very strong holde, called Gazara, where Chereas was gouernour.

33 But they that were with Maccabeus, laid siege against the fortresse couragiously foure dayes.

34 And they þt were within, trusting to the strength of the place, blasphemed exceedingly, & vttered wicked words.

35 Neuerthelesse, vpon the fifth day early, twentie yong men of Maccabeus company, inflamed with anger because of the blasphemies, assaulted the wall manly, and with a fierce courage killed all that they met withall.

36 Others likewise ascending after them, whiles they were busied with them that were within, burnt the towres, and kindling fires, burnt the blasphemers aliue, and others broke open the gates, and hauing receiued in the rest of the army, tooke the city,

37 And killed Timotheus that was hidde in a certaine pit, and Chereas his brother, with Apollophanes.

38 When this was done, they praised the Lord with Psalmes and thankesgiuing, who had done so great things for Israel, and giuen them the victory.


 

2 Maccabees 11 Icon_sound

1 Not long after this, Lysias the kings protectour & cousin, who also managed the affaires, tooke sore displeasure for the things that were done.

2 And when he had gathered about fourescore thousand, with all the horsemen, he came against the Iewes, thinking to make the citie an habitation of the Gentiles,

3 And to make a gaine of the Temple, as of the other Chappels of the heathen, and to set the high Priesthood to sale euery yeere:

4 Not at all considering the power of God, but puffed vp with his ten thousand footmen, and his thousand horsemen, and his fourescore Elephants.

5 So he came to Iudea, & drew neere to Bethsura, which was a strong town, but distant from Ierusalem about fiue furlongs, and he laid sore siege vnto it.

6 Now when they that were with Maccabeus heard that he besieged the holdes, they and all the people with lamentation and teares besought the Lord, that he would send a good Angel to deliuer Israel.

7 Then Maccabeus himselfe first of all tooke weapons, exhorting the other, that they would ieopard themselues together with him, to helpe their brethren: so they went forth together with a willing minde.

8 And as they were at Ierusalem, there appeared before them on horsebacke, one in white clothing, shaking his armour of gold.

9 Then they praised the mercifull God altogether, and tooke heart, insomuch that they were ready not onely to fight with men, but with most cruell beasts, & to pierce through wals of yron.

10 Thus they marched forward in their armour, hauing an helper from heauen: for the Lord was mercifull vnto them.

11 And giuing a charge vpo their enemies like lions, they slew eleuen thousand footmen, & sixteene hundred horsemen, and put all the other to flight.

12 Many of them also being wounded, escaped naked, and Lysias himselfe fled away shamefully, and so escaped.

13 Who as hee was a man of vnderstanding, casting with himselfe what losse he had had, and considering that the Hebrewes could not be ouercome, because the Almighty God helped them, he sent vnto them,

14 And perswaded them to agree to all reasonable conditions, & promised that hee would perswade the king, that he must needs be a friend vnto them.

15 Then Maccabeus consented to all that Lysias desired, being carefull of the common good; and whatsoeuer Maccabeus wrote vnto Lysias concerning the Iewes, the king granted it.

16 For there were letters written vnto the Iewes from Lysias, to this effect: Lysias vnto the people of the Iewes, sendeth greeting.

17 Iohn and Absalon, who were sent from you, deliuered me the petition subscribed, and made request for the performance of the contents thereof.

18 Therefore what things soeuer were meet to be reported to the king, I haue declared them, and he hath granted as much as might be.

19 If then you wil keepe your selues loyall to the state, hereafter also will I endeuour to be a meanes of your good.

20 But of the particulars I haue giuen order, both to these, & the other that came from me, to commune with you.

21 Fare ye wel. The hundred & eight and fortie yeere, the foure and twentie day of the moneth Dioscorinthius.

22 Now the kings letter conteined these words, King Antiochus vnto his brother Lysias sendeth greeting.

23 Since our father is translated vnto þe gods, our will is, that they that are in our realme liue quietly, that euery one may attend vpon his own affaires.

24 Wee vnderstand also that the Iewes would not consent to our father for to bee brought vnto the custome of the Gentiles, but had rather keepe their owne manner of liuing: for the which cause they require of vs that we should suffer the to liue after their own lawes.

