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April, 1994 [Etext #124]
The Deuterocanonical Books of the Bible, known as the Apocrypha
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The Project Gutenberg Etext of Deuterocanonical Books of the Bible
The Project Gutenberg Etext of Deuterocanonical Books of the Bible
also known as the Apocrypha [Book titles added as there were none
in the files we received. One typo of Ezra to Esdr was changed as
were some of the marginations. The books were each received as an
Etext file, and have been put here into one single file for utilty
and they are placed in an order suggested by one of our advisors‑‑
we would be happy to post indices of other suggested orderings and
Encoded under the direction of Robert Kraft for distribution through
the Center for Computer Analysis of Texts, (CCAT), at the University
of Pennsylvania. Robert Kraft <[email protected]>
Here is the suggested table of contents of Bob Kraft:
[I have written out the numerals and the words "Book of" etc., for a
certain amount of internal consistency with our two previous Project
Gutenberg releases of the King James Bible which did not include the
books listed below. The tables of contents I received for this were
inconsistent in this; I am not a Biblical scholar, and am just doing
the best I can; my sincere apologies for any errors, which with your
assistance, will be corrected by month's end. There are also Etexts
to be made of even more Apocryphal materials, if you can help us get
them into our Electronic Public Library. Thanks, Michael S. Hart]
The Books Presented Below Use These Titles
The First Book of Esdras
The Second Book of Esdras Esdras [sometimes Fourth Book of Ezra]
The Book of Tobit
The Book of Judith
The Rest of the Chapters of the Book of Esther
The Wisdom of Solomon
The Wisdom of Jesus the Son of Sirach, or Ecclesiasticus
The Book of Baruch
The Epistle of Jeremy [sometimes Chapter Six of Baruch]
The Song of the Three Holy Children
The Prayer of Azariah [missing in one table of contents]
The History of Susanna [in Daniel]
The History of the Destruction of Bel and the Dragon
The Prayer of Manasses King of Judah
The First Book of the Maccabees
The Second Book of the Maccabees
Here is the table of contents in the order presented below:
The First Book of Esdras
The Second Book of Esdras Esdras [sometimes Fourth Book of Ezra]
The Greek Additions to Esther
The First Book of the Maccabees
The Second Book of the Maccabees
The Book of Tobit
The Book of Judith
The Wisdom of Solomon
The Book of Sirach (or Ecclesiasticus)
The Book of Baruch
The Epistle (or letter) of Jeremiah
The Book of Susanna (in Daniel)
The Prayer of Azariah
The Prayer of Manasseh
Bel and the Dragon (in Daniel)
The First Book of Esdras
And Josias held the feast of the passover in Jerusalem unto his Lord,
and offered the passover the fourteenth day of the first month;
Having set the priests according to their daily courses,
being arrayed in long garments, in the temple of the Lord.
And he spake unto the Levites, the holy ministers of Israel,
that they should hallow themselves unto the Lord, to set
the holy ark of the Lord in the house that king Solomon
the son of David had built:
And said, Ye shall no more bear the ark upon your shoulders:
now therefore serve the Lord your God, and minister unto his
people Israel, and prepare you after your families and kindreds,
According as David the king of Israel prescribed,
and according to the magnificence of Solomon his son:
and standing in the temple according to the several dignity
of the families of you the Levites, who minister in the presence
of your brethren the children of Israel,
Offer the passover in order, and make ready the sacrifices
for your brethren, and keep the passover according to the
commandment of the Lord, which was given unto Moses.
And unto the people that was found there Josias gave
thirty thousand lambs and kids, and three thousand calves:
these things were given of the king's allowance,
according as he promised, to the people, to the priests,
and to the Levites.
And Helkias, Zacharias, and Syelus, the governors of the temple,
gave to the priests for the passover two thousand and six hundred sheep,
and three hundred calves.
And Jeconias, and Samaias, and Nathanael his brother, and Assabias,
and Ochiel, and Joram, captains over thousands, gave to the Levites
for the passover five thousand sheep, and seven hundred calves.
And when these things were done, the priests and Levites,
having the unleavened bread, stood in very comely order
according to the kindreds,
And according to the several dignities of the fathers,
before the people, to offer to the Lord, as it is written
in the book of Moses: and thus did they in the morning.
And they roasted the passover with fire, as appertaineth:
as for the sacrifices, they sod them in brass pots and pans
with a good savour,
And set them before all the people: and afterward they prepared
for themselves, and for the priests their brethren, the sons of Aaron.
For the priests offered the fat until night: and the Levites
prepared for themselves, and the priests their brethren,
the sons of Aaron.
The holy singers also, the sons of Asaph, were in their order,
according to the appointment of David, to wit, Asaph, Zacharias,
and Jeduthun, who was of the king's retinue.
Moreover the porters were at every gate; it was not lawful
for any to go from his ordinary service: for their brethren
the Levites prepared for them.
Thus were the things that belonged to the sacrifices
of the Lord accomplished in that day, that they might
hold the passover,
And offer sacrifices upon the altar of the Lord,
according to the commandment of king Josias.
So the children of Israel which were present held the
passover at that time, and the feast of sweet bread seven days.
And such a passover was not kept in Israel since
the time of the prophet Samuel.
Yea, all the kings of Israel held not such a passover as Josias,
and the priests, and the Levites, and the Jews, held with all Israel
that were found dwelling at Jerusalem.
In the eighteenth year of the reign of Josias was this passover kept.
And the works or Josias were upright before his Lord
with an heart full of godliness.
As for the things that came to pass in his time, they were written
in former times, concerning those that sinned, and did wickedly against
the Lord above all people and kingdoms, and how they grieved him exceedingly,
so that the words of the Lord rose up against Israel.
Now after all these acts of Josias it came to pass,
that Pharaoh the king of Egypt came to raise war at Carchamis
upon Euphrates: and Josias went out against him.
But the king of Egypt sent to him, saying,
What have I to do with thee, O king of Judea?
I am not sent out from the Lord God against thee; for my war
is upon Euphrates: and now the Lord is with me, yea, the Lord is
with me hasting me forward: depart from me, and be not against the Lord.
Howbeit Josias did not turn back his chariot from him,
but undertook to fight with him, not regarding the words
of the prophet Jeremy spoken by the mouth of the Lord:
But joined battle with him in the plain of Magiddo,
and the princes came against king Josias.
Then said the king unto his servants, Carry me away out of
the battle; for I am very weak. And immediately his servants
took him away out of the battle.
Then gat he up upon his second chariot; and being brought
back to Jerusalem died, and was buried in his father's sepulchre.
And in all Jewry they mourned for Josias, yea, Jeremy the prophet
lamented for Josias, and the chief men with the women made lamentation
for him unto this day: and this was given out for an ordinance
to be done continually in all the nation of Israel.
These things are written in the book of the stories of the
kings of Judah, and every one of the acts that Josias did,
and his glory, and his understanding in the law of the Lord,
and the things that he had done before, and the things now recited,
are reported in the book of the kings of Israel and Judea.
And the people took Joachaz the son of Josias, and made him king
instead of Josias his father, when he was twenty and three years old.
And he reigned in Judea and in Jerusalem three months: and
then the king of Egypt deposed him from reigning in Jerusalem.
And he set a tax upon the land of an hundred talents
of silver and one talent of gold.
The king of Egypt also made king Joacim his brother king
of Judea and Jerusalem.
And he bound Joacim and the nobles: but Zaraces his brother
he apprehended, and brought him out of Egypt.
Five and twenty years old was Joacim when he was made king in the land
of Judea and Jerusalem; and he did evil before the Lord.
Wherefore against him Nabuchodonosor the king of Babylon came up,
and bound him with a chain of brass, and carried him into Babylon.
Nabuchodonosor also took of the holy vessels of the Lord,
and carried them away, and set them in his own temple at Babylon.
But those things that are recorded of him, and of his uncleaness and impiety,
are written in the chronicles of the kings.
And Joacim his son reigned in his stead:
he was made king being eighteen years old;
And reigned but three months and ten days in Jerusalem;
and did evil before the Lord.
So after a year Nabuchodonosor sent and caused him to be
brought into Babylon with the holy vessels of the Lord;
And made Zedechias king of Judea and Jerusalem, when he was
one and twenty years old; and he reigned eleven years:
And he did evil also in the sight of the Lord, and cared not
for the words that were spoken unto him by the prophet Jeremy
from the mouth of the Lord.
And after that king Nabuchodonosor had made him to swear
by the name of the Lord, he forswore himself, and rebelled;
and hardening his neck, his heart, he transgressed the laws
of the Lord God of Israel.
The governors also of the people and of the priests did many things
against the laws, and passed all the pollutions of all nations,
and defiled the temple of the Lord, which was sanctified in Jerusalem.
Nevertheless the God of their fathers sent by his messenger
to call them back, because he spared them and his tabernacle also.
But they had his messengers in derision; and, look, when the
Lord spake unto them, they made a sport of his prophets:
So far forth, that he, being wroth with his people for their great ungodliness,
commanded the kings of the Chaldees to come up against them;
Who slew their young men with the sword, yea, even within the compass
of their holy temple, and spared neither young man nor maid,
old man nor child, among them; for he delivered all into their hands.
And they took all the holy vessels of the Lord,
both great and small, with the vessels of the ark of God,
and the king's treasures, and carried them away into Babylon.
As for the house of the Lord, they burnt it, and brake down
the walls of Jerusalem, and set fire upon her towers:
And as for her glorious things, they never ceased till they
had consumed and brought them all to nought: and the people
that were not slain with the sword he carried unto Babylon:
Who became servants to him and his children, till the Persians reigned,
to fulfil the word of the Lord spoken by the mouth of Jeremy:
Until the land had enjoyed her sabbaths, the whole time of her
desolation shall she rest, until the full term of seventy years.
In the first year of Cyrus king of the Persians, that the
word of the Lord might be accomplished, that he had promised by
the mouth of Jeremy;
The Lord raised up the spirit of Cyrus the king of the
Persians, and he made proclamation through all his kingdom, and
also by writing,
Saying, Thus saith Cyrus king of the Persians; The Lord of
Israel, the most high Lord, hath made me king of the whole
And commanded me to build him an house at Jerusalem in Jewry.
If therefore there be any of you that are of his people, let
the Lord, even his Lord, be with him, and let him go up to
Jerusalem that is in Judea, and build the house of the Lord of
Israel: for he is the Lord that dwelleth in Jerusalem.
Whosoever then dwell in the places about, let them help him,
those, I say, that are his neighbours, with gold, and with
With gifts, with horses, and with cattle, and other things,
which have been set forth by vow, for the temple of the Lord at
Then the chief of the families of Judea and of the tribe of
Benjamin stood up; the priests also, and the Levites, and all
they whose mind the Lord had moved to go up, and to build an
house for the Lord at Jerusalem,
And they that dwelt round about them, and helped them in all
things with silver and gold, with horses and cattle, and with
very many free gifts of a great number whose minds were stirred
King Cyrus also brought forth the holy vessels, which
Nabuchodonosor had carried away from Jerusalem, and had set up
in his temple of idols.
Now when Cyrus king of the Persians had brought them forth,
he delivered them to Mithridates his treasurer:
And by him they were delivered to Sanabassar the governor of
And this was the number of them; A thousand golden cups, and
a thousand of silver, censers of silver twenty nine, vials of
gold thirty, and of silver two thousand four hundred and ten,
and a thousand other vessels.
So all the vessels of gold and of silver, which were carried
away, were five thousand four hundred threescore and nine.
These were brought back by Sanabassar, together with them of
the captivity, from Babylon to Jerusalem.
But in the time of Artexerxes king of the Persians Belemus,
and Mithridates, and Tabellius, and Rathumus, and Beeltethmus,
and Semellius the secretary, with others that were in commission
with them, dwelling in Samaria and other places, wrote unto him
against them that dwelt in Judea and Jerusalem these letters
To king Artexerxes our lord, Thy servants, Rathumus the
storywriter, and Semellius the scribe, and the rest of their
council, and the judges that are in Celosyria and Phenice.
Be it now known to the lord king, that the Jews that are up
from you to us, being come into Jerusalem, that rebellious and
wicked city, do build the marketplaces, and repair the walls of
it and do lay the foundation of the temple.
Now if this city and the walls thereof be made up again, they
will not only refuse to give tribute, but also rebel against
And forasmuch as the things pertaining to the temple are now
in hand, we think it meet not to neglect such a matter,
But to speak unto our lord the king, to the intent that, if
it be thy pleasure it may be sought out in the books of thy
And thou shalt find in the chronicles what is written
concerning these things, and shalt understand that that city was
rebellious, troubling both kings and cities:
And that the Jews were rebellious, and raised always wars
therein; for the which cause even this city was made desolate.
Wherefore now we do declare unto thee, O lord the king, that
if this city be built again, and the walls thereof set up anew,
thou shalt from henceforth have no passage into Celosyria and
Then the king wrote back again to Rathumus the storywriter,
to Beeltethmus, to Semellius the scribe, and to the rest that
were in commission, and dwellers in Samaria and Syria and
Phenice, after this manner;
I have read the epistle which ye have sent unto me: therefore
I commanded to make diligent search, and it hath been found that
that city was from the beginning practising against kings;
And the men therein were given to rebellion and war: and that
mighty kings and fierce were in Jerusalem, who reigned and
exacted tributes in Celosyria and Phenice.
Now therefore I have commanded to hinder those men from
building the city, and heed to be taken that there be no more
done in it;
And that those wicked workers proceed no further to the
annoyance of kings,
Then king Artexerxes his letters being read, Rathumus, and
Semellius the scribe, and the rest that were in commission with
them, removing in haste toward Jerusalem with a troop of
horsemen and a multitude of people in battle array, began to
hinder the builders; and the building of the temple in Jerusalem
ceased until the second year of the reign of Darius king of the
Now when Darius reigned, he made a great feast unto all his
subjects, and unto all his household, and unto all the princes
of Media and Persia,
And to all the governors and captains and lieutenants that
were under him, from India unto Ethiopia, of an hundred twenty
and seven provinces.
And when they had eaten and drunken, and being satisfied were
gone home, then Darius the king went into his bedchamber, and
slept, and soon after awaked.
Then three young men, that were of the guard that kept the
king's body, spake one to another;
Let every one of us speak a sentence: he that shall overcome,
and whose sentence shall seem wiser than the others, unto him
shall the king Darius give great gifts, and great things in
token of victory:
As, to be clothed in purple, to drink in gold, and to sleep
upon gold, and a chariot with bridles of gold, and an headtire
of fine linen, and a chain about his neck:
And he shall sit next to Darius because of his wisdom, and
shall be called Darius his cousin.
And then every one wrote his sentence, sealed it, and laid it
under king Darius his pillow;
And said that, when the king is risen, some will give him the
writings; and of whose side the king and the three princes of
Persia shall judge that his sentence is the wisest, to him shall
the victory be given, as was appointed.
The first wrote, Wine is the strongest.
The second wrote, The king is strongest.
The third wrote, Women are strongest: but above all things
Truth beareth away the victory.
Now when the king was risen up, they took their writings, and
delivered them unto him, and so he read them:
And sending forth he called all the princes of Persia and
Media, and the governors, and the captains, and the lieutenants,
and the chief officers;
And sat him down in the royal seat of judgment; and the
writings were read before them.
And he said, Call the young men, and they shall declare their
own sentences. So they were called, and came in.
And he said unto them, Declare unto us your mind concerning
the writings. Then began the first, who had spoken of the
strength of wine;
And he said thus, O ye men, how exceeding strong is wine! it
causeth all men to err that drink it:
It maketh the mind of the king and of the fatherless child to
be all one; of the bondman and of the freeman, of the poor man
and of the rich:
It turneth also every thought into jollity and mirth, so that
a man remembereth neither sorrow nor debt:
And it maketh every heart rich, so that a man remembereth
neither king nor governor; and it maketh to speak all things by
And when they are in their cups, they forget their love both
to friends and brethren, and a little after draw out swords:
But when they are from the wine, they remember not what they
O ye men, is not wine the strongest, that enforceth to do
thus? And when he had so spoken, he held his peace.
Then the second, that had spoken of the strength of the king,
began to say,
O ye men, do not men excel in strength that bear rule over
sea and land and all things in them?
But yet the king is more mighty: for he is lord of all these
things, and hath dominion over them; and whatsoever he
commandeth them they do.
If he bid them make war the one against the other, they do
it: if he send them out against the enemies, they go, and break
down mountains walls and towers.
They slay and are slain, and transgress not the king's
commandment: if they get the victory, they bring all to the
king, as well the spoil, as all things else.
Likewise for those that are no soldiers, and have not to do
with wars, but use husbundry, when they have reaped again that
which they had sown, they bring it to the king, and compel one
another to pay tribute unto the king.
And yet he is but one man: if he command to kill, they kill;
if he command to spare, they spare;
If he command to smite, they smite; if he command to make
desolate, they make desolate; if he command to build, they
If he command to cut down, they cut down; if he command to
plant, they plant.
So all his people and his armies obey him: furthermore he
lieth down, he eateth and drinketh, and taketh his rest:
And these keep watch round about him, neither may any one
depart, and do his own business, neither disobey they him in any
O ye men, how should not the king be mightiest, when in such
sort he is obeyed? And he held his tongue.
Then the third, who had spoken of women, and of the truth,
(this was Zorobabel) began to speak.
O ye men, it is not the great king, nor the multitude of men,
neither is it wine, that excelleth; who is it then that ruleth
them, or hath the lordship over them? are they not women?
Women have borne the king and all the people that bear rule
by sea and land.
Even of them came they: and they nourished them up that
planted the vineyards, from whence the wine cometh.
These also make garments for men; these bring glory unto men;
and without women cannot men be.
Yea, and if men have gathered together gold and silver, or
any other goodly thing, do they not love a woman which is comely
in favour and beauty?
And letting all those things go, do they not gape, and even
with open mouth fix their eyes fast on her; and have not all men
more desire unto her than unto silver or gold, or any goodly
A man leaveth his own father that brought him up, and his own
country, and cleaveth unto his wife.
He sticketh not to spend his life with his wife. and
remembereth neither father, nor mother, nor country.
By this also ye must know that women have dominion over you:
do ye not labour and toil, and give and bring all to the woman?
Yea, a man taketh his sword, and goeth his way to rob and to
steal, to sail upon the sea and upon rivers;
And looketh upon a lion, and goeth in the darkness; and when
he hath stolen, spoiled, and robbed, he bringeth it to his love.
Wherefore a man loveth his wife better than father or mother.
Yea, many there be that have run out of their wits for women,
and become servants for their sakes.
Many also have perished, have erred, and sinned, for women.
And now do ye not believe me? is not the king great in his
power? do not all regions fear to touch him?
Yet did I see him and Apame the king's concubine, the
daughter of the admirable Bartacus, sitting at the right hand of
And taking the crown from the king's head, and setting it
upon her own head; she also struck the king with her left hand.
And yet for all this the king gaped and gazed upon her with
open mouth: if she laughed upon him, he laughed also: but if she
took any displeasure at him, the king was fain to flatter, that
she might be reconciled to him again.
O ye men, how can it be but women should be strong, seeing
they do thus?
Then the king and the princes looked one upon another: so he
began to speak of the truth.
O ye men, are not women strong? great is the earth, high is
the heaven, swift is the sun in his course, for he compasseth
the heavens round about, and fetcheth his course again to his
own place in one day.
Is he not great that maketh these things? therefore great is
the truth, and stronger than all things.
All the earth crieth upon the truth, and the heaven blesseth
it: all works shake and tremble at it, and with it is no
Wine is wicked, the king is wicked, women are wicked, all the
children of men are wicked, and such are all their wicked works;
and there is no truth in them; in their unrighteousness also
they shall perish.
As for the truth, it endureth, and is alwaYs strong; it
liveth and conquereth for evermore.
With her there is no accepting of persons or rewards; but she
doeth the things that are just, and refraineth from all unjust
and wicked things; and all men do well like of her works.
Neither in her judgment is any unrighteousness; and she is
the strength, kingdom, power, and majesty, of all ages. Blessed
be the God of truth.
And with that he held his peace. And all the people then
shouted, and said, Great is Truth, and mighty above all things.
Then said the king unto him, Ask what thou wilt more than is
appointed in the writing, and we will give it thee, because thou
art found wisest; and thou shalt sit next me, and shalt be
called my cousin.
Then said he unto the king, Remember thy vow, which thou hast
vowed to build Jerusalem, in the day when thou camest to thy
And to send away all the vessels that were taken away out of
Jerusalem, which Cyrus set apart, when he vowed to destroy
Babylon, and to send them again thither.
Thou also hast vowed to build up the temple, which the
Edomites burned when Judea was made desolate by the Chaldees.
And now, O lord the king, this is that which I require, and
which I desire of thee, and this is the princely liberality
proceeding from thyself: I desire therefore that thou make good
the vow, the performance whereof with thine own mouth thou hast
vowed to the King of heaven.
Then Darius the king stood up, and kissed him, and wrote
letters for him unto all the treasurers and lieutenants and
captains and governors, that they should safely convey on their
way both him, and all those that go up with him to build
He wrote letters also unto the lieutenants that were in
Celosyria and Phenice, and unto them in Libanus, that they
should bring cedar wood from Libanus unto Jerusalem, and that
they should build the city with him.
Moreover he wrote for all the Jews that went out of his realm
up into Jewry, concerning their freedom, that no officer, no
ruler, no lieutenant, nor treasurer, should forcibly enter into
And that all the country which they hold should be free
without tribute; and that the Edomites should give over the
villages of the Jews which then they held:
Yea, that there should be yearly given twenty talents to the
building of the temple, until the time that it were built;
And other ten talents yearly, to maintain the burnt offerings
upon the altar every day, as they had a commandment to offer
And that all they that went from Babylon to build the city
should have free liberty, as well they as their posterity, and
all the priests that went away.
He wrote also concerning. the charges, and the priests'
vestments wherein they minister;
And likewise for the charges of the Levites, to be given them
until the day that the house were finished, and Jerusalem
And he commanded to give to all that kept the city pensions
He sent away also all the vessels from Babylon, that Cyrus
had set apart; and all that Cyrus had given in commandment, the
same charged he also to be done, and sent unto Jerusalem.
Now when this young man was gone forth, he lifted up his face
to heaven toward Jerusalem, and praised the King of heaven,
And said, From thee cometh victory, from thee cometh wisdom,
and thine is the glory, and I am thy servant.
Blessed art thou, who hast given me wisdom: for to thee I
give thanks, O Lord of our fathers.
And so he took the letters, and went out, and came unto
Babylon, and told it all his brethren.
And they praised the God of their fathers, because he had
given them freedom and liberty
To go up, and to build Jerusalem, and the temple which is
called by his name: and they feasted with instruments of musick
and gladness seven days.
After this were the principal men of the families chosen
according to their tribes, to go up with their wives and sons
and daughters, with their menservants and maidservants, and
And Darius sent with them a thousand horsemen, till they had
brought them back to Jerusalem safely, and with musical
[instruments] tabrets and flutes.
And all their brethren played, and he made them go up
together with them.
And these are the names of the men which went up, according
to their families among their tribes, after their several heads.
The priests, the sons of Phinees the son of Aaron: Jesus the
son of Josedec, the son of Saraias, and Joacim the son of
Zorobabel, the son of Salathiel, of the house of David, out of
the kindred of Phares, of the tribe of Judah;
Who spake wise sentences before Darius the king of Persia in
the second year of his reign, in the month Nisan, which is the
And these are they of Jewry that came up from the captivity,
where they dwelt as strangers, whom Nabuchodonosor the king of
Babylon had carried away unto Babylon.
And they returned unto Jerusalem, and to the other parts of
Jewry, every man to his own city, who came with Zorobabel, with
Jesus, Nehemias, and Zacharias, and Reesaias, Enenius,
Mardocheus. Beelsarus, Aspharasus, Reelius, Roimus, and Baana,
The number of them of the nation, and their governors, sons
of Phoros, two thousand an hundred seventy and two; the sons of
Saphat, four hundred seventy and two:
The sons of Ares, seven hundred fifty and six:
The sons of Phaath Moab, two thousand eight hundred and
The sons of Elam, a thousand two hundred fifty and four: the
sons of Zathul, nine hundred forty and five: the sons of Corbe,
seven hundred and five: the sons of Bani, six hundred forty and
The sons of Bebai, six hundred twenty and three: the sons of
Sadas, three thousand two hundred twenty and two:
The sons of Adonikam, six hundred sixty and seven: the sons
of Bagoi, two thousand sixty and six: the sons of Adin, four
hundred fifty and four:
The sons of Aterezias, ninety and two: the sons of Ceilan and
Azetas threescore and seven: the sons of Azuran, four hundred
thirty and two:
The sons of Ananias, an hundred and one: the sons of Arom,
thirty two: and the sons of Bassa, three hundred twenty and
three: the sons of Azephurith, an hundred and two:
The sons of Meterus, three thousand and five: the sons of
Bethlomon, an hundred twenty and three:
They of Netophah, fifty and five: they of Anathoth, an
hundred fifty and eight: they of Bethsamos, forty and two:
They of Kiriathiarius, twenty and five: they of Caphira and
Beroth, seven hundred forty and three: they of Pira, seven
They of Chadias and Ammidoi, four hundred twenty and two:
they of Cirama and Gabdes, six hundred twenty and one:
They of Macalon, an hundred twenty and two: they of Betolius,
fifty and two: the sons of Nephis, an hundred fifty and six:
The sons of Calamolalus and Onus, seven hundred twenty and
five: the sons of Jerechus, two hundred forty and five:
The sons of Annas, three thousand three hundred and thirty.
The priests: the sons of Jeddu, the son of Jesus among the
sons of Sanasib, nine hundred seventy and two: the sons of
Meruth, a thousand fifty and two:
The sons of Phassaron, a thousand forty and seven: the sons
of Carme, a thousand and seventeen.
The Levites: the sons of Jessue, and Cadmiel, and Banuas, and
Sudias, seventy and four.
The holy singers: the sons of Asaph, an hundred twenty and
The porters: the sons of Salum, the sons of Jatal, the sons
of Talmon, the sons of Dacobi, the sons of Teta, the sons of
Sami, in all an hundred thirty and nine.
The servants of the temple: the sons of Esau, the sons of
Asipha, the sons of Tabaoth, the sons of Ceras, the sons of Sud,
the sons of Phaleas, the sons of Labana, the sons of Graba,
The sons of Acua, the sons of Uta, the sons of Cetab, the
sons of Agaba, the sons of Subai, the sons of Anan, the sons of
Cathua, the sons of Geddur,
The sons of Airus, the sons of Daisan, the sons of Noeba, the
sons of Chaseba, the sons of Gazera, the sons of Azia, the sons
of Phinees, the sons of Azare, the sons of Bastai, the sons of
Asana, the sons of Meani, the sons of Naphisi, the sons of Acub,
the sons of Acipha, the sons of Assur, the sons of Pharacim, the
sons of Basaloth,
The sons of Meeda, the sons of Coutha, the sons of Charea,
the sons of Charcus, the sons of Aserer, the sons of Thomoi, the
sons of Nasith, the sons of Atipha.
The sons of the servants of Solomon: the sons of Azaphion,
the sons of Pharira, the sons of Jeeli, the sons of Lozon, the
sons of Israel, the sons of Sapheth,
The sons of Hagia, the sons of Pharacareth, the sons of
Sabi, the sons of Sarothie, the sons of Masias, the sons of Gar,
the sons of Addus, the sons of Suba, the sons of Apherra, the
sons of Barodis, the sons of Sabat, the sons of Allom.
All the ministers of the temple, and the sons of the servants
of Solomon, were three hundred seventy and two.
These came up from Thermeleth and Thelersas, Charaathalar
leading them, and Aalar;
Neither could they shew their families, nor their stock, how
they were of Israel: the sons of Ladan, the son of Ban, the sons
of Necodan, six hundred fifty and two.
And of the priests that usurped the office of the priesthood,
and were not found: the sons of Obdia, the sons of Accoz, the
sons of Addus, who married Augia one of the daughters of
Barzelus, and was named after his name.
And when the description of the kindred of these men was
sought in the register, and was not found, they were removed
from executing the office of the priesthood:
For unto them said Nehemias and Atharias, that they should
not be partakers of the holy things, till there arose up an high
priest clothed with doctrine and truth.
So of Israel, from them of twelve years old and upward, they
were all in number forty thousand, beside menservants and
womenservants two thousand three hundred and sixty.
Their menservants and handmaids were seven thousand three
hundred forty and seven: the singing men and singing women, two
hundred forty and five:
Four hundred thirty and five camels, seven thousand thirty
and six horses, two hundred forty and five mules, five thousand
five hundred twenty and five beasts used to the yoke.
And certain of the chief of their families, when they came to
the temple of God that is in Jerusalem, vowed to set up the
house again in his own place according to their ability,
And to give into the holy treasury of the works a thousand
pounds of gold, five thousand of silver, and an hundred priestly
And so dwelt the priests and the Levites and the people in
Jerusalem, and in the country, the singers also and the porters;
and all Israel in their villages.
But when the seventh month was at hand, and when the children
of Israel were every man in his own place, they came all
together with one consent into the open place of the first gate
which is toward the east.
Then stood up Jesus the son of Josedec, and his brethren the
priests and Zorobabel the son of Salathiel, and his brethren,
and made ready the altar of the God of Israel,
To offer burnt sacrifices upon it, according as it is
expressly commanded in the book of Moses the man of God.
And there were gathered unto them out of the other nations of
the land, and they erected the altar upon his own place, because
all the nations of the land were at enmity with them, and
oppressed them; and they offered sacrifices according to the
time, and burnt offerings to the Lord both morning and evening.
Also they held the feast of tabernacles, as it is commanded
in the law, and offered sacrifices daily, as was meet:
And after that, the continual oblations, and the sacrifice of
the sabbaths, and of the new moons, and of all holy feasts.
And all they that had made any vow to God began to offer
sacrifices to God from the first day of the seventh month,
although the temple of the Lord was not yet built.
And they gave unto the masons and carpenters money, meat, and
drink, with cheerfulness.
Unto them of Zidon also and Tyre they gave carrs, that they
should bring cedar trees from Libanus, which should be brought
by floats to the haven of Joppa, according as it was commanded
them by Cyrus king of the Persians.
