4 Maccabees Chapter 13 (from The Five Books of Maccabees)


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P. 257 – 260 Book 4 B.C. 167 [PDF: 307/310 of p.524]

CHAPTER 13

(i) Reflections on the above-mentioned occurrence. (see XII)

1 Now if these seven brethren despised sufferings even unto death, it is confessed on all sides that religious Principle is absolute master of the 2 passions. For as, if being enslaved by their passions, they had eaten the unclean meat, we should have said that they were vanquished by these 3 passions; so now it is not so : but through that principle which we have commended[1]P. 257 Foot Note a. Gr. [https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.257-4.Macca_.13-FN-a-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-300x15.png 300w, https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.257-4.Macca_.13-FN-a-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-369x20.png 369w" sizes="(max-width: 395px) 100vw, 395px" /> click on image to enlarge]., by God’s 4 help they overcame their passions. And it is impossible to overlook this victorious generalship[2]P. 257 Foot Note b. Or sovereignty. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge]. of settled purpose : for it prevailed over both passion and sufferings. How then can we avoid conceding 5 to these men the conquest of their passions through rectitude of principle, who shrank not from the pains of fire ? For like as towers[3]P. 258 Foot Note c. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] Thus in the Ajax of Sophocles the projecting rock of Sunium is called Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] See a metaphor of the same kind above … Continue reading placed 6 at the mouths of harbours, breaking the threats of the waves, afford a calm sea to those who are sailing into port ; so that sevenfold[11]P. 258 Foot Note d. Gr. [https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.258-4.Macca_.13-FN-d-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-300x20.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 305px) 100vw, 305px" /> click on image to enlarge]. barrier, the 7 right principle of these youths, having fortified the harbour of piety, conquered the headstrong violence of their passions. For having formed a 8 holy band of piety, they animated each other, saying ; ” Brothers ! let us die like brothers, in defence of the law. Let us imitate the three 9 young men[4]P. 258 Foot Note e. Namely, those mentioned in the hook of Daniel. in Assyria, who despised the furnace equally torturing[5]P. 258 Foot Note f. Gr. [   click on image to enlarge] Or perhaps the expression may mean, ” equal to those tortures which are prepared for us ;” so that they have set us an … Continue reading to them all. Let us not shrink from shewing forth our piety.” And 10 one said, ” Take courage, brother :” and another, ” Endure nobly.” And another, putting them in remembrance, said, ” Remember whence ye are, and by what father’s hand Isaac through his piety submitted to be offered for a victim.” And 11 one and all looking on each other, cheerful and full of confidence, said ; ” Let us with all our heart sacrifice ourselves to God who gave us our lives, and let us make our bodies serviceable for the preservation of the law. Let us not fear 12 p. 259 him who appears to kill the body[6]P. 259 Foot Note g. Thus our blessed Saviour instructs his disciples : ” Fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul,” &c. Matt. x. 28.. For a great trial and danger to the soul is laid up for those 13 who transgress the commandment of God. Let us therefore arm ourselves with that mastery[7]P. 259 Foot Note h. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge]. over the passions which divine principle 14 supplies. For when we shall have suffered thus, Abraham and Isaac and Jacob will receive us into their bosoms[8]P. 259 Foot Note i. Compare Luke xvi. 22, 23., and all the fathers will 15 praise us.” And to each one of their brethren who was dragged along, the rest said ; ” Do not disgrace us, brother ; nor disappoint the just hopes of those who have died before us.”

16 Now you are not ignorant of the charm and spell of brotherhood, which divine and allwise Providence has imparted through fathers to their children, and which it has implanted even from 17 the mother’s womb. In which these brothers having remained an equal time, and being formed in the same period, and increasing in growth from the same blood, and being completed with the 18 same life, and brought forth after equal periods, and drinking milk from the same fountains,—on those accounts the affectionate souls are nourished[9]P. 259 Foot Note k. Gr. [https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.259-4.Macca_.13-FN-k-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-300x10.png 300w, https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.259-4.Macca_.13-FN-k-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-500x17.png 500w, https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.259-4.Macca_.13-FN-k-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-569x20.png 569w" sizes="(max-width: 573px) 100vw, 573px" /> click on image to enlarge] The text is rather obscure : and beyond all doubt the reading of the edition of 1817 is corrupt. up together in the embraces of the same 19 bosom; and increase in affection more and more by this bringing up together, and by daily intercourse, and by the rest of their education, and by p. 260 that study and practice (which we use) of the law of God.

20 Brotherly affection therefore, being thus full of sympathy, even in ordinary cases, these seven brethren had between themselves a still more strongly sympathetic unanimity. For having been 21 educated in the same law, and having practised the same virtues, and being brought up together in a life of righteousness, they loved[10]P. 260 Foot Note l. The edition of 1817 is again faulty here. each other with still greater ardour. For a similar zeal for 22 all which was right and honourable, added intensity to their mutual accordance. For by the addition of piety, it made brotherly affection more than ever desirable to them. But yet, although 23 nature, and familiarity, and virtuous morals, had combined to increase in them the already strong ties of brotherhood ; those who were left of them endured to behold their brethren, who were cruelly used for their religion, tortured even unto death.


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 P. 257 Foot Note a. Gr. [https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.257-4.Macca_.13-FN-a-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-300x15.png 300w, https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.257-4.Macca_.13-FN-a-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-369x20.png 369w" sizes="(max-width: 395px) 100vw, 395px" /> click on image to enlarge].
2 P. 257 Foot Note b. Or sovereignty. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge].
3 P. 258 Foot Note c. Gr. [https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.258-4.Macca_.13-FN-c-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-269x20.png 269w" sizes="(max-width: 274px) 100vw, 274px" /> click on image to enlarge] Thus in the Ajax of Sophocles the projecting rock of Sunium is called Gr. [ click on image to enlarge] See a metaphor of the same kind above at ch. vii.5.
4 P. 258 Foot Note e. Namely, those mentioned in the hook of Daniel.
5 P. 258 Foot Note f. Gr. [   click on image to enlarge] Or perhaps the expression may mean, ” equal to those tortures which are prepared for us ;” so that they have set us an honourable example.
6 P. 259 Foot Note g. Thus our blessed Saviour instructs his disciples : ” Fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul,” &c. Matt. x. 28.
7 P. 259 Foot Note h. Gr. [ click on image to enlarge].
8 P. 259 Foot Note i. Compare Luke xvi. 22, 23.
9 P. 259 Foot Note k. Gr. [https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.259-4.Macca_.13-FN-k-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-300x10.png 300w, https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.259-4.Macca_.13-FN-k-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-500x17.png 500w, https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.259-4.Macca_.13-FN-k-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-569x20.png 569w" sizes="(max-width: 573px) 100vw, 573px" /> click on image to enlarge] The text is rather obscure : and beyond all doubt the reading of the edition of 1817 is corrupt.
10 P. 260 Foot Note l. The edition of 1817 is again faulty here.
11 P. 258 Foot Note d. Gr. [https://fourcornerministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/P.258-4.Macca_.13-FN-d-01-00-20mm-h.fw_-300x20.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 305px) 100vw, 305px" /> click on image to enlarge].

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