25 Wherefore our mind is, that this nation shall be in rest, and we haue determined to restore them their Temple, that they may liue according to the customes of their forefathers.

26 Thou shalt doe well therefore to send vnto them, and grant them peace, that whe they are certified of our mind, they may be of good comfort, & euer goe cheerefully about their owne affaires.

27 And the letter of þe king vnto the nation of the Iewes was after this maner: king Antiochus sendeth greeting vnto the counsel, & the rest of the Iewes

28 If ye fare well, we haue our desire, we are also in good health.

29 Menelaus declared vnto vs, that your desire was to returne home, and to follow your owne businesse.

30 Wherefore they that will depart shall haue safe conduct, till the thirtieth day of Xanthicus with securitie.

31 And the Iewes shal vse their owne kind of meats, and lawes, as before, and none of them any maner of wayes shal be molested for things ignorantly done.

32 I haue sent also Menelaus, that he may comfort you.

33 Fare ye wel. In the hundred, forty and eight yeere, and the fifteenth day of the moneth Xanthicus.

34 The Romanes also sent vnto them a letter containing these wordes: Quintus Memmius, & Titus Manlius embassadours of þe Romanes, send greeting vnto the people of the Iewes.

35 Whatsoeuer Lysias the kings cousin hath granted, therewith we also are well pleased.

36 But touching such things as hee iudged to be referred to the king: after you haue aduised therof, send one forthwith, that we may declare as it is conuenient for you: for we are now going to Antioch.

37 Therefore send some with speed, that we may know what is your mind.

38 Farewell, this hundred and eight and fortie yeere, the fifteenth day of the moneth Xanthicus.


 

2 Maccabees 12 Icon_sound

1 When these Couenants were made, Lysias went vnto the king, and the Iewes were about their husbandrie.

2 But of the gouernours of seueral places, Timotheus, and Apollonius the sonne of Genneus, also Hieronymus, and Demophon, and besides them Nicanor þe gouernor of Cyprus would not suffer them to be quiet, and liue in peace.

3 The men of Ioppe also did such an vngodly deed: they prayed the Iewes that dwelt among them, to goe with their wiues, and children into the boats which they had prepared, as though they had meant them no hurt.

4 Who accepted of it according to the common decree of the citie, as being desirous to liue in peace, and suspecting nothing: but when they were gone forth into the deepe, they drowned no lesse then two hundred of them.

5 When Iudas heard of this crueltie done vnto his countrey men, he commanded those that were with him to make them ready.

6 And calling vpon God the righteous iudge, he came against those murtherers of his brethren, & burnt the hauen by night, and set the boats on fire, and those that fled thither, he slew.

7 And when the towne was shut vp, he went backward, as if he would returne to root out all them of the citie of Ioppe.

8 But when he heard that þe Iamnites were minded to doe in like maner vnto the Iewes þt dwelt among them,

9 He came vpon the Iamnites also by night, and set fire on the hauen, & the nauy, so that the light of the fire was seene at Ierusalem, two hundred and fortie furlongs off.

10 Now when they were gone from thence nine furlongs in their iourney toward Timotheus, no fewer then fiue thousand men on foote, & fiue hundred horse men of the Arabians, set vpon him.

11 Whereupon there was a very sore battell; but Iudas side by the helpe of God got the victory, so that the Nomades of Arabia being ouercome, besought Iudas for peace, promising both to giue him cattell, and to pleasure him otherwise.

12 Then Iudas thinking indeede that they would be profitable in many things, granted them peace, wherupon they shooke hands, and so they departed to their tents.

13 Hee went also about to make a bridge to a certaine strong citie, which was fenced about with walles, and inhabited by people of diuers countries, and the name of it was Caspis.

14 But they that were within it put such trust in the strength of the walles, and prouision of victuals, that they behaued themselues rudely towards them that were with Iudas, railing, and blaspheming, and vttering such words, as were not to be spoken.

15 Wherefore Iudas with his company, calling vpon the great Lord of the world (who without any rammes, or engines of warre did cast downe Iericho in the time of Iosua) gaue a fierce assault against the walles,

16 And tooke the citie by the will of God, and made vnspeakable slaughters, insomuch that a lake two furlongs broad, neere adioining thereunto, being filled ful, was seen running with blood.