And in the second year and second month after his coming to
the temple of God at Jerusalem began Zorobabel the son of
Salathiel, and Jesus the son of Josedec, and their brethren, and
the priests, and the Levites, and all they that were come unto
Jerusalem out of the captivity:
And they laid the foundation of the house of God in the first
day of the second month, in the second year after they were come
to Jewry and Jerusalem.
And they appointed the Levites from twenty years old over the
works of the Lord. Then stood up Jesus, and his sons and
brethren, and Cadmiel his brother, and the sons of Madiabun,
with the sons of Joda the son of Eliadun, with their sons and
brethren, all Levites, with one accord setters forward of the
business, labouring to advance the works in the house of God. So
the workmen built the temple of the Lord.
And the priests stood arrayed in their vestments with musical
instruments and trumpets; and the Levites the sons of Asaph had
Singing songs of thanksgiving, and praising the Lord,
according as David the king of Israel had ordained.
And they sung with loud voices songs to the praise of the
Lord, because his mercy and glory is for ever in all Israel.
And all the people sounded trumpets, and shouted with a loud
voice, singing songs of thanksgiving unto the Lord for the
rearing up of the house of the Lord.
Also of the priests and Levites, and of the chief of their
families, the ancients who had seen the former house came to the
building of this with weeping and great crying.
But many with trumpets and joy shouted with loud voice,
Insomuch that the trumpets might not be heard for the weeping
of the people: yet the multitude sounded marvellously, so that
it was heard afar off.
Wherefore when the enemies of the tribe of Judah and Benjamin
heard it, they came to know what that noise of trumpets should
And they perceived that they that were of the captivity did
build the temple unto the Lord God of Israel.
So they went to Zorobabel and Jesus, and to the chief of the
families, and said unto them, We will build together with you.
For we likewise, as ye, do obey your Lord, and do sacrifice
unto him from the days of Azbazareth the king of the Assyrians,
who brought us hither.
Then Zorobabel and Jesus and the chief of the families of
Israel said unto them, It is not for us and you to build
together an house unto the Lord our God.
We ourselves alone will build unto the Lord of Israel,
according as Cyrus the king of the Persians hath commanded us.
But the heathen of the land lying heavy upon the inhabitants
of Judea, and holding them strait, hindered their building;
And by their secret plots, and popular persuasions and
commotions, they hindered the finishing of the building all the
time that king Cyrus lived: so they were hindered from building
for the space of two years, until the reign of Darius.
Now in the second year of the reign of Darius Aggeus and
Zacharias the son of Addo, the prophets, prophesied unto the
Jews in Jewry and Jerusalem in the name of the Lord God of
Israel, which was upon them.
Then stood up Zorobabel the son of Salatiel, and Jesus the
son of Josedec, and began to build the house of the Lord at
Jerusalem, the prophets of the Lord being with them, and helping
At the same time came unto them Sisinnes the governor of
Syria and Phenice, with Sathrabuzanes and his companions, and
said unto them,
By whose appointment do ye build this house and this roof,
and perform all the other things? and who are the workmen that
perform these things?
Nevertheless the elders of the Jews obtained favour, because
the Lord had visited the captivity;
And they were not hindered from building, until such time as
signification was given unto Darius concerning them, and an
The copy of the letters which Sisinnes, governor of Syria and
Phenice, and Sathrabuzanes, with their companions, rulers in
Syria and Phenice, wrote and sent unto Darius; To king Darius,
Let all things be known unto our lord the king, that being
come into the country of Judea, and entered into the city of
Jerusalem we found in the city of Jerusalem the ancients of the
Jews that were of the captivity
Building an house unto the Lord, great and new, of hewn and
costly stones, and the timber already laid upon the walls.
And those works are done with great speed, and the work goeth
on prosperously in their hands, and with all glory and diligence
is it made.
Then asked we these elders, saying, By whose commandment
build ye this house, and lay the foundations of these works?
Therefore to the intent that we might give knowledge unto
thee by writing, we demanded of them who were the chief doers,
and we required of them the names in writing of their principal
So they gave us this answer, We are the servants of the Lord
which made heaven and earth.
And as for this house, it was builded many years ago by a
king of Israel great and strong, and was finished.
But when our fathers provoked God unto wrath, and sinned
against the Lord of Israel which is in heaven, he gave them over
into the power of Nabuchodonosor king of Babylon, of the
Who pulled down the house, and burned it, and carried away
the people captives unto Babylon.
But in the first year that king Cyrus reigned over the
country of Babylon Cyrus the king wrote to build up this house.
And the holy vessels of gold and of silver, that
Nabuchodonosor had carried away out of the house at Jerusalem,
and had set them in his own temple those Cyrus the king brought
forth again out of the temple at Babylon, and they were
delivered to Zorobabel and to Sanabassarus the ruler,
With commandment that he should carry away the same vessels,
and put them in the temple at Jerusalem; and that the temple of
the Lord should be built in his place.
Then the same Sanabassarus, being come hither, laid the
foundations of the house of the Lord at Jerusalem; and from that
time to this being still a building, it is not yet fully ended.
Now therefore, if it seem good unto the king, let search be
made among the records of king Cyrus:
And if it be found that the building of the house of the Lord
at Jerusalem hath been done with the consent of king Cyrus, and
if our lord the king be so minded, let him signify unto us
Then commanded king Darius to seek among the records at
Babylon: and so at Ecbatane the palace, which is in the country
of Media, there was found a roll wherein these things were
In the first year of the reign of Cyrus king Cyrus commanded
that the house of the Lord at Jerusalem should be built again,
where they do sacrifice with continual fire:
Whose height shall be sixty cubits and the breadth sixty
cubits, with three rows of hewn stones, and one row of new wood
of that country; and the expences thereof to be given out of the
house of king Cyrus:
And that the holy vessels of the house of the Lord, both of
gold and silver, that Nabuchodonosor took out of the house at
Jerusalem, and brought to Babylon, should be restored to the
house at Jerusalem, and be set in the place where they were
And also he commanded that Sisinnes the governor of Syria and
Phenice, and Sathrabuzanes, and their companions, and those
which were appointed rulers in Syria and Phenice, should be
careful not to meddle with the place, but suffer Zorobabel, the
servant of the Lord, and governor of Judea, and the elders of
the Jews, to build the house of the Lord in that place.
I have commanded also to have it built up whole again; and
that they look diligently to help those that be of the captivity
of the Jews, till the house of the Lord be finished:
And out of the tribute of Celosyria and Phenice a portion
carefully to be given these men for the sacrifices of the Lord,
that is, to Zorobabel the governor, for bullocks, and rams, and
And also corn, salt, wine, and oil, and that continually
every year without further question, according as the priests
that be in Jerusalem shall signify to be daily spent:
That offerings may be made to the most high God for the king
and for his children, and that they may pray for their lives.
And he commanded that whosoever should transgress, yea, or
make light of any thing afore spoken or written, out of his own
house should a tree be taken, and he thereon be hanged, and all
his goods seized for the king.
The Lord therefore, whose name is there called upon, utterly
destroy every king and nation, that stretcheth out his hand to
hinder or endamage that house of the Lord in Jerusalem.
I Darius the king have ordained that according unto these
things it be done with diligence.
Then Sisinnes the governor of Celosyria and Phenice, and
Sathrabuzanes, with their companions following the commandments
of king Darius,
Did very carefully oversee the holy works, assisting the
ancients of the Jews and governors of the temple.
And so the holy works prospered, when Aggeus and Zacharias
the prophets prophesied.
And they finished these things by the commandment of the Lord
God of Israel, and with the consent of Cyrus, Darius, and
Artexerxes, kings of Persia.
And thus was the holy house finished in the three and
twentieth day of the month Adar, in the sixth year of Darius
king of the Persians
And the children of Israel, the priests, and the Levites, and
others that were of the captivity, that were added unto them,
did according to the things written in the book of Moses.
And to the dedication of the temple of the Lord they offered
an hundred bullocks two hundred rams, four hundred lambs;
And twelve goats for the sin of all Israel, according to the
number of the chief of the tribes of Israel.
The priests also and the Levites stood arrayed in their
vestments, according to their kindreds, in the service of the
Lord God of Israel, according to the book of Moses: and the
porters at every gate.
And the children of Israel that were of the captivity held
the passover the fourteenth day of the first month, after that
the priests and the Levites were sanctified.
They that were of the captivity were not all sanctified
together: but the Levites were all sanctified together.
And so they offered the passover for all them of the
captivity, and for their brethren the priests, and for
And the children of Israel that came out of the captivity did
eat, even all they that had separated themselves from the
abominations of the people of the land, and sought the Lord.
And they kept the feast of unleavened bread seven days,
making merry before the Lord,
For that he had turned the counsel of the king of Assyria
toward them, to strengthen their hands in the works of the Lord
God of Israel.
And after these things, when Artexerxes the king of the
Persians reigned came Esdras the son of Saraias, the son of
Ezerias, the son of Helchiah, the son of Salum,
The son of Sadduc, the son of Achitob, the son of Amarias,
the son of Ezias, the son of Meremoth, the son of Zaraias, the
son of Savias, the son of Boccas, the son of Abisum, the son of
Phinees, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the chief priest.
This Esdras went up from Babylon, as a scribe, being very
ready in the law of Moses, that was given by the God of Israel.
And the king did him honour: for he found grace in his sight
in all his requests.
There went up with him also certain of the children of
Israel, of the priest of the Levites, of the holy singers,
porters, and ministers of the temple, unto Jerusalem,
In the seventh year of the reign of Artexerxes, in the fifth
month, this was the king's seventh year; for they went from
Babylon in the first day of the first month, and came to
Jerusalem, according to the prosperous journey which the Lord
For Esdras had very great skill, so that he omitted nothing
of the law and commandments of the Lord, but taught all Israel
the ordinances and judgments.
Now the copy of the commission, which was written from
Artexerxes the king, and came to Esdras the priest and reader of
the law of the Lord, is this that followeth;
King Artexerxes unto Esdras the priest and reader of the law
of the Lord sendeth greeting:
Having determined to deal graciously, I have given order,
that such of the nation of the Jews, and of the priests and
Levites being within our realm, as are willing and desirous
should go with thee unto Jerusalem.
As many therefore as have a mind thereunto, let them depart
with thee, as it hath seemed good both to me and my seven
friends the counsellors;
That they may look unto the affairs of Judea and Jerusalem,
agreeably to that which is in the law of the Lord;
And carry the gifts unto the Lord of Israel to Jerusalem,
which I and my friends have vowed, and all the gold and silver
that in the country of Babylon can be found, to the Lord in
With that also which is given of the people for the temple of
the Lord their God at Jerusalem: and that silver and gold may be
collected for bullocks, rams, and lambs, and things thereunto
To the end that they may offer sacrifices unto the Lord upon
the altar of the Lord their God, which is in Jerusalem.
And whatsoever thou and thy brethren will do with the silver
and gold, that do, according to the will of thy God.
And the holy vessels of the Lord, which are given thee for
the use of the temple of thy God, which is in Jerusalem, thou
shalt set before thy God in Jerusalem.
And whatsoever thing else thou shalt remember for the use of
the temple of thy God, thou shalt give it out of the king's
And I king Artexerxes have also commanded the keepers of the
treasures in Syria and Phenice, that whatsoever Esdras the
priest and the reader of the law of the most high God shall send
for, they should give it him with speed,
To the sum of an hundred talents of silver, likewise also of
wheat even to an hundred cors, and an hundred pieces of wine,
and other things in abundance.
Let all things be performed after the law of God diligently
unto the most high God, that wrath come not upon the kingdom of
the king and his sons.
I command you also, that ye require no tax, nor any other
imposition, of any of the priests, or Levites, or holy singers,
or porters, or ministers of the temple, or of any that have
doings in this temple, and that no man have authority to impose
any thing upon them.
And thou, Esdras, according to the wisdom of God ordain
judges and justices, that they may judge in all Syria and
Phenice all those that know the law of thy God; and those that
know it not thou shalt teach.
And whosoever shall transgress the law of thy God, and of the
king, shall be punished diligently, whether it be by death, or
other punishment, by penalty of money, or by imprisonment.
Then said Esdras the scribe, Blessed be the only Lord God of
my fathers, who hath put these things into the heart of the
king, to glorify his house that is in Jerusalem:
And hath honoured me in the sight of the king, and his
counsellors, and all his friends and nobles.
Therefore was I encouraged by the help of the Lord my God,
and gathered together men of Israel to go up with me.
And these are the chief according to their families and several
dignities, that went up with me from Babylon in the reign of
Of the sons of Phinees, Gerson: of the sons of Ithamar,
Gamael: of the sons of David, Lettus the son of Sechenias:
Of the sons of Pharez, Zacharias; and with him were counted
an hundred and fifty men:
Of the sons of Pahath Moab, Eliaonias, the son of Zaraias,
and with him two hundred men:
Of the sons of Zathoe, Sechenias the son of Jezelus, and with
him three hundred men: of the sons of Adin, Obeth the son of
Jonathan, and with him two hundred and fifty men:
Of the sons of Elam, Josias son of Gotholias, and with him
Of the sons of Saphatias, Zaraias son of Michael, and with
him threescore and ten men:
Of the sons of Joab, Abadias son of Jezelus, and with him two
hundred and twelve men:
Of the sons of Banid, Assalimoth son of Josaphias, and with
him an hundred and threescore men:
Of the sons of Babi, Zacharias son of Bebai, and with him
twenty and eight men:
Of the sons of Astath, Johannes son of Acatan, and with him
an hundred and ten men:
Of the sons of Adonikam the last, and these are the names of
them, Eliphalet, Jewel, and Samaias, and with them seventy men:
Of the sons of Bago, Uthi the son of Istalcurus, and with him
And these I gathered together to the river called Theras,
where we pitched our tents three days: and then I surveyed them.
But when I had found there none of the priests and Levites,
Then sent I unto Eleazar, and Iduel, and Masman,
And Alnathan, and Mamaias, and Joribas, and Nathan, Eunatan,
Zacharias, and Mosollamon, principal men and learned.
And I bade them that they should go unto Saddeus the captain,
who was in the place of the treasury:
And commanded them that they should speak unto Daddeus, and
to his brethren, and to the treasurers in that place, to send us
such men as might execute the priests' office in the house of
And by the mighty hand of our Lord they brought unto us
skilful men of the sons of Moli the son of Levi, the son of
Israel, Asebebia, and his sons, and his brethren, who were
And Asebia, and Annus, and Osaias his brother, of the sons
of Channuneus, and their sons, were twenty men.
And of the servants of the temple whom David had ordained,
and the principal men for the service of the Levites to wit, the
servants of the temple two hundred and twenty, the catalogue of
whose names were shewed.
And there I vowed a fast unto the young men before our Lord,
to desire of him a prosperous journey both for us and them that
were with us, for our children, and for the cattle:
For I was ashamed to ask the king footmen, and horsemen, and
conduct for safeguard against our adversaries.
For we had said unto the king, that the power of the Lord our
God should be with them that seek him, to support them in all
And again we besought our Lord as touching these things, and
found him favourable unto us.
Then I separated twelve of the chief of the priests,
Esebrias, and Assanias, and ten men of their brethren with them:
And I weighed them the gold, and the silver, and the holy
vessels of the house of our Lord, which the king, and his
council, and the princes, and all Israel, had given.
And when I had weighed it, I delivered unto them six hundred
and fifty talents of silver, and silver vessels of an hundred
talents, and an hundred talents of gold,
And twenty golden vessels, and twelve vessels of brass, even
of fine brass, glittering like gold.
And I said unto them, Both ye are holy unto the Lord, and the
vessels are holy, and the gold and the silver is a vow unto the
Lord, the Lord of our fathers.
Watch ye, and keep them till ye deliver them to the chief of
the priests and Levites, and to the principal men of the
families of Israel, in Jerusalem, into the chambers of the house
of our God.
So the priests and the Levites, who had received the silver
and the gold and the vessels, brought them unto Jerusalem, into
the temple of the Lord.
And from the river Theras we departed the twelfth day of the
first month, and came to Jerusalem by the mighty hand of our
Lord, which was with us: and from the beginning of our journey
the Lord delivered us from every enemy, and so we came to
And when we had been there three days, the gold and silver
that was weighed was delivered in the house of our Lord on the
fourth day unto Marmoth the priest the son of Iri.
And with him was Eleazar the son of Phinees, and with them
were Josabad the son of Jesu and Moeth the son of Sabban,
Levites: all was delivered them by number and weight.
And all the weight of them was written up the same hour.
Moreover they that were come out of the captivity offered
sacrifice unto the Lord God of Israel, even twelve bullocks for
all Israel, fourscore and sixteen rams,
Threescore and twelve lambs, goats for a peace offering,
twelve; all of them a sacrifice to the Lord.
And they delivered the king's commandments unto the king's
stewards' and to the governors of Celosyria and Phenice; and
they honoured the people and the temple of God.
Now when these things were done, the rulers came unto me, and
The nation of Israel, the princes, the priests and Levites,
have not put away from them the strange people of the land, nor
the pollutions of the Gentiles to wit, of the Canaanites,
Hittites, Pheresites, Jebusites, and the Moabites, Egyptians,
For both they and their sons have married with their
daughters, and the holy seed is mixed with the strange people of
the land; and from the beginning of this matter the rulers and
the great men have been partakers of this iniquity.
And as soon as I had heard these things, I rent my clothes,
and the holy garment, and pulled off the hair from off my head
and beard, and sat me down sad and very heavy.
So all they that were then moved at the word of the Lord God
of Israel assembled unto me, whilst I mourned for the iniquity:
but I sat still full of heaviness until the evening sacrifice.
Then rising up from the fast with my clothes and the holy
garment rent, and bowing my knees, and stretching forth my hands
unto the Lord,
I said, O Lord, I am confounded and ashamed before thy face;
For our sins are multiplied above our heads, and our
ignorances have reached up unto heaven.
For ever since the time of our fathers we have been and are
in great sin, even unto this day.
And for our sins and our fathers' we with our brethren and
our kings and our priests were given up unto the kings of the
earth, to the sword, and to captivity, and for a prey with
shame, unto this day.
And now in some measure hath mercy been shewed unto us from
thee, O Lord, that there should be left us a root and a name in
the place of thy sanctuary;
And to discover unto us a light in the house of the Lord our
God, and to give us food in the time of our servitude.
Yea, when we were in bondage, we were not forsaken of our
Lord; but he made us gracious before the kings of Persia, so
that they gave us food;
Yea, and honoured the temple of our Lord, and raised up the
desolate Sion, that they have given us a sure abiding in Jewry
And now, O Lord, what shall we say, having these things? for
we have transgressed thy commandments, which thou gavest by the
hand of thy servants the prophets, saying,
That the land, which ye enter into to possess as an heritage,
is a land polluted with the pollutions of the strangers of the
land, and they have filled it with their uncleanness.
Therefore now shall ye not join your daughters unto their
sons, neither shall ye take their daughters unto your sons.
Moreover ye shall never seek to have peace with them, that ye
may be strong, and eat the good things of the land, and that ye
may leave the inheritance of the land unto your children for
And all that is befallen is done unto us for our wicked works
and great sins; for thou, O Lord, didst make our sins light,
And didst give unto us such a root: but we have turned back
again to transgress thy law, and to mingle ourselves with the
uncleanness of the nations of the land.
Mightest not thou be angry with us to destroy us, till thou
hadst left us neither root, seed, nor name?
O Lord of Israel, thou art true: for we are left a root this
Behold, now are we before thee in our iniquities, for we
cannot stand any longer by reason of these things before thee.
And as Esdras in his prayer made his confession, weeping, and
lying flat upon the ground before the temple, there gathered
unto him from Jerusalem a very great multitude of men and women
and children: for there was great weeping among the multitude.
Then Jechonias the son of Jeelus, one of the sons of Israel,
called out, and said, O Esdras, we have sinned against the Lord
God, we have married strange women of the nations of the land,
and now is all Israel aloft.
Let us make an oath to the Lord, that we will put away all
our wives, which we have taken of the heathen, with their
Like as thou hast decreed, and as many as do obey the law of
Arise and put in execution: for to thee doth this matter
appertain, and we will be with thee: do valiantly.
So Esdras arose, and took an oath of the chief of the priests
and Levites of all Israel to do after these things; and so they
Then Esdras rising from the court of the temple went to the
chamber of Joanan the son of Eliasib,
And remained there, and did eat no meat nor drink water,
mourning for the great iniquities of the multitude.
And there was a proclamation in all Jewry and Jerusalem to
all them that were of the captivity, that they should be
gathered together at Jerusalem:
And that whosoever met not there within two or three days
according as the elders that bare rule appointed, their cattle
should be seized to the use of the temple, and himself cast out
from them that were of the captivity.
And in three days were all they of the tribe of Judah and
Benjamin gathered together at Jerusalem the twentieth day of the
And all the multitude sat trembling in the broad court of the
temple because of the present foul weather.
So Esdras arose up, and said unto them, Ye have transgressed
the law in marrying strange wives, thereby to increase the sins
And now by confessing give glory unto the Lord God of our
And do his will, and separate yourselves from the heathen of
the land, and from the strange women.
Then cried the whole multitude, and said with a loud voice,
Like as thou hast spoken, so will we do.
But forasmuch as the people are many, and it is foul weather,
so that we cannot stand without, and this is not a work of a day
or two, seeing our sin in these things is spread far:
Therefore let the rulers of the multitude stay, and let all
them of our habitations that have strange wives come at the time
And with them the rulers and judges of every place, till we
turn away the wrath of the Lord from us for this matter.
Then Jonathan the son of Azael and Ezechias the son of
Theocanus accordingly took this matter upon them: and Mosollam
and Levis and Sabbatheus helped them.
And they that were of the captivity did according to all
And Esdras the priest chose unto him the principal men of
their families, all by name: and in the first day of the tenth
month they sat together to examine the matter.
So their cause that held strange wives was brought to an end
in the first day of the first month.
And of the priests that were come together, and had strange
wives, there were found:
Of the sons of Jesus the son of Josedec, and his brethren;
Matthelas and Eleazar, and Joribus and Joadanus.
And they gave their hands to put away their wives and to
offer rams to make reconcilement for their errors.
And of the sons of Emmer; Ananias, and Zabdeus, and Eanes,
and Sameius, and Hiereel, and Azarias.
And of the sons of Phaisur; Elionas, Massias Israel, and
Nathanael, and Ocidelus and Talsas.
And of the Levites; Jozabad, and Semis, and Colius, who was
called Calitas, and Patheus, and Judas, and Jonas.
Of the holy singers; Eleazurus, Bacchurus.
Of the porters; Sallumus, and Tolbanes.
Of them of Israel, of the sons of Phoros; Hiermas, and
Eddias, and Melchias, and Maelus, and Eleazar, and Asibias, and
Of the sons of Ela; Matthanias, Zacharias, and Hierielus, and
Hieremoth, and Aedias.
And of the sons of Zamoth; Eliadas, Elisimus, Othonias,
Jarimoth, and Sabatus, and Sardeus.
Of the sons of Babai; Johannes, and Ananias and Josabad, and
Of the sons of Mani; Olamus, Mamuchus, Jedeus, Jasubus,
Jasael, and Hieremoth.
And of the sons of Addi; Naathus, and Moosias, Lacunus, and
Naidus, and Mathanias, and Sesthel, Balnuus, and Manasseas.
And of the sons of Annas; Elionas and Aseas, and Melchias,
and Sabbeus, and Simon Chosameus.
And of the sons of Asom; Altaneus, and Matthias, and Baanaia,
Eliphalet, and Manasses, and Semei.
And of the sons of Maani; Jeremias, Momdis, Omaerus, Juel,
Mabdai, and Pelias, and Anos, Carabasion, and Enasibus, and
Mamnitanaimus, Eliasis, Bannus, Eliali, Samis, Selemias,
Nathanias: and of the sons of Ozora; Sesis, Esril, Azaelus,
Samatus, Zambis, Josephus.
And of the sons of Ethma; Mazitias, Zabadaias, Edes, Juel,
All these had taken strange wives, and they put them away
with their children.
And the priests and Levites, and they that were of Israel,
dwelt in Jerusalem, and in the country, in the first day of the
seventh month: so the children of Israel were in their
And the whole multitude came together with one accord into
the broad place of the holy porch toward the east:
And they spake unto Esdras the priest and reader, that he
would bring the law of Moses, that was given of the Lord God of
So Esdras the chief priest brought the law unto the whole
multitude from man to woman, and to all the priests, to hear law
in the first day of the seventh month.
And he read in the broad court before the holy porch from
morning unto midday, before both men and women; and the
multitude gave heed unto the law.
And Esdras the priest and reader of the law stood up upon a
pulpit of wood, which was made for that purpose.
And there stood up by him Mattathias, Sammus, Ananias,
Azarias, Urias, Ezecias, Balasamus, upon the right hand:
And upon his left hand stood Phaldaius, Misael, Melchias,
Lothasubus, and Nabarias.
Then took Esdras the book of the law before the multitude:
for he sat honourably in the first place in the sight of them
And when he opened the law, they stood all straight up. So
Esdras blessed the Lord God most High, the God of hosts,
And all the people answered, Amen; and lifting up their hands
they fell to the ground, and worshipped the Lord.
Also Jesus, Anus, Sarabias, Adinus, Jacubus, Sabateas,
Auteas, Maianeas, and Calitas, Asrias, and Joazabdus, and
Ananias, Biatas, the Levites, taught the law of the Lord, making
them withal to understand it.
Then spake Attharates unto Esdras the chief priest. and
reader, and to the Levites that taught the multitude, even to
This day is holy unto the Lord; (for they all wept when they
heard the law:)
Go then, and eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send part
to them that have nothing;
For this day is holy unto the Lord: and be not sorrowful; for
the Lord will bring you to honour.
So the Levites published all things to the people, saying,
This day is holy to the Lord; be not sorrowful.
Then went they their way, every one to eat and drink, and
make merry, and to give part to them that had nothing, and to
make great cheer;
Because they understood the words wherein they were
instructed, and for the which they had been assembled.
The Second Book of Esdras
The second book of the prophet Esdras, the son of Saraias,
the son of Azarias, the son of Helchias, the son of Sadamias,
the sou of Sadoc, the son of Achitob,
The son of Achias, the son of Phinees, the son of Heli,
the son of Amarias, the son of Aziei, the son of Marimoth,
the son of And he spake unto the of Borith, the son of Abisei,
the son of Phinees, the son of Eleazar,
The son of Aaron, of the tribe of Levi; which was captive in
the land of the Medes, in the reign of Artexerxes king of the
And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
Go thy way, and shew my people their sinful deeds, and their
children their wickedness which they have done against me; that
they may tell their children's children:
Because the sins of their fathers are increased in them: for
they have forgotten me, and have offered unto strange gods.
Am not I even he that brought them out of the land of Egypt,
from the house of bondage? but they have provoked me unto wrath,
and despised my counsels.
Pull thou off then the hair of thy head, and cast all evil upon them,
for they have not been obedient unto my law, but it is a rebellious people.
How long shall I forbear them, into whom I have done so much good?
Many kings have I destroyed for their sakes; Pharaoh with his
servants and all his power have I smitten down.
All the nations have I destroyed before them, and in the east
I have scattered the people of two provinces, even of Tyrus and
Sidon, and have slain all their enemies.
Speak thou therefore unto them, saying, Thus saith the Lord,
I led you through the sea and in the beginning gave you
a large and safe passage; I gave you Moses for a leader,
and Aaron for a priest.
I gave you light in a pillar of fire, and great wonders have
I done among you; yet have ye forgotten me, saith the Lord.
Thus saith the Almighty Lord, The quails were as a token to you;
I gave you tents for your safeguard: nevertheless ye murmured there,
And triumphed not in my name for the destruction of your enemies,
but ever to this day do ye yet murmur.
Where are the benefits that I have done for you? when ye were
hungry and thirsty in the wilderness, did ye not cry unto me,
Saying, Why hast thou brought us into this wilderness to kill us?
it had been better for us to have served the Egyptians,
than to die in this wilderness.
Then had I pity upon your mournings, and gave you manna to eat;
so ye did eat angels' bread.
When ye were thirsty, did I not cleave the rock, and waters
flowed out to your fill? for the heat I covered you with the
leaves of the trees.
I divided among you a fruitful land, I cast out the
Canaanites, the Pherezites, and the Philistines, before you:
what shall I yet do more for you? saith the Lord.
Thus saith the Almighty Lord, When ye were in the wilderness,
in the river of the Amorites, being athirst, and blaspheming my name,
I gave you not fire for your blasphemies, but cast a tree in the water,
and made the river sweet.
What shall I do unto thee, O Jacob? thou, Juda, wouldest not
obey me: I will turn me to other nations, and unto those will
I give my name, that they may keep my statutes.
Seeing ye have forsaken me, I will forsake you also; when ye desire me
to be gracious unto you, I shall have no mercy upon you.
Whensoever ye shall call upon me, I will not hear you:
for ye have defiled your hands with blood, and your feet are swift
to commit manslaughter.
Ye have not as it were forsaken me, but your own selves,
saith the Lord.
Thus saith the Almighty Lord, Have I not prayed you as a
father his sons, as a mother her daughters, and a nurse her
That ye would be my people, and I should be your God; that ye
would be my children, and I should be your father?
I gathered you together, as a hen gathereth her chickens
under her wings: but now, what shall I do unto you? I will cast
you out from my face.
When ye offer unto me, I will turn my face from you: for your
solemn feastdays, your new moons, and your circumcisions, have I
I sent unto you my servants the prophets, whom ye have taken
and slain, and torn their bodies in pieces, whose blood I will
require of your hands, saith the Lord.
Thus saith the Almighty Lord, Your house is desolate, I will
cast you out as the wind doth stubble.
And your children shall not be fruitful; for they have
despised my commandment, and done the thing that is an evil
Your houses will I give to a people that shall come; which
not having heard of me yet shall believe me; to whom I have
shewed no signs, yet they shall do that I have commanded them.
They have seen no prophets, yet they shall call their sins to
remembrance, and acknowledge them.
I take to witness the grace of the people to come, whose
little ones rejoice in gladness: and though they have not seen
me with bodily eyes, yet in spirit they believe the thing that I
And now, brother, behold what glory; and see the people that
come from the east:
Unto whom I will give for leaders, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,
Oseas, Amos, and Micheas, Joel, Abdias, and Jonas,
Nahum, and Abacuc, Sophonias, Aggeus, Zachary, and Malachy,
which is called also an angel of the Lord.
