2 Maccabees Chapter 10 (from Five Books of Maccabees)


01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 1516 |


P. 101 –  111 Book 2 B.C. 153 [PDF: 151/161 of p.524]

CHAPTER X

(i) The negotiations of Alexander and Demetrius with Jonathan. The death of Demetrius.

1 In the hundred and sixtieth year, Alexander[1]P. 101 Foot Note a. Namely a younger brother of Antiochus Eupator, whom Demetrius had put to death, (ch. vii. 4.) But it is maintained by authors of credit, that in reality this was no son of … Continue reading the son of Antiochus surnamed Epiphanes, [B.C. 153.] went up and took Ptolemais : for the people had received him, by means whereof he p. 102 reigned there. Now when king Demetrius heard 2 thereof, he gathered together an exceeding great host, and went forth against him to fight. 3 Moreover, Demetrius sent letters unto Jonathan with loving words, so that he magnified him. For said 4 he, Let us first make peace with him, before he join with Alexander against us ; else he will 5 remember all the evils which we have done against him, and against his brethren, and his people. Wherefore he gave him authority to gather 6 together an host, and to provide weapons, that he might aid him in battle : he commanded also that the hostages which were in the tower should be delivered to him.

7 Then came Jonathan to Jerusalem, and read the letters in the audience of all the people, and of them which were in the tower : who were sore 8 afraid, when they heard that the king had given him authority to gather together an host. 9 Whereupon they of the tower delivered their hostages unto Jonathan, and he delivered them unto their parents. And Jonathan settled himself in Jerusalem, 10 and began to build and repair the city. And 11 he commanded the workmen to build the walls, and the mount Sion round about with square stones, for fortification : and they did so. Then 12 the strangers who were in the fortresses which Bacchides had built, fled away: insomuch that 13 every man left his place, and went into his own country. Only at Bethsura certain of those who 14 had forsaken the law and the commandments, remained still : for it was their place of refuge. Now when king Alexander had heard what 15 promises Demetrius had sent unto Jonathan p. 103 when also it was told him of the battles and noble acts which he and his brethren had done, and of 16 the pains which they had endured, he said, Shall we find such another man ? now therefore we will 17 make him our friend and confederate. Upon this he wrote a letter, and sent it unto him, according 18 to these words, saying, ” King Alexander to his 19 brother Jonathan, sendeth greeting: We have heard of thee, that thou art a man of great 20 power, and meet to be our friend. Wherefore now this day we ordain thee to be the high priest[2]P. 103 Foot Note b. This office continued in Jonathan’s family until the days of Herod the Great, from which period it became no longer hereditary. of thy nation, and to be called the king’s friend, (and there withal he sent him a purple robe[3]P. 103 Foot Note c. A mark of high dignity, which could not be assumed without permission., and a crown of gold,) and require thee to take our part, and keep friendship with us.” 21 So in the seventh month of the hundred and sixtieth year, at the feast of the tabernacles, Jonathan put on the holy robe, and gathered together forces, and provided much armour.

