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MACCABEES II / ΜΑΚΚΑΒΑΙΩΝ Β

10

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1 Now Maccabeus and his company, the Lord guiding them, recovered the temple and the city: 2 But the altars which the heathen had built in the open street, and also the chapels, they pulled down. 3 And having cleansed the temple they made another altar, and striking stones they took fire out of them, and offered a sacrifice after two years, and set forth incense, and lights, and shewbread. 4 When that was done, they fell flat down, and besought the Lord that they might come no more into such troubles; but if they sinned any more against him, that he himself would chasten them with mercy, and that they might not be delivered unto the blasphemous and barbarous nations. 5 Now upon the same day that the strangers profaned the temple, on the very same day it was cleansed again, even the five and twentieth day of the same month, which is Casleu. 6 And they kept the eight days with gladness, as in the feast of the tabernacles, remembering that not long afore they had held the feast of the tabernacles, when as they wandered in the mountains and dens like beasts. 7 Therefore they bare branches, and fair boughs, and palms also, and sang psalms unto him that had given them good success in cleansing his place. 8 They ordained also by a common statute and decree, That every year those days should be kept of the whole nation of the Jews. 9 And this was the end of Antiochus, called Epiphanes. 10 Now will we declare the acts of Antiochus Eupator, who was the son of this wicked man, gathering briefly the calamities of the wars. 11 So when he was come to the crown, he set one Lysias over the affairs of his realm, and appointed him his chief governor of Celosyria and Phenice. 12 For Ptolemeus, that was called Macron, choosing rather to do justice unto the Jews for the wrong that had been done unto them, endeavoured to continue peace with them. 13 Whereupon being accused of the king’s friends before Eupator, and called traitor at every word because he had left Cyprus, that Philometor had committed unto him, and departed to Antiochus Epiphanes, and seeing that he was in no honourable place, he was so discouraged, that he poisoned himself and died. 14 But when Gorgias was governor of the holds, he hired soldiers, and nourished war continually with the Jews: 15 And therewithal the Idumeans, having gotten into their hands the most commodious holds, kept the Jews occupied, and receiving those that were banished from Jerusalem, they went about to nourish war. 16 Then they that were with Maccabeus made supplication, and besought God that he would be their helper; and so they ran with violence upon the strong holds of the Idumeans, 17 And assaulting them strongly, they won the holds, and kept off all that fought upon the wall, and slew all that fell into their hands, and killed no fewer than twenty thousand. 