Thus saith the Lord, I brought this people out of bondage,
and I gave them my commandments by menservants the prophets;
whom they would not hear, but despised my counsels.
The mother that bare them saith unto them, Go your way, ye
children; for I am a widow and forsaken.
I brought you up with gladness; but with sorrow and heaviness
have I lost you: for ye have sinned before the Lord your God,
and done that thing that is evil before him.
But what shall I now do unto you? I am a widow and forsaken:
go your way, O my children, and ask mercy of the Lord.
As for me, O father, I call upon thee for a witness over the
mother of these children, which would not keep my covenant,
That thou bring them to confusion, and their mother to a
spoil, that there may be no offspring of them.
Let them be scattered abroad among the heathen, let their
names be put out of the earth: for they have despised my
Woe be unto thee, Assur, thou that hidest the unrighteous in
thee! O thou wicked people, remember what I did unto Sodom and
Whose land lieth in clods of pitch and heaps of ashes: even
so also will I do unto them that hear me not, saith the Almighty
Thus saith the Lord unto Esdras, Tell my people that I will
give them the kingdom of Jerusalem, which I would have given
Their glory also will I take unto me, and give these the
everlasting tabernacles, which I had prepared for them.
They shall have the tree of life for an ointment of sweet
savour; they shall neither labour, nor be weary.
Go, and ye shall receive: pray for few days unto you, that
they may be shortened: the kingdom is already prepared for you:
Take heaven and earth to witness; for I have broken the evil
in pieces, and created the good: for I live, saith the Lord.
Mother, embrace thy children, and bring them up with
gladness, make their feet as fast as a pillar: for I have chosen
thee, saith the Lord.
And those that be dead will I raise up again from their
places, and bring them out of the graves: for I have known my
name in Israel.
Fear not, thou mother of the children: for I have chosen
thee, saith the Lord.
For thy help will I send my servants Esau and Jeremy, after
whose counsel I have sanctified and prepared for thee twelve
trees laden with divers fruits,
And as many fountains flowing with milk and honey, and seven
mighty mountains, whereupon there grow roses and lilies, whereby
I will fill thy children with joy.
Do right to the widow, judge for the fatherless, give to the
poor, defend the orphan, clothe the naked,
Heal the broken and the weak, laugh not a lame man to scorn,
defend the maimed, and let the blind man come into the sight of
Keep the old and young within thy walls.
Wheresoever thou findest the dead, take them and bury them,
and I will give thee the first place in my resurrection.
Abide still, O my people, and take thy rest, for thy
quietness still come.
Nourish thy children, O thou good nurse; stablish their feet.
As for the servants whom I have given thee, there shall not
one of them perish; for I will require them from among thy
Be not weary: for when the day of trouble and heaviness
cometh, others shall weep and be sorrowful, but thou shalt be
merry and have abundance.
The heathen shall envy thee, but they shall be able to do
nothing against thee, saith the Lord.
My hands shall cover thee, so that thy children shall not see
Be joyful, O thou mother, with thy children; for I will
deliver thee, saith the Lord.
Remember thy children that sleep, for I shall bring them out
of the sides of the earth, and shew mercy unto them: for I am
merciful, saith the Lord Almighty.
Embrace thy children until I come and shew mercy unto them:
for my wells run over, and my grace shall not fail.
I Esdras received a charge of the Lord upon the mount Oreb,
that I should go unto Israel; but when I came unto them, they
set me at nought, and despised the commandment of the Lord.
And therefore I say unto you, O ye heathen, that hear and
understand, look for your Shepherd, he shall give you
everlasting rest; for he is nigh at hand, that shall come in the
end of the world.
Be ready to the reward of the kingdom, for the everlasting
light shall shine upon you for evermore.
Flee the shadow of this world, receive the joyfulness of your
glory: I testify my Saviour openly.
O receive the gift that is given you, and be glad, giving
thanks unto him that hath led you to the heavenly kingdom.
Arise up and stand, behold the number of those that be sealed
in the feast of the Lord;
Which are departed from the shadow of the world, and have
received glorious garments of the Lord.
Take thy number, O Sion, and shut up those of thine that are
clothed in white, which have fulfilled the law of the Lord.
The number of thy children, whom thou longedst for, is
fulfilled: beseech the power of the Lord, that thy people, which
have been called from the beginning, may be hallowed.
I Esdras saw upon the mount Sion a great people, whom I could
not number, and they all praised the Lord with songs.
And in the midst of them there was a young man of a high
stature, taller than all the rest, and upon every one of their
heads he set crowns, and was more exalted; which I marvelled at
So I asked the angel, and said, Sir, what are these?
He answered and said unto me, These be they that have put off
the mortal clothing, and put on the immortal, and have confessed
the name of God: now are they crowned, and receive palms.
Then said I unto the angel, What young person is it that
crowneth them, and giveth them palms in their hands?
So he answered and said unto me, It is the Son of God, whom
they have confessed in the world. Then began I greatly to
commend them that stood so stiffly for the name of the Lord.
Then the angel said unto me, Go thy way, and tell my people
what manner of things, and how great wonders of the Lord thy
God, thou hast seen.
In the thirtieth year after the ruin of the city I was in
Babylon, and lay troubled upon my bed, and my thoughts came up
over my heart:
For I saw the desolation of Sion, and the wealth of them that
dwelt at Babylon.
And my spirit was sore moved, so that I began to speak words
full of fear to the most High, and said,
O Lord, who bearest rule, thou spakest at the beginning, when
thou didst plant the earth, and that thyself alone, and
commandedst the people,
And gavest a body unto Adam without soul, which was the
workmanship of thine hands, and didst breathe into him the
breath of life, and he was made living before thee.
And thou leadest him into paradise, which thy right hand had
planted, before ever the earth came forward.
And unto him thou gavest commandment to love thy way: which
he transgressed, and immediately thou appointedst death in him
and in his generations, of whom came nations, tribes, people,
and kindreds, out of number.
And every people walked after their own will, and did
wonderful things before thee, and despised thy commandments.
And again in process of time thou broughtest the flood upon
those that dwelt in the world, and destroyedst them.
And it came to pass in every of them, that as death was to
Adam, so was the flood to these.
Nevertheless one of them thou leftest, namely, Noah with his
household, of whom came all righteous men.
And it happened, that when they that dwelt upon the earth
began to multiply, and had gotten them many children, and were a
great people, they began again to be more ungodly than the
Now when they lived so wickedly before thee, thou didst
choose thee a man from among them, whose name was Abraham.
Him thou lovedst, and unto him only thou shewedst thy will:
And madest an everlasting covenant with him, promising him
that thou wouldest never forsake his seed.
And unto him thou gavest Isaac, and unto Isaac also thou
gavest Jacob and Esau. As for Jacob, thou didst choose him to
thee, and put by Esau: and so Jacob became a great multitude.
And it came to pass, that when thou leadest his seed out of
Egypt, thou broughtest them up to the mount Sinai.
And bowing the heavens, thou didst set fast the earth,
movedst the whole world, and madest the depths to tremble, and
troubledst the men of that age.
And thy glory went through four gates, of fire, and of
earthquake, and of wind, and of cold; that thou mightest give
the law unto the seed of Jacob, and diligence unto the
generation of Israel.
And yet tookest thou not away from them a wicked heart, that
thy law might bring forth fruit in them.
For the first Adam bearing a wicked heart transgressed, and
was overcome; and so be all they that are born of him.
Thus infirmity was made permanent; and the law (also) in the
heart of the people with the malignity of the root; so that the
good departed away, and the evil abode still.
So the times passed away, and the years were brought to an
end: then didst thou raise thee up a servant, called David:
Whom thou commandedst to build a city unto thy name, and to
offer incense and oblations unto thee therein.
When this was done many years, then they that inhabited the
city forsook thee,
And in all things did even as Adam and all his generations
had done: for they also had a wicked heart:
And so thou gavest thy city over into the hands of thine
Are their deeds then any better that inhabit Babylon, that
they should therefore have the dominion over Sion?
For when I came thither, and had seen impieties without
number, then my soul saw many evildoers in this thirtieth year,
so that my heart failed me.
For I have seen how thou sufferest them sinning, and hast
spared wicked doers: and hast destroyed thy people, and hast
preserved thine enemies, and hast not signified it.
I do not remember how this way may be left: Are they then of
Babylon better than they of Sion?
Or is there any other people that knoweth thee beside Israel?
or what generation hath so believed thy covenants as Jacob?
And yet their reward appeareth not, and their labour hath no
fruit: for I have gone here and there through the heathen, and I
see that they flow in wealth, and think not upon thy
Weigh thou therefore our wickedness now in the balance, and
their's also that dwell the world; and so shall thy name no
where be found but in Israel.
Or when was it that they which dwell upon the earth have not
sinned in thy sight? or what people have so kept thy
Thou shalt find that Israel by name hath kept thy precepts;
but not the heathen.
And the angel that was sent unto me, whose name was Uriel,
gave me an answer,
And said, Thy heart hath gone to far in this world, and
thinkest thou to comprehend the way of the most High?
Then said I, Yea, my lord. And he answered me, and said, I am
sent to shew thee three ways, and to set forth three similitudes
Whereof if thou canst declare me one, I will shew thee also
the way that thou desirest to see, and I shall shew thee from
whence the wicked heart cometh.
And I said, Tell on, my lord. Then said he unto me, Go thy
way, weigh me the weight of the fire, or measure me the blast of
the wind, or call me again the day that is past.
Then answered I and said, What man is able to do that, that
thou shouldest ask such things of me?
And he said unto me, If I should ask thee how great dwellings
are in the midst of the sea, or how many springs are in the
beginning of the deep, or how many springs are above the
firmament, or which are the outgoings of paradise:
Peradventure thou wouldest say unto me, I never went down
into the deep, nor as yet into hell, neither did I ever climb up
Nevertheless now have I asked thee but only of the fire and
wind, and of the day wherethrough thou hast passed, and of
things from which thou canst not be separated, and yet canst
thou give me no answer of them.
He said moreover unto me, Thine own things, and such as are
grown up with thee, canst thou not know;
How should thy vessel then be able to comprehend the way of
the Highest, and, the world being now outwardly corrupted to
understand the corruption that is evident in my sight?
Then said I unto him, It were better that we were not at all,
than that we should live still in wickedness, and to suffer, and
not to know wherefore.
He answered me, and said, I went into a forest into a plain,
and the trees took counsel,
And said, Come, let us go and make war against the sea that
it may depart away before us, and that we may make us more
The floods of the sea also in like manner took counsel, and
said, Come, let us go up and subdue the woods of the plain, that
there also we may make us another country.
The thought of the wood was in vain, for the fire came and
The thought of the floods of the sea came likewise to nought,
for the sand stood up and stopped them.
If thou wert judge now betwixt these two, whom wouldest thou
begin to justify? or whom wouldest thou condemn?
I answered and said, Verily it is a foolish thought that they
both have devised, for the ground is given unto the wood, and
the sea also hath his place to bear his floods.
Then answered he me, and said, Thou hast given a right
judgment, but why judgest thou not thyself also?
For like as the ground is given unto the wood, and the sea to
his floods: even so they that dwell upon the earth may
understand nothing but that which is upon the earth: and he that
dwelleth above the heavens may only understand the things that
are above the height of the heavens.
Then answered I and said, I beseech thee, O Lord, let me have
For it was not my mind to be curious of the high things, but
of such as pass by us daily, namely, wherefore Israel is given
up as a reproach to the heathen, and for what cause the people
whom thou hast loved is given over unto ungodly nations, and why
the law of our forefathers is brought to nought, and the written
covenants come to none effect,
And we pass away out of the world as grasshoppers, and our
life is astonishment and fear, and we are not worthy to obtain
What will he then do unto his name whereby we are called? of
these things have I asked.
Then answered he me, and said, The more thou searchest, the
more thou shalt marvel; for the world hasteth fast to pass away,
And cannot comprehend the things that are promised to the
righteous in time to come: for this world is full of
unrighteousness and infirmities.
But as concerning the things whereof thou askest me, I will
tell thee; for the evil is sown, but the destruction thereof is
not yet come.
If therefore that which is sown be not turned upside down,
and if the place where the evil is sown pass not away, then
cannot it come that is sown with good.
For the grain of evil seed hath been sown in the heart of
Adam from the beginning, and how much ungodliness hath it
brought up unto this time? and how much shall it yet bring forth
until the time of threshing come?
Ponder now by thyself, how great fruit of wickedness the
grain of evil seed hath brought forth.
And when the ears shall be cut down, which are without
number, how great a floor shall they fill?
Then I answered and said, How, and when shall these things
come to pass? wherefore are our years few and evil?
And he answered me, saying, Do not thou hasten above the most
Highest: for thy haste is in vain to be above him, for thou hast
Did not the souls also of the righteous ask question of these
things in their chambers, saying, How long shall I hope on this
fashion? when cometh the fruit of the floor of our reward?
And unto these things Uriel the archangel gave them answer,
and said, Even when the number of seeds is filled in you: for he
hath weighed the world in the balance.
By measure hath he measured the times; and by number hath he
numbered the times; and he doth not move nor stir them, until
the said measure be fulfilled.
Then answered I and said, O Lord that bearest rule, even we
all are full of impiety.
And for our sakes peradventure it is that the floors of the
righteous are not filled, because of the sins of them that dwell
upon the earth.
So he answered me, and said, Go thy way to a woman with
child, and ask of her when she hath fulfilled her nine months,
if her womb may keep the birth any longer within her.
Then said I, No, Lord, that can she not. And he said unto me,
In the grave the chambers of souls are like the womb of a woman:
For like as a woman that travaileth maketh haste to escape
the necessity of the travail: even so do these places haste to
deliver those things that are committed unto them.
From the beginning, look, what thou desirest to see, it shall
be shewed thee.
Then answered I and said, If I have found favour in thy
sight, and if it be possible, and if I be meet therefore,
Shew me then whether there be more to come than is past, or
more past than is to come.
What is past I know, but what is for to come I know not.
And he said unto me, Stand up upon the right side, and I
shall expound the similitude unto thee.
So I stood, and saw, and, behold, an hot burning oven passed
by before me: and it happened that when the flame was gone by I
looked, and, behold, the smoke remained still.
After this there passed by before me a watery cloud, and sent
down much rain with a storm; and when the stormy rain was past,
the drops remained still.
Then said he unto me, Consider with thyself; as the rain is
more than the drops, and as the fire is greater than the smoke;
but the drops and the smoke remain behind: so the quantity which
is past did more exceed.
Then I prayed, and said, May I live, thinkest thou, until
that time? or what shall happen in those days?
He answered me, and said, As for the tokens whereof thou
askest me, I may tell thee of them in part: but as touching thy
life, I am not sent to shew thee; for I do not know it.
Nevertheless as coming the tokens, behold, the days shall
come, that they which dwell upon earth shall be taken in a great
number, and the way of truth shall be hidden, and the land shall
be barren of faith.
But iniquity shall be increased above that which now thou
seest, or that thou hast heard long ago.
And the land, that thou seest now to have root, shalt thou
see wasted suddenly.
But if the most High grant thee to live, thou shalt see after
the third trumpet that the sun shall suddenly shine again in the
night, and the moon thrice in the day:
And blood shall drop out of wood, and the stone shall give
his voice, and the people shall be troubled:
And even he shall rule, whom they look not for that dwell
upon the earth, and the fowls shall take their flight away
And the Sodomitish sea shall cast out fish, and make a noise
in the night, which many have not known: but they shall all hear
the voice thereof.
There shall be a confusion also in many places, and the fire
shall be oft sent out again, and the wild beasts shall change
their places, and menstruous women shall bring forth monsters:
And salt waters shall be found in the sweet, and all friends
shall destroy one another; then shall wit hide itself, and
understanding withdraw itself into his secret chamber,
And shall be sought of many, and yet not be found: then shall
unrighteousness and incontinency be multiplied upon earth.
One land also shall ask another, and say, Is righteousness
that maketh a man righteous gone through thee? And it shall say,
At the same time shall men hope, but nothing obtain: they
shall labour, but their ways shall not prosper.
To shew thee such tokens I have leave; and if thou wilt pray
again, and weep as now, and fast even days, thou shalt hear yet
Then I awaked, and an extreme fearfulness went through all my
body, and my mind was troubled, so that it fainted.
So the angel that was come to talk with me held me, comforted
me, and set me up upon my feet.
And in the second night it came to pass, that Salathiel the
captain of the people came unto me, saying, Where hast thou
been? and why is thy countenance so heavy?
Knowest thou not that Israel is committed unto thee in the
land of their captivity?
Up then, and eat bread, and forsake us not, as the shepherd
that leaveth his flock in the hands of cruel wolves.
Then said I unto him, Go thy ways from me, and come not nigh
me. And he heard what I said, and went from me.
And so I fasted seven days, mourning and weeping, like as
Uriel the angel commanded me.
And after seven days so it was, that the thoughts of my heart
were very grievous unto me again,
And my soul recovered the spirit of understanding, and I
began to talk with the most High again,
And said, O Lord that bearest rule, of every wood of the
earth, and of all the trees thereof, thou hast chosen thee one
And of all lands of the whole world thou hast chosen thee one
pit: and of all the flowers thereof one lily:
And of all the depths of the sea thou hast filled thee one
river: and of all builded cities thou hast hallowed Sion unto
And of all the fowls that are created thou hast named thee
one dove: and of all the cattle that are made thou hast provided
thee one sheep:
And among all the multitudes of people thou hast gotten thee
one people: and unto this people, whom thou lovedst, thou gavest
a law that is approved of all.
And now, O Lord, why hast thou given this one people over
unto many? and upon the one root hast thou prepared others, and
why hast thou scattered thy only one people among many?
And they which did gainsay thy promises, and believed not thy
covenants, have trodden them down.
If thou didst so much hate thy people, yet shouldest thou
punish them with thine own hands.
Now when I had spoken these words, the angel that came to me
the night afore was sent unto me,
And said unto me, Hear me, and I will instruct thee; hearken
to the thing that I say, and I shall tell thee more.
And I said, Speak on, my Lord. Then said he unto me, Thou art
sore troubled in mind for Israel's sake: lovest thou that people
better than he that made them?
And I said, No, Lord: but of very grief have I spoken: for my
reins pain me every hour, while I labour to comprehend the way
of the most High, and to seek out part of his judgment.
And he said unto me, Thou canst not. And I said, Wherefore,
Lord? whereunto was I born then? or why was not my mother's womb
then my grave, that I might not have seen the travail of Jacob,
and the wearisome toil of the stock of Israel?
And he said unto me, Number me the things that are not yet
come, gather me together the dross that are scattered abroad,
make me the flowers green again that are withered,
Open me the places that are closed, and bring me forth the
winds that in them are shut up, shew me the image of a voice:
and then I will declare to thee the thing that thou labourest to
And I said, O Lord that bearest rule, who may know these
things, but he that hath not his dwelling with men?
As for me, I am unwise: how may I then speak of these things
whereof thou askest me?
Then said he unto me, Like as thou canst do none of these
things that I have spoken of, even so canst thou not find out my
judgment, or in the end the love that I have promised unto my
And I said, Behold, O Lord, yet art thou nigh unto them that
be reserved till the end: and what shall they do that have been
before me, or we that be now, or they that shall come after us?
And he said unto me, I will liken my judgment unto a ring:
like as there is no slackness of the last, even so there is no
swiftness of the first.
So I answered and said, Couldest thou not make those that
have been made, and be now, and that are for to come, at once;
that thou mightest shew thy judgment the sooner?
Then answered he me, and said, The creature may not haste
above the maker; neither may the world hold them at once that
shall be created therein.
And I said, As thou hast said unto thy servant, that thou,
which givest life to all, hast given life at once to the
creature that thou hast created, and the creature bare it: even
so it might now also bear them that now be present at once.
And he said unto me, Ask the womb of a woman, and say unto
her, If thou bringest forth children, why dost thou it not
together, but one after another? pray her therefore to bring
forth ten children at once.
And I said, She cannot: but must do it by distance of time.
Then said he unto me, Even so have I given the womb of the
earth to those that be sown in it in their times.
For like as a young child may not bring forth the things that
belong to the aged, even so have I disposed the world which I
And I asked, and said, Seeing thou hast now given me the way,
I will proceed to speak before thee: for our mother, of whom
thou hast told me that she is young, draweth now nigh unto age.
He answered me, and said, Ask a woman that beareth children,
and she shall tell thee.
Say unto her, Wherefore are unto they whom thou hast now
brought forth like those that were before, but less of stature?
And she shall answer thee, They that be born in the the
strength of youth are of one fashion, and they that are born in
the time of age, when the womb faileth, are otherwise.
Consider thou therefore also, how that ye are less of stature
than those that were before you.
And so are they that come after you less than ye, as the
creatures which now begin to be old, and have passed over the
strength of youth.
Then said I, Lord, I beseech thee, if I have found favour in
thy sight, shew thy servant by whom thou visitest thy creature.
And he said unto me, In the beginning, when the earth was
made, before the borders of the world stood, or ever the winds
Before it thundered and lightened, or ever the foundations of
paradise were laid,
Before the fair flowers were seen, or ever the moveable
powers were established, before the innumerable multitude of
angels were gathered together,
Or ever the heights of the air were lifted up, before the
measures of the firmament were named, or ever the chimneys in
Sion were hot,
And ere the present years were sought out, and or ever the
inventions of them that now sin were turned, before they were
sealed that have gathered faith for a treasure:
Then did I consider these things, and they all were made
through me alone, and through none other: by me also they shall
be ended, and by none other.
Then answered I and said, What shall be the parting asunder
of the times? or when shall be the end of the first, and the
beginning of it that followeth?
And he said unto me, From Abraham unto Isaac, when Jacob and
Esau were born of him, Jacob's hand held first the heel of Esau.
For Esau is the end of the world, and Jacob is the beginning
of it that followeth.
The hand of man is betwixt the heel and the hand: other
question, Esdras, ask thou not.
I answered then and said, O Lord that bearest rule, if I have
found favour in thy sight,
I beseech thee, shew thy servant the end of thy tokens,
whereof thou shewedst me part the last night.
So he answered and said unto me, Stand up upon thy feet, and
hear a mighty sounding voice.
And it shall be as it were a great motion; but the place
where thou standest shall not be moved.
And therefore when it speaketh be not afraid: for the word is
of the end, and the foundation of the earth is understood.
And why? because the speech of these things trembleth and is
moved: for it knoweth that the end of these things must be
And it happened, that when I had heard it I stood up upon my
feet, and hearkened, and, behold, there was a voice that spake,
and the sound of it was like the sound of many waters.
And it said, Behold, the days come, that I will begin to draw
nigh, and to visit them that dwell upon the earth,
And will begin to make inquisition of them, what they be that
have hurt unjustly with their unrighteousness, and when the
affliction of Sion shall be fulfilled;
And when the world, that shall begin to vanish away, shall be
finished, then will I shew these tokens: the books shall be
opened before the firmament, and they shall see all together:
And the children of a year old shall speak with their voices,
the women with child shall bring forth untimely children of
three or four months old, and they shall live, and be raised up.
And suddenly shall the sown places appear unsown, the full
storehouses shall suddenly be found empty:
And tha trumpet shall give a sound, which when every man
heareth, they shall be suddenly afraid.
At that time shall friends fight one against another like
enemies, and the earth shall stand in fear with those that dwell
therein, the springs of the fountains shall stand still, and in
three hours they shall not run.
Whosoever remaineth from all these that I have told thee
shall escape, and see my salvation, and the end of your world.
And the men that are received shall see it, who have not
tasted death from their birth: and the heart of the inhabitants
shall be changed, and turned into another meaning.
For evil shall be put out, and deceit shall be quenched.
As for faith, it shall flourish, corruption shall be
overcome, and the truth, which hath been so long without fruit,
shall be declared.
And when he talked with me, behold, I looked by little and
little upon him before whom I stood.
And these words said he unto me; I am come to shew thee the
time of the night to come.
If thou wilt pray yet more, and fast seven days again, I
shall tell thee greater things by day than I have heard.
For thy voice is heard before the most High: for the Mighty
hath seen thy righteous dealing, he hath seen also thy chastity,
which thou hast had ever since thy youth.
And therefore hath he sent me to shew thee all these things,
and to say unto thee, Be of good comfort and fear not
And hasten not with the times that are past, to think vain
things, that thou mayest not hasten from the latter times.
And it came to pass after this, that I wept again, and fasted
seven days in like manner, that I might fulfil the three weeks
which he told me.
And in the eighth night was my heart vexed within me again,
and I began to speak before the most High.
For my spirit was greatly set on fire, and my soul was in
And I said, O Lord, thou spakest from the beginning of the
creation, even the first day, and saidst thus; Let heaven and
earth be made; and thy word was a perfect work.
And then was the spirit, and darkness and silence were on
every side; the sound of man's voice was not yet formed.
Then commandedst thou a fair light to come forth of thy
treasures, that thy work might appear.
Upon the second day thou madest the spirit of the firmament,
and commandedst it to part asunder, and to make a division
betwixt the waters, that the one part might go up, and the other
Upon the third day thou didst command that the waters should
be gathered in the seventh part of the earth: six pats hast thou
dried up, and kept them, to the intent that of these some being
planted of God and tilled might serve thee.
For as soon as thy word went forth the work was made.
For immediately there was great and innumerable fruit, and
many and divers pleasures for the taste, and flowers of
unchangeable colour, and odours of wonderful smell: and this was
done the third day.
Upon the fourth day thou commandedst that the sun should
shine, and the moon give her light, and the stars should be in
And gavest them a charge to do service unto man, that was to
Upon the fifth day thou saidst unto the seventh part, where
the waters were gathered that it should bring forth living
creatures, fowls and fishes: and so it came to pass.
For the dumb water and without life brought forth living
things at the commandment of God, that all people might praise
thy wondrous works.
Then didst thou ordain two living creatures, the one thou
calledst Enoch, and the other Leviathan;
And didst separate the one from the other: for the seventh
part, namely, where the water was gathered together, might not
hold them both.
Unto Enoch thou gavest one part, which was dried up the third
day, that he should dwell in the same part, wherein are a
But unto Leviathan thou gavest the seventh part, namely, the
moist; and hast kept him to be devoured of whom thou wilt, and
Upon the sixth day thou gavest commandment unto the earth,
that before thee it should bring forth beasts, cattle, and
And after these, Adam also, whom thou madest lord of all thy
creatures: of him come we all, and the people also whom thou
All this have I spoken before thee, O Lord, because thou
madest the world for our sakes
As for the other people, which also come of Adam, thou hast
said that they are nothing, but be like unto spittle: and hast
likened the abundance of them unto a drop that falleth from a
And now, O Lord, behold, these heathen, which have ever been
reputed as nothing, have begun to be lords over us, and to
But we thy people, whom thou hast called thy firstborn, thy
only begotten, and thy fervent lover, are given into their
If the world now be made for our sakes, why do we not possess
an inheritance with the world? how long shall this endure?
And when I had made an end of speaking these words, there was
sent unto me the angel which had been sent unto me the nights
And he said unto me, Up, Esdras, and hear the words that I am
come to tell thee.
And I said, Speak on, my God. Then said he unto me, The sea
is set in a wide place, that it might be deep and great.
But put the case the entrance were narrow, and like a river;
Who then could go into the sea to look upon it, and to rule
it? if he went not through the narrow, how could he come into
There is also another thing; A city is builded, and set upon
a broad field, and is full of all good things:
The entrance thereof is narrow, and is set in a dangerous
place to fall, like as if there were a fire on the right hand,
and on the left a deep water:
And one only path between them both, even between the fire
and the water, so small that there could but one man go there at
If this city now were given unto a man for an inheritance, if
he never shall pass the danger set before it, how shall he
receive this inheritance?
And I said, It is so, Lord. Then said he unto me, Even so
also is Israel's portion.
Because for their sakes I made the world: and when Adam
transgressed my statutes, then was decreed that now is done.
Then were the entrances of this world made narrow, full of
sorrow and travail: they are but few and evil, full of perils,:
and very painful.
For the entrances of the elder world were wide and sure, and
brought immortal fruit.
If then they that live labour not to enter these strait and
vain things, they can never receive those that are laid up for
Now therefore why disquietest thou thyself, seeing thou art
but a corruptible man? and why art thou moved, whereas thou art
Why hast thou not considered in thy mind this thing that is
to come, rather than that which is present?
Then answered I and said, O Lord that bearest rule, thou hast
ordained in thy law, that the righteous should inherit these
things, but that the ungodly should perish.
Nevertheless the righteous shall suffer strait things, and
hope for wide: for they that have done wickedly have suffered
the strait things, and yet shall not see the wide.
And he said unto me. There is no judge above God, and none
that hath understanding above the Highest.
For there be many that perish in this life, because they
despise the law of God that is set before them.
For God hath given strait commandment to such as came, what
they should do to live, even as they came, and what they should
observe to avoid punishment.
Nevertheless they were not obedient unto him; but spake
against him, and imagined vain things;
And deceived themselves by their wicked deeds; and said of
the most High, that he is not; and knew not his ways:
But his law have they despised, and denied his covenants; in
his statutes have they not been faithful, and have not performed
And therefore, Esdras, for the empty are empty things, and
for the full are the full things.
Behold, the time shall come, that these tokens which I have
told thee shall come to pass, and the bride shall appear, and
she coming forth shall be seen, that now is withdrawn from the
And whosoever is delivered from the foresaid evils shall see
For my son Jesus shall be revealed with those that be with
him, and they that remain shall rejoice within four hundred
After these years shall my son Christ die, and all men that
And the world shall be turned into the old silence seven
days, like as in the former judgments: so that no man shall
And after seven days the world, that yet awaketh not, shall
be raised up, and that shall die that is corrupt
And the earth shall restore those that are asleep in her, and
so shall the dust those that dwell in silence, and the secret
places shall deliver those souls that were committed unto them.
And the most High shall appear upon the seat of judgment, and
misery shall pass away, and the long suffering shall have an
But judgment only shall remain, truth shall stand, and faith
shall wax strong:
And the work shall follow, and the reward shall be shewed,
and the good deeds shall be of force, and wicked deeds shall
bear no rule.
Then said I, Abraham prayed first for the Sodomites, and
Moses for the fathers that sinned in the wilderness:
And Jesus after him for Israel in the time of Achan:
And Samuel and David for the destruction: and Solomon for
them that should come to the sanctuary:
And Helias for those that received rain; and for the dead,
that he might live:
And Ezechias for the people in the time of Sennacherib: and
many for many.