17 Then departed they from thence seuen hundred and fifty furlongs, and came to Characa vnto the Iewes that are called Tubieni.

18 But as for Timotheus they found him not in the places, for before hee had dispatched any thing, he departed from thence, hauing left a very strong garrison in a certaine hold:

19 Howbeit, Dositheus, and Sosipater, who were of Maccabeus captaines, went forth, and slew those that Timotheus had left in the fortresse, aboue tenne thousand men.

20 And Maccabeus ranged his armie by bands, & set them ouer the bands, and went against Timotheus, who had about him & hundred and twentie thousand men of foote, and two thousand, and fiue hundred horsemen.

21 Nowe when Timotheus had knowledge of Iudas comming, he sent the women and children, and the other baggage vnto a fortresse called Carnion (for the towne was hard to besiege and vneasie to come vnto, by reason of the straitnesse of all the places.)

22 But when Iudas his first band came in sight, the enemies (being smitten with feare, and terrour through the appearing of him that seeth all things) fled amaine, one running this way, another that way, so as that they were often hurt of their owne men, and wounded with þe points of their owne swords

23 Iudas also was very earnest in pursuing them, killing those wicked wretches, of whom he slew about thirtie thousand men.

24 Moreouer, Timotheus himselfe fell into the hands of Dositheus, & Sosipater, whom he besought with much craft to let him goe with his life, because hee had many of the Iewes parents, and the brethren of some of them, who, if they put him to death, should not be regarded.

25 So when hee had assured them with many words, that hee would restore them without hurt according to the agreement, they let him goe for the sauing of their brethren.

26 Then Maccabeus marched forth to Carnion, & to the Temple of Atargatis, and there he slew fiue and twenty thousand persons.

27 And after he had put to flight, and destroyed them, Iudas remooued the hoste towards Ephron, a strong citie, wherin Lysias abode, and a great multitude of diuers nations, and the strong yong men kept the wals, and defended them mightily: wherin also was great prouision of engines, and darts.

28 But when Iudas and his company had called vpon Almighty God (who with his power breaketh the strength of his enemies) they wanne the citie, and slew twentie and fiue thousand of them that were within.

29 From thence they departed to Scythopolis, which lieth sixe hundreth furlongs from Ierusalem.

30 But when the Iewes that dwelt there had testified that the Scythopolitans dealt louingly with them, and entreated them kindely in the time of their aduersitie:

31 They gaue them thankes, desiring them to be friendly stil vnto them, and so they came to Ierusalem, the feast of the weekes approching.

32 And after the feast called Pentecost, they went foorth against Gorgias the gouernour of Idumea,

33 Who came out wt three thousand men of foot, & foure hundred horsemen.

34 And it happened that in their fighting together, a few of the Iewes were slaine.

35 At which time Dositheus one of Bacenors company, who was on horsbacke, and a strong man, was still vpon Gorgias, and taking hold of his coate, drew him by force, and when he would haue taken that cursed man aliue, a horseman of Thracia comming vpon him, smote off his shoulder, so that Gorgias fled vnto Marisa.

36 Now when they that were with Gorgias had fought long & were wearie, Iudas called vpon the Lord that he would shew himselfe to be their helper, and leader of the battell.

37 And with that he beganne in his owne language, & sung Psalmes with a lowd voyce, & rushing vnawares vpon Gorgias men, he put them to flight.

38 So Iudas gathered his host, and came into the city of Odollam. And when the seuenth day came, they purified themselues (as the custome was) and kept the Sabbath in the same place.

39 And vpon the day following as the vse had bene, Iudas and his company came to take vp the bodies of them that were slaine, and to bury them with their kinsmen, in their fathers graues.

40 Now vnder the coats of euery one that was slaine, they found things consecrated to the idoles of the Iamnites, which is forbidden the Iewes by the Law. Then euery man saw that this was þe cause wherefore they were slaine.

41 All men therefore praising the Lord the righteous Iudge, who had opened the things that were hid,

42 Betooke themselues vnto praier, and besought him that the sinne committed, might wholy bee put out of remembrance. Besides, that noble Iudas exhorted the people to keep themselues from sinne, forsomuch as they saw before their eyes the things that came to passe, for the sinne of those þt were slaine.