18 And because certain, who were no less than nine thousand, were fled together into two very strong castles, having all manner of things convenient to sustain the siege, 19 Maccabeus left Simon and Joseph, and Zaccheus also, and them that were with him, who were enough to besiege them, and departed himself unto those places which more needed his help. 20 Now they that were with Simon, being led with covetousness, were persuaded for money through certain of those that were in the castle, and took seventy thousand drachms, and let some of them escape. 21 But when it was told Maccabeus what was done, he called the governors of the people together, and accused those men, that they had sold their brethren for money, and set their enemies free to fight against them. 22 So he slew those that were found traitors, and immediately took the two castles. 23 And having good success with his weapons in all things he took in hand, he slew in the two holds more than twenty thousand. 24 Now Timotheus, whom the Jews had overcome before, when he had gathered a great multitude of foreign forces, and horses out of Asia not a few, came as though he would take Jewry by force of arms. 25 But when he drew near, they that were with Maccabeus turned themselves to pray unto God, and sprinkled earth upon their heads, and girded their loins with sackcloth, 26 And fell down at the foot of the altar, and besought him to be merciful to them, and to be an enemy to their enemies, and an adversary to their adversaries, as the law declareth. 27 So after the prayer they took their weapons, and went on further from the city: and when they drew near to their enemies, they kept by themselves. 28 Now the sun being newly risen, they joined both together; the one part having together with their virtue their refuge also unto the Lord for a pledge of their success and victory: the other side making their rage leader of their battle 29 But when the battle waxed strong, there appeared unto the enemies from heaven five comely men upon horses, with bridles of gold, and two of them led the Jews, 30 And took Maccabeus betwixt them, and covered him on every side weapons, and kept him safe, but shot arrows and lightnings against the enemies: so that being confounded with blindness, and full of trouble, they were killed. 31 And there were slain of footmen twenty thousand and five hundred, and six hundred horsemen. 32 As for Timotheus himself, he fled into a very strong hold, called Gazara, where Chereas was governor. 33 But they that were with Maccabeus laid siege against the fortress courageously four days. 34 And they that were within, trusting to the strength of the place, blasphemed exceedingly, and uttered wicked words. 35 Nevertheless upon the fifth day early twenty young men of Maccabeus’ company, inflamed with anger because of the blasphemies, assaulted the wall manly, and with a fierce courage killed all that they met withal. 