Even so now, seeing corruption is grown up, and wickedness
increased, and the righteous have prayed for the ungodly:
wherefore shall it not be so now also?
He answered me, and said, This present life is not the end
where much glory doth abide; therefore have they prayed for the
But the day of doom shall be the end of this time, and the
beginning of the immortality for to come, wherein corruption is
Intemperance is at an end, infidelity is cut off,
righteousness is grown, and truth is sprung up.
Then shall no man be able to save him that is destroyed, nor
to oppress him that hath gotten the victory.
I answered then and said, This is my first and last saying,
that it had been better not to have given the earth unto Adam:
or else, when it was given him, to have restrained him from
For what profit is it for men now in this present time to
live in heaviness, and after death to look for punishment?
O thou Adam, what hast thou done? for though it was thou that
sinned, thou art not fallen alone, but we all that come of thee.
For what profit is it unto us, if there be promised us an
immortal time, whereas we have done the works that bring death?
And that there is promised us an everlasting hope, whereas
ourselves being most wicked are made vain?
And that there are laid up for us dwellings of health and
safety, whereas we have lived wickedly?
And that the glory of the most High is kept to defend them
which have led a wary life, whereas we have walked in the most
wicked ways of all?
And that there should be shewed a paradise, whose fruit
endureth for ever, wherein is security and medicine, since we
shall not enter into it?
(For we have walked in unpleasant places.)
And that the faces of them which have used abstinence shall
shine above the stars, whereas our faces shall be blacker than
For while we lived and committed iniquity, we considered not
that we should begin to suffer for it after death.
Then answered he me, and said, This is the condition of the
battle, which man that is born upon the earth shall fight;
That, if he be overcome, he shall suffer as thou hast said:
but if he get the victory, he shall receive the thing that I
For this is the life whereof Moses spake unto the people
while he lived, saying, Choose thee life, that thou mayest live.
Nevertheless they believed not him, nor yet the prophets
after him, no nor me which have spoken unto them,
That there should not be such heaviness in their destruction,
as shall be joy over them that are persuaded to salvation.
I answered then, and said, I know, Lord, that the most High
is called merciful, in that he hath mercy upon them which are
not yet come into the world,
And upon those also that turn to his law;
And that he is patient, and long suffereth those that have
sinned, as his creatures;
And that he is bountiful, for he is ready to give where it
And that he is of great mercy, for he multiplieth more and
more mercies to them that are present, and that are past, and
also to them which are to come.
For if he shall not multiply his mercies, the world would not
continue with them that inherit therein.
And he pardoneth; for if he did not so of his goodness, that
they which have committed iniquities might be eased of them, the
ten thousandth part of men should not remain living.
And being judge, if he should not forgive them that are cured
with his word, and put out the multitude of contentions,
There should be very few left peradventure in an innumerable
And he answered me, saying, The most High hath made this
world for many, but the world to come for few.
I will tell thee a similitude, Esdras; As when thou askest
the earth, it shall say unto thee, that it giveth much mould
whereof earthen vessels are made, but little dust that gold
cometh of: even so is the course of this present world.
There be many created, but few shall be saved.
So answered I and said, Swallow then down, O my soul,
understanding, and devour wisdom.
For thou hast agreed to give ear, and art willing to
prophesy: for thou hast no longer space than only to live.
O Lord, if thou suffer not thy servant, that we may pray
before thee, and thou give us seed unto our heart, and culture
to our understanding, that there may come fruit of it; how shall
each man live that is corrupt, who beareth the place of a man?
For thou art alone, and we all one workmanship of thine
hands, like as thou hast said.
For when the body is fashioned now in the mother's womb, and
thou givest it members, thy creature is preserved in fire and
water, and nine months doth thy workmanship endure thy creature
which is created in her.
But that which keepeth and is kept shall both be preserved:
and when the time cometh, the womb preserved delivereth up the
things that grew in it.
For thou hast commanded out of the parts of the body, that is
to say, out of the breasts, milk to be given, which is the fruit
of the breasts,
That the thing which is fashioned may be nourished for a
time, till thou disposest it to thy mercy.
Thou broughtest it up with thy righteousness, and nurturedst
it in thy law, and reformedst it with thy judgment.
And thou shalt mortify it as thy creature, and quicken it as
If therefore thou shalt destroy him which with so great
labour was fashioned, it is an easy thing to be ordained by thy
commandment, that the thing which was made might be preserved.
Now therefore, Lord, I will speak; touching man in general,
thou knowest best; but touching thy people, for whose sake I am
And for thine inheritance, for whose cause I mourn; and for
Israel, for whom I am heavy; and for Jacob, for whose sake I am
Therefore will I begin to pray before thee for myself and for
them: for I see the falls of us that dwell in the land.
But I have heard the swiftness of the judge which is to come.
Therefore hear my voice, and understand my words, and I shall
speak before thee. This is the beginning of the words of Esdras,
before he was taken up: and I said,
O Lord, thou that dwellest in everlastingness which beholdest
from above things in the heaven and in the air;
Whose throne is inestimable; whose glory may not be
comprehended; before whom the hosts of angels stand with
Whose service is conversant in wind and fire; whose word is
true, and sayings constant; whose commandment is strong, and
Whose look drieth up the depths, and indignation maketh the
mountains to melt away; which the truth witnesseth:
O hear the prayer of thy servant, and give ear to the
petition of thy creature.
For while I live I will speak, and so long as I have
understanding I will answer.
O look not upon the sins of thy people; but on them which
serve thee in truth.
Regard not the wicked inventions of the heathen, but the
desire of those that keep thy testimonies in afflictions.
Think not upon those that have walked feignedly before thee:
but remember them, which according to thy will have known thy
Let it not be thy will to destroy them which have lived like
beasts; but to look upon them that have clearly taught thy law.
Take thou no indignation at them which are deemed worse than
beasts; but love them that always put their trust in thy
righteousness and glory.
For we and our fathers do languish of such diseases: but
because of us sinners thou shalt be called merciful.
For if thou hast a desire to have mercy upon us, thou shalt
be called merciful, to us namely, that have no works of
For the just, which have many good works laid up with thee,
shall out of their own deeds receive reward.
For what is man, that thou shouldest take displeasure at him?
or what is a corruptible generation, that thou shouldest be so
bitter toward it?
For in truth them is no man among them that be born, but he
hath dealt wickedly; and among the faithful there is none which
hath not done amiss.
For in this, O Lord, thy righteousness and thy goodness shall
be declared, if thou be merciful unto them which have not the
confidence of good works.
Then answered he me, and said, Some things hast thou spoken
aright, and according unto thy words it shall be.
For indeed I will not think on the disposition of them which
have sinned before death, before judgment, before destruction:
But I will rejoice over the disposition of the righteous, and
I will remember also their pilgrimage, and the salvation, and
the reward, that they shall have.
Like as I have spoken now, so shall it come to pass.
For as the husbandman soweth much seed upon the ground, and
planteth many trees, and yet the thing that is sown good in his
season cometh not up, neither doth all that is planted take
root: even so is it of them that are sown in the world; they
shall not all be saved.
I answered then and said, If I have found grace, let me
Like as the husbandman's seed perisheth, if it come not up,
and receive not thy rain in due season; or if there come too
much rain, and corrupt it:
Even so perisheth man also, which is formed with thy hands,
and is called thine own image, because thou art like unto him,
for whose sake thou hast made all things, and likened him unto
the husbandman's seed.
Be not wroth with us but spare thy people, and have mercy
upon thine own inheritance: for thou art merciful unto thy
Then answered he me, and said, Things present are for the
present, and things to cometh for such as be to come.
For thou comest far short that thou shouldest be able to love
my creature more than I: but I have ofttimes drawn nigh unto
thee, and unto it, but never to the unrighteous.
In this also thou art marvellous before the most High:
In that thou hast humbled thyself, as it becometh thee, and
hast not judged thyself worthy to be much glorified among the
For many great miseries shall be done to them that in the
latter time shall dwell in the world, because they have walked
in great pride.
But understand thou for thyself, and seek out the glory for
such as be like thee.
For unto you is paradise opened, the tree of life is planted,
the time to come is prepared, plenteousness is made ready, a
city is builded, and rest is allowed, yea, perfect goodness and
The root of evil is sealed up from you, weakness and the moth
is hid from you, and corruption is fled into hell to be
Sorrows are passed, and in the end is shewed the treasure of
And therefore ask thou no more questions concerning the
multitude of them that perish.
For when they had taken liberty, they despised the most High,
thought scorn of his law, and forsook his ways.
Moreover they have trodden down his righteous,
And said in their heart, that there is no God; yea, and that
knowing they must die.
For as the things aforesaid shalt receive you, so thirst and
pain are prepared for them: for it was not his will that men
should come to nought:
But they which be created have defiled the name of him that
made them, and were unthankful unto him which prepared life for
And therefore is my judgment now at hand.
These things have I not shewed unto all men, but unto thee,
and a few like thee. Then answered I and said,
Behold, O Lord, now hast thou shewed me the multitude of the
wonders, which thou wilt begin to do in the last times: but at
what time, thou hast not shewed me.
He answered me then, and said, Measure thou the time
diligently in itself: and when thou seest part of the signs
past, which I have told thee before,
Then shalt thou understand, that it is the very same time,
wherein the Highest will begin to visit the world which he made.
Therefore when there shall be seen earthquakes and uproars of
the people in the world:
Then shalt thou well understand, that the most High spake of
those things from the days that were before thee, even from the
For like as all that is made in the world hath a beginning
and an end, and the end is manifest:
Even so the times also of the Highest have plain beginnings
in wonder and powerful works, and endings in effects and signs.
And every one that shall be saved, and shall be able to
escape by his works, and by faith, whereby ye have believed,
Shall be preserved from the said perils, and shall see my
salvation in my land, and within my borders: for I have
sanctified them for me from the beginning.
Then shall they be in pitiful case, which now have abused my
ways: and they that have cast them away despitefully shall dwell
For such as in their life have received benefits, and have
not known me;
And they that have loathed my law, while they had yet liberty,
and, when as yet place of repentance was open unto them,
understood not, but despised it;
The same must know it after death by pain.
And therefore be thou not curious how the ungodly shall be
punished, and when: but enquire how the righteous shall be
saved, whose the world is, and for whom the world is created.
Then answered I and said,
I have said before, and now do speak, and will speak it also
hereafter, that there be many more of them which perish, than of
them which shall be saved:
Like as a wave is greater than a drop.
And he answered me, saying, Like as the field is, so is also
the seed; as the flowers be, such are the colours also; such as
the workman is, such also is the work; and as the husbandman ls
himself, so is his husbandry also: for it was the time of the
And now when I prepared the world, which was not yet made,
even for them to dwell in that now live, no man spake against
For then every one obeyed: but now the manners of them which
are created in this world that is made are corrupted by a
perpetual seed, and by a law which is unsearchable rid
So I considered the world, and, behold, there was peril
because of the devices that were come into it.
And I saw, and spared it greatly, and have kept me a grape of
the cluster, and a plant of a great people.
Let the multitude perish then, which was born in vain; and
let my grape be kept, and my plant; for with great labour have I
made it perfect.
Nevertheless, if thou wilt cease yet seven days more, (but
thou shalt not fast in them,
But go into a field of flowers, where no house is builded,
and eat only the flowers of the field; taste no flesh, drink no
wine, but eat flowers only;)
And pray unto the Highest continually, then will I come and
talk with thee.
So I went my way into the field which is called Ardath, like
as he commanded me; and there I sat among the flowers, and did
eat of the herbs of the field, and the meat of the same
After seven days I sat upon the grass, and my heart was vexed
within me, like as before:
And I opened my mouth, and began to talk before the most
High, and said,
O Lord, thou that shewest thyself unto us, thou wast shewed
unto our fathers in the wilderness, in a place where no man
treadeth, in a barren place, when they came out of Egypt.
And thou spakest saying, Hear me, O Israel; and mark my
words, thou seed of Jacob.
For, behold, I sow my law in you, and it shall bring fruit in
you, and ye shall be honoured in it for ever.
But our fathers, which received the law, kept it not, and
observed not thy ordinances: and though the fruit of thy law did
not perish, neither could it, for it was thine;
Yet they that received it perished, because they kept not the
thing that was sown in them.
And, lo, it ls a custom, when the ground hath received seed,
or the sea a ship, or any vessel meat or drink, that, that being
perished wherein it was sown or cast into,
That thing also which was sown, or cast therein, or received,
doth perish, and remaineth not with us: but with us it hath not
For we that have received the law perish by sin, and our
heart also which received it
Notwithstanding the law perisheth not, but remaineth in his
And when I spake these things in my heart, I looked back with
mine eyes, and upon the right side I saw a woman, and, behold,
she mourned and wept with a loud voice, and was much grieved in
heart, and her clothes were rent, and she had ashes upon her
Then let I my thoughts go that I was in, and turned me unto
And said unto her, Wherefore weepest thou? why art thou so
grieved in thy mind?
And she said unto me, Sir, let me alone, that I may bewail
myself, and add unto my sorrow, for I am sore vexed in my mind,
and brought very low.
And I said unto her, What aileth thee? tell me.
She said unto me, I thy servant have been barren, and had no
child, though I had an husband thirty years,
And those thirty years I did nothing else day and night, and
every hour, but make my, prayer to the Highest.
After thirty years God heard me thine handmaid, looked upon
my misery, considered my trouble, and gave me a son: and I was
very glad of him, so was my husband also, and all my neighbours:
and we gave great honour unto the Almighty.
And I nourished him with great travail.
So when he grew up, and came to the time that he should have
a wife, I made a feast.
And it so came to pass, that when my son was entered into his
wedding chamber, he fell down, and died.
Then we all overthrew the lights, and all my neighbours rose
up to comfort me: so I took my rest unto the second day at
And it came to pass, when they had all left off to comfort
me, to the end I might be quiet; then rose I up by night and
fled, and came hither into this field, as thou seest.
And I do now purpose not to return into the city, but here to
stay, and neither to eat nor drink, but continually to mourn and
to fast until I die.
Then left I the meditations wherein I was, and spake to her
in anger, saying,
Thou foolish woman above all other, seest thou not our
mourning, and what happeneth unto us?
How that Sion our mother is full of all heaviness, and much
humbled, mourning very sore?
And now, seeing we all mourn and are sad, for we are all in
heaviness, art thou grieved for one son?
For ask the earth, and she shall tell thee, that it is she
which ought to mourn for the fall of so many that grow upon her.
For out of her came all at the first, and out of her shall
all others come, and, behold, they walk almost all into
destruction, and a multitude of them is utterly rooted out.
Who then should make more mourning than she, that hath lost
so great a multitude; and not thou, which art sorry but for one?
But if thou sayest unto me, My lamentation is not like the
earth's, because I have lost the fruit of my womb, which I
brought forth with pains, and bare with sorrows;
But the earth not so: for the multitude present in it
according to the course of the earth is gone, as it came:
Then say I unto thee, Like as thou hast brought forth with
labour; even so the earth also hath given her fruit, namely,
man, ever since the beginning unto him that made her.
Now therefore keep thy sorrow to thyself, and bear with a
good courage that which hath befallen thee.
For if thou shalt acknowledge the determination of God to be
just, thou shalt both receive thy son in time, and shalt be
commended among women.
Go thy way then into the city to thine husband.
And she said unto me, That will I not do: I will not go into
the city, but here will I die.
So I proceeded to speak further unto her, and said,
Do not so, but be counselled. by me: for how many are the
adversities of Sion? be comforted in regard of the sorrow of
For thou seest that our sanctuary is laid waste, our altar
broken down, our temple destroyed;
Our psaltery is laid on the ground, our song is put to
silence, our rejoicing is at an end, the light of our
candlestick is put out, the ark of our covenant is spoiled, our
holy things are defiled, and the name that is called upon us is
almost profaned: our children are put to shame, our priests are
burnt, our Levites are gone into captivity, our virgins are
defiled, and our wives ravished; our righteous men carried away,
our little ones destroyed, our young men are brought in bondage,
and our strong men are become weak;
And, which is the greatest of all, the seal of Sion hath now
lost her honour; for she is delivered into the hands of them
that hate us.
And therefore shake off thy great heaviness, and put away the
multitude of sorrows, that the Mighty may be merciful unto thee
again, and the Highest shall give thee rest and ease from thy
And it came to pass while I was talking with her, behold, her
face upon a sudden shined exceedingly, and her countenance
glistered, so that I was afraid of her, and mused what it might
And, behold, suddenly she made a great cry very fearful: so
that the earth shook at the noise of the woman.
And I looked, and, behold, the woman appeared unto me no
more, but there was a city builded, and a large place shewed
itself from the foundations: then was I afraid, and cried with a
loud voice, and said,
Where is Uriel the angel, who came unto me at the first? for
he hath caused me to fall into many trances, and mine end is
turned into corruption, and my prayer to rebuke.
And as I was speaking these words behold, he came unto me,
and looked upon me.
And, lo, I lay as one that had been dead, and mine
understanding was taken from me: and he took me by the right
hand, and comforted me, and set me upon my feet, and said unto
What aileth thee? and why art thou so disquieted? and why is
thine understanding troubled, and the thoughts of thine heart?
And I said, Because thou hast forsaken me, and yet I did
according to thy words, and I went into the field, and, lo, I
have seen, and yet see, that I am not able to express.
And he said unto me, Stand up manfully, and I will advise
Then said I, Speak on, my lord, in me; only forsake me not,
lest I die frustrate of my hope.
For I have seen that I knew not, and hear that I do not know.
Or is my sense deceived, or my soul in a dream?
Now therefore I beseech thee that thou wilt shew thy servant
of this vision.
He answered me then, and said, Hear me, and I shall inform
thee, and tell thee wherefore thou art afraid: for the Highest
will reveal many secret things unto thee.
He hath seen that thy way is right: for that thou sorrowest
continually for thy people, and makest great lamentation for
This therefore is the meaning of the vision which thou lately
Thou sawest a woman mourning, and thou begannest to comfort
But now seest thou the likeness of the woman no more, but
there appeared unto thee a city builded.
And whereas she told thee of the death of her son, this is
This woman, whom thou sawest is Sion: and whereas she said
unto thee, even she whom thou seest as a city builded,
Whereas, I say, she said unto thee, that she hath been thirty
years barren: those are the thirty years wherein there was no
offering made in her.
But after thirty years Solomon builded the city and offered
offerings: and then bare the barren a son.
And whereas she told thee that she nourished him with labour:
that was the dwelling in Jerusalem.
But whereas she said unto thee, That my son coming into his
marriage chamber happened to have a fail, and died: this was the
destruction that came to Jerusalem.
And, behold, thou sawest her likeness, and because she
mourned for her son, thou begannest to comfort her: and of these
things which have chanced, these are to be opened unto thee.
For now the most High seeth that thou art grieved
unfeignedly, and sufferest from thy whole heart for her, so hath
he shewed thee the brightness of her glory, and the comeliness
of her beauty:
And therefore I bade thee remain in the field where no house
For I knew that the Highest would shew this unto thee.
Therefore I commanded thee to go into the field, where no
foundation of any building was.
For in the place wherein the Highest beginneth to shew his
city, there can no man's building be able to stand.
And therefore fear not, let not thine heart be affrighted,
but go thy way in, and see the beauty and greatness of the
building, as much as thine eyes be able to see:
And then shalt thou hear as much as thine ears may
For thou art blessed above many other, and art called with
the Highest; and so are but few.
But to morrow at night thou shalt remain here;
And so shall the Highest shew thee visions of the high
things, which the most High will do unto them that dwell upon
the earth in the last days. So I slept that night and another,
like as he commanded me.
Then saw I a dream, and, behold, there came up from the sea
an eagle, which had twelve feathered wings, and three heads.
And I saw, and, behold, she spread her wings over all the
earth, and all the winds of the air blew on her, and were
And I beheld, and out of her feathers there grew other
contrary feathers; and they became little feathers and small.
But her heads were at rest: the head in the midst was greater
than the other, yet rested it with the residue.
Moreover I beheld, and, lo, the eagle flew with her feathers,
and reigned upon earth, and over them that dwelt therein.
And I saw that all things under heaven were subject unto her,
and no man spake against her, no, not one creature upon earth.
And I beheld, and, lo, the eagle rose upon her talons, and
spake to her feathers, saying,
Watch not all at once: sleep every one in his own place, and
watch by course:
But let the heads be preserved for the last.
And I beheld, and, lo, the voice went not out of her heads,
but from the midst of her body.
And I numbered her contrary feathers, and, behold, there were
eight of them.
And I looked, and, behold, on the right side there arose one
feather, and reigned over all the earth;
And so it was, that when it reigned, the end of it came, and
the place thereof appeared no more: so the next following stood
up. and reigned, and had a great time;
And it happened, that when it reigned, the end of it came
also, like as the first, so that it appeared no more.
Then came there a voice unto it, and said,
Hear thou that hast borne rule over the earth so long: this I
say unto thee, before thou beginnest to appear no more,
There shall none after thee attain unto thy time, neither
unto the half thereof.
Then arose the third, and reigned as the other before, and
appeared no more also.
So went it with all the residue one after another, as that
every one reigned, and then appeared no more.
Then I beheld, and, lo, in process of time the feathers that
followed stood up upon the right side, that they might rule
also; and some of them ruled, but within a while they appeared
For some of them were set up, but ruled not.
After this I looked, and, behold, the twelve feathers
appeared no more, nor the two little feathers:
And there was no more upon the eagle's body, but three heads
that rested, and six little wings.
Then saw I also that two little feathers divided themselves
from the six, and remained under the head that was upon the
right side: for the four continued in their place.
And I beheld, and, lo, the feathers that were under the wing
thought to set up themselves and to have the rule.
And I beheld, and, lo, there was one set up, but shortly it
appeared no more.
And the second was sooner away than the first.
And I beheld, and, lo, the two that remained thought also in
themselves to reign:
And when they so thought, behold, there awaked one of the
heads that were at rest, namely, it that was in the midst; for
that was greater than the two other heads.
And then I saw that the two other heads were joined with it.
And, behold, the head was turned with them that were with it,
and did eat up the two feathers under the wing that would have
But this head put the whole earth in fear, and bare rule in
it over all those that dwelt upon the earth with much
oppression; and it had the governance of the world more than all
the wings that had been.
And after this I beheld, and, lo, the head that was in the
midst suddenly appeared no more, like as the wings.
But there remained the two heads, which also in like sort
ruled upon the earth, and over those that dwelt therein.
And I beheld, and, lo, the head upon the right side devoured
it that was upon the left side.
Then I head a voice, which said unto me, Look before thee,
and consider the thing that thou seest.
And I beheld, and lo, as it were a roaring lion chased out of
the wood: and I saw that he sent out a man's voice unto the
eagle, and said,
Hear thou, I will talk with thee, and the Highest shall say
Art not thou it that remainest of the four beasts, whom I
made to reign in my world, that the end of their times might
come through them?
And the fourth came, and overcame all the beasts that were
past, and had power over the world with great fearfulness, and
over the whole compass of the earth with much wicked oppression;
and so long time dwelt he upon the earth with deceit.
For the earth hast thou not judged with truth.
For thou hast afflicted the meek, thou hast hurt the
peaceable, thou hast loved liars, and destroyed the dwellings of
them that brought forth fruit, and hast cast down the walls of
such as did thee no harm.
Therefore is thy wrongful dealing come up unto the Highest,
and thy pride unto the Mighty.
The Highest also hath looked upon the proud times, and,
behold, they are ended, and his abominations are fulfilled.
And therefore appear no more, thou eagle, nor thy horrible
wings, nor thy wicked feathers nor thy malicious heads, nor thy
hurtful claws, nor all thy vain body:
That all the earth may be refreshed, and may return, being
delivered from thy violence, and that she may hope for the
judgment and mercy of him that made her.
And it came to pass, whiles the lion spake these words unto
the eagle, I saw,
And, behold, the head that remained and the four wings
appeared no more, and the two went unto it and set themselves up
to reign, and their kingdom was small, and fill of uproar.
And I saw, and, behold, they appeared no more, and the whole
body of the eagle was burnt so that the earth was in great fear:
then awaked I out of the trouble and trance of my mind, and from
great fear, and said unto my spirit,
Lo, this hast thou done unto me, in that thou searchest out
the ways of the Highest.
Lo, yet am I weary in my mind, and very weak in my spirit;
and little strength is there in me, for the great fear wherewith
I was afflicted this night.
Therefore will I now beseech the Highest, that he will
comfort me unto the end.
And I said, Lord that bearest rule, if I have found grace
before thy sight, and if I am justified with thee before many
others, and if my prayer indeed be come up before thy face;
Comfort me then, and shew me thy servant the interpretation
and plain difference of this fearful vision, that thou mayest
perfectly comfort my soul.
For thou hast judged me worthy to shew me the last times.
And he said unto me, This is the interpretation of the
The eagle, whom thou sawest come up from the sea, is the
kingdom which was seen in the vision of thy brother Daniel.
But it was not expounded unto him, therefore now I declare it
Behold, the days will come, that there shall rise up a
kingdom upon earth, and it shall be feared above all the
kingdoms that were before it.
In the same shall twelve kings reign, one after another:
Whereof the second shall begin to reign, and shall have more
time than any of the twelve.
And this do the twelve wings signify, which thou sawest.
As for the voice which thou heardest speak, and that thou
sawest not to go out from the heads but from the midst of the
body thereof, this is the interpretation:
That after the time of that kingdom there shall arise great
strivings, and it shall stand in peril of failing: nevertheless
it shall not then fall, but shall be restored again to his
And whereas thou sawest the eight small under feathers
sticking to her wings, this is the interpretation:
That in him there shall arise eight kings, whose times shall
be but small, and their years swift.
And two of them shall perish, the middle time approaching:
four shall be kept until their end begin to approach: but two
shall be kept unto the end.
And whereas thou sawest three heads resting, this is the
In his last days shall the most High raise up three kingdoms,
and renew many things therein, and they shall have the dominion
of the earth,
And of those that dwell therein, with much oppression, above
all those that were before them: therefore are they called the
heads of the eagle.
For these are they that shall accomplish his wickedness, and
that shall finish his last end.
And whereas thou sawest that the great head appeared no more,
it signifieth that one of them shall die upon his bed, and yet
For the two that remain shall be slain with the sword.
For the sword of the one shall devour the other: but at the
last shall he fall through the sword himself.
And whereas thou sawest two feathers under the wings passing
over the head that is on the right side;
It signifieth that these are they, whom the Highest hath kept
unto their end: this is the small kingdom and full of trouble,
as thou sawest.
And the lion, whom thou sawest rising up out of the wood, and
roaring, and speaking to the eagle, and rebuking her for her
unrighteousness with all the words which thou hast heard;
This is the anointed, which the Highest hath kept for them
and for their wickedness unto the end: he shall reprove them,
and shall upbraid them with their cruelty.
For he shall set them before him alive in judgment, and shall
rebuke them, and correct them.
For the rest of my people shall he deliver with mercy, those
that have been pressed upon my borders, and he shall make them
joyful until the coming of the day of judgment, whereof I have
spoken unto thee from the the beginning.
This is the dream that thou sawest, and these are the
Thou only hast been meet to know this secret of the Highest.
Therefore write all these things that thou hast seen in a
book, and hide them:
And teach them to the wise of the people, whose hearts thou
knowest may comprehend and keep these secrets.
But wait thou here thyself yet seven days more, that it may
be shewed thee, whatsoever it pleaseth the Highest to declare
unto thee. And with that he went his way.
And it came to pass, when all the people saw that the seven
days were past, and I not come again into the city, they
gathered them all together, from the least unto the greatest,
and came unto me, and said,
What have we offended thee? and what evil have we done
against thee, that thou forsakest us, and sittest here in this
For of all the prophets thou only art left us, as a cluster
of the vintage, and as a candle in a dark place, and as a haven
or ship preserved from the tempest.
Are not the evils which are come to us sufficient?
If thou shalt forsake us, how much better had it been for us,
if we also had been burned in the midst of Sion?
For we are not better than they that died there. And they
wept with a loud voice. Then answered I them, and said,
Be of good comfort, O Israel; and be not heavy, thou house of
For the Highest hath you in remembrance, and the Mighty hath
not forgotten you in temptation.
As for me, I have not forsaken you, neither am I departed
from you: but am come into this place, to pray for the
desolation of Sion, and that I might seek mercy for the low
estate of your sanctuary.
And now go your way home every man, and after these days will
I come unto you.
So the people went their way into the city, like as I
But I remained still in the field seven days, as the angel
commanded me; and did eat only in those days of the flowers of
the field, and had my meat of the herbs
And it came to pass after seven days, I dreamed a dream by
And, lo, there arose a wind from the sea, that it moved all
the waves thereof.
And I beheld, and, lo, that man waxed strong with the
thousands of heaven: and when he turned his countenance to look,
all the things trembled that were seen under him.
And whensoever the voice went out of his mouth, all they
burned that heard his voice, like as the earth faileth when it
feeleth the fire.
And after this I beheld, and, lo, there was gathered together
a multitude of men, out of number, from the four winds of the
heaven, to subdue the man that came out of the sea
But I beheld, and, lo, he had graved himself a great
mountain, and flew up upon it.
But I would have seen the region or place whereout the hill
was graven, and I could not.
And after this I beheld, and, lo, all they which were
gathered together to subdue him were sore afraid, and yet durst
And, lo, as he saw the violence of the multitude that came,
he neither lifted up his hand, nor held sword, nor any
instrument of war:
But only I saw that he sent out of his mouth as it had been a
blast of fire, and out of his lips a flaming breath, and out of
his tongue he cast out sparks and tempests.
And they were all mixed together; the blast of fire, the
flaming breath, and the great tempest; and fell with violence
upon the multitude which was prepared to fight, and burned them
up every one, so that upon a sudden of an innumerable multitude
nothing was to be perceived, but only dust and smell of smoke:
when I saw this I was afraid.
Afterward saw I the same man come down from the mountain, and
call unto him another peaceable Multitude.
And there came much people unto him, whereof some were glad,
some were sorry, and some of them were bound, and other some
brought of them that were offered: then was I sick through great
fear, and I awaked, and said,
Thou hast shewed thy servant these wonders from the
beginning, and hast counted me worthy that thou shouldest
receive my prayer:
Shew me now yet the interpretation of this dream.