43 And when he had made a gathering throughout the company, to the sum of two thousand drachmes of siluer, hee sent it to Ierusalem to offer a sinne offering, doing therein very well, and honestly, in that he was mindfull of the resurrection.

44 (For if he had not hoped that they that were slaine should haue risen againe, it had bin superfluous and vaine, to pray for the dead.)

45 And also in that he perceiued that there was great fauour layed vp for those that died godly. (It was an holy, and good thought) wherupon he made a reconciliation for the dead, that they might be deliuered from sinne.


 

2 Maccabees 13 Icon_sound

1 In the hundreth forty and ninth yere it was told Iudas that Antiochus Eupator was coming with a great power into Iudea;

2 And with him Lysias his protector, and ruler of his affaires, hauing either of them a Grecian power of footemen, an hundred and ten thousand, and horsmen fiue thousand, & three hundred, and Elephants two & twenty, and three hundred charets armed wt hooks.

3 Menelaus also ioyned himself with them, and with great dissimulation encouraged Antiochus, not for the safegard of the countrey, but because hee thought to haue bin made gouernour.

4 But the King of kings mooued Antiochus minde against this wicked wretch, and Lysias enformed the king, that this man was the cause of all mischiefe, so that the king commanded to bring him vnto Berea, and to put him to death, as the maner is in that place.

5 Now there was in that place a towre of fifty cubites high full of ashes, and it had a round instrumet which on euery side hanged down into the ashes.

6 And whosoeuer was condemned of sacriledge, or had committed any other grieuous crime, there did all men thrust him vnto death.

7 Such a death it happened that wicked man to die, not hauing so much as buriall in the earth, & that most iustly.

8 For inasmuch as he had committed many sinnes about the altar whose fire and ashes were holy, hee receiued his death in ashes.

9 Now þe king came with a barbarous & hautie mind, to do far worse to þe Iewes then had beene done in his fathers time.

10 Which things when Iudas perceiued, hee commanded the multitude to call vpon the Lord night & day, that if euer at any other time, he would now also helpe them, being at the point to be put from their Law, from their country, and from the holy Temple:

11 And that hee would not suffer the people, that had euen now been but a little refreshed, to be in subiection to the blasphemous nations.

12 So when they had all done this together, and besought the mercifull Lord with weeping, and fasting, and lying flat vpon the ground three daies long, Iudas hauing exhorted them, commanded they should be in a readinesse.

13 And Iudas being apart with the Elders, determined before the kings host should enter into Iudea and get the city, to goe foorth and try the matter in fight by the helpe of the Lord.

14 So when he had committed all to the Creator of the world, & exhorted his souldiers to fight manfully, euen vnto death, for the Lawes, the Temple, the city, the country, and the common-wealth, he camped by Modin.

15 And hauing giuen the watchword to them that were about him, Uictory is of God; with the most valiant and choice yong men, he went in into the kings tent by night, & slewe in the campe about foure thousand men, and the chiefest of the Elephants, with all that were vpon him.

16 And at last they filled the campe with feare and tumult, and departed with good successe.

17 This was done in the breake of the day, because the protection of the Lord did helpe him.

18 Now when the king had taken a taste of the manlinesse of the Iewes, hee went about to take the holds by policie,

19 And marched towards Bethsura, which was a stroghold of þe Iews, but he was put to flight, failed, & lost of his men.

20 For Iudas had conueyed vnto them þt were in it, such things as were necessary.

21 But Rhodocus who was in þe Iewes hoste, disclosed the secrets to the enemies, therefore he was sought out, & when they had gotten him, they put him in prison.

22 The king treated with them in Bethsura the second time, gaue his hand, tooke theirs, departed, fought with Iudas, was ouercome:

23 Heard that Philip who was left ouer the affaires in Antioch was desperately bent, confounded, intreated the Iewes, submitted himselfe, and sware to all equal conditions, agreed with them, and offred sacrifice, honoured the Temple, and dealt kindly with the place,

24 And accepted well of Maccabeus, made him principall gouernor from Ptolemais vnto the Gerrhenians,

25 Came to Ptolemais, the people there were grieued for the couenants: for they stormed because they would make their couenants voide.

26 Lysias went vp to the iudgement seat, said as much as could be in defence of the cause, perswaded, pacified, made them well affected, returned to Antioch. Thus it went touching the kings comming and departing.


