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ter of the elephants, and making him governor over Judea, || temple, and commanded the priests, that were offering he sent him forth, their usual sacrifices, to deliver him the man.
13 Commanding him to slay Judas, and to scatter them. that were with him, and to make Alcimus high priest of the great temple.
14 Then the heathen that had fled out of Judea from Judas, came to Nicanor by flocks, thinking the harm and calamities of the Jews to be their welfare.
15 Now when the Jews heard of Nicanor's coming, and that the heathen were up against them, they cast earth upon their heads, and made supplication to him that nad established his people for ever, and who always helpeth his portion with manifestation of his presence.
16 So at the commandment of the captain they removed straightways from thence, and came near unto them at the town of Dessau.
17 Now Simon, Judas's brother, had joined battle with Nicanor, but was somewhat discomfited through the sudden silence of his enemies.
18 Nevertheless, Nicanor, hearing of the manliness of them that were with Judas, and the courageousness that they had to fight for their country, durst not try the matter by the sword.
19 Wherefore we sent Posidonius, and Theodotus, and Mattathias, to make peace.
20 So when they had taken long advisement thereupon, and the captain had made the multitude acquainted therewith, and it appeared that they were all of one mind, they consented to the covenants,
21 And appointed a day to meet in together by themselves and when the day came, and stools were set for either of them,
22 Judas placed armed men ready in convenient places, est some treachery should be suddenly practised by the enemies so they made a peaceable conference.
23 Now Nicanor abode in Jerusalem, and did no hurt, but sent away the people that came flocking unto him. 24 And he would not willingly have Judas out of his sight for he loved the man from his heart.
25 He prayed him also to take a wife, and to beget children: so he married, was quiet, and took part of this life. 26 But Alcimus, perceiving the love that was betwixt them, and considering the covenants that were made, came to Demetrius, and told him that Nicanor was not
well-affected towards the state: for that he had ordained Judas, a traitor to his realm, to be the king's successor.
27 Then the king being in a rage, and provoked with the accusations of the most wicked man, wrote to Nicanor, signifying that he was much displeased with the covenants, and commanding him that he should send Maccabeus prisoner in all haste unto Antioch.
28 When this came to Nicanor's hearing, he was much confounded in himself, and took it grievously that he should make void the articles which were agreed upon, the man being in no fault.
29 But because there was no dealing against the king, he watched his time to accomplish this thing by policy. 30 Notwithstanding,
or began to standing, when Maccabeus saw that Nica
32 And when they sware that they could not tell where the man was whom he sought,
33 He stretched out his right hand toward the temple, and made an oath in this manner: If ye will not deliver me Judas as a prisoner, I will lay this temple of God even with the ground, and I will break down the altar, and erect a notable temple unto Bacchus.
34 After these words he departed. Then the priests lifted up their hands toward heaven, and besought him that was ever a defender of their nation, saying in this
35 Thou, O Lord of all things, who hast need of nothing, was pleased that the temple of thine habitation should be among us :
36 Therefore now, O holy Lord of all holiness, keep this house ever undefiled, which lately was cleansed, and stop every unrighteous mouth.
37 Now was there accused unto Nicanor one Razis, one of the elders of Jerusalem, a lover of his countrymen, and a man of very good report, who for his kindness was called a father of the Jews.
38 For in the former times, when they mingled not themselves with the Gentiles, he had been accused of Judaism, and did boldly jeopard his body and life with all vehemency for the religion of the Jews.
39 So Nicanor, willing to declare the hate that he bare unto the Jews, sent above five hundred men of war to take him :
40 For he thought by taking him to do the Jews much hurt.
41 Now when the multitude would have taken the tower, and violently broken into the outer door, and bade that fire should be brought to burn it, he being ready to be taken on every side, fell upon his sword;
42 Choosing rather to die manfully, than to come into the hands of the wicked, to be abused otherwise than beseemed his noble birth:
43 But missing his stroke through haste, the multitude also rushing within the doors, he ran boldly up to the wall, and cast himself down manfully among the thickest of them 44 But they quickly giving back, and a space being made, he fell down into the midst of the void place.
45 Nevertheless, while there was yet breath within him, being inflamed with anger, he rose up; and though his blood gushed out like spouts of water, and his wounds were grievous, yet he ran through the midst of the throng; and standing upon a steep rock,
46 When as his blood was now quite gone, he plucked them upon the throng, and calling upon the Lord of life out his bowels, and taking them in both his hands, he cast and spirit to restore him those again, he thus died.
5 Nicanor's blasphemy. 8 Judas encourageth his men by
his dream. 28 Nicanor is slain.
nor began to be churlish unto him, and that he entreated BUT Nicanor, hearing that Judas Samaria, resolved were in the strong places about him more roughly than he was wont, perceiving that such without any danger to set upon them on the sabbath-day. sour behaviour came not of good, he gathered together 2 Nevertheless the Jews that were compelled to go not a few of his men, and withdrew himself from Nicanor. with him, said, O destroy not so cruelly and barbarous 31 But the other knowing that he was notably pre-but rive honour to that day, which he, that seeth all things vented by Judas' policy, came into the great and holy hath honoured with holiness above other days.