36 Others likewise ascending after them, whiles they were busied with them that were within, burnt the towers, and kindling fires burnt the blasphemers alive; and others broke open the gates, and, having received in the rest of the army, took the city, 37 And killed Timotheus, that was hid in a certain pit, and Chereas his brother, with Apollophanes. 38 When this was done, they praised the Lord with psalms and thanksgiving, who had done so great things for Israel, and given them the victory. ΜΑΚΚΑΒΑΙΟΣ δὲ καὶ οἱ σὺν αὐτῷ, τοῦ Κυρίου προάγοντος αὐτούς, τὸ μὲν ἱερὸν ἐκομίσαντο καὶ τὴν πόλιν, 2 τοὺς δὲ κατὰ τὴν ἀγορὰν βωμοὺς ὑπὸ τῶν ἀλλοφύλων δεδημιουργημένους, ἔτι δὲ τεμένη καθεῖλον. 3 καὶ τὸν νεὼν καθαρίσαντες ἕτερον θυσιαστήριον ἐποίησαν καὶ πυρώσαντες λίθους καὶ πῦρ ἐκ τούτων λαβόντες, ἀνήνεγκαν θυσίαν μετὰ διετῆ χρόνον καὶ θυμίαμα καὶ λύχνους καὶ τῶν ἄρτων τὴν πρόθεσιν ἐποιήσαντο. 4 ταῦτα δὲ ποιήσαντες ἠξίωσαν τὸν Κύριον πεσόντες ἐπὶ κοιλίαν μηκέτι περιπεσεῖν τοιούτοις κακοῖς, ἀλλ᾿ ἐάν ποτε καὶ ἁμάρτωσιν, ὑπ᾿ αὐτοῦ μετ᾿ ἐπιεικείας παιδεύεσθαι καὶ μὴ βλασφήμοις καὶ βαρβάροις ἔθνεσι παραδίδοσθαι. 5 ἐν ᾗ δὲ ἡμέρᾳ ὁ νεὼς ὑπὸ ἀλλοφύλων ἐβεβηλώθη, συνέβη κατὰ τὴν αὐτὴν ἡμέραν τὸν καθαρισμὸν γενέσθαι τοῦ ναοῦ, τῇ πέμπτῃ καὶ εἰκάδι τοῦ αὐτοῦ μηνός, ὅς ἐστι Χασελεῦ. 6 καὶ μετ᾿ εὐφροσύνης ἦγον ἡμέρας ὀκτὼ σκηνωμάτων τρόπον, μνημονεύοντες ὡς πρὸ μικροῦ χρόνου τὴν τῶν σκηνῶν ἑορτὴν ἐν τοῖς ὄρεσι καὶ ἐν τοῖς σπηλαίοις θηρίων τρόπον ἦσαν νεμόμενοι. 7 διὸ θύρσους καὶ κλάδους ὡραίους, ἔτι δὲ φοίνικας ἔχοντες ὕμνους ἀνέφερον τῷ εὐοδώσαντι καθαρισθῆναι τὸν ἑαυτοῦ τόπον. 8 ἐδογμάτισαν δὲ μετὰ κοινοῦ προστάγματος καὶ ψηφίσματος παντὶ τῷ τῶν ᾿Ιουδαίων ἔθνει κατ᾿ ἐνιαυτὸν ἄγειν τάσδε τὰς ἡμέρας. 9 καὶ τὰ μὲν τῆς ᾿Αντιόχου τοῦ προσαγορευθέντος ᾿Επιφανοῦς τελευτῆς οὕτως εἶχε. 10 Νυνὶ δὲ τὰ κατὰ τὸν Εὐπάτορα ᾿Αντίοχον, υἱὸν δὲ τοῦ ἀσεβοῦς γενόμενον δηλώσομεν, αὐτὰ συντέμνοντες τὰ τῶν πολέμων κακά. 11 αὐτὸς γὰρ παραλαβὼν βασιλείαν ἀνέδειξεν ἐπὶ τῶν πραγμάτων Λυσίαν τινά, Κοίλης δὲ Συρίας καὶ Φοινίκης στρατηγὸν πρώταρχον. 12 Πτολεμαῖος γὰρ ὁ καλούμενος Μάκρων τὸ δίκαιον συντηρεῖν προηγούμενος εἰς τοὺς ᾿Ιουδαίους διὰ τὴν γεγονυῖαν εἰς αὐτοὺς ἀδικίαν ἐπειρᾶτο τὰ πρὸς αὐτοὺς εἰρηνικῶς διεξάγειν. 13 ὅθεν κατηγορούμενος ὑπὸ τῶν φίλων πρὸς τὸν Εὐπάτορα καὶ προδότης παρέκαστα ἀκούων διὰ τὸ τὴν Κύπρον ἐμπιστευθέντα ὑπὸ τοῦ Φιλομήτορος ἐκλιπεῖν καὶ πρὸς ᾿Αντίοχον τὸν ᾿Επιφανῆ ἀναχωρῆσαι μήτ᾿ εὐγενῆ τὴν ἐξουσίαν ἔχων, ὑπ᾿ ἀθυμίας φαρμακεύσας ἑαυτὸν ἐξέλιπε τὸν βίον. 14 Γοργίας δὲ γενόμενος στρατηγὸς τῶν τόπων ἐξενοτρόφει καὶ παρέκαστα πρὸς τοὺς ᾿Ιουδαίους ἐπολεμοτρόφει. 15 ὁμοῦ δὲ τούτῳ καὶ οἱ ᾿Ιδουμαῖοι ἐγκρατεῖς ἐπικαίρων ὀχυρωμάτων ὄντες ἐγύμναζον τοὺς ᾿Ιουδαίους, καὶ τοὺς φυγαδευθέντας ἀπὸ ῾Ιεροσολύμων προσλαβόμενοι πολεμοτροφεῖν ἐπεχείρουν. 16 οἱ δὲ περὶ τὸν Μακκαβαῖον ποιησάμενοι λιτανείαν καὶ ἀξιώσαντες τὸν Θεὸν σύμμαχον αὐτοῖς γενέσθαι, ἐπὶ τὰ τῶν ᾿Ιδουμαίων ὀχυρώματα ὥρμησαν, 17 οἷς καὶ προσβαλόντες εὐρώστως ἐγκρατεῖς ἐγένοντο τῶν τόπων πάντας τε τοὺς ἐπὶ τῷ τείχει μαχομένους ἠμύναντο κατέσφαζόν τε τοὺς ἐμπίπτοντας, ἀνεῖλον δὲ οὐχ ἦττον τῶν δισμυρίων. 