5 Maccabees Chapter 11 (from The Five Books of Maccabees)


Cotton H.Sir : 

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P. 309 – 311 Book 5 B.C. 163 [PDF: 359/361 of p.524]

CHAPTER 11.1)Foot Note p. 309 a. Compare with this the account and xii. given at 3 Mace. xi.

(i) The relation of the battle between Judas and Lysias the general of Etipator, after the death of king Antiochus.

1 The name of Antiochus, of whom mention has been made above, was Epiphanius : [B.C. 163] but the name of his son who reigned after him was Eupator, who also was named Antiochus. 2 And when the battles of Judas with these generals had taken place, they2)Foot Note p. 309 b. Namely, some of the king’s troops who still held the tower in Jerusalem, together with “some ungodly men of Israel, who joined them selves unto them,” as related at 2 Mace. vi. 18—27. wrote on the subject to Eupator ; who sent with Lysias, his cousin’s son, a large army, in which were eighty thousand 3 horsemen and eighty elephants. Who coming to a city which is called Bethner3)Foot Note p. 309 c. The same place as Bethsura, so often mentioned in books II. and III. and Bethzur, named in the books of Joshua and Chronicles., pitched their camp around it, and besieged it, because it was 4 a large city, and much people was therein. And Lysias raised engines of war around it, and began 5 to besiege the inhabitants : which being told to p. 310 Judas, he himself and his company went out to some fortified mountains4)Foot Note p. 310 d. Probably in the neighbourhood of Bathzacharias. mentioned at 2 Mace. vi. 32.; and there they abode; 6 lest if they remained in any city, Lysias should come and besiege it, and should overpower them. Judas therefore collected his company, and 7 resolved to march with them to Lysias’ camp, after they should have gone to the house of God and offered sacrifices in it ; beseeching the great and 8 good God to turn away from them the malice of their enemies, and to grant them victory over them : which thing they did. After this, they 9 marched from the region of the holy house to Bethner. For they had designed to come upon the army suddenly, and to defeat it without a struggle.

Now men say, that there appeared to Judas 10 a certain personage between heaven and earth, riding on a fiery horse, and holding in his hand a large spear, with which he smote the army of the Gentiles5)Foot Note p. 310 e. Literally, “of the Greeks.”. So that what they had seen gave 11 them additional courage and spirits. And they made haste and charged the army, and slew great numbers of its men. Wherefore the enemy’s army 12 was troubled and thrown into the greatest confusion, and the whole of it betook itself to a confused flight. And the sword of Judas and his 13 company pressed sore upon them ; and he slew of them eleven thousand footmen, and sixteen hundred horsemen. Lysias also was chased, with 14 his company, to a distant place, in which he remained in safety. And he sent to Judas, desiring him to be 15 p. 311 subject to the king, retaining his own and his people’s 16 religion : to whom Judas consented in this matter, until word could be written to the king, and an answer of his agreeing thereto could be received. 17 And Judas wrote concerning this business: Lysias also wrote to the king, informing him of what had happened, and what proof he had had of the strength and bravery of the Jewish 18 nation ; and that a continuation of wars with them would exterminate his men, as these before mentioned had been exterminated : he told him also their agreement, and his own waiting until he should receive a letter to say what he must do. 19 To whom the king replied, that it seemed right to him to make peace with the nation of the Jews, taking away that stumbling block concerning the exercise of their religion : for that this very thing had incited them to the revolts, and to the attacks 20 made on his predecessors. He also commanded him to make with them a treaty of peace and obedience ; so that no obstacles should be thrown in 21 their way in the matter of religion. He wrote also to Judas, and to all the Jews who were in the land of Judah, according to this effect : and this peace continued between them for some space of time.


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. 309 a. Compare with this the account and xii. given at 3 Mace. xi.
2. Foot Note p. 309 b. Namely, some of the king’s troops who still held the tower in Jerusalem, together with “some ungodly men of Israel, who joined them selves unto them,” as related at 2 Mace. vi. 18—27.
3. Foot Note p. 309 c. The same place as Bethsura, so often mentioned in books II. and III. and Bethzur, named in the books of Joshua and Chronicles.
4. Foot Note p. 310 d. Probably in the neighbourhood of Bathzacharias. mentioned at 2 Mace. vi. 32.
5. Foot Note p. 310 e. Literally, “of the Greeks.”

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