3 Then the most ungracious wretch demanded, if there were a Mighty One in heaven, that had commanded the sabbath-day to be kept.
4 And when they said, There is in heaven a living Lord, and mighty, who commanded the seventh day to be kept: 5 Then said the other, And I also am mighty upon earth, and I command to take arms, and to do the king's business. Yet he obtained not to have his wicked will done. 6 So Nicanor in exceeding pride and haughtiness determined to set up a public monument of his victory over Judas and them that were with him.
7 But Maccabeus had even sure confidence that the Lord would help him:
8 Wherefore he exhorted his people not to fear the coming of the heathen against them, but to remember the help which in former times they had received from heaven, and now to expect the victory and aid, which should come unto them from the Almighty.
9 And so comforting them out of the law and the prophets, and withal putting them in mind of the battles that they won afore, he made them more cheerful.
10 And when he had stirred up their minds, he gave them the charge, shewing them therewithal the falsehood of the heathen, and the breach of oaths.
11 Thus he armed every one of them, not so much with defence of shields and spears, as with comfortable and good words and besides that, he told them a dream worthy to be believed, as if it had been so indeed, which did not a little rejoice them.
12 And this was his vision: That Onias, who had Deen high priest, a virtuous and a good man, reverend in conversation, gentle in condition, well-spoken also, and exercised from a child in all points of virtue, holding up his hands, prayed for the whole body of the Jews.
13 This done, in like manner there appeared a man with gray hairs, and exceeding glorious, who was of a wonderful and excellent majesty.
14 Then Onias answered, saying, This is a lover of the brethren, who prayeth much for the people, and for the holy city, to wit, Jeremias the prophet of God.
15 Whereupon Jeremias holding forth his right hand, gave to Judas a sword of gold, and, in giving it, spake thus, 16 Take this holy sword, a gift from God, with the which thou shalt wound the adversaries.
17 Thus being well comforted by the words of Judas, which were very good, and able to stir them up to valour, and to encourage the hearts of the young men, they determined not to pitch camp, but courageously to set upon them, and manfully to try the matter by conflict, because the city and the sanctuary and the temple were in danger. 18 For the care that they took for their wives, and their children, their brethren, and kinsfolks, was in least account with them but the greatest and principal fear was for the holy temple.
19 Also they that were in the city took not the least care, being troubled for the conflict abroad.
20 And now, when as all looked what should be the trial, and the enemies were already come near, and the army was set in array, and the beasts conveniently placed, and the horsemen set in wings,
21 Maccabeus, seeing the coming of the multitude,
Apocrypha. and the divers preparations of armour, and the fierceness of the beasts, stretched out his hands towards heaven, and called upon the Lord that worketh wonders, knowing that victory cometh not by arms, but even as it seemeth good to him, he giveth it to such as are worthy:
22 Therefore in his prayer he said after this manner O Lord, thou didst send thine angel in the time of Ezekias king of Judea, and didst slay in the host of Sennacherib an hundred fourscore and five thousand:
23 Wherefore now also, O Lord of heaven, send a good angel before us for a fear and dread unto them;
24 And through the might of thine arm let those be stricken with terror, that come against thy holy people to blaspheme. And he ended thus.
25 Then Nicanor and they that were with him came forward with trumpets and songs.
26 But Judas and his company encountered the enemies with invocation and prayer.
27 So that fighting with their hands, and praying unto God with their hearts, they slew no less than thirty and five thousand men for through the appearance of God they were greatly cheered.
28 Now when the battle was done, returning again with joy, they knew that Nicanor lay dead in his harness. 29 Then they made a great shout and a noise, praising the Almighty in their own language.
30 And Judas, who was ever the chief defender of the citizens, both in body and mind, and who continued his love towards his countrymen all his life, commanded to strike off Nicanor's head, and his hand with his shoulder, and bring them to Jerusalem.
31 So when he was there, and had called them of his nation together, and set the priests before the altar, he sent for them that were of the tower,
32 And shewed them vile Nicanor's head, and the hand of that blasphemer, which with proud brags he had stretched out against the holy temple of the Almighty.
33 And when he had cut out the tongue of that ungodly Nicanor, he commanded that they should give it by pieces unto the fowls, and hang up the reward of his madness before the temple.
34 So every man praised toward the heaven the glorious Lord, saying, Blessed be he that hath kept his own place undefiled.
35 He hanged also Nicanor's head upon the tower, an evident and manifest sign unto all of the help of the Lord.
36 And they ordained all with a common decree, in no case to let that day pass without solemnity, but to celebrate the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which in the Syrian tongue is called Adar, the day before Mardocheus' day.
37 Thus went it with Nicanor: and from that time forth the Hebrews had the city in their power. And here will I make an end.
38 And if I have done well, and as is fitting the story, it is that which I desired: but if slenderly and meanly, it is that which I could attain unto.
39 For as it is hurtful to drink wine or water alone; and as wine mingled with water is pleasant, and delighteth the taste: even so speech finely framed delighteth the ears of them that read the story. And here shall be an end.