22 Whereof when Demetrius heard, he was very 23 sorry, and said ; What have we done, that Alexander hath anticipated us, in making amity with the 24 Jews to strengthen himself? I also will write unto them words of encouragement, and promise them dignities[4]P. 103 Foot Note d. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] which perhaps may signify ” words of commendation.” and gifts, that they may be with 25 me to aid me. He sent unto them therefore to this effect : ” King Demetrius unto the people of 26 the Jews, sendeth greeting : Whereas ye have kept covenants with us, and continued in our p. 104 friendship, not joining yourselves with our enemies, we have heard thereof, and are glad. Wherefore now continue ye still to be faithful 27 unto us, and we will well recompense you for the things ye do in our behalf; and will grant 28 you many immunities, and give you rewards. And now do I free you, and for your sake I 29 release all the Jews from tributes, and from the customs of salt, and from crown-taxes[5]P. 104 Foot Note e. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] the golden crowns which the Jews were wont to otter every year to the kings, or a sum of money in lieu of them. Compare chap. xi. 35. xiii. … Continue reading. And 30 from that which appertaineth unto me to receive for the third part of the grain, and the half of the fruit of the trees, I release it from this day forth ; so that they shall not be taken from the land of Judah, nor from the three governments which are added thereunto out of the country of Samaria, and Galilee[6]P. 104 Foot Note f. Here should be inserted the words ” and Peraa.” The names of these three governments, or ” toparchies,” as Josephus calls them, appear at ch. xi. 34. … Continue reading, from this day forth for evermore. Let Jerusalem also be holy 31 and free, with the borders thereof, both from tenths and tributes. I also yield up my 32 authority over the tower which is in Jerusalem, and give it to the high priest, that he may set in it p. 105 33 ” such men as he shall choose to keep it. Moreover, I freely set at liberty every one of the Jews who were carried captives out of the land of Judah into any part of my kingdom ; and I will, that all my officers remit their tributes, 34 even of their cattle. Furthermore, I will, that all the feasts, and sabbaths, and new-moons, and solemn days, and the three days before the feast, and the three days after the feast, shall be all days of immunity and freedom for all the 35 Jews in my realm. Also no man shall have authority to meddle with them, or to molest any of 36 them in any matter. I will further, that there be enrolled amongst the king’s forces about thirty thousand men of the Jews, unto whom pay shall be given, as belongeth to all the king’s 37 forces. And of them some shall be placed in the king’s strong holds, of whom also some shall be set over the affairs of the kingdom, which are of trust : and I will, that their overseers and governors be of themselves, and that they walk after their own laws, even as the king hath 38 commanded in the land of Judah. And concerning the three governments which are added to Judaea from the country of Samaria[7]P. 105 Foot Note g. See the note at verse 30, of this chapter., let them be joined with Judaea, that they may be reckoned to be under one, and may not obey other 39 authority than the high priest’s. As for Ptolemais and the land pertaining thereto, I give it as a free gift to the sanctuary at Jerusalem, for 40 the necessary expences of the sanctuary. Moreover, I give every year fifteen thousand shekels of silver out of the king’s accounts, from the p. 106 places appertaining. And all the overplus, 41 which the officers payed not in, as in former times, from henceforth they shall give towards the works of the temple. And besides this, the 42 five thousand shekels of silver, which they took from the uses of the temple out of the accounts year by year, even those things are released, because they appertain to the priests who minister. And whosoever they be which flee unto the 43 temple at Jerusalem, or be within the liberties thereof, being indebted unto the king, or for any other matter, let them be at liberty, and all which they have in my realm. For the building 44 also and repairing of the works of the sanctuary, expences shall be given out of the king’s accounts : yea, and for the building of the walls 45 of Jerusalem, and the fortifying thereof round about, expences shall be given out of the king’s accounts, as also for the building of the walls in Judaea[8]P. 106 Foot Note h. That is, in different cities of Judaea, according as they may require such aid..”

46 Now when Jonathan and the people heard these words, they gave no credit unto them, [B.C 152.] nor received them, because they remembered the great evil which he had done in Israel ; for he had afflicted them very sore. But with Alexander 47 they were well pleased, because he was the first who entreated of peaceable words with them, and they were confederate with him always.

48 Then gathered king Alexander great forces, and camped over against Demetrius. [B.C. 151.] And after 49 the two kings had joined battle, Demetrius’s host fled : but Alexander followed after p. 107 50 him, and prevailed against them. And he continued the battle very sore until the sun went down: and that day was Demetrius slain.

51 Afterward Alexander sent ambassadors to Ptolemy[9]P. 107 Foot Note i. Surnamed Philometor, the son of Ptolemy Epiphanes., king of Egypt, with a message to this 52 effect : ” Forasmuch as I am come again to my realm, and am set on the throne of my fathers, and have gotten the dominion, and overthrown 53 Demetrius, and recovered our country : (For after I had joined battle with him, both he and his host was discomfited by us, so that we sit in 54 the throne of his kingdom.) Now therefore let us make a league of amity together, and give me now thy daughter to wife : and I will be thy son-in-law, and will give both thee and her 55 gifts, according to thy dignity.” Then Ptolemy the king gave answer, saying, Happy be the day wherein thou didst return into the land of thy fathers, and sattest in the throne of their kingdom. 56 And now will I do to thee, as thou hast written : meet me therefore at Ptolemais, that we may see one another ; and I will marry my 57 daughter to thee, as thou hast said. So Ptolemy went out of Egypt himself and his daughter Cleopatra, and they came unto Ptolemais in the hundred 58 threescore and second year : where king Alexander meeting him, he gave unto him his daughter Cleopatra, and celebrated her marriage at Ptolemais with great glory, as the manner of kings is.

59 Now king Alexander had written unto Jonathan, 60 that he should come and meet him. Who thereupon went honourably to Ptolemais, where p. 108 he met the two kings, and gave them and their friends silver and gold, and many presents, and found favour in their sight. At that time certain 61 pestilent fellows of Israel, men of a wicked life, assembled themselves against him, to complain of him : but the king did not attend to them. And 62 the king commanded, and they stripped Jonathan of his garments, and put on him a purple robe : and they did so. Also he made him sit near 63 himself, and said unto his princes, Go with him into the midst of the city, and make proclamation, that no man complain against him of any matter, and that no man trouble him for any manner of cause. Now when those who complained of him saw his 64 glory, according to the proclamation, and himself clothed with a purple robe, they fled all away. So the king honoured him, and wrote him amongst 65 his chief friends, and made him a general, and governor of a province[10]P. 108 Foot Note k. Gr. [  click on image to enlarge] Grotius, however, in a note on this passage, and also on 3 Mace. v. 10, Gr. [  click on image to enlarge] denotes merely … Continue reading. Afterward Jonathan 66 returned to Jerusalem with peace and gladness.