 

2 Maccabees 14 Icon_sound

1 After three yeres was Iudas enformed that Demetrius the sonne of Seleucus hauing entred by the hauen of Tripolis with a great power and nauie,

2 Had taken the countrey, and killed Antiochus, and Lysias his protectour.

3 Now one Alcimus who had beene hie Priest, and had defiled himselfe wilfully in the times of their mingling (with the Gentiles) seeing that by no meanes hee could saue himselfe, nor haue any more accesse to the holy Altar,

4 Came to king Demetrius in the hundreth and one and fiftieth yeere, presenting vnto him a crowne of golde, and a palme, and also of the boughes which were vsed solemnly in the Temple: and so that day he helde his peace.

5 Howbeit hauing gotten opportunity to further his foolish enterprise, and being called into counsel by Demetrius, & asked how the Iewes stood affected, and what they inteded, he answered therunto;

6 Those of the Iewes that bee called Asideans (whose captaine is Iudas Maccabeus) nourish warre, and are seditious; and will not let the realme be in peace.

7 Therfore I being depriued of mine ancestors honor (I meane the hie Priesthood) am now come hither.

8 First verily for the vnfained care I haue of things pertaining to the king, and secondly, euen for that I intend the good of mine owne countrey men: for all our nation is in no small misery, through the vnaduised dealing of them aforesaid.

9 Wherefore, O king, seeing thou knowest all these things, bee carefull for the countrey, and our nation, which is pressed on euery side, according to the clemency that thou readily shewest vnto all.

10 For as long as Iudas liueth, it is not possible that the state should be quiet.

11 This was no sooner spoken of him, but others of the kings friends being malitiously set against Iudas, did more incense Demetrius.

12 And foorthwith calling Nicanor, who had bene master of the Elephants, and making him gouernour ouer Iudea, he sent him forth,

13 Comanding him to slay Iudas, & to scatter them that were wt him, & to make Alcimus high priest of the great Temple.

14 Then the heathen that had fled out of Iudea from Iudas, came to Nicanor by flocks, thinking the harme and calamities of the Iewes, to be their well-fare.

15 Now when the Iewes heard of Nicanors comming, and that the heathen were vp against them, they cast earth vpon their heads, and made supplication to him that had stablished his people for euer, and who alwayes helpeth his portion with manifestation of his presence.

16 So at the commandement of the captaine, they remooued straightwayes from thence, and came neere vnto them, at the towne of Deffaro.

17 Now Simon, Iudas brother, had ioyned battell with Nicanor, but was somewhat discomfited, through the suddaine silence of his enemies.

18 Neuerthelesse Nicanor hearing of the manlinesse of them that were with Iudas, and the courageousnes that they had to fight for their countrey, durst not try the matter by the sword.

19 Wherefore he sent Posidonius, and Theodotus, & Mattathias to make peace.

20 So when they had taken long aduisement thereupon, and the captaine had made þe multitude acquainted therewith, and it appeared that they were all of one minde, they consented to the couenants,

21 And appointed a day to meet in together by themselues, & when the day came, and stooles were set for either of them,

22 Iudas placed armed men ready in conuenient places, lest some treachery should bee suddenly practised by the enemies; so they made a peaceable coference.

23 Now Nicanor abode in Ierusalem, and did no hurt, but sent away the people that came flocking vnto him.

24 And hee would not willingly haue Iudas out of his sight: for hee loued the man from his heart.

25 He praied him also to take a wife, and to beget children: so he maried, was quiet, and tooke part of this life.

26 But Alcimus perceiuing the loue that was betwixt them, and considering the couenants that were made, came to Demetrius, and tolde him that Nicanor was not well affected towards the state, for that he had ordained Iudas, a traitor to his realme, to be the kings successour.

27 Then the king being in a rage, and prouoked with the accusations of the most wicked man, wrote to Nicanor, signifying that he was much displeased with the couenants, and commaunding him that hee should send Maccabeus prisoner in all haste vnto Antioch.

28 When this came to Nicanors hearing, he was much cofounded in himselfe, and tooke it grieuously, that hee should make voyd the articles which were agreed vpon, the man being in no fault.

