5 Maccabees Chapter 06 (from The Five Books of Maccabees)


Cotton H.Sir : 

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P. 294 – 297 Book 5 B.C. 167 [PDF: 344/347 of p.524]

CHAPTER 61)Foot Note p. 294 a. Compare this chapter with 2 Mace. ii. ; Joseph. Antiq. XII. II; Bell. 1.1.

(i) The history of Mattathias the high priest, the son of’ Jochanan, who is the son of Hesmai2)Foot Note p. 294 b. Called by Josephus, “Assamonaens:”: compare the note on book II. eh. ii. 1. the priest.

1 A certain man named Mattathias, the son of p. 295 Jochanan, fled to one of the mountains which were fortified. And the men who were scattered abroad fled thither to him: and some concealed 2 themselves in secluded places. But after that Antiochus had departed to a greater distance from the country, Mattathias sent his son Judas 3 secretly into the cities of Judah; to certify them of his own and his people’s health, and to desire that as many as were inspired with courage, magnanimity, and zeal for religion, for their wives, and their children, should come unto him. 4 And certain of the higher orders of the people, who had stayed behind, went out to him: who, 5 when they were come to him, said to them; “No thing is left to us, but prayer to God, and confidence in Him, and a fight with our enemies, if perhaps God will give us assistance and the victory over them.” 6 And the people assented to the opinion of Mattathias, and they acted according to it.

7 And it was told to Faelix; and he marched 8 against them with a great army. And word was brought to him, while on his march, that about a thousand of the people of the Jews, men and women mixed, were assembled together, and dwelling in a certain cave, that they might be enabled 9 to preserve their own way of worship. And he turned aside to them with some part of his troops, sending the commanders of his men with the rest 10 of the army against Mattathias. Now Faelix demanded from those who were in the cave, that they should come out to him, and consent to enter 11 into his religion; but they refused. Whereupon  p. 296 he threatened that he would put smoke3)Foot Note p. 296 c. Namely, that he would kindle fires in the cave’s mouth and thus smother them with the smoke. under them ; and they endured that, and did not come out to him ; and he put smoke under them, and they all died.

12 And when the generals of his army were marching against Mattathias, and came even to him, he being ready for battle; one of the generals, of 13 noble blood, went to him, proposing to him to obey the king, and that he should not oppose his authority; so that he himself might live, and those who were with him, and might not perish. To whom he said; “I indeed obey God the true 14 king : but do you obey your king, and do whatsoever seems good to you.” And he ceased from speaking. And they began to lay snares for him. 15 And there came a certain man, of the worst of 16 the Jews who were with them, and excited them to march against him and to prepare war. And 17 Mattathias rushed on him with his drawn sword, and cut off the Jew’s head: then he struck the general4)Foot Note p. 296 d. Josephus states the name of this general (or commissioner, as he is called at 2 Mace. ii. 25) to be Apelles., to whom the Jew was speaking, and slew him also. 18 But Mattathias’ companions, seeing what he had done, hastened to him ; and they burst into the camp of the enemy, slaying great numbers of them, and put them to flight: afterwards they pursued the fugitives, until they slew the whole of them.

19 After this, Mattathias blew the trumpet, and p. 297 proclaimed an expedition against Faelix. And he and his companions entered into the land of Judah, and took possession of very many of their 20 cities. And the most high God gave them rest by his hands from the generals of Antiochus: and they returned to the observance of their own religion: and the bands of their enemies retreated from before them.


Original Source: Transcribed from PDF copy of Book "The Five Books of Maccabees in English. With Notes and Illustrations", by HENRY COTTON, D.C.L.(Sir) Archdeacon of Cashel, and Late Student of Christ Church, Oxford. Publication date 1832 | PDF


References   [ + ]

1. Foot Note p. 294 a. Compare this chapter with 2 Mace. ii. ; Joseph. Antiq. XII. II; Bell. 1.1.
2. Foot Note p. 294 b. Called by Josephus, “Assamonaens:”: compare the note on book II. eh. ii. 1.
3. Foot Note p. 296 c. Namely, that he would kindle fires in the cave’s mouth and thus smother them with the smoke.
4. Foot Note p. 296 d. Josephus states the name of this general (or commissioner, as he is called at 2 Mace. ii. 25) to be Apelles.

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