67 Furthermore, in the hundred threescore and fifth year, [B.C. 148.] came Demetrius((P. 108 Foot Note l. Demetrius Nicator, the son of Demetrius Soter. See Justin.)), son of Demetrius, out of Crete into the land of his fathers. Whereof when king Alexander heard tell, 68 he was right sorry, and returned into Antioch. Then Demetrius made Apollonius[11]P. 108/109 Foot Note m. This name is of very frequent occurrence during this p.109 period of Jewish history- Prideaux mentions altogether six persons so called. The one here spoken of is judged … Continue reading the governor 69 p. 109 of Coelosyria his general, who gathered together a great host, and camped in Jamnia[12]P. 109 Foot Note n. A town on the coast of the Mediterranean, not far from Joppe., and sent unto 70 Jonathan the high priest, saying, Thou alone liftest up thyself against us, and I am laughed to scorn for thy sake, and reproached : and why dost thou vaunt thy power against us in the mountains ? 71 Now therefore, if thou trustest in thine own strength, come down to us into the plain field, and there let us try the matter together: for 72 with me is the power of the cities. Ask, and learn who I am, and the rest who take our part, and they shall tell thee, that thy foot is not able to stand before our face; for thy fathers have been 73 twice[13]P. 109 Foot Note o. See above, ch. v. 60, and ix. 6, 18. put to flight in their own land. Wherefore now thou shalt not be able to abide the horsemen, and so great a power in the plain, where is neither 74 stone nor flint[14]P. 109 Foot Note p. This seems to allude to the mode of defence which the Jews had adopted., nor place to flee unto. So when Jonathan heard these words of Apollonius, he was moved in his mind; and chusing ten thousand men, he went out of Jerusalem, and Simon his brother 75 met him to help him. And he pitched his tents against Joppe : but they of Joppe shut him out of the city, because Apollonius had a garrison there. 76 Then Jonathan laid siege unto it: whereupon they of the city let him in for fear : and so Jonathan p. 110 won Joppe. Whereof when Apollonius heard, he 77 took three thousand horsemen, with a great host of footmen, and went to Azotus as one who was journeying through it ; and there withal marched forth into the plain, because he had a great number of horsemen, in whom he put his trust. Then 78 Jonathan followed after him to Azotus, where the armies joined battle. Now Apollonius had left a 79 thousand horsemen in ambush behind them. And 80 Jonathan perceived that there was an ambushment behind him ; for they had compassed in his host, and cast darts at the people, from morning till evening. But the people stood still, as 81 Jonathan had commanded them : and so the enemies’ horses were tired[15]P. 110 Foot Note q. Compare Josephus, Ant. XIII. 8.. Then brought Simon forth 82 his host, and set them against the footmen[16]P. 110 Foot Note r. The Greet reading varies between Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] and Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] as it did before, in the very same words, at ch. vi. 38., (for the horsemen were spent); who were discomfited by him, and fled ; the horsemen also, being 83 scattered in the field, fled to Azotus, and went into Bethdagon[17]P. 110 Foot Note s. Or, ” the house of Dagon, ” concerning which see 1 Sam. ch. v., their idol’s temple, for safety. But 84 Jonathan set fire on Azotus, and the cities[18]P. 110 Foot Note t. Perhaps villages, or else towers, immediately adjoining to the city. round about it, and took their spoils ; and the temple of Dagon, with them which had fled together into it, he burnt with fire. And they which fell by the 85 sword, with those who were burnt, were about eight thousand men. And from thence Jonathan 86 removed his host, and camped against Ascalon, where the men of the city came forth, and met him with p. 111 87 great pomp. After this returned Jonathan and his host unto Jerusalem, having many spoils.

88 Now it came to pass when king Alexander heard these things, he honoured Jonathan yet 89 more; and sent him a buckle[19]P. 111 Foot Note u. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] See Josephus, Ant. XIII. 4. It was a mark of high distinction among the Persians, Greeks, and Romans.  of gold, as the use is to be given to such as are of the king’s blood : he gave him also Accaron[20]P. 111 Foot Note x. Accaron, or Ekron, was the most northern of the five cities belonging to the Philistines., and all the borders thereof, in possession.