29 But because there was no dealing against the king, hee watched his time to accomplish this thing by pollicie.

30 Notwithstading when Maccabeus saw that Nicanor began to bee churlish vnto him, and that he entreated him more roughly then he was wont, perceiuing þt such sowre behauiour came not of good, hee gathered together not a few of his men, and withdrew himselfe fro Nicanor.

31 But the other knowing that he was notably preuented by Iudas policie, came into the great and holy Temple, and commanded the Priestes that were offering their vsual sacrifices, to deliuer him þe man.

32 And whe they sware that they could not tel where þe man was, who he sought,

33 Hee stretched out his right hand toward the Temple, & made an oath in this maner: If you wil not deliuer me Iudas as a prisoner, I will lay this Temple of God euen with the ground, and I will breake downe the Altar, and erect a notable temple vnto Bacchus.

34 After these words he departed; then the Priests lift vp their handes towards heauen, & besought him þt was euer a defeder of their nation, saying in this maner:

35 Thou, O Lord of all things, who hast neede of nothing, wast pleased that the Temple of thine habitation should be among vs.

36 Therefore now, O holy Lord of all holinesse, keepe this house euer vndefiled, which lately was cleansed, and stop euery vnrighteous mouth.

37 Now was there accused vnto Nicanor, one Razis, one of the Elders of Ierusalem, a louer of his countrey men, and a man of very good report, who for his kindnesse was called a father of þe Iewes.

38 For in the former times, when they mingled not themselues with the Gentiles, he had bin accused of Iudaisme, and did boldly ieopard his body and life with al vehemency for the religion of þe Iewes.

39 So Nicanor willing to declare the hate that he bare vnto the Iewes, sent aboue fiue hudred men of war to take him.

40 For he thought by taking him to do the Iewes much hurt.

41 Now when the multitude would haue taken the towre, and violently broken into the vtter doore, and bade that fire should be brought to burne it, he being ready to be taken on euery side, fell vpon his sword,

42 Chusing rather to die manfully, then to come into the hands of the wicked to be abused otherwise then beseemed his noble birth.

43 But missing his stroke through haste, the multitude also rushing within the doores, he ran boldly vp to the wall, and cast himselfe downe manfully among the thickest of them.

44 But they quickly giuing backe, and a space being made, he fell downe into the midst of the void place.

45 Neuerthelesse while there was yet breath within him, being inflamed with anger, he rose vp, and though his blood gushed out like spouts of water, and his wounds were grieuous, yet hee ranne through the midst of the throng, and standing vpon a steepe rocke,

46 When as his blood was now quite gone, hee pluckt out his bowels, & taking them in both his hands, hee cast them vpon the throng, and calling vpon the Lord of life and spirit to restore him those againe, he thus died.


 

2 Maccabees 15 Icon_sound

1 But Nicanor hearing that Iudas and his company were in the strong places about Samaria, resolued without any danger to set vpon them on þe sabbath day.

2 Neuertheles, the Iewes that were compelled to go with him, said, O destroy not so cruelly and barbarously, but giue honour to that day, which he that seeth all things, hath honoured with holinesse aboue other dayes.

3 Then this most vngracious wretch demanded, if there were a mightie one in heauen that had commanded the Sabbath day to be kept.

4 And when they said, There is in heauen a liuing Lord, and mightie, who commanded the seuenth day to be kept,

5 Then said the other, And I also am mightie vpon earth, & I comand to take armes, and to do the kings busines: yet he obteined not to haue his wicked wil done.

6 So Nicanor in exceeding pride and haughtinesse, determined to set vp a publike moument of his victorie ouer Iudas, and them that were with him.

7 But Maccabeus had euer sure confidence that the Lord would helpe him.

8 Wherfore he exhorted his people not to feare the comming of the heathen against them, but to remember the helpe which in former times they had receiued from heauen, and now to expect the victory, and aid which should come vnto them from the Almightie.

9 And so comforting them out of the law, and the prophets, and withall putting them in mind of the battels that they won afore, he made them more cheerefull.

10 And when he had stirred vp their minds, he gaue them their charge, shewing them therewithall the falshood of the heathen, and the breach of othes.

11 Thus he armed euery one of them not so much with defence of shields and speares, as with comfortable and good words: and besides that, he tolde them a dreame worthy to be beleeued, as if it had bin so indeed, which did not a litle reioyce them.