For as I conceive in mine understanding, woe unto them that
shall be left in those days and much more woe unto them that are
not left behind!
For they that were not left were in heaviness.
Now understand I the things that are laid up in the latter
days, which shall happen unto them, and to those that are left
Therefore are they come into great perils and many
necessities, like as these dreams declare.
Yet is it easier for him that is in danger to come into these
things, than to pass away as a cloud out of the world, and not
to see the things that happen in the last days. And he answered
unto me, and said,
The interpretation of the vision shall I shew thee, and I
will open unto thee the thing that thou hast required.
Whereas thou hast spoken of them that are left behind, this
is the interpretation:
He that shall endure the peril in that time hath kept
himself: they that be fallen into danger are such as have works,
and faith toward the Almighty.
Know this therefore, that they which be left behind are more
blessed than they that be dead.
This is the meaning of the vision: Whereas thou sawest a man
coming up from the midst of the sea:
The same is he whom God the Highest hath kept a great season,
which by his own self shall deliver his creature: and he shall
order them that are left behind.
And whereas thou sawest, that out of his mouth there came as
a blast of wind, and fire, and storm;
And that he held neither sword, nor any instrument of war,
but that the rushing in of him destroyed the whole multitude
that came to subdue him; this is the interpretation:
Behold, the days come, when the most High will begin to
deliver them that are upon the earth.
And he shall come to the astonishment of them that dwell on
And one shall undertake to fight against another, one city
against another, one place against another, one people against
another, and one realm against another.
And the time shall be when these things shall come to pass,
and the signs shall happen which I shewed thee before, and then
shall my Son be declared, whom thou sawest as a man ascending.
And when all the people hear his voice, every man shall in
their own land leave the battle they have one against another.
And an innumerable multitude shall be gathered together, as
thou sawest them, willing to come, and to overcome him by
But he shall stand upon the top of the mount Sion.
And Sion shall come, and shall be shewed to all men, being
prepared and builded, like as thou sawest the hill graven
And this my Son shall rebuke the wicked inventions of those
nations, which for their wicked life are fallen into the
And shall lay before them their evil thoughts, and the
torments wherewith they shall begin to be tormented, which are
like unto a flame: and he shall destroy them without labour by
the law which is like unto me.
And whereas thou sawest that he gathered another peaceable
multitude unto him;
Those are the ten tribes, which were carried away prisoners
out of their own land in the time of Osea the king, whom
Salmanasar the king of Assyria led away captive, and he carried
them over the waters, and so came they into another land.
But they took this counsel among themselves, that they would
leave the multitude of the heathen, and go forth into a further
country, where never mankind dwelt,
That they might there keep their statutes, which they never
kept in their own land.
And they entered into Euphrates by the narrow places of the
For the most High then shewed signs for them, and held still
the flood, till they were passed over.
For through that country there was a great way to go, namely,
of a year and a half: and the same region is called Arsareth.
Then dwelt they there until the latter time; and now when
they shall begin to come,
The Highest shall stay the springs of the stream again, that
they may go through: therefore sawest thou the multitude with
But those that be left behind of thy people are they that are
found within my borders.
Now when he destroyeth the multitude of the nations that are
gathered together, he shall defend his people that remain.
And then shall he shew them great wonders.
Then said I, O Lord that bearest rule, shew me this:
Wherefore have I seen the man coming up from the midst of the
And he said unto me, Like as thou canst neither seek out nor
know the things that are in the deep of the sea: even so can no
man upon earth see my Son, or those that be with him, but in the
This is the interpretation of the dream which thou sawest,
and whereby thou only art here lightened.
For thou hast forsaken thine own way, and applied thy
diligence unto my law, and sought it.
Thy life hast thou ordered in wisdom, and hast called
understanding thy mother.
And therefore have I shewed thee the treasures of the
Highest: after other three days I will speak other things unto
thee, and declare unto thee mighty and wondrous things.
Then went I forth into the field, giving praise and thanks
greatly unto the most High because of his wonders which he did
And because he governeth the same, and such things as fall in
their seasons: and there I sat three days.
And it came to pass upon the third day, I sat under an oak,
and, behold, there came a voice out of a bush over against me,
and said, Esdras, Esdras.
And I said, Here am I, Lord And I stood up upon my feet.
Then said he unto me, In the bush I did manifestly reveal
myself unto Moses, and talked with him, when my people served in
And I sent him and led my people out of Egypt, and brought
him up to the mount of where I held him by me a long season,
And told him many wondrous things, and shewed him the secrets
of the times, and the end; and commanded him, saying,
These words shalt thou declare, and these shalt thou hide.
And now I say unto thee,
That thou lay up in thy heart the signs that I have shewed,
and the dreams that thou hast seen, and the interpretations
which thou hast heard:
For thou shalt be taken away from all, and from henceforth
thou shalt remain with my Son, and with such as be like thee,
until the times be ended.
For the world hath lost his youth, and the times begin to wax
For the world is divided into twelve parts, and the ten parts
of it are gone already, and half of a tenth part:
And there remaineth that which is after the half of the tenth
Now therefore set thine house in order, and reprove thy
people, comfort such of them as be in trouble, and now renounce
Let go from thee mortal thoughts, cast away the burdens of
man, put off now the weak nature,
And set aside the thoughts that are most heavy unto thee, and
haste thee to flee from these times.
For yet greater evils than those which thou hast seen happen
shall be done hereafter.
For look how much the world shall be weaker through age, so
much the more shall evils increase upon them that dwell therein.
For the time is fled far away, and leasing is hard at hand:
for now hasteth the vision to come, which thou hast seen.
Then answered I before thee, and said,
Behold, Lord, I will go, as thou hast commanded me, and
reprove the people which are present: but they that shall be
born afterward, who shall admonish them? thus the world is set
in darkness, and they that dwell therein are without light.
For thy law is burnt, therefore no man knoweth the things
that are done of thee, or the work that shall begin.
But if I have found grace before thee, send the Holy Ghost
into me, and I shall write all that hath been done in the world
since the beginning, which were written in thy law, that men may
find thy path, and that they which will live in the latter days
And he answered me, saying, Go thy way, gather the people
together, and say unto them, that they seek thee not for forty
But look thou prepare thee many box trees, and take with thee
Sarea, Dabria, Selemia, Ecanus, and Asiel, these five which are
ready to write swiftly;
And come hither, and I shall light a candle of understanding
in thine heart, which shall not be put out, till the things be
performed which thou shalt begin to write.
And when thou hast done, some things shalt thou publish, and
some things shalt thou shew secretly to the wise: to morrow this
hour shalt thou begin to write.
Then went I forth, as he commanded, and gathered all the
people together, and said,
Hear these words, O Israel.
Our fathers at the beginning were strangers in Egypt, from
whence they were delivered:
And received the law of life, which they kept not, which ye
also have transgressed after them.
Then was the land, even the land of Sion, parted among you by
lot: but your fathers, and ye yourselves, have done
unrighteousness, and have not kept the ways which the Highest
And forasmuch as he is a righteous judge, he took from you in
time the thing that he had given you.
And now are ye here, and your brethren among you.
Therefore if so be that ye will subdue your own
understanding, and reform your hearts, ye shall be kept alive
and after death ye shall obtain mercy.
For after death shall the judgment come, when we shall live
again: and then shall the names of the righteous be manifest,
and the works of the ungodly shall be declared.
Let no man therefore come unto me now, nor seek after me
these forty days.
So I took the five men, as he commanded me, and we went into
the field, and remained there.
And the next day, behold, a voice called me, saying, Esdras,
open thy mouth, and drink that I give thee to drink.
Then opened I my mouth, and, behold, he reached me a full
cup, which was full as it were with water, but the colour of it
was like fire.
And I took it, and drank: and when I had drunk of it, my
heart uttered understanding, and wisdom grew in my breast, for
my spirit strengthened my memory:
And my mouth was opened, and shut no more.
The Highest gave understanding unto the five men, and they
wrote the wonderful visions of the night that were told, which
they knew not: and they sat forty days, and they wrote in the
day, and at night they ate bread.
As for me. I spake in the day, and I held not my tongue by
In forty days they wrote two hundred and four books.
And it came to pass, when the forty days were filled, that
the Highest spake, saying, The first that thou hast written
publish openly, that the worthy and unworthy may read it:
But keep the seventy last, that thou mayest deliver them only
to such as be wise among the people:
For in them is the spring of understanding, the fountain of
wisdom, and the stream of knowledge.
And I did so.
Behold, speak thou in the ears of my people the words of
prophecy, which I will put in thy mouth, saith the Lord:
And cause them to be written in paper: for they are faithful
Fear not the imaginations against thee, let not the
incredulity of them trouble thee, that speak against thee.
For all the unfaithful shall die in their unfaithfulness.
Behold, saith the Lord, I will bring plagues upon the world;
the sword, famine, death, and destruction.
For wickedness hath exceedingly polluted the whole earth, and
their hurtful works are fulfilled.
Therefore saith the Lord,
I will hold my tongue no more as touching their wickedness,
which they profanely commit, neither will I suffer them in those
things, in which they wickedly exercise themselves: behold, the
innocent and righteous blood crieth unto me, and the souls of
the just complain continually.
And therefore, saith the Lord, I will surely avenge them, and
receive unto me all the innocent blood from among them.
Behold, my people is led as a flock to the slaughter: I will
not suffer them now to dwell in the land of Egypt:
But I will bring them with a mighty hand and a stretched out
arm, and smite Egypt with plagues, as before, and will destroy
all the land thereof.
Egypt shall mourn, and the foundation of it shall be smitten
with the plague and punishment that God shall bring upon it.
They that till the ground shall mourn: for their seeds shall
fail through the blasting and hail, and with a fearful
Woe to the world and them that dwell therein!
For the sword and their destruction draweth nigh, and one
people shall stand up and fight against another, and swords in
For there shall be sedition among men, and invading one
another; they shall not regard their kings nor princes, and the
course of their actions shall stand in their power.
A man shall desire to go into a city, and shall not be able.
For because of their pride the cities shall be troubled, the
houses shall be destroyed, and men shall be afraid.
A man shall have no pity upon his neighbour, but shall
destroy their houses with the sword, and spoil their goods,
because of the lack of bread, and for great tribulation.
Behold, saith God, I will call together all the kings of the
earth to reverence me, which are from the rising of the sun,
from the south, from the east, and Libanus; to turn themselves
one against another, and repay the things that they have done to
Like as they do yet this day unto my chosen, so will I do
also, and recompense in their bosom. Thus saith the Lord God;
My right hand shall not spare the sinners, and my sword shall
not cease over them that shed innocent blood upon the earth.
The fire is gone forth from his wrath, and hath consumed the
foundations of the earth, and the sinners, like the straw that
Woe to them that sin, and keep not my commandments! saith
I will not spare them: go your way, ye children, from the
power, defile not my sanctuary.
For the Lord knoweth all them that sin against him, and
therefore delivereth he them unto death and destruction.
For now are the plagues come upon the whole earth and ye
shall remain in them: for God shall not deliver you, because ye
have sinned against him.
Behold an horrible vision, and the appearance thereof from
Where the nations of the dragons of Arabia shall come out
with many chariots, and the multitude of them shall be carried
as the wind upon earth, that all they which hear them may fear
Also the Carmanians raging in wrath shall go forth as the
wild boars of the wood, and with great power shall they come,
and join battle with them, and shall waste a portion of the land
of the Assyrians.
And then shall the dragons have the upper hand, remembering
their nature; and if they shall turn themselves, conspiring
together in great power to persecute them,
Then these shall be troubled bled, and keep silence through
their power, and shall flee.
And from the land of the Assyrians shall the enemy besiege
them, and consume some of them, and in their host shall be fear
and dread, and strife among their kings.
Behold clouds from the east and from the north unto the
south, and they are very horrible to look upon, full of wrath
They shall smite one upon another, and they shall smite down
a great multitude of stars upon the earth, even their own star;
and blood shall be from the sword unto the belly,
And dung of men unto the camel's hough.
And there shall be great fearfulness and trembling upon
earth: and they that see the wrath shall be afraid, and
trembling shall come upon them.
And then shall there come great storms from the south, and
from the north, and another part from the west.
And strong winds shall arise from the east, and shall open
it; and the cloud which he raised up in wrath, and the star
stirred to cause fear toward the east and west wind, shall be
The great and mighty clouds shall be puffed up full of wrath,
and the star, that they may make all the earth afraid, and them
that dwell therein; and they shall pour out over every high and
eminent place an horrible star,
Fire, and hail, and flying swords, and many waters, that all
fields may be full, and all rivers, with the abundance of great
And they shall break down the cities and walls, mountains and
hills, trees of the wood, and grass of the meadows, and their
And they shall go stedfastly unto Babylon, and make her
They shall come to her, and besiege her, the star and all
wrath shall they pour out upon her: then shall the dust and
smoke go up unto the heaven, and all they that be about her
shall bewail her.
And they that remain under her shall do service unto them
that have put her in fear.
And thou, Asia, that art partaker of the hope of Babylon, and
art the glory of her person:
Woe be unto thee, thou wretch, because thou hast made thyself
like unto her; and hast decked thy daughters in whoredom, that
they might please and glory in thy lovers, which have always
desired to commit whoredom with thee.
Thou hast followed her that is hated in all her works and
inventions: therefore saith God,
I will send plagues upon thee; widowhood, poverty, famine,
sword, and pestilence, to waste thy houses with destruction and
And the glory of thy Power shall be dried up as a flower, the
heat shall arise that is sent over thee.
Thou shalt be weakened as a poor woman with stripes, and as
one chastised with wounds, so that the mighty and lovers shall
not be able to receive thee.
Would I with jealousy have so proceeded against thee, saith
If thou hadst not always slain my chosen, exalting the stroke
of thine hands, and saying over their dead, when thou wast
Set forth the beauty of thy countenance?
The reward of thy whoredom shall be in thy bosom, therefore
shalt thou receive recompence.
Like as thou hast done unto my chosen, saith the Lord, even
so shall God do unto thee, and shall deliver thee into mischief
Thy children shall die of hunger, and thou shalt fall through
the sword: thy cities shall be broken down, and all thine shall
perish with the sword in the field.
They that be in the mountains shall die of hunger, and eat
their own flesh, and drink their own blood, for very hunger of
bread, and thirst of water.
Thou as unhappy shalt come through the sea, and receive
And in the passage they shall rush on the idle city, and
shall destroy some portion of thy land, and consume part of thy
glory, and shall return to Babylon that was destroyed.
And thou shalt be cast down by them as stubble, and they
shall be unto thee as fire;
And shall consume thee, and thy cities, thy land, and thy
mountains; all thy woods and thy fruitful trees shall they burn
up with fire.
Thy children shall they carry away captive, and, look, what
thou hast, they shall spoil it, and mar the beauty of thy face.
Woe be unto thee, Babylon, and Asia! woe be unto thee, Egypt
Gird up yourselves with cloths of sack and hair, bewail your
children, and be sorry; for your destruction is at hand.
A sword is sent upon you, and who may turn it back?
A fire is sent among you, and who may quench it?
Plagues are sent unto you, and what is he that may drive them
May any man drive away an hungry lion in the wood? or may any
one quench the fire in stubble, when it hath begun to burn?
May one turn again the arrow that is shot of a strong archer?
The mighty Lord sendeth the plagues and who is he that can
drive them away?
A fire shall go forth from his wrath, and who is he that may
He shall cast lightnings, and who shall not fear? he shall
thunder, and who shall not be afraid?
The Lord shall threaten, and who shall not be utterly beaten
to powder at his presence?
The earth quaketh, and the foundations thereof; the sea
ariseth up with waves from the deep, and the waves of it are
troubled, and the fishes thereof also, before the Lord, and
before the glory of his power:
For strong is his right hand that bendeth the bow, his arrows
that he shooteth are sharp, and shall not miss, when they begin
to be shot into the ends of the world.
Behold, the plagues are sent, and shall not return again,
until they come upon the earth.
The fire is kindled, and shall not be put out, till it
consume the foundation of the earth.
Like as an arrow which is shot of a mighty archer returneth
not backward: even so the plagues that shall be sent upon earth
shall not return again.
Woe is me! woe is me! who will deliver me in those days?
The beginning of sorrows and great mournings; the beginning
of famine and great death; the beginning of wars, and the powers
shall stand in fear; the beginning of evils! what shall I do
when these evils shall come?
Behold, famine and plague, tribulation and anguish, are sent
as scourges for amendment.
But for all these things they shall not turn from their
wickedness, nor be always mindful of the scourges.
Behold, victuals shall be so good cheap upon earth, that they
shall think themselves to be in good case, and even then shall
evils grow upon earth, sword, famine, and great confusion.
For many of them that dwell upon earth shall perish of
famine; and the other, that escape the hunger, shall the sword
And the dead shall be cast out as dung, and there shall be no
man to comfort them: for the earth shall be wasted, and the
cities shall be cast down.
There shall be no man left to till the earth, and to sow it
The trees shall give fruit, and who shall gather them?
The grapes shall ripen, and who shall tread them? for all
places shall be desolate of men:
So that one man shall desire to see another, and to hear his
For of a city there shall be ten left, and two of the field,
which shall hide themselves in the thick groves, and in the
clefts of the rocks.
As in an orchard of Olives upon every tree there are left
three or four olives;
Or as when a vineyard is gathered, there are left some
clusters of them that diligently seek through the vineyard:
Even so in those days there shall be three or four left by
them that search their houses with the sword.
And the earth shall be laid waste, and the fields thereof
shall wax old, and her ways and all her paths shall grow full of
thorns, because no man shall travel therethrough.
The virgins shall mourn, having no bridegrooms; the women
shall mourn, having no husbands; their daughters shall mourn,
having no helpers.
In the wars shall their bridegrooms be destroyed, and their
husbands shall perish of famine.
Hear now these things and understand them, ye servants of the
Behold, the word of the Lord, receive it: believe not the
gods of whom the Lord spake.
Behold, the plagues draw nigh, and are not slack.
As when a woman with child in the ninth month bringeth forth
her son, with two or three hours of her birth great pains
compass her womb, which pains, when the child cometh forth, they
slack not a moment:
Even so shall not the plagues be slack to come upon the
earth, and the world shall mourn, and sorrows shall come upon it
on every side.
O my people, hear my word: make you ready to thy battle, and
in those evils be even as pilgrims upon the earth.
He that selleth, let him be as he that fleeth away: and he
that buyeth, as one that will lose:
He that occupieth merchandise, as he that hath no profit by
it: and he that buildeth, as he that shall not dwell therein:
He that soweth, as if he should not reap: so also he that
planteth the vineyard, as he that shall not gather the grapes:
They that marry, as they that shall get no children; and they
that marry not, as the widowers.
And therefore they that labour labour in vain:
For strangers shall reap their fruits, and spoil their goods,
overthrow their houses, and take their children captives, for in
captivity and famine shall they get children.
And they that occupy their merchandise with robbery, the more
they deck their cities, their houses, their possessions, and
their own persons:
The more will I be angry with them for their sin, saith the
Like as a whore envieth a right honest and virtuous woman:
So shall righteousness hate iniquity, when she decketh
herself, and shall accuse her to her face, when he cometh that
shall defend him that diligently searcheth out every sin upon
And therefore be ye not like thereunto, nor to the works
For yet a little, and iniquity shall be taken away out of the
earth, and righteousness shall reign among you.
Let not the sinner say that he hath not sinned: for God shall
burn coals of fire upon his head, which saith before the Lord
God and his glory, I have not sinned.
Behold, the Lord knoweth all the works of men, their
imaginations, their thoughts, and their hearts:
Which spake but the word, Let the earth be made; and it was
made: Let the heaven be made; and it was created.
In his word were the stars made, and he knoweth the number of
He searcheth the deep, and the treasures thereof; he hath
measured the sea, and what it containeth.
He hath shut the sea in the midst of the waters, and with his
word hath he hanged the earth upon the waters.
He spreadeth out the heavens like a vault; upon the waters
hath he founded it.
In the desert hath he made springs of water, and pools upon
the tops of the mountains, that the floods might pour down from
the high rocks to water the earth.
He made man, and put his heart in the midst of the body, and
gave him breath, life, and understanding.
Yea and the Spirit of Almighty God, which made all things,
and searcheth out all hidden things in the secrets of the earth,
Surely he knoweth your inventions, and what ye think in your
hearts, even them that sin, and would hide their sin.
Therefore hath the Lord exactly searched out all your works,
and he will put you all to shame.
And when your sins are brought forth, ye shall be ashamed
before men, and your own sins shall be your accusers in that
What will ye do? or how will ye hide your sins before God and
Behold, God himself is the judge, fear him: leave off from
your sins, and forget your iniquities, to meddle no more with
them for ever: so shall God lead you forth, and deliver you from
For, behold, the burning wrath of a great multitude is
kindled over you, and they shall take away certain of you, and
feed you, being idle, with things offered unto idols.
And they that consent unto them shall be had in derision and
in reproach, and trodden under foot.
For there shall be in every place, and in the next cities, a
great insurrection upon those that fear the Lord.
They shall be like mad men, sparing none, but still spoiling
and destroying those that fear the Lord.
For they shall waste and take away their goods, and cast them
out of their houses.
Then shall they be known, who are my chosen; and they shall
be tried as the gold in the fire.
Hear, O ye my beloved, saith the Lord: behold, the days of
trouble are at hand, but I will deliver you from the same.
Be ye not afraid neither doubt; for God is your guide,
And the guide of them who keep my commandments and precepts,
saith the Lord God: let not your sins weigh you down, and let
not your iniquities lift up themselves.
Woe be unto them that are bound with their sins, and covered
with their iniquities like as a field is covered over with
bushes, and the path thereof covered with thorns, that no man
may travel through!
It is left undressed, and is cast into the fire to be
The Greek Additions to Esther
[The Rest of the Chapters of the Book of Esther]
Then Mardocheus said, God hath done these things.
For I remember a dream which I saw concerning these matters,
and nothing thereof hath failed.
A little fountain became a river, and there was light, and the
sun, and much water: this river is Esther, whom the king
married, and made queen:
And the two dragons are I and Aman.
And the nations were those that were assembled to destroy the
name of the Jews:
And my nation is this Israel, which cried to God, and were
saved: for the Lord hath saved his people, and the Lord hath
delivered us from all those evils, and God hath wrought signs
and great wonders, which have not been done among the Gentiles.
Therefore hath he made two lots, one for the people of God,
and another for all the Gentiles.
And these two lots came at the hour, and time, and day of
judgment, before God among all nations.
So God remembered his people, and justified his inheritance.
Therefore those days shall be unto them in the month Adar,
the fourteenth and fifteenth day of the same month, with an
assembly, and joy, and with gladness before God, according to
the generations for ever among his people.
In the fourth year of the reign of Ptolemeus and Cleopatra,
Dositheus, who said he was a priest and Levite, and Ptolemeus
his son, brought this epistle of Phurim, which they said was the
same, and that Lysimachus the son of Ptolemeus, that was in
Jerusalem, had interpreted it.
In the second year of the reign of Artexerxes the great, in
the first day of the month Nisan, Mardocheus the son of Jairus,
the son of Semei, the son of Cisai, of the tribe of Benjamin,
had a dream;
Who was a Jew, and dwelt in the city of Susa, a great man,
being a servitor in the king's court.
He was also one of the captives, which Nabuchodonosor the
king of Babylon carried from Jerusalem with Jechonias king of
Judea; and this was his dream:
Behold a noise of a tumult, with thunder, and earthquakes,
and uproar in the land:
And, behold, two great dragons came forth ready to fight, and
their cry was great.
And at their cry all nations were prepared to battle, that
they might fight against the righteous people.
And lo a day of darkness and obscurity, tribulation and
anguish, affliction and great uproar, upon earth.
And the whole righteous nation was troubled, fearing their
own evils, and were ready to perish.
Then they cried unto God, and upon their cry, as it were from
a little fountain, was made a great flood, even much water.
The light and the sun rose up, and the lowly were exalted,
and devoured the glorious.
Now when Mardocheus, who had seen this dream, and what God
had determined to do, was awake, he bare this dream in mind, and
until night by all means was desirous to know it.
And Mardocheus took his rest in the court with Gabatha and
Tharra, the two eunuchs of the king, and keepers of the palace.
And he heard their devices, and searched out their purposes,
and learned that they were about to lay hands upon Artexerxes
the king; and so he certified the king of them.
Then the king examined the two eunuchs, and after that they
had confessed it, they were strangled.
And the king made a record of these things, and Mardocheus
also wrote thereof.
So the king commanded, Mardocheus to serve in the court, and
for this he rewarded him.
Howbeit Aman the son of Amadathus the Agagite, who was in
great honour with the king, sought to molest Mardocheus and his
people because of the two eunuchs of the king.
The copy of the letters was this: The great king Artexerxes
writeth these things to the princes and governours that are under
him from India unto Ethiopia in an hundred and seven and twenty
After that I became lord over many nations and had dominion
over the whole world, not lifted up with presumption of my
authority, but carrying myself always with equity and mildness,
I purposed to settle my subjects continually in a quiet life,
and making my kingdom peaceable, and open for passage to the
utmost coasts, to renew peace, which is desired of all men.
Now when I asked my counsellors how this might be brought to
pass, Aman, that excelled in wisdom among us, and was approved
for his constant good will and steadfast fidelity, and had the
honour of the second place in the kingdom,
Declared unto us, that in all nations throughout the world
there was scattered a certain malicious people, that had laws
contrary to ail nations, and continually despised the
commandments of kings, so as the uniting of our kingdoms,
honourably intended by us cannot go forward.
Seeing then we understand that this people alone is
continually in opposition unto all men, differing in the strange
manner of their laws, and evil affected to our state, working
all the mischief they can that our kingdom may not be firmly
Therefore have we commanded, that all they that are signified
in writing unto you by Aman, who is ordained over the affairs,
and is next unto us, shall all, with their wives and children,
be utterly destroyed by the sword of their enemies, without all
mercy and pity, the fourteenth day of the twelfth month Adar of
this present year:
That they, who of old and now also are malicious, may in one
day with violence go into the grave, and so ever hereafter cause
our affairs to be well settled, and without trouble.
Then Mardocheus thought upon all the works of the Lord, and
made his prayer unto him,
Saying, O Lord, Lord, the King Almighty: for the whole world
is in thy power, and if thou hast appointed to save Israel,
there is no man that can gainsay thee:
For thou hast made heaven and earth, and all the wondrous
things under the heaven.
Thou art Lord of all things, and and there is no man that can
resist thee, which art the Lord.
Thou knowest all things, and thou knowest, Lord, that it was
neither in contempt nor pride, nor for any desire of glory, that
I did not bow down to proud Aman.
For I could have been content with good will for the
salvation of Israel to kiss the soles of his feet.
But I did this, that I might not prefer the glory of man
above the glory of God: neither will I worship any but thee, O
God, neither will I do it in pride.
And now, O Lord God and King, spare thy people: for their
eyes are upon us to bring us to nought; yea, they desire to
destroy the inheritance, that hath been thine from the
Despise not the portion, which thou hast delivered out of
Egypt for thine own self.
Hear my prayer, and be merciful unto thine inheritance: turn
our sorrow into joy, that we may live, O Lord, and praise thy
name: and destroy not the mouths of them that praise thee, O
All Israel in like manner cried most earnestly unto the Lord,
because their death was before their eyes.
Queen Esther also, being in fear of death, resorted unto the
And laid away her glorious apparel, and put on the garments
of anguish and mourning: and instead of precious ointments, she
covered her head with ashes and dung, and she humbled her body
greatly, and all the places of her joy she filled with her torn
And she prayed unto the Lord God of Israel, saying, O my
Lord, thou only art our King: help me, desolate woman, which
have no helper but thee:
For my danger is in mine hand.
From my youth up I have heard in the tribe of my family that
thou, O Lord, tookest Israel from among all people, and our
fathers from all their predecessors, for a perpetual
inheritance, and thou hast performed whatsoever thou didst
And now we have sinned before thee: therefore hast thou given
us into the hands of our enemies,
Because we worshipped their gods: O Lord, thou art righteous.
Nevertheless it satisfieth them not, that we are in bitter
captivity: but they have stricken hands with their idols,
That they will abolish the thing that thou with thy mouth
hast ordained, and destroy thine inheritance, and stop the mouth
of them that praise thee, and quench the glory of thy house, and
of thine altar,
And open the mouths of the heathen to set forth the praises
of the idols, and to magnify a fleshly king for ever.
O Lord, give not thy sceptre unto them that be nothing, and
let them not laugh at our fall; but turn their device upon
themselves, and make him an example, that hath begun this
Remember, O Lord, make thyself known in time of our
affliction, and give me boldness, O King of the nations, and
Lord of all power.
Give me eloquent speech in my mouth before the lion: turn his
heart to hate him that fighteth against us, that there may be an
end of him, and of all that are likeminded to him:
But deliver us with thine hand, and help me that am desolate,
and which have no other help but thee.
Thou knowest all things, O Lord; thou knowest that I hate the
glory of the unrighteous, and abhor the bed of the
uncircumcised, and of all the heathen.
Thou knowest my necessity: for I abhor the sign of my high
estate, which is upon mine head in the days wherein I shew
myself, and that I abhor it as a menstruous rag, and that I wear
it not when I am private by myself.
And that thine handmaid hath not eaten at Aman's table, and
that I have not greatly esteemed the king's feast, nor drunk the
wine of the drink offerings.
Neither had thine handmaid any joy since the day that I was
brought hither to this present, but in thee, O Lord God of
O thou mighty God above all, hear the voice of the forlorn
and deliver us out of the hands of the mischievous, and deliver
me out of my fear.
And upon the third day, when she had ended her prayers, she
laid away her mourning garments, and put on her glorious
And being gloriously adorned, after she had called upon God,
who is the beholder and saviour of all things, she took two
maids with her:
And upon the one she leaned, as carrying herself daintily;
And the other followed, bearing up her train.
And she was ruddy through the perfection of her beauty, and
her countenance was cheerful and very amiable: but her heart was
in anguish for fear.
Then having passed through all the doors, she stood before
the king, who sat upon his royal throne, and was clothed with
all his robes of majesty, all glittering with gold and precious
stones; and he was very dreadful.
Then lifting up his countenance that shone with majesty, he
looked very fiercely upon her: and the queen fell down, and was
pale, and fainted, and bowed herself upon the head of the maid
that went before her.