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

References
1 P. 101 Foot Note a. Namely a younger brother of Antiochus Eupator, whom Demetrius had put to death, (ch. vii. 4.) But it is maintained by authors of credit, that in reality this was no son of Antiochus Epiphanes, but an impostor named Balas, who for purposes merely political, was set up and encouraged in his assumption of the Syrian throne. See Appian ; and Justin, XXV. As historians are divided on the subject of Alexander’s genuineness, I think that the best evidence on the point is that which is furnished by himself. He took the pains to inscribe himself on his coins, Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] ; which looks very much like the act of one who distrusted his own cause. Several of these coins are yet remaining in cabinets. Three of them are figured by Vaillant, in his ” Historia Regum Syriae,” folio, p. 138—140: also in ” Froelichii Annales Regum Syriae,” fol. 1754. p. 64, &c. and in Gough’s “Coins of the Seleucidac,” 4to, Lond. 1803, Tab. xii. p. 79.
2 P. 103 Foot Note b. This office continued in Jonathan’s family until the days of Herod the Great, from which period it became no longer hereditary.
3 P. 103 Foot Note c. A mark of high dignity, which could not be assumed without permission.
4 P. 103 Foot Note d. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] which perhaps may signify ” words of commendation.”
5 P. 104 Foot Note e. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] the golden crowns which the Jews were wont to otter every year to the kings, or a sum of money in lieu of them. Compare chap. xi. 35. xiii. 39. The word is used also by Polybius in this sense, XXII. 17. 4. Josephus, speaking of the same impost, as remitted by Antiochus the Great, calls it Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] Allticj. XII. 3.
6 P. 104 Foot Note f. Here should be inserted the words ” and Peraa.” The names of these three governments, or ” toparchies,” as Josephus calls them, appear at ch. xi. 34. In another place (XII. 8.) he speaks of them as belonging to Samaria, Joppe, and Galilee. It is also recorded by Josephus, that a similar immunity had been granted formerly to the Jews by Alexander the Great : Gr. [https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.104-2.Macca_.10-FN-f-01.1-00-20mm-h.fw_-300x13.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 465px) 100vw, 465px" /> click on image to enlarge]
[https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.104-2.Macca_.10-FN-f-01.2-00-20mm-h.fw_-300x8.png 300w, https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.104-2.Macca_.10-FN-f-01.2-00-20mm-h.fw_-768x20.png 768w, https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.104-2.Macca_.10-FN-f-01.2-00-20mm-h.fw_-500x13.png 500w" sizes="(max-width: 773px) 100vw, 773px" /> click on image to enlarge] Joseph, c. Apion. lib. II.
7 P. 105 Foot Note g. See the note at verse 30, of this chapter.
8 P. 106 Foot Note h. That is, in different cities of Judaea, according as they may require such aid.
9 P. 107 Foot Note i. Surnamed Philometor, the son of Ptolemy Epiphanes.
10 P. 108 Foot Note k. Gr. [  click on image to enlarge] Grotius, however, in a note on this passage, and also on 3 Mace. v. 10, Gr. [  click on image to enlarge] denotes merely praepositus mensa’, a person appointed to sit at the head of a royal table as a post of dignity : but query the correctness of this opinion. See Josephus, Antiq. XII. 7. The substantive Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] occurs at 3 Esdras i. 5, 10, where it is used to signify the division office or dignity among the Levites: also again at ch. v. 4; viii. 28, &c.
11 P. 108/109 Foot Note m. This name is of very frequent occurrence during this p.109 period of Jewish history- Prideaux mentions altogether six persons so called. The one here spoken of is judged to be the son of that Apollonius who also was governor of Coelosyria (Coele-Syria) at the time when Heliodorus attempted to plunder the temple of Jerusalem, (2 Mace. ii. 5.) and to have been the friend and fellow-fugitive from Rome of Demetrius, who afterwards promoted him to honour.
12 P. 109 Foot Note n. A town on the coast of the Mediterranean, not far from Joppe.
13 P. 109 Foot Note o. See above, ch. v. 60, and ix. 6, 18.
14 P. 109 Foot Note p. This seems to allude to the mode of defence which the Jews had adopted.
15 P. 110 Foot Note q. Compare Josephus, Ant. XIII. 8.
16 P. 110 Foot Note r. The Greet reading varies between Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] and Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] as it did before, in the very same words, at ch. vi. 38.
17 P. 110 Foot Note s. Or, ” the house of Dagon, ” concerning which see 1 Sam. ch. v.
18 P. 110 Foot Note t. Perhaps villages, or else towers, immediately adjoining to the city.
19 P. 111 Foot Note u. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] See Josephus, Ant. XIII. 4. It was a mark of high distinction among the Persians, Greeks, and Romans.
20 P. 111 Foot Note x. Accaron, or Ekron, was the most northern of the five cities belonging to the Philistines.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *