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First Book of Machabees

(excluded from most "bibles of men")

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Chapter 5

Yes Word (Tyndale-Modern English)


      It happened also that when the Heathen round about heard, how that the altar and the Sanctuary were set up in their old estate: it displeased them very sore, wherefore they thought to destroy the generation of Jacob that was among them: In so much that they began to slay and persecute certain of the people. Then Judas fought against the children of Esau in Idumea, and against those which were at Arabathane, ( for they dwelt round about the Israelites) where he slew and spoiled a great multitude of them. He thought also upon the malice and unfaithfulness of the children of Bean, how they were a snare and stop unto the people, and how they layed wait for them in the high way: wherefore he shut them up in to towers, and came unto them, condemned them, and burnt up their towers, with all that were in them.
      Afterward went he against the children of Ammon, whereof he found a mighty power and a great multitude of people, with Timothy their captain. So he struck many battles with them, which were destroyed before him. And when he had slayen them, he won Gazer the city, with the towns belonging thereto, and so turned again into Jewry. The Heathen also in Galaad gathered them together, against the Israelites that were in their quarters, to slay them: but they fled to the castle of Datheman, and sent letters unto Judas and his brethren saying: The Heathen are gathered against us on every side, to destroy us, and now they make them for to come and lay siege to the castle, whereunto we are fled, and Timothy is the captain of their Host: come therefore, and deliver us out of their hands: for there is a great multitude of us slain already. Yee, and our brethren that were at Tubin, are slain and destroyed ( well nye a thousand men ) and their wives, their children and their goods have the enemies led away captive.
      While these letters were yet a reading, behold, there came other messengers from Galilee, with rent clothes: which told even the same tidings, and said, that they of Ptolomaus, of Tyrus, and of Sidon were gathered against them, and that all Galilee was filled with enemies to destroy Israel. When Judas and the people heard this, they came together ( a great congregation ) to devise, what they might do for their brethren, that were in trouble, and besieged of their enemies. And Judas said unto Simon his brother: Choose thee out certain men, and go and deliver thy brethren in Galilee: As for me and my brother Jonathas, we will go into Galaadithim. So he left Josephus the son of Zachary, and Asarias to be Captains of the people, and to keep the remnant of the Host in Jewry, and commanded them, saying: Take the oversight of this people, and see that ye make no war against the Heathen, until the time that we come again. And unto Simon he gave three thousand men for to go into Galilee, but Judas himself had eight thousand in Galaadithim.
      Then went Simon into Galilee, and struck diverse battles with the Heathen: who he discomfited, and followed upon them unto the port of *Ptolemais. And there were slain of the Heathen almost three thousand men. So he took the spoils of them, and carried away the Israelites, that were in Galilee, and in Arbatis, with their wives, their children, and all that they had, and brought them in to Jewry with great gladness. Judas Maccabeus also and his brother Jonathas, went over Jordan, and travelled three days journey in the wilderness: Where the Nebuthees met them, and received them lovingly, and told them every thing that had happened to their brethren in the land of Galaadithim, and how that many of them were besieged in Barasa, Bosor, Alimis, Casphor, Mageth, and Carnaim, ( all these cities are strong walled and mighty great cities ) And that they were kept in other cities of Galaad also: and tomorrow they are appointed to bring their Host unto these cities, to take them and to win them in one day.
      So Judas and his host turned in all the haste in the wilderness toward Bosor and won the city, slew all the males with the sword, took all their goods, and set fire upon the city. And in the night they took their journey from thence, and came to the castle. And by times in the morning when they looked up, behold, there was an innumerable people bearing ladders and other instruments of war, to take the castle and over come them.
      When Judas saw that the battle began, and that the noise thereof went up to heaven, and that there was so great a cry in the city: He said unto his host: Fight this day for your brethren. And so came behind their enemies in three companies, and blew up their trumpets, and cried in their prayer to God.
      But as soon as Timothis host perceived that Maccabeus was there, they fled from him, and the other slew them down right sore: so that there were killed of them that same day, almost eight thousand men. Then departed Judas unto Maspha, layed siege to it and won it, slew all the males in it, spoiled it, and set fire upon it. From thence went he and took Casbon, Mageth, Bosor, and the other cities in Galaad.
      After this gathered Timothy another Host, which pitched their tents before Raphon beyond the water. Judas sent to spy the host, and they brought him word again, saying: All the Heathen that be round about us, are gathered unto him, and the host is very great: Yee they have hired the Arabians to help them, and have pitched their tents beyond the water, and are ready to come and fight against thee. So Judas went on to meet them.
      And Timothy said unto the captains of his host: When Judas and his host come nye the river: if he go over first, we shall not be able to withstand him: for why? he will be too strong for us. But if he dare not come over so that he pitch his tent beyond the water: then we go over, for we shall be strong enough against him. Now as soon as Judas came near to the river, he appointed certain scribes of the people, and commanded them, saying: see that ye leave none behind upon this side of the river, but let every man come to the battle. So he went first over unto them and his people after him.
      And all the Heathen were discomfited before him, and let their weapons fall, and ran into the temple that was at Carnaim. Which city Judas won, and burnt the temple with all that were in it: So was Carnaim subdued, and might not withstand Judas. Then Judas gathered all the Israelites that were in Galaadithim, from the least unto the most, with their wives, and their children, ( very great host ) for to come into the land of Israel.
      So they came unto Ephron, which was a mighty, great and strong city, and lay in their way. For they could not go by it, neither of the right hand ner of the left, but must go through it. Nevertheless they that were in the city, would not let them go through, but walled up the ports with stones. And Judas sent unto them with peaceable words, saying: Let us pass through your land, that we may go into our own country: there shall no body do you harm, we will but only go through. But they would not let them in.
      Wherefore Judas commanded a proclamation to be made throughout the Host, that every man should keep his order: and so they did their best like valiant men.
      And Judas besieged the city all that day and all that night, and so won it: where they slew as many as were males, and destroyed the city, and spoiled it, and went through all the city over them that were slain. Then went they over Jordan into the plain field before Bethsan. And Judas helped those forward that came behind, and gave the people good exhortation all the way through, till they were come in to the land of Juda. Thus they went up unto the mount Sion, where they offered with mirth and thanksgiving: because there were none of them slain, but came home again peaceably.
      Now what time as Judas and Jonathas were in the land of Galaad, and Simon their brother in Galilee before Ptolomais: Then Josephus the son of Zachary and Asarias the captains, hearing of the acts that were done and the battles that were struck, said: Let us get us a name also, and go fight against the Heathen that are round about us.
      So they gave their host a commandment, and went toward Jamniah. Then came Gorgiah and his men out of the city, to fight against them: Josephus also and Asariah were chased unto the borders of Jewry and there were slain that day of the people of Israel two thousand men: so there was a great misery among the people, and all because they were not obedient unto Judas and his brethren, but thought they should quit themselves manfully. Nevertheless they came not of the seed of these men, by whom Israel was helped. But the men that were with Judas, were greatly commended in the sight of all Israel and all Heathen, where so ever their name was heard upon, and the people came unto them biding them welcome.
      After this went Judas forth with his brethren, and fought against the children of Esau, in the land that layeth toward the south where he won the city of Hebron and the towns that lay beside it: and as for the walls and towers round about it, he burnt them up. Then removed he to go in to the land of the Philistines, and went through Samaria. At the same time were there many priests slain in the battle, which willfully and without advisement went out for to fight to get them honor. And when Judas came to Azot in the Philistines land, he break down their altars, burned the images of their Idols, spoiled the cities, and came again into the land of Juda.

*Ptolemais. (grk = warlike)

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