Then God changed the spirit of the king into mildness, who in
a fear leaped from his throne, and took her in his arms, till
she came to herself again, and comforted her with loving words
and said unto her,
Esther, what is the matter? I am thy brother, be of good
Thou shalt not die, though our our commandment be general:
And so be held up his golden sceptre, and laid it upon her
And embraced her, and said, Speak unto me.
Then said she unto him, I saw thee, my lord, as an angel of
God, and my heart was troubled for fear of thy majesty.
For wonderful art thou, lord, and thy countenance is full of
And as she was speaking, she fell down for faintness.
Then the king was troubled, and ail his servants comforted
The great king Artexerxes unto the princes and governors of
an hundred and seven and twenty provinces from India unto
Ethiopia, and unto all our faithful subjects, greeting.
Many, the more often they are honoured with the great bounty
of their gracious princes, the more proud they are waxen,
And endeavour to hurt not our subjects only, but not being
able to bear abundance, do take in hand to practise also against
those that do them good:
And take not only thankfulness away from among men, but also
lifted up with the glorious words of lewd persons, that were
never good, they think to escape the justice of God, that seeth
all things and hateth evil.
Oftentimes also fair speech of those, that are put in trust
to manage their friends' affairs, hath caused many that are in
authority to be partakers of innocent blood, and hath enwrapped
them in remediless calamities:
Beguiling with the falsehood and deceit of their lewd
disposition the innocency and goodness of princes.
Now ye may see this, as we have declared, not so much by
ancient histories, as ye may, if ye search what hath been
wickedly done of late through the pestilent behaviour of them
that are unworthily placed in authority.
And we must take care for the time to come, that our kingdom
may be quiet and peaceable for all men,
Both by changing our purposes, and always judging things that
are evident with more equal proceeding.
For Aman, a Macedonian, the son of Amadatha, being indeed a
stranger from the Persian blood, and far distant from our
goodness, and as a stranger received of us,
Had so far forth obtained the favour that we shew toward
every nation, as that he was called our father, and was
continually honoured of all the next person unto the king.
But he, not bearing his great dignity, went about to deprive
us of our kingdom and life:
Having by manifold and cunning deceits sought of us the
destruction, as well of Mardocheus, who saved our life, and
continually procured our good, as also of blameless Esther,
partaker of our kingdom, with their whole nation.
For by these means he thought, finding us destitute of
friends to have translated the kingdom of the Persians to the
But we find that the Jews, whom this wicked wretch hath
delivered to utter destruction, are no evildoers, but live by
most just laws:
And that they be children of the most high and most mighty,
living God, who hath ordered the kingdom both unto us and to our
progenitors in the most excellent manner.
Wherefore ye shall do well not to put in execution the
letters sent unto you by Aman the son of Amadatha.
For he that was the worker of these things, is hanged at the
gates of Susa with all his family: God, who ruleth all things,
speedily rendering vengeance to him according to his deserts.
Therefore ye shall publish the copy of this letter in all
places, that the Jews may freely live after their own laws.
And ye shall aid them, that even the same day, being the
thirteenth day of the twelfth month Adar, they may be avenged on
them, who in the time of their affliction shall set upon them.
For Almighty God hath turned to joy unto them the day,
wherein the chosen people should have perished.
Ye shall therefore among your solemn feasts keep it an high
day with all feasting:
That both now and hereafter there may be safety to us and the
well affected Persians; but to those which do conspire against
us a memorial of destruction.
Therefore every city and country whatsoever, which shall not
do according to these things, shall be destroyed without mercy
with fire and sword, and shall be made not only unpassable for
men, but also most hateful to wild beasts and fowls for ever.
The First Book of the Maccabees
And it happened, after that Alexander son of Philip, the
Macedonian, who came out of the land of Chettiim, had smitten
Darius king of the Persians and Medes, that he reigned in his
stead, the first over Greece,
And made many wars, and won many strong holds, and slew the
kings of the earth,
And went through to the ends of the earth, and took spoils of
many nations, insomuch that the earth was quiet before him;
whereupon he was exalted and his heart was lifted up.
And he gathered a mighty strong host and ruled over
countries, and nations, and kings, who became tributaries unto
And after these things he fell sick, and perceived that he
Wherefore he called his servants, such as were honourable,
and had been brought up with him from his youth, and parted his
kingdom among them, while he was yet alive.
So Alexander reigned twelves years, and then died.
And his servants bare rule every one in his place.
And after his death they all put crowns upon themselves; so
did their sons after them many years: and evils were multiplied
in the earth.
And there came out of them a wicked root Antiochus surnamed
Epiphanes, son of Antiochus the king, who had been an hostage at
Rome, and he reigned in the hundred and thirty and seventh year
of the kingdom of the Greeks.
In those days went there out of Israel wicked men, who
persuaded many, saying, Let us go and make a covenant with the
heathen that are round about us: for since we departed from them
we have had much sorrow.
So this device pleased them well.
Then certain of the people were so forward herein, that they
went to the king, who gave them licence to do after the
ordinances of the heathen:
Whereupon they built a place of exercise at Jerusalem
according to the customs of the heathen:
And made themselves uncircumcised, and forsook the holy
covenant, and joined themselves to the heathen, and were sold to
Now when the kingdom was established before Antiochus, he
thought to reign over Egypt that he might have the dominion of
Wherefore he entered into Egypt with a great multitude, with
chariots, and elephants, and horsemen, and a great navy,
And made war against Ptolemee king of Egypt: but Ptolemee was
afraid of him, and fled; and many were wounded to death.
Thus they got the strong cities in the land of Egypt and he
took the spoils thereof.
And after that Antiochus had smitten Egypt, he returned again
in the hundred forty and third year, and went up against Israel
and Jerusalem with a great multitude,
And entered proudly into the sanctuary, and took away the
golden altar, and the candlestick of light, and all the vessels
And the table of the shewbread, and the pouring vessels, and
the vials. and the censers of gold, and the veil, and the crown,
and the golden ornaments that were before the temple, all which
he pulled off.
He took also the silver and the gold, and the precious
vessels: also he took the hidden treasures which he found.
And when he had taken all away, he went into his own land,
having made a great massacre, and spoken very proudly.
Therefore there was a great mourning in Israel, in every
place where they were;
So that the princes and elders mourned, the virgins and young
men were made feeble, and the beauty of women was changed.
Every bridegroom took up lamentation, and she that sat in the
marriage chamber was in heaviness,
The land also was moved for the inhabitants thereof, and all
the house of Jacob was covered with confusion.
And after two years fully expired the king sent his chief
collector of tribute unto the cities of Juda, who came unto
Jerusalem with a great multitude,
And spake peaceable words unto them, but all was deceit: for
when they had given him credence, he fell suddenly upon the
city, and smote it very sore, and destroyed much people of
And when he had taken the spoils of the city, he set it on
fire, and pulled down the houses and walls thereof on every
But the women and children took they captive, and possessed
Then builded they the city of David with a great and strong
wall, and with mighty towers, and made it a strong hold for
And they put therein a sinful nation, wicked men, and
fortified themselves therein.
They stored it also with armour and victuals, and when they
had gathered together the spoils of Jerusalem, they laid them up
there, and so they became a sore snare:
For it was a place to lie in wait against the sanctuary, and
an evil adversary to Israel.
Thus they shed innocent blood on every side of the sanctuary,
and defiled it:
Insomuch that the inhabitants of Jerusalem fled because of
them: whereupon the city was made an habitation of strangers,
and became strange to those that were born in her; and her own
children left her.
Her sanctuary was laid waste like a wilderness, her feasts
were turned into mourning, her sabbaths into reproach her honour
As had been her glory, so was her dishonour increased, and
her excellency was turned into mourning.
Moreover king Antiochus wrote to his whole kingdom, that all
should be one people,
And every one should leave his laws: so all the heathen
agreed according to the commandment of the king.
Yea, many also of the Israelites consented to his religion,
and sacrificed unto idols, and profaned the sabbath.
For the king had sent letters by messengers unto Jerusalem
and the cities of Juda that they should follow the strange laws
of the land,
And forbid burnt offerings, and sacrifice, and drink
offerings, in the temple; and that they should profane the
sabbaths and festival days:
And pollute the sanctuary and holy people:
Set up altars, and groves, and chapels of idols, and
sacrifice swine's flesh, and unclean beasts:
That they should also leave their children uncircumcised, and
make their souls abominable with all manner of uncleanness and
To the end they might forget the law, and change all the
And whosoever would not do according to the commandment of
the king, he said, he should die.
In the selfsame manner wrote he to his whole kingdom, and
appointed overseers over all the people, commanding the cities
of Juda to sacrifice, city by city.
Then many of the people were gathered unto them, to wit every
one that forsook the law; and so they committed evils in the
And drove the Israelites into secret places, even wheresoever
they could flee for succour.
Now the fifteenth day of the month Casleu, in the hundred
forty and fifth year, they set up the abomination of desolation
upon the altar, and builded idol altars throughout the cities of
Juda on every side;
And burnt incense at the doors of their houses, and in the
And when they had rent in pieces the books of the law which
they found, they burnt them with fire.
And whosoever was found with any the book of the testament,
or if any committed to the law, the king's commandment was, that
they should put him to death.
Thus did they by their authority unto the Israelites every
month, to as many as were found in the cities.
Now the five and twentieth day of the month they did
sacrifice upon the idol altar, which was upon the altar of God.
At which time according to the commandment they put to death
certain women, that had caused their children to be circumcised.
And they hanged the infants about their necks, and rifled
their houses, and slew them that had circumcised them.
Howbeit many in Israel were fully resolved and confirmed in
themselves not to eat any unclean thing.
Wherefore the rather to die, that they might not be defiled
with meats, and that they might not profane the holy covenant:
so then they died.
And there was very great wrath upon Israel.
In those days arose Mattathias the son of John, the son of
Simeon, a priest of the sons of Joarib, from Jerusalem, and
dwelt in Modin.
And he had five sons, Joannan, called Caddis:
Simon; called Thassi:
Judas, who was called Maccabeus:
Eleazar, called Avaran: and Jonathan, whose surname was
And when he saw the blasphemies that were committed in Juda
He said, Woe is me! wherefore was I born to see this misery
of my people, and of the holy city, and to dwell there, when it
was delivered into the hand of the enemy, and the sanctuary into
the hand of strangers?
Her temple is become as a man without glory.
Her glorious vessels are carried away into captivity, her
infants are slain in the streets, her young men with the sword
of the enemy.
What nation hath not had a part in her kingdom and gotten of
All her ornaments are taken away; of a free woman she is
become a bondslave.
And, behold, our sanctuary, even our beauty and our glory, is
laid waste, and the Gentiles have profaned it.
To what end therefore shall we live any longer?
Then Mattathias and his sons rent their clothes, and put on
sackcloth, and mourned very sore.
In the mean while the king's officers, such as compelled the
people to revolt, came into the city Modin, to make them
And when many of Israel came unto them, Mattathias also and
his sons came together.
Then answered the king's officers, and said to Mattathias on
this wise, Thou art a ruler, and an honourable and great man in
this city, and strengthened with sons and brethren:
Now therefore come thou first, and fulfil the king's
commandment, like as all the heathen have done, yea, and the men
of Juda also, and such as remain at Jerusalem: so shalt thou and
thy house be in the number of the king's friends, and thou and
thy children shall be honoured with silver and gold, and many
Then Mattathias answered and spake with a loud voice, Though
all the nations that are under the king's dominion obey him, and
fall away every one from the religion of their fathers, and give
consent to his commandments:
Yet will I and my sons and my brethren walk in the covenant
of our fathers.
God forbid that we should forsake the law and the ordinances.
We will not hearken to the king's words, to go from our
religion, either on the right hand, or the left.
Now when he had left speaking these words, there came one of
the Jews in the sight of all to sacrifice on the altar which was
at Modin, according to the king's commandment.
Which thing when Mattathias saw, he was inflamed with zeal,
and his reins trembled, neither could he forbear to shew his
anger according to judgment: wherefore he ran, and slew him upon
Also the king's commissioner, who compelled men to sacrifice,
he killed at that time, and the altar he pulled down.
Thus dealt he zealously for the law of God like as Phinees
did unto Zambri the son of Salom.
And Mattathias cried throughout the city with a loud voice,
saying, Whosoever is zealous of the law, and maintaineth the
covenant, let him follow me.
So he and his sons fled into the mountains, and left all that
ever they had in the city.
Then many that sought after justice and judgment went down
into the wilderness, to dwell there:
Both they, and their children, and their wives; and their
cattle; because afflictions increased sore upon them.
Now when it was told the king's servants, and the host that
was at Jerusalem, in the city of David, that certain men, who
had broken the king's commandment, were gone down into the
secret places in the wilderness,
They pursued after them a great number, and having overtaken
them, they camped against them, and made war against them on the
And they said unto them, Let that which ye have done hitherto
suffice; come forth, and do according to the commandment of the
king, and ye shall live.
But they said, We will not come forth, neither will we do the
king's commandment, to profane the sabbath day.
So then they gave them the battle with all speed.
Howbeit they answered them not, neither cast they a stone at
them, nor stopped the places where they lay hid;
But said, Let us die all in our innocency: heaven and earth
will testify for us, that ye put us to death wrongfully.
So they rose up against them in battle on the sabbath, and
they slew them, with their wives and children and their cattle,
to the number of a thousand people.
Now when Mattathias and his friends understood hereof, they
mourned for them right sore.
And one of them said to another, If we all do as our brethren
have done, and fight not for our lives and laws against the
heathen, they will now quickly root us out of the earth.
At that time therefore they decreed, saying, Whosoever shall
come to make battle with us on the sabbath day, we will fight
against him; neither will we die all, as our brethren that were
murdered im the secret places.
Then came there unto him a company of Assideans who were
mighty men of Israel, even all such as were voluntarily devoted
unto the law.
Also all they that fled for persecution joined themselves
unto them, and were a stay unto them.
So they joined their forces, and smote sinful men in their
anger, and wicked men in their wrath: but the rest fled to the
heathen for succour.
Then Mattathias and his friends went round about, and pulled
down the altars:
And what children soever they found within the coast of
Israel uncircumcised, those they circumcised valiantly.
They pursued also after the proud men, and the work prospered
in their hand.
So they recovered the law out of the hand of the Gentiles,
and out of the hand of kings, neither suffered they the sinner
Now when the time drew near that Mattathias should die, he
said unto his sons, Now hath pride and rebuke gotten strength,
and the time of destruction, and the wrath of indignation:
Now therefore, my sons, be ye zealous for the law, and give
your lives for the covenant of your fathers.
Call to remembrance what acts our fathers did in their time;
so shall ye receive great honour and an everlasting name.
Was not Abraham found faithful in temptation, and it was
imputed unto him for righteousness?
Joseph in the time of his distress kept the commandment and
was made lord of Egypt.
Phinees our father in being zealous and fervent obtained the
covenant of an everlasting priesthood.
Jesus for fulfilling the word was made a judge in Israel.
Caleb for bearing witness before the congregation received
the heritage of the land.
David for being merciful possessed the throne of an
Elias for being zealous and fervent for the law was taken up
Ananias, Azarias, and Misael, by believing were saved out of
Daniel for his innocency was delivered from the mouth of
And thus consider ye throughout all ages, that none that put
their trust in him shall be overcome.
Fear not then the words of a sinful man: for his glory shall
be dung and worms.
To day he shall be lifted up and to morrow he shall not be
found, because he is returned into his dust, and his thought is
come to nothing.
Wherefore, ye my sons, be valiant and shew yourselves men in
the behalf of the law; for by it shall ye obtain glory.
And behold, I know that your brother Simon is a man of
counsel, give ear unto him alway: he shall be a father unto you.
As for Judas Maccabeus, he hath been mighty and strong, even
from his youth up: let him be your captain, and fight the battle
of the people.
Take also unto you all those that observe the law, and avenge
ye the wrong of your people.
Recompense fully the heathen, and take heed to the
commandments of the law.
So he blessed them, and was gathered to his fathers.
And he died in the hundred forty and sixth year, and his sons
buried him in the sepulchres of his fathers at Modin, and all
Israel made great lamentation for him.
Then his son Judas, called Maccabeus, rose up in his stead.
And all his brethren helped him, and so did all they that
held with his father, and they fought with cheerfulness the
battle of Israel.
So he gat his people great honour, and put on a breastplate
as a giant, and girt his warlike harness about him, and he made
battles, protecting the host with his sword.
In his acts he was like a lion, and like a lion's whelp
roaring for his prey.
For He pursued the wicked, and sought them out, and burnt up
those that vexed his people.
Wherefore the wicked shrunk for fear of him, and all the
workers of iniquity were troubled, because salvation prospered
in his hand.
He grieved also many kings, and made Jacob glad with his
acts, and his memorial is blessed for ever.
Moreover he went through the cities of Juda, destroying the
ungodly out of them, and turning away wrath from Israel:
So that he was renowned unto the utmost part of the earth,
and he received unto him such as were ready to perish.
Then Apollonius gathered the Gentiles together, and a great
host out of Samaria, to fight against Israel.
Which thing when Judas perceived, he went forth to meet him,
and so he smote him, and slew him: many also fell down slain,
but the rest fled.
Wherefore Judas took their spoils, and Apollonius' sword
also, and therewith he fought all his life long.
Now when Seron, a prince of the army of Syria, heard say that
Judas had gathered unto him a multitude and company of the
faithful to go out with him to war;
He said, I will get me a name and honour in the kingdom; for
I will go fight with Judas and them that are with him, who
despise the king's commandment.
So he made him ready to go up, and there went with him a
mighty host of the ungodly to help him, and to be avenged of the
children of Israel.
And when he came near to the going up of Bethhoron, Judas
went forth to meet him with a small company:
Who, when they saw the host coming to meet them, said unto
Judas, How shall we be able, being so few, to fight against so
great a multitude and so strong, seeing we are ready to faint
with fasting all this day?
Unto whom Judas answered, It is no hard matter for many to be
shut up in the hands of a few; and with the God of heaven it is
all one, to deliver with a great multitude, or a small company:
For the victory of battle standeth not in the multitude of an
host; but strength cometh from heaven.
They come against us in much pride and iniquity to destroy
us, and our wives and children, and to spoil us:
But we fight for our lives and our laws.
Wherefore the Lord himself will overthrow them before our
face: and as for you, be ye not afraid of them.
Now as soon as he had left off speaking, he leapt suddenly
upon them, and so Seron and his host was overthrown before him.
And they pursued them from the going down of Bethhoron unto
the plain, where were slain about eight hundred men of them; and
the residue fled into the land of the Philistines.
Then began the fear of Judas and his brethren, and an
exceeding great dread, to fall upon the nations round about
Insomuch as his fame came unto the king, and all nations
talked of the battles of Judas.
Now when king Antiochus heard these things, he was full of
indignation: wherefore he sent and gathered together all the
forces of his realm, even a very strong army.
He opened also his treasure, and gave his soldiers pay for a
year, commanding them to be ready whensoever he should need
Nevertheless, when he saw that the money of his treasures
failed and that the tributes in the country were small, because
of the dissension and plague, which he had brought upon the land
in taking away the laws which had been of old time;
He feared that he should not be able to bear the charges any
longer, nor to have such gifts to give so liberally as he did
before: for he had abounded above the kings that were before
Wherefore, being greatly perplexed in his mind, he determined
to go into Persia, there to take the tributes of the countries,
and to gather much money.
So he left Lysias, a nobleman, and one of the blood royal, to
oversee the affairs of the king from the river Euphrates unto
the borders of Egypt:
And to bring up his son Antiochus, until he came again.
Moreover he delivered unto him the half of his forces, and
the elephants, and gave him charge of all things that he would
have done, as also concerning them that dwelt in Juda and
To wit, that he should send an army against them, to destroy
and root out the strength of Israel, and the remnant of
Jerusalem, and to take away their memorial from that place;
And that he should place strangers in all their quarters, and
divide their land by lot.
So the king took the half of the forces that remained, and
departed from Antioch, his royal city, the hundred forty and
seventh year; and having passed the river Euphrates, he went
through the high countries.
Then Lysias chose Ptolemee the son of Dorymenes, Nicanor, and
Gorgias, mighty men of the king's friends:
And with them he sent forty thousand footmen, and seven
thousand horsemen, to go into the land of Juda, and to destroy
it, as the king commanded.
So they went forth with all their power, and came and pitched
by Emmaus in the plain country.
And the merchants of the country, hearing the fame of them,
took silver and gold very much, with servants, and came into the
camp to buy the children of Israel for slaves: a power also of
Syria and of the land of the Philistines joined themselves unto
Now when Judas and his brethren saw that miseries were
multiplied, and that the forces did encamp themselves in their
borders: for they knew how the king had given commandment to
destroy the people, and utterly abolish them;
They said one to another, Let us restore the decayed fortune
of our people, and let us fight for our people and the
Then was the congregation gathered together, that they might
be ready for battle, and that they might pray, and ask mercy and
Now Jerusalem lay void as a wilderness, there was none of her
children that went in or out: the sanctuary also was trodden
down, and aliens kept the strong hold; the heathen had their
habitation in that place; and joy was taken from Jacob, and the
pipe with the harp ceased.
Wherefore the Israelites assembled themselves together, and
came to Maspha, over against Jerusalem; for in Maspha was the
place where they prayed aforetime in Israel.
Then they fasted that day, and put on sackcloth, and cast
ashes upon their heads, and rent their clothes,
And laid open the book of the law, wherein the heathen had
sought to paint the likeness of their images.
They brought also the priests' garments, and the firstfruits,
and the tithes: and the Nazarites they stirred up, who had
accomplished their days.
Then cried they with a loud voice toward heaven, saying, What
shall we do with these, and whither shall we carry them away?
For thy sanctuary is trodden down and profaned, and thy
priests are in heaviness, and brought low.
And lo, the heathen are assembled together against us to
destroy us: what things they imagine against us, thou knowest.
How shall we be able to stand against them, except thou, O
God, be our help?
Then sounded they with trumpets, and cried with a loud voice.
And after this Judas ordained captains over the people, even
captains over thousands, and over hundreds, and over fifties,
and over tens.
But as for such as were building houses, or had betrothed
wives, or were planting vineyards, or were fearful, those he
commanded that they should return, every man to his own house,
according to the law.
So the camp removed, and pitched upon the south side of
And Judas said, arm yourselves, and be valiant men, and see
that ye be in readiness against the morning, that ye may fight
with these nations, that are assembled together against us to
destroy us and our sanctuary:
For it is better for us to die in battle, than to behold the
calamities of our people and our sanctuary.
Nevertheless, as the will of God is in heaven, so let him do.
Then took Gorgias five thousand footmen, and a thousand of
the best horsemen, and removed out of the camp by night;
To the end he might rush in upon the camp of the Jews, and
smite them suddenly. And the men of the fortress were his
Now when Judas heard thereof he himself removed, and the
valiant men with him, that he might smite the king's army which
was at Emmaus,
While as yet the forces were dispersed from the camp.
In the mean season came Gorgias by night into the camp of
Judas: and when he found no man there, he sought them in the
mountains: for said he, These fellows flee from us
But as soon as it was day, Judas shewed himself in the plain
with three thousand men, who nevertheless had neither armour nor
swords to their minds.
And they saw the camp of the heathen, that it was strong and
well harnessed, and compassed round about with horsemen; and
these were expert of war.
Then said Judas to the men that were with him, Fear ye not
their multitude, neither be ye afraid of their assault.
Remember how our fathers were delivered in the Red sea, when
Pharaoh pursued them with an army.
Now therefore let us cry unto heaven, if peradventure the
Lord will have mercy upon us, and remember the covenant of our
fathers, and destroy this host before our face this day:
That so all the heathen may know that there is one who
delivereth and saveth Israel.
Then the strangers lifted up their eyes, and saw them coming
over against them.
Wherefore they went out of the camp to battle; but they that
were with Judas sounded their trumpets.
So they joined battle, and the heathen being discomfited fled
into the plain.
Howbeit all the hindmost of them were slain with the sword:
for they pursued them unto Gazera, and unto the plains of
Idumea, and Azotus, and Jamnia, so that there were slain of them
upon a three thousand men.
This done, Judas returned again with his host from pursuing
And said to the people, Be not greedy of the spoil inasmuch
as there is a battle before us,
And Gorgias and his host are here by us in the mountain: but
stand ye now against our enemies, and overcome them, and after
this ye may boldly take the spoils.
As Judas was yet speaking these words, there appeared a part
of them looking out of the mountain:
Who when they perceived that the Jews had put their host to
flight and were burning the tents; for the smoke that was seen
declared what was done:
When therefore they perceived these things, they were sore
afraid, and seeing also the host of Judas in the plain ready to
They fled every one into the land of strangers.
Then Judas returned to spoil the tents, where they got much
gold, and silver, and blue silk, and purple of the sea, and
After this they went home, and sung a song of thanksgiving,
and praised the Lord in heaven: because it is good, because his
mercy endureth forever.
Thus Israel had a great deliverance that day.
Now all the strangers that had escaped came and told Lysias
what had happened:
Who, when he heard thereof, was confounded and discouraged,
because neither such things as he would were done unto Israel,
nor such things as the king commanded him were come to pass.
The next year therefore following Lysias gathered together
threescore thousand choice men of foot, and five thousand
horsemen, that he might subdue them.
So they came into Idumea, and pitched their tents at
Bethsura, and Judas met them with ten thousand men.
And when he saw that mighty army, he prayed and said, Blessed
art thou, O Saviour of Israel, who didst quell the violence of
the mighty man by the hand of thy servant David, and gavest the
host of strangers into the hands of Jonathan the son of Saul,
and his armourbearer;
Shut up this army in the hand of thy people Israel, and let
them be confounded in their power and horsemen:
Make them to be of no courage, and cause the boldness of
their strength to fall away, and let them quake at their
Cast them down with the sword of them that love thee, and let
all those that know thy name praise thee with thanksgiving.
So they joined battle; and there were slain of the host of
Lysias about five thousand men, even before them were they
Now when Lysias saw his army put to flight, and the manliness
of Judas' soldiers, and how they were ready either to live or
die valiantly, he went into Antiochia, and gathered together a
company of strangers, and having made his army greater than it
was, he purposed to come again into Judea.
Then said Judas and his brethren, Behold, our enemies are
discomfited: let us go up to cleanse and dedicate the sanctuary.
Upon this all the host assembled themselves together, and
went up into mount Sion.
And when they saw the sanctuary desolate, and the altar
profaned, and the gates burned up, and shrubs growing in the
courts as in a forest, or in one of the mountains, yea, and the
priests' chambers pulled down;
They rent their clothes, and made great lamentation, and cast
ashes upon their heads,
And fell down flat to the ground upon their faces, and blew
an alarm with the trumpets, and cried toward heaven.
Then Judas appointed certain men to fight against those that
were in the fortress, until he had cleansed the sanctuary.
So he chose priests of blameless conversation, such as had
pleasure in the law:
Who cleansed the sanctuary, and bare out the defiled stones
into an unclean place.
And when as they consulted what to do with the altar of burnt
offerings, which was profaned;
They thought it best to pull it down, lest it should be a
reproach to them, because the heathen had defiled it: wherefore
they pulled it down,
And laid up the stones in the mountain of the temple in a
convenient place, until there should come a prophet to shew what
should be done with them.
Then they took whole stones according to the law, and built a
new altar according to the former;
And made up the sanctuary, and the things that were within
the temple, and hallowed the courts.
They made also new holy vessels, and into the temple they
brought the candlestick, and the altar of burnt offerings, and
of incense, and the table.
And upon the altar they burned incense, and the lamps that
were upon the candlestick they lighted, that they might give
light in the temple.
Furthermore they set the loaves upon the table, and spread
out the veils, and finished all the works which they had begun
Now on the five and twentieth day of the ninth month, which
is called the month Casleu, in the hundred forty and eighth
year, they rose up betimes in the morning,
And offered sacrifice according to the law upon the new altar
of burnt offerings, which they had made.
Look, at what time and what day the heathen had profaned it,
even in that was it dedicated with songs, and citherns, and
harps, and cymbals.
Then all the people fell upon their faces, worshipping and
praising the God of heaven, who had given them good success.
And so they kept the dedication of the altar eight days and
offered burnt offerings with gladness, and sacrificed the
sacrifice of deliverance and praise.
They decked also the forefront of the temple with crowns of
gold, and with shields; and the gates and the chambers they
renewed, and hanged doors upon them.
Thus was there very great gladness among the people, for that
the reproach of the heathen was put away.
Moreover Judas and his brethren with the whole congregation
of Israel ordained, that the days of the dedication of the altar
should be kept in their season from year to year by the space of
eight days, from the five and twentieth day of the month Casleu,
with mirth and gladness.
At that time also they builded up the mount Sion with high
walls and strong towers round about, lest the Gentiles should
come and tread it down as they had done before.
And they set there a garrison to keep it, and fortified
Bethsura to preserve it; that the people might have a defence
Now when the nations round about heard that the altar was
built and the sanctuary renewed as before, it displeased them
Wherefore they thought to destroy the generation of Jacob
that was among them, and thereupon they began to slay and
destroy the people.
Then Judas fought against the children of Esau in Idumea at
Arabattine, because they besieged Gael: and he gave them a great
overthrow, and abated their courage, and took their spoils.
Also he remembered the injury of the children of Bean, who
had been a snare and an offence unto the people, in that they
lay in wait for them in the ways.
He shut them up therefore in the towers, and encamped against
them, and destroyed them utterly, and burned the towers of that
place with fire, and all that were therein.
Afterward he passed over to the children of Ammon, where he
found a mighty power, and much people, with Timotheus their
So he fought many battles with them, till at length they were
discomfited before him; and he smote them.
And when he had taken Jazar, with the towns belonging
thereto, he returned into Judea.
Then the heathen that were at Galaad assembled themselves
together against the Israelites that were in their quarters, to
destroy them; but they fled to the fortress of Dathema.
And sent letters unto Judas and his brethren, The heathen
that are round about us are assembled together against us to
And they are preparing to come and take the fortress
whereunto we are fled, Timotheus being captain of their host.
Come now therefore, and deliver us from their hands, for many
of us are slain:
Yea, all our brethren that were in the places of Tobie are
put to death: their wives and their children also they have
carried away captives, and borne away their stuff; and they have
destroyed there about a thousand men.