12 And this was his vision: that Onias, who had bin high Priest, a vertuous, and a good man, reuerend in conuersation, gentle in condition, well spoken also, and exercised from a child in all points of vertue, holding vp his hands, prayed for the whole bodie of the Iewes.

13 This done, in like maner there appeared a man with gray haires, & exceeding glorious, who was of a wonderfull and excellent maiestie.

14 Then Onias answered, saying, This is a louer of the brethren, who prayeth much for the people, and for the holy citie, (to wit) Ieremias þe prophet of God.

15 Whereupon Ieremias, holding forth his right hand, gaue to Iudas a sword of gold, and in giuing it spake thus:

16 Take this holy sword a gift from God, with the which thou shalt wound the aduersaries.

17 Thus being well comforted by the words of Iudas, which were very good, and able to stirre them vp to valour, and to encourage the hearts of the yong men, they determined not to pitch campe, but couragiously to set vpon them, and manfully to trie the matter by conflict, because the citie, and the Sanctuarie, and the Temple were in danger.

18 For the care that they tooke for their wiues, and their children, their brethren, and kinsfolkes, was in least account with them: but the greatest, and principall feare, was for the holy Temple.

19 Also they that were in the citie, tooke not the least care, being troubled for the conflict abroad.

20 And now when as all looked what should bee þe triall, & the enemies were already come neere, and the armie was set in aray, and the beasts conueniently placed, and the horsemen set in wings:

21 Maccabeus seeing the comming of the multitude, and the diuers preparations of armour, and the fiercenesse of the beasts, stretched out his hands towards heauen, and called vpon the Lord, that worketh wonders, knowing that victorie commeth not by armes, but euen as it seemeth good to him, he giueth it to such as are worthy:

22 Therefore in his prayer he said after this maner: O Lord, thou diddest send thine Angel in the time of Ezekias king of Iudea, and diddest slay in the host of Sennacherib, an hundred, fourescore, and fiue thousand.

23 Wherfore now also O Lord of heauen, send a good Angel before vs, for a feare, and dread vnto them.

24 And through the might of thine arme, let those bee stricken with terror, that come against thy holy people to blaspheme. And he ended thus.

25 Then Nicanor, and they that were with him came forward with trumpets, and songs.

26 But Iudas, and his company encountred the enemies with inuocation, and prayer.

27 So that fighting with their hands, and praying vnto God with their hearts, they slew no lesse then thirty and fiue thousand men: for through the appearance of God, they were greatly cheered.

28 Now when the battell was done, returning againe with ioy, they knew that Nicanor lay dead in his harnesse.

29 Then they made a great shout, and a noise, praising the Almighty in their owne language:

30 And Iudas, who was euer the chiefe defender of the citizens both in body, and minde, and who continued his loue towards his countrymen all his life, commanded to strike off Nicanors head, and his hand, with his shoulder, & bring them to Ierusalem.

31 So when he was there, and had called them of his nation together, and set the priests before the altar, he sent for them that were of the Towre,

32 And shewed them vile Nicanors head, and the hand of that blasphemer, which with proud brags he had stretched out against the holy Temple of the Almightie.

33 And when he had cut out the tongue of that vngodly Nicanor, he commanded that they should giue it by pieces vnto the foules, and hang vp the reward of his madnesse before the Temple.

34 So euery man praised towards the heauen the glorious Lord, saying, Blessed be hee that hath kept his owne place vndefiled.

35 He hanged also Nicanors head vpon the Towre, an euident, and manifest signe vnto all, of the helpe of the Lord.

36 And they ordained all with a common decree, in no case to let that day passe without solemnitie: but to celebrate the thirteenth day of the twelfth moneth, which in the Syrian tongue is called Adar, the day before Mardocheus day.

37 Thus went it with Nicanor, and from that time forth, the Hebrewes had the citie in their power: and heere will I make an end.

38 And if I haue done well, and as is fitting the story, it is that which I desired: but if slenderly, and meanly, it is that which I could attaine vnto.

39 For as it is hurtfull to drinke wine, or water alone; & as wine mingled with water is pleasant, and delighteth the tast: euen so speech finely framed, delighteth the eares of them that read the storie. And heere shall be an end.


 

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