18 συμφυγόντων δὲ οὐκ ἔλαττον τῶν ἐνακισχιλίων εἰς δύο πύργους ὀχυροὺς εὖ μάλα καὶ πάντα τὰ πρὸς πολιορκίαν ἔχοντας, 19 ὁ Μακκαβαῖος εἰς ἐπείγοντας τόπους ἀπολιπὼν Σίμωνα καὶ ᾿Ιώσηφον, ἔτι δὲ καὶ Ζακχαῖον καὶ τοὺς σὺν αὐτῷ ἱκανοὺς πρὸς τὴν τούτων πολιορκίαν, αὐτὸς ἐχωρίσθη. 20 οἱ δὲ περὶ τὸν Σίμωνα φιλαργυρήσαντες ὑπό τινων τῶν ἐν τοῖς πύργοις ἐπείσθησαν ἀργυρίῳ· ἑπτάκις δὲ μυριάδας δραχμὰς λαβόντες εἴασάν τινας διαρρυῆναι. 21 προσαγγελθέντος δὲ τῷ Μακκαβαίῳ περὶ τοῦ γεγονότος, συναγαγὼν τοὺς ἡγουμένους τοῦ λαοῦ κατηγόρησεν ὡς ἀργυρίου πεπράκασι τοὺς ἀδελφούς, τοὺς πολεμίους κατ᾿ αὐτῶν ἀπολύσαντες. 22 τούτους μὲν οὖν προδότας γενομένους ἀπέκτεινε καὶ παραχρῆμα τοὺς δύο πύργους κατελάβετο. 23 τοῖς δὲ ὅπλοις τὰ πάντα ἐν ταῖς χερσὶν εὐοδούμενος ἀπώλεσεν ἐν τοῖς δυσὶν ὀχυρώμασι πλείους τῶν δισμυρίων. 24 Τιμόθεος δὲ ὁ πρότερον ἡττηθεὶς ὑπὸ τῶν ᾿Ιουδαίων συναγαγὼν ξένας δυνάμεις παμπληθεῖς καὶ τοὺς τῆς ᾿Ασίας γενομένους ἵππους συναθροίσας οὐκ ὀλίγους, παρῆν ὡς δορυάλωτον ληψόμενος τὴν ᾿Ιουδαίαν. 25 οἱ δὲ περὶ τὸν Μακκαβαῖον συνεγγίζοντος αὐτοῦ, πρὸς ἱκετείαν τοῦ Θεοῦ ἐτράπησαν γῇ τὰς κεφαλὰς καταπάσαντες καὶ τὰς ὀσφύας σάκκοις ζώσαντες, 26 ἐπὶ τὴν ἀπέναντι τοῦ θυσιαστηρίου κρηπῖδα προσπεσόντες, ἠξίουν ἵλεων αὐτοῖς γενόμενν ἐχθρεῦσαι τοῖς ἐχθροῖς αὐτῶν καὶ ἀντικεῖσθαι τοῖς ἀντικειμένοις, καθὼς ὁ νόμος διασαφεῖ. 27 γενόμενοι δὲ ἀπὸ τῆς δεήσεως, ἀναλαβόντες τὰ ὅπλα προῆγον ἀπὸ τῆς πόλεως ἐπὶ πλεῖον· συνεγγίσαντες δὲ τοῖς πολεμίοις ἐφ᾿ ἑαυτῶν ἦσαν. 28 ἄρτι δὲ τῆς ἀνατολῆς διαδεχομένης προσέβαλον ἑκάτεροι, οἱ μὲν ἔγγυον ἔχοντες εὐημερίας καὶ νίκης μετ᾿ ἀρετῆς τὴν ἐπὶ τὸν Κύριον καταφυγήν, οἱ δὲ καθηγεμόνα τῶν ἀγώνων ταττόμενοι τὸν θυμόν. 29 γενομένης δὲ καρτερᾶς μάχης, ἐφάνησαν τοῖς ὑπεναντίοις ἐξ οὐρανοῦ ἐφ᾿ ἵππων χρυσοχαλίνων ἄνδρες πέντε διαπρεπεῖς, καὶ ἀφηγούμενοι τῶν ᾿Ιουδαίων, 30 οἳ καὶ τὸν Μακκαβαῖον μέσον λαβόντες καὶ σκεπάζοντες ταῖς ἑαυτῶν πανοπλίαις ἄτρωτον διεφύλαττον, εἰς δὲ τοὺς ὑπεναντίους τοξεύματα καὶ κεραυνοὺς ἐξερρίπτουν· διὸ συγχυθέντες ἀορασίᾳ κατεκόπτοντο ταραχῆς πεπληρωμένοι. 31 κατεσφάγησαν δὲ δισμύριοι πρὸς τοῖς πεντακοσίοις, ἱππεῖς δὲ ἑξακόσιοι. 32 αὐτὸς δὲ ὁ Τιμόθεος συνέφυγεν εἰς Γάζαρα λεγόμενον ὀχύρωμα, εὖ μάλα φρούριον, στρατηγοῦντος ἐκεῖ Χαιρέου. 33 οἱ δὲ περὶ τὸν Μακκαβαῖον ἄσμενοι περιεκάθισαν τὸ φρούριον ἡμέρας τέσσαρας. 34 οἱ δὲ ἔνδον τῇ ἐρυμνότητι τοῦ τόπου πεποιθότες ὑπεράγαν ἐβλασφήμουν καὶ λόγους ἀθεμίτους προΐεντο. 35 ὑποφαινούσης δὲ τῆς πέμπτης ἡμέρας, εἴκοσι νεανίαι τῶν περὶ τὸν Μακκαβαῖον πυρωθέντες τοῖς θυμοῖς διὰ τὰς βλασφημίας, προσβαλόντες τῷ τείχει ἀρρενωδῶς καὶ θηριώδει θυμῷ τὸν ἐμπίπτοντα ἔκοπτον. 36 ἕτεροι δὲ ὁμοίως προσαναβάντες ἐν τῷ περισπασμῷ πρὸς τοὺς ἔνδον, ἐνεπίμπρων τοὺς πύργους καὶ πυρὰς ἀνάψαντες ζῶντας τοὺς βλασφήμους κατέκαιον. οἱ δὲ τὰς πύλας διέκοπτον, εἰσδεξάμενοι δὲ τὴν λοιπὴν τάξιν προκατελάβοντο τὴν πόλιν. 37 καὶ τὸν Τιμόθεον ἀποκεκρυμμένον ἔν τινι λάκκῳ κατέσφαξαν καὶ τὸν τούτου ἀδελφὸν Χαιρέαν καὶ τὸν ᾿Απολλοφάνην. 38 ταῦτα δὲ διαπραξάμενοι μεθ᾿ ὕμνων καὶ ἐξομολογήσεων εὐλόγουν τῷ Κυρίῳ τῷ μεγάλως εὐεργετοῦντι τὸν ᾿Ισραὴλ καὶ τὸ νῖκος αὐτοῖς διδόντι.

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