While these letters were yet reading, behold, there came
other messengers from Galilee with their clothes rent, who
reported on this wise,
And said, They of Ptolemais, and of Tyrus, and Sidon, and all
Galilee of the Gentiles, are assembled together against us to
Now when Judas and the people heard these words, there
assembled a great congregation together, to consult what they
should do for their brethren, that were in trouble, and
assaulted of them.
Then said Judas unto Simon his brother, Choose thee out men,
and go and deliver thy brethren that are in Galilee, for I and
Jonathan my brother will go into the country of Galaad.
So he left Joseph the son of Zacharias, and Azarias, captains
of the people, with the remnant of the host in Judea to keep it.
Unto whom he gave commandment, saying, Take ye the charge of
this people, and see that ye make not war against the heathen
until the time that we come again.
Now unto Simon were given three thousand men to go into
Galilee, and unto Judas eight thousand men for the country of
Then went Simon into Galilee, where he fought many battles
with the heathen, so that the heathen were discomfited by him.
And he pursued them unto the gate of Ptolemais; and there
were slain of the heathen about three thousand men, whose spoils
And those that were in Galilee, and in Arbattis, with their
wives and their children, and all that they had, took he away
with him, and brought them into Judea with great joy.
Judas Maccabeus also and his brother Jonathan went over
Jordan, and travelled three days' journey in the wilderness,
Where they met with the Nabathites, who came unto them in a
peaceable manner, and told them every thing that had happened to
their brethren in the land of Galaad:
And how that many of them were shut up in Bosora, and Bosor,
and Alema, Casphor, Maked, and Carnaim; all these cities are
strong and great:
And that they were shut up in the rest of the cities of the
country of Galaad, and that against to morrow they had appointed
to bring their host against the forts, and to take them, and to
destroy them all in one day.
Hereupon Judas and his host turned suddenly by the way of the
wilderness unto Bosora; and when he had won the city, he slew
all the males with the edge of the sword, and took all their
spoils, and burned the city with fire,
From whence he removed by night, and went till he came to the
And betimes in the morning they looked up, and, behold, there
was an innumerable people bearing ladders and other engines of
war, to take the fortress: for they assaulted them.
When Judas therefore saw that the battle was begun, and that
the cry of the city went up to heaven, with trumpets, and a
He said unto his host, Fight this day for your brethren.
So he went forth behind them in three companies, who sounded
their trumpets, and cried with prayer.
Then the host of Timotheus, knowing that it was Maccabeus,
fled from him: wherefore he smote them with a great slaughter;
so that there were killed of them that day about eight thousand
This done, Judas turned aside to Maspha; and after he had
assaulted it he took and slew all the males therein, and
received the spoils thereof and and burnt it with fire.
From thence went he, and took Casphon, Maged, Bosor, and the
other cities of the country of Galaad.
After these things gathered Timotheus another host and
encamped against Raphon beyond the brook.
So Judas sent men to espy the host, who brought him word,
saying, All the heathen that be round about us are assembled
unto them, even a very great host.
He hath also hired the Arabians to help them and they have
pitched their tents beyond the brook, ready to come and fight
against thee. Upon this Judas went to meet them.
Then Timotheus said unto the captains of his host, When Judas
and his host come near the brook, if he pass over first unto us,
we shall not be able to withstand him; for he will mightily
prevail against us:
But if he be afraid, and camp beyond the river, we shall go
over unto him, and prevail against him.
Now when Judas came near the brook, he caused the scribes of
the people to remain by the brook: unto whom he gave
commandment, saying, Suffer no man to remain in the camp, but
let all come to the battle.
So he went first over unto them, and all the people after
him: then all the heathen, being discomfited before him, cast
away their weapons, and fled unto the temple that was at
But they took the city, and burned the temple with all that
were therein. Thus was Carnaim subdued, neither could they stand
any longer before Judas.
Then Judas gathered together all the Israelites that were in
the country of Galaad, from the least unto the greatest, even
their wives, and their children, and their stuff, a very great
host, to the end they might come into the land of Judea.
Now when they came unto Ephron, (this was a great city in the
way as they should go, very well fortified) they could not turn
from it, either on the right hand or the left, but must needs
pass through the midst of it.
Then they of the city shut them out, and stopped up the gates
Whereupon Judas sent unto them in peaceable manner, saying,
Let us pass through your land to go into our own country, and
none shall do you any hurt; we will only pass through on foot:
howbeit they would not open unto him.
Wherefore Judas commanded a proclamation to be made
throughout the host, that every man should pitch his tent in the
place where he was.
So the soldiers pitched, and assaulted the city all that day
and all that night, till at the length the city was delivered
into his hands:
Who then slew all the males with the edge of the sword, and
rased the city, and took the spoils thereof, and passed through
the city over them that were slain.
After this went they over Jordan into the great plain before
And Judas gathered together those that came behind, and
exhorted the people all the way through, till they came into the
land of Judea.
So they went up to mount Sion with joy and gladness, where
they offered burnt offerings, because not one of them were slain
until they had returned in peace.
Now what time as Judas and Jonathan were in the land of
Galaad, and Simon his brother in Galilee before Ptolemais,
Joseph the son of Zacharias, and Azarias, captains of the
garrisons, heard of the valiant acts and warlike deeds which
they had done.
Wherefore they said, Let us also get us a name, and go fight
against the heathen that are round about us.
So when they had given charge unto the garrison that was with
them, they went toward Jamnia.
Then came Gorgias and his men out of the city to fight
And so it was, that Joseph and Azaras were put to flight, and
pursued unto the borders of Judea: and there were slain that day
of the people of Israel about two thousand men.
Thus was there a great overthrow among the children of
Israel, because they were not obedient unto Judas and his
brethren, but thought to do some valiant act.
Moreover these men came not of the seed of those, by whose
hand deliverance was given unto Israel.
Howbeit the man Judas and his brethren were greatly renowned
in the sight of all Israel, and of all the heathen, wheresoever
their name was heard of;
Insomuch as the the people assembled unto them with joyful
Afterward went Judas forth with his brethren, and fought
against the children of Esau in the land toward the south, where
he smote Hebron, and the towns thereof, and pulled down the
fortress of it, and burned the towers thereof round about.
From thence he removed to go into the land of the
Philistines, and passed through Samaria.
At that time certain priests, desirous to shew their valour,
were slain in battle, for that they went out to fight
So Judas turned to Azotus in the land of the Philistines, and
when he had pulled down their altars, and burned their carved
images with fire, and spoiled their cities, he returned into the
land of Judea.
About that time king Antiochus travelling through the high
countries heard say, that Elymais in the country of Persia was a
city greatly renowned for riches, silver, and gold;
And that there was in it a very rich temple, wherein were
coverings of gold, and breastplates, and shields, which
Alexander, son of Philip, the Macedonian king, who reigned first
among the Grecians, had left there.
Wherefore he came and sought to take the city, and to spoil
it; but he was not able, because they of the city, having had
Rose up against him in battle: so he fled, and departed
thence with great heaviness, and returned to Babylon.
Moreover there came one who brought him tidings into Persia,
that the armies, which went against the land of Judea, were put
And that Lysias, who went forth first with a great power was
driven away of the Jews; and that they were made strong by the
armour, and power, and store of spoils, which they had gotten of
the armies, whom they had destroyed:
Also that they had pulled down the abomination, which he had
set up upon the altar in Jerusalem, and that they had compassed
about the sanctuary with high walls, as before, and his city
Now when the king heard these words, he was astonished and
sore moved: whereupon he laid him down upon his bed, and fell
sick for grief, because it had not befallen him as he looked
And there he continued many days: for his grief was ever more
and more, and he made account that he should die.
Wherefore he called for all his friends, and said unto them,
The sleep is gone from mine eyes, and my heart faileth for very
And I thought with myself, Into what tribulation am I come,
and how great a flood of misery is it, wherein now I am! for I
was bountiful and beloved in my power.
But now I remember the evils that I did at Jerusalem, and
that I took all the vessels of gold and silver that were
therein, and sent to destroy the inhabitants of Judea without a
I perceive therefore that for this cause these troubles are
come upon me, and, behold, I perish through great grief in a
Then called he for Philip, one of his friends, who he made
ruler over all his realm,
And gave him the crown, and his robe, and his signet, to the
end he should bring up his son Antiochus, and nourish him up for
So king Antiochus died there in the hundred forty and ninth
Now when Lysias knew that the king was dead, he set up
Antiochus his son, whom he had brought up being young, to reign
in his stead, and his name he called Eupator.
About this time they that were in the tower shut up the
Israelites round about the sanctuary, and sought always their
hurt, and the strengthening of the heathen.
Wherefore Judas, purposing to destroy them, called all the
people together to besiege them.
So they came together, and besieged them in the hundred and
fiftieth year, and he made mounts for shot against them, and
Howbeit certain of them that were besieged got forth, unto
whom some ungodly men of Israel joined themselves:
And they went unto the king, and said, How long will it be
ere thou execute judgment, and avenge our brethren?
We have been willing to serve thy father, and to do as he
would have us, and to obey his commandments;
For which cause they of our nation besiege the tower, and are
alienated from us: moreover as many of us as they could light on
they slew, and spoiled our inheritance.
Neither have they stretched out their hand against us only,
but also against their borders.
And, behold, this day are they besieging the tower at
Jerusalem, to take it: the sanctuary also and Bethsura have they
Wherefore if thou dost not prevent them quickly, they will do
the greater things than these, neither shalt thou be able to
Now when the king heard this, he was angry, and gathered
together all his friends, and the captains of his army, and
those that had charge of the horse.
There came also unto him from other kingdoms, and from isles
of the sea, bands of hired soldiers.
So that the number of his army was an hundred thousand
footmen, and twenty thousand horsemen, and two and thirty
elephants exercised in battle.
These went through Idumea, and pitched against Bethsura,
which they assaulted many days, making engines of war; but they
of Bethsura came out, and burned them with fire, and fought
Upon this Judas removed from the tower, and pitched in
Bathzacharias, over against the king's camp.
Then the king rising very early marched fiercely with his
host toward Bathzacharias, where his armies made them ready to
battle, and sounded the trumpets.
And to the end they might provoke the elephants to fight,
they shewed them the blood of grapes and mulberries.
Moreover they divided the beasts among the armies, and for
every elephant they appointed a thousand men, armed with coats
of mail, and with helmets of brass on their heads; and beside
this, for every beast were ordained five hundred horsemen of the
These were ready at every occasion: wheresoever the beast
was, and whithersoever the beast went, they went also, neither
departed they from him.
And upon the beasts were there strong towers of wood, which
covered every one of them, and were girt fast unto them with
devices: there were also upon every one two and thirty strong
men, that fought upon them, beside the Indian that ruled him.
As for the remnant of the horsemen, they set them on this
side and that side at the two parts of the host giving them
signs what to do, and being harnessed all over amidst the ranks.
Now when the sun shone upon the shields of gold and brass,
the mountains glistered therewith, and shined like lamps of
So part of the king's army being spread upon the high
mountains, and part on the valleys below, they marched on safely
and in order.
Wherefore all that heard the noise of their multitude, and
the marching of the company, and the rattling of the harness,
were moved: for the army was very great and mighty.
Then Judas and his host drew near, and entered into battle,
and there were slain of the king's army six hundred men.
Eleazar also, surnamed Savaran, perceiving that one of the
beasts, armed with royal harness, was higher than all the rest,
and supposing that the king was upon him,
Put himself in jeopardy, to the end he might deliver his
people, and get him a perpetual name:
Wherefore he ran upon him courageously through the midst of
the battle, slaying on the right hand and on the left, so that
they were divided from him on both sides.
Which done, he crept under the elephant, and thrust him
under, and slew him: whereupon the elephant fell down upon him,
and there he died.
Howbeit the rest of the Jews seeing the strength of the king,
and the violence of his forces, turned away from them.
Then the king's army went up to Jerusalem to meet them, and
the king pitched his tents against Judea, and against mount
But with them that were in Bethsura he made peace: for they
came out of the city, because they had no victuals there to
endure the siege, it being a year of rest to the land.
So the king took Bethsura, and set a garrison there to keep
As for the sanctuary, he besieged it many days: and set there
artillery with engines and instruments to cast fire and stones,
and pieces to cast darts and slings.
Whereupon they also made engines against their engines, and
held them battle a long season.
Yet at the last, their vessels being without victuals, (for
that it was the seventh year, and they in Judea that were
delivered from the Gentiles, had eaten up the residue of the
There were but a few left in the sanctuary, because the
famine did so prevail against them, that they were fain to
disperse themselves, every man to his own place.
At that time Lysias heard say, that Philip, whom Antiochus
the king, whiles he lived, had appointed to bring up his son
Antiochus, that he might be king,
Was returned out of Persia and Media, and the king's host
also that went with him, and that he sought to take unto him the
ruling of the affairs.
Wherefore he went in all haste, and said to the king and the
captains of the host and the company, We decay daily, and our
victuals are but small, and the place we lay siege unto is
strong, and the affairs of the kingdom lie upon us:
Now therefore let us be friends with these men, and make
peace with them, and with all their nation;
And covenant with them, that they shall live after their
laws, as they did before: for they are therefore displeased, and
have done all these things, because we abolished their laws.
So the king and the princes were content: wherefore he sent
unto them to make peace; and they accepted thereof.
Also the king and the princes made an oath unto them:
whereupon they went out of the strong hold.
Then the king entered into mount Sion; but when he saw the
strength of the place, he broke his oath that he had made, and
gave commandment to pull down the wall round about.
Afterward departed he in all haste, and returned unto
Antiochia, where he found Philip to be master of the city: so he
fought against him, and took the city by force.
In the hundred and one and fiftieth year Demetrius the son of
Seleucus departed from Rome, and came up with a few men unto a
city of the sea coast, and reigned there.
And as he entered into the palace of his ancestors, so it
was, that his forces had taken Antiochus and Lysias, to bring
them unto him.
Wherefore, when he knew it, he said, Let me not see their
So his host slew them. Now when Demetrius was set upon the
throne of his kingdom,
There came unto him all the wicked and ungodly men of Israel,
having Alcimus, who was desirous to be high priest, for their
And they accused the people to the king, saying, Judas and
his brethren have slain all thy friends, and driven us out of
our own land.
Now therefore send some man whom thou trustest, and let him
go and see what havock he hath made among us, and in the king's
land, and let him punish them with all them that aid them.
Then the king chose Bacchides, a friend of the king, who
ruled beyond the flood, and was a great man in the kingdom, and
faithful to the king,
And him he sent with that wicked Alcimus, whom he made high
priest, and commanded that he should take vengeance of the
children of Israel.
So they departed, and came with a great power into the land
of Judea, where they sent messengers to Judas and his brethren
with peaceable words deceitfully.
But they gave no heed to their words; for they saw that they
were come with a great power.
Then did there assemble unto Alcimus and Bacchides a company
of scribes, to require justice.
Now the Assideans were the first among the children of Israel
that sought peace of them:
For said they, One that is a priest of the seed of Aaron is
come with this army, and he will do us no wrong.
So he spake unto them, peaceably, and sware unto them,
saying, we will procure the harm neither of you nor your
Whereupon they believed him: howbeit he took of them
threescore men, and slew them in one day, according to the words
which he wrote,
The flesh of thy saints have they cast out, and their blood
have they shed round about Jerusalem, and there was none to bury
Wherefore the fear and dread of them fell upon all the
people, who said, There is neither truth nor righteousness in
them; for they have broken the covenant and oath that they made.
After this, removed Bacchides from Jerusalem, and pitched his
tents in Bezeth, where he sent and took many of the men that had
forsaken him, and certain of the people also, and when he had
slain them, he cast them into the great pit.
Then committed he the country to Alcimus, and left with him a
power to aid him: so Bacchides went to the king.
But Alcimus contended for the high priesthood.
And unto him resorted all such as troubled the people, who,
after they had gotten the land of Juda into their power, did
much hurt in Israel.
Now when Judas saw all the mischief that Alcimus and his
company had done among the Israelites, even above the heathen,
He went out into all the coasts of Judea round about, and
took vengeance of them that had revolted from him, so that they
durst no more go forth into the country.
On the other side, when Alcimus saw that Judas and his
company had gotten the upper hand, and knew that he was not able
to abide their force, he went again to the king, and said all
the worst of them that he could.
Then the king sent Nicanor, one of his honourable princes, a
man that bare deadly hate unto Israel, with commandment to
destroy the people.
So Nicanor came to Jerusalem with a great force; and sent
unto Judas and his brethren deceitfully with friendly words,
Let there be no battle between me and you; I will come with a
few men, that I may see you in peace.
He came therefore to Judas, and they saluted one another
peaceably. Howbeit the enemies were prepared to take away Judas
Which thing after it was known to Judas, to wit, that he came
unto him with deceit, he was sore afraid of him, and would see
his face no more.
Nicanor also, when he saw that his counsel was discovered,
went out to fight against Judas beside Capharsalama:
Where there were slain of Nicanor's side about five thousand
men, and the rest fled into the city of David.
After this went Nicanor up to mount Sion, and there came out
of the sanctuary certain of the priests and certain of the
elders of the people, to salute him peaceably, and to shew him
the burnt sacrifice that was offered for the king.
But he mocked them, and laughed at them, and abused them
shamefully, and spake proudly,
And sware in his wrath, saying, Unless Judas and his host be
now delivered into my hands, if ever I come again in safety, I
will burn up this house: and with that he went out in a great
Then the priests entered in, and stood before the altar and
the temple, weeping, and saying,
Thou, O Lord, didst choose this house to be called by thy
name, and to be a house of prayer and petition for thy people:
Be avenged of this man and his host, and let them fall by the
sword: remember their blasphemies, and suffer them not to
continue any longer.
So Nicanor went out of Jerusalem, and pitched his tents in
Bethhoron, where an host out of Syria met him.
But Judas pitched in Adasa with three thousand men, and there
he prayed, saying,
O Lord, when they that were sent from the king of the
Assyrians blasphemed, thine angel went out, and smote an hundred
fourscore and five thousand of them.
Even so destroy thou this host before us this day, that the
rest may know that he hath spoken blasphemously against thy
sanctuary, and judge thou him according to his wickedness.
So the thirteenth day of the month Adar the hosts joined
battle: but Nicanor's host was discomfited, and he himself was
first slain in the battle.
Now when Nicanor's host saw that he was slain, they cast away
their weapons, and fled.
Then they pursued after them a day's journey, from Adasa unto
Gazera, sounding an alarm after them with their trumpets.
Whereupon they came forth out of all the towns of Judea round
about, and closed them in; so that they, turning back upon them
that pursued them, were all slain with the sword, and not one of
them was left.
Afterwards they took the spoils, and the prey, and smote off
Nicanors head, and his right hand, which he stretched out so
proudly, and brought them away, and hanged them up toward
For this cause the people rejoiced greatly, and they kept
that day a day of great gladness.
Moreover they ordained to keep yearly this day, being the
thirteenth of Adar.
Thus the land of Juda was in rest a little while.
Now Judas had heard of the the Romans, that they were mighty
and valiant men, and such as would lovingly accept all that
joined themselves unto them, and make a league of amity with all
that came unto them;
And that they were men of great valour. It was told him also
of their wars and noble acts which they had done among the
Galatians, and how they had conquered them, and brought them
And what they had done in the country of Spain, for the
winning of the mines of the silver and gold which is there;
And that by their policy and patience they had conquered all
the place, though it were very far from them; and the kings also
that came against them from the uttermost part of the earth,
till they had discomfited them, and given them a great
overthrow, so that the rest did give them tribute every year:
Beside this, how they had discomfited in battle Philip, and
Perseus, king of the Citims, with others that lifted up
themselves against them, and had overcome them:
How also Antiochus the great king of Asia, that came against
them in battle, having an hundred and twenty elephants, with
horsemen, and chariots, and a very great army, was discomfited
And how they took him alive, and covenanted that he and such
as reigned after him should pay a great tribute, and give
hostages, and that which was agreed upon,
And the country of India, and Media and Lydia and of the
goodliest countries, which they took of him, and gave to king
Moreover how the Grecians had determined to come and destroy
And that they, having knowledge thereof sent against them a
certain captain, and fighting with them slew many of them, and
carried away captives their wives and their children, and
spoiled them, and took possession of their lands, and pulled
down their strong holds, and brought them to be their servants
unto this day:
It was told him besides, how they destroyed and brought under
their dominion all other kingdoms and isles that at any time
But with their friends and such as relied upon them they kept
amity: and that they had conquered kingdoms both far and nigh,
insomuch as all that heard of their name were afraid of them:
Also that, whom they would help to a kingdom, those reign;
and whom again they would, they displace: finally, that they
were greatly exalted:
Yet for all this none of them wore a crown or was clothed in
purple, to be magnified thereby:
Moreover how they had made for themselves a senate house,
wherein three hundred and twenty men sat in council daily,
consulting alway for the people, to the end they might be well
And that they committed their government to one man every
year, who ruled over all their country, and that all were
obedient to that one, and that there was neither envy nor
emmulation among them.
In consideration of these things, Judas chose Eupolemus the
son of John, the son of Accos, and Jason the son of Eleazar, and
sent them to Rome, to make a league of amity and confederacy
And to intreat them that they would take the yoke from them;
for they saw that the kingdom of the Grecians did oppress Israel
They went therefore to Rome, which was a very great journey,
and came into the senate, where they spake and said.
Judas Maccabeus with his brethren, and the people of the
Jews, have sent us unto you, to make a confederacy and peace
with you, and that we might be registered your confederates and
So that matter pleased the Romans well.
And this is the copy of the epistle which the senate wrote
back again in tables of brass, and sent to Jerusalem, that there
they might have by them a memorial of peace and confederacy:
Good success be to the Romans, and to the people of the Jews,
by sea and by land for ever: the sword also and enemy be far
If there come first any war upon the Romans or any of their
confederates throughout all their dominion,
The people of the Jews shall help them, as the time shall be
appointed, with all their heart:
Neither shall they give any thing unto them that make war
upon them, or aid them with victuals, weapons, money, or ships,
as it hath seemed good unto the Romans; but they shall keep
their covenants without taking any thing therefore.
In the same manner also, if war come first upon the nation of
the Jews, the Romans shall help them with all their heart,
according as the time shall be appointed them:
Neither shall victuals be given to them that take part
against them, or weapons, or money, or ships, as it hath seemed
good to the Romans; but they shall keep their covenants, and
that without deceit.
According to these articles did the Romans make a covenant
with the people of the Jews.
Howbeit if hereafter the one party or the other shall think
to meet to add or diminish any thing, they may do it at their
pleasures, and whatsoever they shall add or take away shall be
And as touching the evils that Demetrius doeth to the Jews,
we have written unto him, saying, Wherefore thou made thy yoke
heavy upon our friends and confederates the Jews?
If therefore they complain any more against thee, we will do
them justice, and fight with thee by sea and by land.
Furthermore, when Demetrius heard the Nicanor and his host
were slain in battle, he sent Bacchides and Alcimus into the
land of Judea the second time, and with them the chief strength
of his host:
Who went forth by the way that leadeth to Galgala, and
pitched their tents before Masaloth, which is in Arbela, and
after they had won it, they slew much people.
Also the first month of the hundred fifty and second year
they encamped before Jerusalem:
From whence they removed, and went to Berea, with twenty
thousand footmen and two thousand horsemen.
Now Judas had pitched his tents at Eleasa, and three thousand
chosen men with him:
Who seeing the multitude of the other army to he so great
were sore afraid; whereupon many conveyed themselves out of the
host, insomuch as abode of them no more but eight hundred men.
When Judas therefore saw that his host slipt away, and that
the battle pressed upon him, he was sore troubled in mind, and
much distressed, for that he had no time to gather them
Nevertheless unto them that remained he said, Let us arise
and go up against our enemies, if peradventure we may be able to
fight with them.
But they dehorted him, saying, We shall never be able: let us
now rather save our lives, and hereafter we will return with our
brethren, and fight against them: for we are but few.
Then Judas said, God forbid that I should do this thing, and
flee away from them: if our time be come, let us die manfully
for our brethren, and let us not stain our honour.
With that the host of Bacchides removed out of their tents,
and stood over against them, their horsemen being divided into
two troops, and their slingers and archers going before the host
and they that marched in the foreward were all mighty men.
As for Bacchides, he was in the right wing: so the host drew
near on the two parts, and sounded their trumpets.
They also of Judas' side, even they sounded their trumpets
also, so that the earth shook at the noise of the armies, and
the battle continued from morning till night.
Now when Judas perceived that Bacchides and the strength of
his army were on the right side, he took with him all the hardy
Who discomfited the right wing, and pursued them unto the
But when they of the left wing saw that they of the right
wing were discomfited, they followed upon Judas and those that
were with him hard at the heels from behind:
Whereupon there was a sore battle, insomuch as many were
slain on both parts.
Judas also was killed, and the remnant fled.
THen Jonathan and Simon took Judas their brother, and buried
him in the sepulchre of his fathers in Modin.
Moreover they bewailed him, and all Israel made great
lamentation for him, and mourned many days, saying,
How is the valiant man fallen, that delivered Israel!
As for the other things concerning Judas and his wars, and
the noble acts which he did, and his greatness, they are not
written: for they were very many.
Now after the death of Judas the wicked began to put forth
their heads in all the coasts of Israel, and there arose up all
such as wrought iniquity.
In those days also was there a very great famine, by reason
whereof the country revolted, and went with them.
Then Bacchides chose the wicked men, and made them lords of
And they made enquiry and search for Judas' friends, and
brought them unto Bacchides, who took vengeance of them, and
used them despitefully.
So was there a great affliction in Israel, the like whereof
was not since the time that a prophet was not seen among them.
For this cause all Judas' friends came together, and said
Since thy brother Judas died, we have no man like him to go
forth against our enemies, and Bacchides, and against them of
our nation that are adversaries to us.
Now therefore we have chosen thee this day to be our prince
and captain in his stead, that thou mayest fight our battles.
Upon this Jonathan took the governance upon him at that time,
and rose up instead of his brother Judas.
But when Bacchides gat knowledge thereof, he sought for to
Then Jonathan, and Simon his brother, and all that were with
him, perceiving that, fled into the wilderness of Thecoe, and
pitched their tents by the water of the pool Asphar.
Which when Bacchides understood, he came near to Jordan with
all his host upon the sabbath day.
Now Jonathan had sent his brother John, a captain of the
people, to pray his friends the Nabathites, that they might
leave with them their carriage, which was much.
But the children of Jambri came out of Medaba, and took John,
and all that he had, and went their way with it.
After this came word to Jonathan and Simon his brother, that
the children of Jambri made a great marriage, and were bringing
the bride from Nadabatha with a great train, as being the
daughter of one of the great princes of Chanaan.
Therefore they remembered John their brother, and went up,
and hid themselves under the covert of the mountain:
Where they lifted up their eyes, and looked, and, behold,
there was much ado and great carriage: and the bridegroom came
forth, and his friends and brethren, to meet them with drums,
and instruments of musick, and many weapons.
Then Jonathan and they that were with him rose up against
them from the place where they lay in ambush, and made a
slaughter of them in such sort, as many fell down dead, and the
remnant fled into the mountain, and they took all their spoils.
Thus was the marriage turned into mourning, and the noise of
their melody into lamentation.
So when they had avenged fully the blood of their brother,
they turned again to the marsh of Jordan.
Now when Bacchides heard hereof, he came on the sabbath day
unto the banks of Jordan with a great power.
Then Jonathan said to his company, Let us go up now and fight
for our lives, for it standeth not with us to day, as in time
For, behold, the battle is before us and behind us, and the
water of Jordan on this side and that side, the marsh likewise
and wood, neither is there place for us to turn aside.
Wherefore cry ye now unto heaven, that ye may be delivered
from the hand of your enemies.
With that they joined battle, and Jonathan stretched forth
his hand to smite Bacchides, but he turned back from him.
Then Jonathan and they that were with him leapt into Jordan,
and swam over unto the other bank: howbeit the other passed not
over Jordan unto them.
So there were slain of Bacchides' side that day about a
Afterward returned Bacchides to Jerusalem and repaired the
strong cites in Judea; the fort in Jericho, and Emmaus, and
Bethhoron, and Bethel, and Thamnatha, Pharathoni, and Taphon,
these did he strengthen with high walls, with gates and with
And in them he set a garrison, that they might work malice
He fortified also the city Bethsura, and Gazera, and the
tower, and put forces in them, and provision of victuals.
Besides, he took the chief men's sons in the country for
hostages, and put them into the tower at Jerusalem to be kept.
Moreover in the hundred fifty and third year, in the second
month, Alcimus commanded that the wall of the inner court of the
sanctuary should be pulled down; he pulled down also the works
of the prophets
And as he began to pull down, even at that time was Alcimus
plagued, and his enterprizes hindered: for his mouth was
stopped, and he was taken with a palsy, so that he could no more
speak any thing, nor give order concerning his house.
So Alcimus died at that time with great torment.
Now when Bacchides saw that Alcimus was dead, he returned to
the king: whereupon the land of Judea was in rest two years.
Then all the ungodly men held a council, saying, Behold,
Jonathan and his company are at ease, and dwell without care:
now therefore we will bring Bacchides hither, who shall take
them all in one night.
So they went and consulted with him.
Then removed he, and came with a great host, and sent letters
privily to his adherents in Judea, that they should take
Jonathan and those that were with him: howbeit they could not,
because their counsel was known unto them.
Wherefore they took of the men of the country, that were
authors of that mischief, about fifty persons, and slew them.
Afterward Jonathan, and Simon, and they that were with him,
got them away to Bethbasi, which is in the wilderness, and they
repaired the decays thereof, and made it strong.
Which thing when Bacchides knew, he gathered together all his
host, and sent word to them that were of Judea.
Then went he and laid siege against Bethbasi; and they fought
against it a long season and made engines of war.
But Jonathan left his brother Simon in the city, and went
forth himself into the country, and with a certain number went
And he smote Odonarkes and his brethren, and the children of
Phasiron in their tent.
And when he began to smite them, and came up with his forces,
Simon and his company went out of the city, and burned up the
engines of war,
And fought against Bacchides, who was discomfited by them,
and they afflicted him sore: for his counsel and travail was in
Wherefore he was very wroth at the wicked men that gave him
counsel to come into the country, inasmuch as he slew many of
them, and purposed to return into his own country.
Whereof when Jonathan had knowledge, he sent ambassadors unto
him, to the end he should make peace with him, and deliver them
Which thing he accepted, and did according to his demands,
and sware unto him that he would never do him harm all the days
of his life.
