King Demetrius is finally captured. The achievements of Simon Maccabees are summarized. He makes an alliance with Rome and Sparta. And he is honored.
DEMETRUIS IS FINALLY CAPTURED
VERSE 1. And in the hundred and seventy and second year king Demetrius gathered his forces together, and went into Media, to get him help, that he might fight against Tryphon.
VERSE 2. And Arsaces, the king of Persia and Media, heard that Demetrius was come into his borders, and he sent one of his princes to take him alive:
VERSE 3. and he went and struck the army of Demetrius, and took him, and brought him to Arsaces; and he put him in ward.
SUMMARIZING THE ACHIEVEMENTS OF SIMON MACCABEES
VERSE 4. And the land had rest all the days of Simon: and he sought the good of his nation; and and his authority and his glory was well-pleasing to them all his days.
VERSE 5. And amid all his glory he took Joppa for a haven, and made it an entrance for the isles of the sea;
VERSE 6. and he enlarged the borders of his nation, and got possession of the country;
VERSE 7. and he gathered together a great number of captives, and got the dominion of Gazara, and Bethsura, and the citadel, and he took away from it its uncleannesses; and there was none that resisted him.
the citadel. That is, Jerusalem.
VERSE 8. And they tilled their land in peace, and the land gave her increase, and the trees of the plains their fruit.
VERSE 9. The ancient men sat in the streets, they communed all of them together of good things, and the young men put on glorious and warlike apparel.
communed all of them together of good things. This is a great picture of Old Testament manliness. They sit together and talk about good things.
VERSE 10. He provided food for the cities, and furnished them with all manner of munition, until the name of his glory was named to the end of the earth.
VERSE 11. He made peace in the land, and Israel rejoiced with great joy:
VERSE 12. and they sat each man under his vine and his fig tree, and there was none to make them afraid:
VERSE 13. and there ceased in the land any that fought against them: and the kings were discomfited in those days.
VERSE 14. And he strengthened all those of his people that were brought low: the law he searched out, and every lawless and wicked person he took away.
VERSE 15. He glorified the sanctuary, and the vessels of the temple he multiplied.
SIMON MACCABEES MAKES AN ALLIANCE WITH ROME AND SPARTA
VERSE 16. And it was heard at Rome that Jonathan was dead, and even to Sparta, and they were exceedingly sorry.
VERSE 17. But as soon as they heard that his brother Simon was made high priest in his stead, and ruled the country, and the cities therein,
VERSE 18. they wrote to him on tables of brass, to renew with him the friendship and the confederacy which they had confirmed with Judas and Jonathan his kindred;
VERSE 19. and they were read before the congregation at Jerusalem.
VERSE 20. And this is the copy of the letters which the Spartans sent: The rulers of the Spartans, and the city, to Simon the high priest, and to the elders, and the priests, and the residue of the people of the Jews, our kindred, greeting:
VERSE 21. The ambassadors that were sent to our people made report to us of your glory and honor: and we were glad for their coming,
VERSE 22. and we did register the things that were spoken by them in the public records after this manner: Numenius son of Antiochus, and Antipater son of Jason, the Jews’ ambassadors, came to us to renew the friendship they had with us.
VERSE 23. And it pleased the people to entertain the men honorably, and to put the copy of their words in the public records, to the end that the people of the Spartans might have a memorial thereof: moreover they wrote a copy of these things to Simon the high priest.
VERSE 24. After this Simon sent Numenius to Rome with a great shield of gold of a thousand pound weight, in order to confirm the confederacy with them.
SIMON MACCABEES IS HONORED
VERSE 25. But when the people heard these things, they said, What thanks shall we give to Simon and his sons?
VERSE 26. for he and his kindred and the house of his father have made themselves strong, and have chased away in fight the enemies of Israel from them, and confirmed liberty to * Israel.
VERSE 27. And they wrote on tables of brass, and set them upon pillars in mount Sion: and this is the copy of the writing: On the eighteenth day of Elul, in the hundred and seventy and second year, and this is the third year of Simon the high priest,
VERSE 28. in Asaramel, in a great congregation of priests and people and princes of the nation, and of the elders of the country, was it notified to us:
VERSE 29. Forasmuch as oftentimes there have been wars in the country, but Simon the son of Mattathias, the son of the sons of Joarib, and his kindred, put themselves in jeopardy, and withstood the enemies of their nation, that their sanctuary and the law might be established, and glorified their nation with great glory:
VERSE 30. and Jonathan assembled their nation together, and became their high priest, and was gathered to his people:
VERSE 31. and their enemies purposed to invade their country, that they might destroy their country utterly, and stretch forth their hands against their sanctuary:
VERSE 32. then rose up Simon, and fought for his nation, and spent much of his own substance, and armed the valiant men of his nation, and gave them wages:
VERSE 33. and he fortified the cities of Judea, and Bethsura that lies upon the borders of Judea, where the arms of the enemies were aforetime, and set there a garrison of Jews:
VERSE 34. and he fortified Joppa which is upon the sea, and Gazara which is upon the borders of Azotus, wherein the enemies lived aforetime, and placed Jews there, and set therein all things convenient for the reparation thereof:
VERSE 35. and the people saw the faith of Simon, and the glory which he thought to bring to his nation, and they made him their leader and high priest, because he had done all these things, and for the justice and the faith which he kept to his nation, and for that he sought by all means to exalt his people:
VERSE 36. and in his days things prospered in his hands, so that the Gentiles were taken away out of their country, and they also that were in the city of David, those who were in Jerusalem, who had made themselves a citadel, out of which they issued, and polluted all things round about the sanctuary, and did great hurt to its purity;
VERSE 37. and he placed Jews therein, and fortified it for the safety of the country and the city, and made high the walls of Jerusalem:
VERSE 38. and king Demetrius confirmed to him the high priesthood according to these things,
VERSE 39. and made him one of his Friends, and honored him with great honor;
VERSE 40. for he had heard say, that the Jews had been called by the Romans friends and confederates and kindred, and that they had met the ambassadors of Simon honorably;
VERSE 41. and that the Jews and the priests were well pleased that Simon should be their leader and high priest forever, until there should arise a faithful prophet;
VERSE 42. and that he should be captain over them, and should take charge of the sanctuary, to set them over their works, and over the country, and over the arms, and over the strongholds; and that he should take charge of the sanctuary,
VERSE 43. and that he should be obeyed by all, and that all instruments in the country should be written in his name, and that he should be clothed in purple, and wear gold;
VERSE 44. and that it should not be lawful for any of the people or of the priests to set at nothing any of these things, or to gainsay the words that he should speak, or to gather an assembly in the country without him, or to be clothed in purple, or wear a buckle of gold;
VERSE 45. but whoever should do otherwise, or set at nothing any of these things, he should be liable to punishment.
VERSE 46. All the people consented to ordain for Simon that he should do according to these words;
VERSE 47. and Simon accepted hereof, and consented to be high priest, and to be captain and governor of the Jews and of the priests, and to be protector of all.
VERSE 48. And they commanded to put this writing on tables of brass, and to set them up within the precinct of the sanctuary in a conspicuous place;
VERSE 49. and moreover to put the copies thereof in the treasury, to the end that Simon and his sons might have them.
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