When therefore he had restored unto him the prisoners that he
had taken aforetime out of the land of Judea, he returned and
went his way into his own land, neither came he any more into
Thus the sword ceased from Israel: but Jonathan dwelt at
Machmas, and began to govern the people; and he destroyed the
ungodly men out of Israel.
In the hundred and sixtieth year Alexander, the son of
Antiochus surnamed Epiphanes, went up and took Ptolemais: for
the people had received him, by means whereof he reigned there,
Now when king Demetrius heard thereof, he gathered together
an exceeding great host, and went forth against him to fight.
Moreover Demetrius sent letters unto Jonathan with loving
words, so as he magnified him.
For said he, Let us first make peace with him, before he join
with Alexander against us:
Else he will remember all the evils that we have done against
him, and against his brethren and his people.
Wherefore he gave him authority to gather together an host,
and to provide weapons, that he might aid him in battle: he
commanded also that the hostages that were in the tower should
be delivered him.
Then came Jonathan to Jerusalem, and read the letters in the
audience of all the people, and of them that were in the tower:
Who were sore afraid, when they heard that the king had given
him authority to gather together an host.
Whereupon they of the tower delivered their hostages unto
Jonathan, and he delivered them unto their parents.
This done, Jonathan settled himself in Jerusalem, and began
to build and repair the city.
And he commanded the workmen to build the walls and the mount
Sion and about with square stones for fortification; and they
Then the strangers, that were in the fortresses which
Bacchides had built, fled away;
Insomuch as every man left his place, and went into his own
Only at Bethsura certain of those that had forsaken the law
and the commandments remained still: for it was their place of
Now when king Alexander had heard what promises Demetrius had
sent unto Jonathan: when also it was told him of the battles and
noble acts which he and his brethren had done, and of the pains
that they had endured,
He said, Shall we find such another man? now therefore we
will make him our friend and confederate.
Upon this he wrote a letter, and sent it unto him, according
to these words, saying,
King Alexander to his brother Jonathan sendeth greeting:
We have heard of thee, that thou art a man of great power,
and meet to be our friend.
Wherefore now this day we ordain thee to be the high priest
of thy nation, and to be called the king's friend; (and
therewithal he sent him a purple robe and a crown of gold:) and
require thee to take our part, and keep friendship with us.
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.
Whereof when Demetrius heard, he was very sorry, and said,
What have we done, that Alexander hath prevented us in making
amity with the Jews to strengthen himself?
I also will write unto them words of encouragement, and
promise them dignities and gifts, that I may have their aid.
He sent unto them therefore to this effect: King Demetrius
unto the people of the Jews sendeth greeting:
Whereas ye have kept covenants with us, and continued in our
friendship, not joining yourselves with our enemies, we have
heard hereof, and are glad.
Wherefore now continue ye still to be faithful unto us, and
we will well recompense you for the things ye do in our behalf,
And will grant you many immunities, and give you rewards.
And now do I free you, and for your sake I release all the
Jews, from tributes, and from the customs of salt, and from
And from that which appertaineth unto me to receive for the
third part or the seed, and the half of the fruit of the trees,
I release it from this day forth, so that they shall not be
taken of the land of Judea, nor of the three governments which
are added thereunto out of the country of Samaria and Galilee,
from this day forth for evermore.
Let Jerusalem also be holy and free, with the borders
thereof, both from tenths and tributes.
And as for the tower which is at Jerusalem, I yield up
authority over it, and give the high priest, that he may set in
it such men as he shall choose to keep it.
Moreover I freely set at liberty every one of the Jews, that
were carried captives out of the land of Judea into any part of
my kingdom, and I will that all my officers remit the tributes
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 of immunity and
freedom for all the Jews in my realm.
Also no man shall have authority to meddle with or to molest
any of them in any matter.
I will further, that there be enrolled among the king's
forces about thirty thousand men of the Jews, unto whom pay
shall be given, as belongeth to all king's 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 live after their own
laws, even as the king hath commanded in the land of Judea.
And concerning the three governments that are added to Judea
from the country of Samaria, let them be joined with Judea, that
they may be reckoned to be under one, nor bound to obey other
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 the necessary
expences of the sanctuary.
Moreover I give every year fifteen thousand shekels of silver
out of the king's accounts from the places appertaining.
And all the overplus, which the officers payed not in as in
former time, from henceforth shall be given toward the works of
And beside this, the five thousand shekels of silver, which
they took from the uses of the temple out of the accounts year
by year, even those things shall be released, because they
appertain to the priests that minister.
And whosoever they be that flee unto the temple at Jerusalem,
or be within the liberties hereof, being indebted unto the king,
or for any other matter, let them be at liberty, and all that
they have in my realm.
For the building also and repairing of the works of the
sanctuary expences shall be given of the king's accounts.
Yea, and for the building of the walls 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
Now when Jonathan and the people heard these words, they gave
no credit unto them, nor received them, because they remembered
the great evil that he had done in Israel; for he had afflicted
them very sore.
But with Alexander they were well pleased, because he was the
first that entreated of true peace with them, and they were
confederate with him always.
Then gathered king Alexander great forces, and camped over
And after the two kings had joined battle, Demetrius' host
fled: but Alexander followed after him, and prevailed against
And he continued the battle very sore until the sun went
down: and that day was Demetrius slain.
Afterward Alexander sent ambassadors to Ptolemee king of
Egypt with a message to this effect:
Forasmuch as I am come again to my realm, and am set in the
throne of my progenitors, and have gotten the dominion, and
overthrown 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 the throne of his
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 as according to thy dignity.
Then Ptolemee the king gave answer, saying, Happy be the day
wherein thou didst return into the land of thy fathers, and
satest in the throne of their kingdom.
And now will I do to thee, as thou hast written: meet me
therefore at Ptolemais, that we may see one another; for I will
marry my daughter to thee according to thy desire.
So Ptolemee went out of Egypt with his daughter Cleopatra,
and they came unto Ptolemais in the hundred threescore and
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.
Now king Alexander had written unto Jonathan, that he should
come and meet him.
Who thereupon went honourably to Ptolemais, where 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 pestilent fellows of Israel, men of a
wicked life, assembled themselves against him, to accuse him:
but the king would not hear them.
Yea more than that, the king commanded to take off his
garments, and clothe him in purple: and they did so.
And he made him sit by himself, and said into 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 his accusers saw that he was honored according to
the proclamation, and clothed in purple, they fled all away.
So the king honoured him, and wrote him among his chief
friends, and made him a duke, and partaker of his dominion.
Afterward Jonathan returned to Jerusalem with peace and
Furthermore in the; hundred threescore and fifth year came
Demetrius son of Demetrius out of Crete into the land of his
Whereof when king Alexander heard tell, he was right sorry,
and returned into Antioch.
Then Demetrius made Apollonius the governor of Celosyria his
general, who gathered together a great host, and camped in
Jamnia, and sent unto 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?
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 with me is the power of the cities.
Ask and learn who I am, and the rest that take our part, and
they shall tell thee that thy foot is not able to 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 stone nor
flint, nor place to flee unto.
So when Jonathan heard these words of Apollonius, he was
moved in his mind, and choosing ten thousand men he went out of
Jerusalem, where Simon his brother met him for to help him.
And he pitched his tents against Joppa: but; they of Joppa
shut him out of the city, because Apollonius had a garrison
Then Jonathan laid siege unto it: whereupon they of the city
let him in for fear: and so Jonathan won Joppa.
Whereof when Apollonius heard, he took three thousand
horsemen, with a great host of footmen, and went to Azotus as
one that journeyed, and therewithal drew him forth into the
plain. because he had a great number of horsemen, in whom he put
Then Jonathan followed after him to Azotus, where the armies
Now Apollonius had left a thousand horsemen in ambush.
And Jonathan knew 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 Jonathan had commanded them:
and so the enemies' horses were tired.
Then brought Simon forth his host, and set them against the
footmen, (for the horsemen were spent) who were discomfited by
him, and fled.
The horsemen also, being scattered in the field, fled to
Azotus, and went into Bethdagon, their idol's temple, for
But Jonathan set fire on Azotus, and the cities round about
it, and took their spoils; and the temple of Dagon, with them
that were fled into it, he burned with fire.
Thus there were burned and slain with the sword well nigh
eight thousand men.
And from thence Jonathan removed his host, and camped against
Ascalon, where the men of the city came forth, and met him with
After this returned Jonathan and his host unto Jerusalem,
having any spoils.
Now when king ALexander heard these things, he honoured
Jonathan yet more.
And sent him a buckle of gold, as the use is to be given to
such as are of the king's blood: he gave him also Accaron with
the borders thereof in possession.
And the king of Egypt gathered together a great host, like
the sand that lieth upon the sea shore, and many ships, and went
about through deceit to get Alexander's kingdom, and join it to
Whereupon he took his journey into Spain in peaceable manner,
so as they of the cities opened unto him, and met him: for king
Alexander had commanded them so to do, because he was his
brother in law.
Now as Ptolemee entered into the cities, he set in every one
of them a garrison of soldiers to keep it.
And when he came near to Azotus, they shewed him the temple
of Dagon that was burnt, and Azotus and the suburbs thereof that
were destroyed, and the bodies that were cast abroad and them
that he had burnt in the battle; for they had made heaps of them
by the way where he should pass.
Also they told the king whatsoever Jonathan had done, to the
intent he might blame him: but the king held his peace.
Then Jonathan met the king with great pomp at Joppa, where
they saluted one another, and lodged.
Afterward Jonathan, when he had gone with the king to the
river called Eleutherus, returned again to Jerusalem.
King Ptolemee therefore, having gotten the dominion of the
cities by the sea unto Seleucia upon the sea coast, imagined
wicked counsels against Alexander.
Whereupon he sent ambasadors unto king Demetrius, saying,
Come, let us make a league betwixt us, and I will give thee my
daughter whom Alexander hath, and thou shalt reign in thy
For I repent that I gave my daughter unto him, for he sought
to slay me.
Thus did he slander him, because he was desirous of his
Wherefore he took his daughter from him, and gave her to
Demetrius, and forsook Alexander, so that their hatred was
Then Ptolemee entered into Antioch, where he set two crowns
upon his head, the crown of Asia, and of Egypt.
In the mean season was king Alexander in Cilicia, because
those that dwelt in those parts had revolted from him.
But when Alexander heard of this, he came to war against him:
whereupon king Ptolemee brought forth his host, and met him with
a mighty power, and put him to flight.
So Alexander fled into Arabia there to be defended; but king
Ptolemee was exalted:
For Zabdiel the Arabian took off Alexander's head, and sent
it unto Ptolemee.
King Ptolemee also died the third day after, and they that
were in the strong holds were slain one of another.
By this means Demetrius reigned in the hundred threescore and
At the same time Jonathan gathered together them that were in
Judea to take the tower that was in Jerusalem: and he made many
engines of war against it.
Then came ungodly persons, who hated their own people, went
unto the king, and told him that Jonathan besieged the tower,
Whereof when he heard, he was angry, and immediately
removing, he came to Ptolemais, and wrote unto Jonathan, that he
should not lay siege to the tower, but come and speak with him
at Ptolemais in great haste.
Nevertheless Jonathan, when he heard this, commanded to
besiege it still: and he chose certain of the elders of Israel
and the priests, and put himself in peril;
And took silver and gold, and raiment, and divers presents
besides, and went to Ptolemais unto the king, where he found
favour in his sight.
And though certain ungodly men of the people had made
complaints against him,
Yet the king entreated him as his predecessors had done
before, and promoted him in the sight of all his friends,
And confirmed him in the high priesthood, and in all the
honours that he had before, and gave him preeminence among his
Then Jonathan desired the king, that he would make Judea free
from tribute, as also the three governments, with the country of
Samaria; and he promised him three hundred talents.
So the king consented, and wrote letters unto Jonathan of all
these things after this manner:
King Demetrius unto his brother Jonathan, and unto the nation
of the Jews, sendeth greeting:
We send you here a copy of the letter which we did write unto
our cousin Lasthenes concerning you, that ye might see it.
King Demetrius unto his father Lasthenes sendeth greeting:
We are determined to do good to the people of the Jews, who
are our friends, and keep covenants with us, because of their
good will toward us.
Wherefore we have ratified unto them the borders of Judea,
with the three governments of Apherema and Lydda and Ramathem,
that are added unto Judea from the country of Samaria, and all
things appertaining unto them, for all such as do sacrifice in
Jerusalem, instead of the payments which the king received of
them yearly aforetime out of the fruits of the earth and of
And as for other things that belong unto us, of the tithes
and customs pertaining unto us, as also the saltpits, and the
crown taxes, which are due unto us, we discharge them of them
all for their relief.
And nothing hereof shall be revoked from this time forth for
Now therefore see that thou make a copy of these things, and
let it be delivered unto Jonathan, and set upon the holy mount
in a conspicuous place.
After this, when king Demetrius saw that the land was quiet
before him, and that no resistance was made against him, he sent
away all his forces, every one to his own place, except certain
bands of strangers, whom he had gathered from the isles of the
heathen: wherefore all the forces of his fathers hated him.
Moreover there was one Tryphon, that had been of Alexander's
part afore, who, seeing that all the host murmured against
Demetrius, went to Simalcue the Arabian that brought up
Antiochus the young son of Alexander,
And lay sore upon him to deliver him this young Antiochus,
that he might reign in his father's stead: he told him therefore
all that Demetrius had done, and how his men of war were at
enmity with him, and there he remained a long season.
In the mean time Jonathan sent unto king Demetrius, that he
would cast those of the tower out of Jerusalem, and those also
in the fortresses: for they fought against Israel.
So Demetrius sent unto Jonathan, saying, I will not only do
this for thee and thy people, but I will greatly honour thee and
thy nation, if opportunity serve.
Now therefore thou shalt do well, if thou send me men to help
me; for all my forces are gone from me.
Upon this Jonathan sent him three thousand strong men unto
Antioch: and when they came to the king, the king was very glad
of their coming.
Howbeit they that were of the city gathered themselves
together into the midst of the city, to the number of an hundred
and twenty thousand men, and would have slain the king.
Wherefore the king fled into the court, but they of the city
kept the passages of the city, and began to fight.
Then the king called to the Jews for help, who came unto him
all at once, and dispersing themselves through the city slew
that day in the city to the number of an hundred thousand.
Also they set fire on the city, and gat many spoils that day,
and delivered the king.
So when they of the city saw that the Jews had got the city
as they would, their courage was abated: wherefore they made
supplication to the king, and cried, saying,
Grant us peace, and let the Jews cease from assaulting us and
With that they cast away their weapons, and made peace; and
the Jews were honoured in the sight of the king, and in the
sight of all that were in his realm; and they returned to
Jerusalem, having great spoils.
So king Demetrius sat on the throne of his kingdom, and the
land was quiet before him.
Nevertheless he dissembled in all that ever he spake, and
estranged himself from Jonathan, neither rewarded he him
according to the benefits which he had received of him, but
troubled him very sore.
After this returned Tryphon, and with him the young child
Antiochus, who reigned, and was crowned.
Then there gathered unto him all the men of war, whom
Demetrius had put away, and they fought against Demetrius, who
turned his back and fled.
Moreover Tryphon took the elephants, and won Antioch.
At that time young Antiochus wrote unto Jonathan, saying, I
confirm thee in the high priesthood, and appoint thee ruler over
the four governments, and to be one of the king's friends.
Upon this he sent him golden vessels to be served in, and
gave him leave to drink in gold, and to be clothed in purple,
and to wear a golden buckle.
His brother Simon also he made captain from the place called
The ladder of Tyrus unto the borders of Egypt.
Then Jonathan went forth, and passed through the cities
beyond the water, and all the forces of Syria gathered
themselves unto him for to help him: and when he came to
Ascalon, they of the city met him honourably.
From whence he went to Gaza, but they of Gaza shut him out;
wherefore he laid siege unto it, and burned the suburbs thereof
with fire, and spoiled them.
Afterward, when they of Gaza made supplication unto Jonathan,
he made peace with them, and took the sons of their chief men
for hostages, and sent them to Jerusalem, and passed through the
country unto Damascus.
Now when Jonathan heard that Demetrius' princes were come to
Cades, which is in Galilee, with a great power, purposing to
remove him out of the country,
He went to meet them, and left Simon his brother in the
Then Simon encamped against Bethsura and fought against it a
long season, and shut it up:
But they desired to have peace with him, which he granted
them, and then put them out from thence, and took the city, and
set a garrison in it.
As for Jonathan and his host, they pitched at the water of
Gennesar, from whence betimes in the morning they gat them to
the plain of Nasor.
And, behold, the host of strangers met them in the plain,
who, having laid men in ambush for him in the mountains, came
themselves over against him.
So when they that lay in ambush rose out of their places and
joined battle, all that were of Jonathan's side fled;
Insomuch as there was not one of them left, except Mattathias
the son of Absalom, and Judas the son of Calphi, the captains of
Then Jonathan rent his clothes, and cast earth upon his head,
Afterwards turning again to battle, he put them to flight,
and so they ran away.
Now when his own men that were fled saw this, they turned
again unto him, and with him pursued them to Cades, even unto
their own tents, and there they camped.
So there were slain of the heathen that day about three
thousand men: but Jonathan returned to Jerusalem.
Now when Jonathan saw that time served him, he chose certain
men, and sent them to Rome, for to confirm and renew the
friendship that they had with them.
He sent letters also to the Lacedemonians, and to other
places, for the same purpose.
So they went unto Rome, and entered into the senate, and
said, Jonathan the high priest, and the people of the Jews, sent
us unto you, to the end ye should renew the friendship, which ye
had with them, and league, as in former time.
Upon this the Romans gave them letters unto the governors of
every place that they should bring them into the land of Judea
And this is the copy of the letters which Jonathan wrote to
Jonathan the high priest, and the elders of the nation, and
the priests, and the other of the Jews, unto the Lacedemonians
their brethren send greeting:
There were letters sent in times past unto Onias the high
priest from Darius, who reigned then among you, to signify that
ye are our brethren, as the copy here underwritten doth specify.
At which time Onias entreated the ambassador that was sent
honourably, and received the letters, wherein declaration was
made of the league and friendship.
Therefore we also, albeit we need none of these things, that
we have the holy books of scripture in our hands to comfort us,
Have nevertheless attempted to send unto you for the renewing
of brotherhood and friendship, lest we should become strangers
unto you altogether: for there is a long time passed since ye
sent unto us.
We therefore at all times without ceasing, both in our
feasts, and other convenient days, do remember you in the
sacrifices which we offer, and in our prayers, as reason is, and
as it becometh us to think upon our brethren:
And we are right glad of your honour.
As for ourselves, we have had great troubles and wars on
every side, forsomuch as the kings that are round about us have
fought against us.
Howbeit we would not be troublesome unto you, nor to others
of our confederates and friends, in these wars:
For we have help from heaven that succoureth us, so as we are
delivered from our enemies, and our enemies are brought under
For this cause we chose Numenius the son of Antiochus, and
Antipater he son of Jason, and sent them unto the Romans, to
renew the amity that we had with them, and the former league.
We commanded them also to go unto you, and to salute and to
deliver you our letters concerning the renewing of our
Wherefore now ye shall do well to give us an answer thereto.
And this is the copy of the letters which Oniares sent.
Areus king of the Lacedemonians to Onias the high priest,
It is found in writing, that the Lacedemonians and Jews are
brethren, and that they are of the stock of Abraham:
Now therefore, since this is come to our knowledge, ye shall
do well to write unto us of your prosperity.
We do write back again to you, that your cattle and goods are
our's, and our's are your's We do command therefore our
ambassadors to make report unto you on this wise.
Now when Jonathan heard that Demebius' princes were come to
fight against him with a greater host than afore,
He removed from Jerusalem, and met them in the land of
Amathis: for he gave them no respite to enter his country.
He sent spies also unto their tents, who came again, and told
him that they were appointed to come upon them in the night
Wherefore so soon as the sun was down, Jonathan commanded his
men to watch, and to be in arms, that all the night long they
might be ready to fight: also he sent forth centinels round
about the host.
But when the adversaries heard that Jonathan and his men were
ready for battle, they feared, and trembled in their hearts, and
they kindled fires in their camp.
Howbeit Jonathan and his company knew it not till the
morning: for they saw the lights burning.
Then Jonathan pursued after them, but overtook them not: for
they were gone over the river Eleutherus.
Wherefore Jonathan turned to the Arabians, who were called
Zabadeans, and smote them, and took their spoils.
And removing thence, he came to Damascus, and so passed
through all the country,
Simon also went forth, and passed through the country unto
Ascalon, and the holds there adjoining, from whence he turned
aside to Joppa, and won it.
For he had heard that they would deliver the hold unto them
that took Demetrius' part; wherefore he set a garrison there to
After this came Jonathan home again, and calling the elders
of the people together, he consulted with them about building
strong holds in Judea,
And making the walls of Jerusalem higher, and raising a great
mount between the tower and the city, for to separate it from
the city, that so it might be alone, that men might neither sell
nor buy in it.
Upon this they came together to build up the city, forasmuch
as part of the wall toward the brook on the east side was fallen
down, and they repaired that which was called Caphenatha.
Simon also set up Adida in Sephela, and made it strong with
gates and bars.
Now Tryphon went about to get the kingdom of Asia, and to
kill Antiochus the king, that he might set the crown upon his
Howbeit he was afraid that Jonathan would not suffer him, and
that he would fight against him; wherefore he sought a way how
to take Jonathan, that he might kill him. So he removed, and
came to Bethsan.
Then Jonathan went out to meet him with forty thousand men
chosen for the battle, and came to Bethsan.
Now when Tryphon saw Jonathan came with so great a force, he
durst not stretch his hand against him;
But received him honourably, and commended him unto all his
friends, and gave him gifts, and commanded his men of war to be
as obedient unto him, as to himself.
Unto Jonathan also he said, Why hast thou brought all this
people to so great trouble, seeing there is no war betwixt us?
Therefore send them now home again, and choose a few men to
wait on thee, and come thou with me to Ptolemais, for I will
give it thee, and the rest of the strong holds and forces, and
all that have any charge: as for me, I will return and depart:
for this is the cause of my coming.
So Jonathan believing him did as he bade him, and sent away
his host, who went into the land of Judea.
And with himself he retained but three thousand men, of whom
he sent two thousand into Galilee, and one thousand went with
Now as soon as Jonathan entered into Ptolemais, they of
Ptolemais shut the gates and took him, and all them that came
with him they slew with the sword.
Then sent Tryphon an host of footmen and horsemen into
Galilee, and into the great plain, to destroy all Jonathan's
But when they knew that Jonathan and they that were with him
were taken and slain, they encouraged one another; and went
close together, prepared to fight.
They therefore that followed upon them, perceiving that they
were ready to fight for their lives, turned back again.
Whereupon they all came into the land of Judea peaceably, and
there they bewailed Jonathan, and them that were with him, and
they were sore afraid; wherefore all Israel made great
Then all the heathen that were round about then sought to
destroy them: for said they, They have no captain, nor any to
help them: now therefore let us make war upon them, and take
away their memorial from among men.
Now when Simon heard that Tryphon had gathered together a
great host to invade the land of Judea, and destroy it,
And saw that the people was in great trembling and fear, he
went up to Jerusalem, and gathered the people together,
And gave them exhortation, saying, Ye yourselves know what
great things I, and my brethren, and my father's house, have
done for the laws and the sanctuary, the battles also and
troubles which we have seen.
By reason whereof all my brethren are slain for Israel's
sake, and I am left alone.
Now therefore be it far from me, that I should spare mine own
life in any time of trouble: for I am no better than my
Doubtless I will avenge my nation, and the sanctuary, and our
wives, and our children: for all the heathen are gathered to
destroy us of very malice.
Now as soon as the people heard these words, their spirit
And they answered with a loud voice, saying, Thou shalt be
our leader instead of Judas and Jonathan thy brother.
Fight thou our battles, and whatsoever, thou commandest us,
that will we do.
So then he gathered together all the men of war, and made
haste to finish the walls of Jerusalem, and he fortified it
Also he sent Jonathan the son of Absolom, and with him a
great power, to Joppa: who casting out them that were therein
remained there in it.
So Tryphon removed from Ptolemaus with a great power to
invade the land of Judea, and Jonathan was with him in ward.
But Simon pitched his tents at Adida, over against the plain.
Now when Tryphon knew that Simon was risen up instead of his
brother Jonathan, and meant to join battle with him, he sent
messengers unto him, saying,
Whereas we have Jonathan thy brother in hold, it is for money
that he is owing unto the king's treasure, concerning the
business that was committed unto him.
Wherefore now send an hundred talents of silver, and two of
his sons for hostages, that when he is at liberty he may not
revolt from us, and we will let him go.
Hereupon Simon, albeit he perceived that they spake
deceitfully unto him yet sent he the money and the children,
lest peradventure he should procure to himself great hatred of
Who might have said, Because I sent him not the money and the
children, therefore is Jonathan dead.
So he sent them the children and the hundred talents: howbeit
Tryphon dissembled neither would he let Jonathan go.
And after this came Tryphon to invade the land, and destroy
it, going round about by the way that leadeth unto Adora: but
Simon and his host marched against him in every place,
wheresoever he went.
Now they that were in the tower sent messengers unto Tryphon,
to the end that he should hasten his coming unto them by the
wilderness, and send them victuals.
Wherefore Tryphon made ready all his horsemen to come that
night: but there fell a very great snow, by reason whereof he
came not. So he departed, and came into the country of Galaad.
And when he came near to Bascama he slew Jonathan, who was
Afterward Tryphon returned and went into his own land.
Then sent Simon, and took the bones of Jonathan his brother,
and buried them in Modin, the city of his fathers.
And all Israel made great lamentation for him, and bewailed
him many days.
Simon also built a monument upon the sepulchre of his father
and his brethren, and raised it aloft to the sight, with hewn
stone behind and before.
Moreover he set up seven pyramids, one against another, for
his father, and his mother, and his four brethren.
And in these he made cunning devices, about the which he set
great pillars, and upon the pillars he made all their armour for
a perpetual memory, and by the armour ships carved, that they
might be seen of all that sail on the sea.
This is the sepulchre which he made at Modin, and it standeth
yet unto this day.
Now Tryphon dealt deceitfully with the young king Antiochus,
and slew him.
And he reigned in his stead, and crowned himself king of
Asia, and brought a great calamity upon the land.
Then Simon built up the strong holds in Judea, and fenced
them about with high towers, and great walls, and gates, and
bars, and laid up victuals therein.
Moreover Simon chose men, and sent to king Demetrius, to the
end he should give the land an immunity, because all that
Tryphon did was to spoil.
Unto whom king Demetrius answered and wrote after this
King Demetrius unto Simon the high priest, and friend of
kings, as also unto the elders and nation of the Jews, sendeth
The golden crown, and the scarlet robe, which ye sent unto
us, we have received: and we are ready to make a stedfast peace
with you, yea, and to write unto our officers, to confirm the
immunities which we have granted.
And whatsoever covenants we have made with you shall stand;
and the strong holds, which ye have builded, shall be your own.
As for any oversight or fault committed unto this day, we
forgive it, and the crown tax also, which ye owe us: and if
there were any other tribute paid in Jerusalem, it shall no more
And look who are meet among you to be in our court, let then
be enrolled, and let there be peace betwixt us.
Thus the yoke of the heathen was taken away from Israel in
the hundred and seventieth year.
Then the people of Israel began to write in their instruments
and contracts, In the first year of Simon the high priest, the
governor and leader of the Jews.
In those days Simon camped against Gaza and besieged it round
about; he made also an engine of war, and set it by the city,
and battered a certain tower, and took it.
And they that were in the engine leaped into the city;
whereupon there was a great uproar in the city:
Insomuch as the people of the city rent their clothes, and
climbed upon the walls with their wives and children, and cried
with a loud voice, beseeching Simon to grant them peace.
And they said, Deal not with us according to our wickedness,
but according to thy mercy.
So Simon was appeased toward them, and fought no more against
them, but put them out of the city, and cleansed the houses
wherein the idols were, and so entered into it with songs and
Yea, he put all uncleanness out of it, and placed such men
there as would keep the law, and made it stronger than it was
before, and built therein a dwellingplace for himself.
They also of the tower in Jerusalem were kept so strait, that
they could neither come forth, nor go into the country, nor buy,
nor sell: wherefore they were in great distress for want of
victuals, and a great number of them perished through famine.
Then cried they to Simon, beseeching him to be at one with
them: which thing he granted them; and when he had put them out
from thence, he cleansed the tower from pollutions:
And entered into it the three and twentieth day of the second
month in the hundred seventy and first year, with thanksgiving,
and branches of palm trees, and with harps, and cymbals, and
with viols, and hymns, and songs: because there was destroyed a
great enemy out of Israel.
He ordained also that that day should be kept every year with
gladness. Moreover the hill of the temple that was by the tower
he made stronger than it was, and there he dwelt himself with
And when Simon saw that John his son was a valiant man, he
made him captain of all the hosts; and he dwelt in Gazera.
Now in the hundred threescore and twelfth year king Demetrius
gathered his forces together, and went into Media to get him
help to fight against Tryphone.
But when Arsaces, the king of Persia and Media, heard that
Demetrius was entered within his borders, he sent one of his
princes to take him alive:
Who went and smote the host of Demetrius, and took him, and
brought him to Arsaces, by whom he was put in ward.
As for the land of Judea, that was quiet all the days of
Simon; for he sought the good of his nation in such wise, as
that evermore his authority and honour pleased them well.
And as he was honourable in all his acts, so in this, that he
took Joppa for an haven, and made an entrance to the isles of
And enlarged the bounds of his nation, and recovered the
And gathered together a great number of captives, and had the
dominion of Gazera, and Bethsura, and the tower, out of the
which he took all uncleaness, neither was there any that
Then did they till their ground in peace, and the earth gave
her increase, and the trees of the field their fruit.
The ancient men sat all in the streets, communing together of
good things, and the young men put on glorious and warlike
He provided victuals for the cities, and set in them all
manner of munition, so that his honourable name was renowned
unto the end of the world.
He made peace in the land, and Israel rejoiced with great
For every man sat under his vine and his fig tree, and there
was none to fray them:
Neither was there any left in the land to fight against them:
yea, the kings themselves were overthrown in those days.
Moreover he strengthened all those of his people that were
brought low: the law he searched out; and every contemner of the
law and wicked person he took away.
He beautified the sanctuary, and multiplied vessels of the