King Antiochus VII grants freedom to the Jews. The Roman Empire gives them its protection. But then Antiochus attacks Dor. And Cendebaeus invades Judea.
KING ANTIOCHUS VII GRANTS FREEDOM TO THE JEWS
VERSE 1. And Antiochus son of Demetrius the king sent letters from the isles of the sea to Simon the priest and governor of the Jews, and to all the nation;
VERSE 2. and the contents thereof were after this manner: King Antiochus to Simon the chief priest and † governor, and to the nation of the Jews, greeting:
VERSE 3. Forasmuch as certain pestilent fellows have made themselves masters of the kingdom of our fathers, but my purpose is to claim the kingdom, that I may restore it as it was before; and moreover I have raised a multitude of foreign soldiers, and have prepared ships of war;
VERSE 4. moreover I am minded to land in the country, that I may punish those who have destroyed our country, and those who have made many cities in the kingdom desolate:
VERSE 5. Now therefore I confirm to you all the exactions which the kings that were before me remitted to you, and whatever gifts besides they remitted to you:
VERSE 6. and I give you leave to coin money for your country with your own stamp,
VERSE 7. but that Jerusalem and the sanctuary should be free: and all the arms that you have prepared, and the strongholds that you have built, which you have in your possession, let them remain to you:
VERSE 8. and everything owing to the king, and the things that shall be owing to the king from henceforth and for evermore, let them be remitted to you:
VERSE 9. moreover, when we shall have established our kingdom, we will glorify you and your nation and the temple with great glory, so that your glory shall be made manifest in all the earth.
VERSE 10. In the hundred and seventy and fourth year went Antiochus forth into the land of his fathers; and all the forces came together to him, so that there were few men with Tryphon.
VERSE 11. And king Antiochus pursued him, and § he came, as he fled, to Dor, which is by the sea:
VERSE 12. for he knew that troubles were come upon him all at once, and that his forces had forsaken him.
VERSE 13. And Antiochus encamped against Dor, and with him a hundred and twenty thousand men of war, and eight thousand horse.
VERSE 14. And he compassed the city round about, and the ships joined in the attack from the sea; and he vexed the city by land and sea, and suffered no man to go out or in.
THE ROMAN EMPIRE PROTECTS THE JEWS
VERSE 15. And Numenius and his company came from Rome, having letters to the kings and to the countries, wherein were written these things:
VERSE 16. Lucius, consul of the Romans, to king Ptolemy, greeting:
VERSE 17. The Jews’ ambassadors came to us as our friends and confederates, to renew the old friendship and confederacy, being sent from Simon the high priest, and from the people of the Jews:
VERSE 18. moreover they brought a shield of gold of a thousand pound.
VERSE 19. It pleased us therefore to write to the kings and to the countries, that they should not seek their hurt, nor fight against them, and their cities, and their country, nor be confederates with such as fight against them.
VERSE 20. Moreover it seemed good to us to receive the shield of them.
VERSE 21. If therefore any pestilent fellows have fled from their country to you, deliver them to Simon the high priest, that he may take vengeance on them according to their law.
VERSE 22. And the same things wrote he to Demetrius the king, and to Attalus, and to Arathes, and to Arsaces,
VERSE 23. and to all the countries, and to Sampsames, and to the Spartans, and to Delos, and to Myndos, and to Sicyon, and to Caria, and to Samos, and to Pamphylia, and to Lycia, and to Halicarnassus, and to Rhodes, and to Phaselis, and to Cos, and to Side, and to Aradus, and Gortyna, and Cnidus, and Cyprus, and Cyrene.
VERSE 24. But the copy hereof they wrote to Simon the high priest.
KING ANTIOCHUS VII ATTACKS THE CITY OF DOR
VERSE 25. But Antiochus the king encamped against Dor the second day, bringing his forces up to it continually, and making engines of war, and he shut up Tryphon from going in or out.
VERSE 26. And Simon sent him two thousand chosen men to fight on his side; and silver, and gold, and instruments of war in abundance.
VERSE 27. And he would not receive them, but set at nothing all the covenants which he had made with him aforetime, and was estranged from him.
VERSE 28. And he sent to him Athenobius, one of his Friends, to commune with him, saying, You hold possession of Joppa and Gazara, and the citadel that is in Jerusalem, cities of my kingdom.
VERSE 29. The borders thereof you have wasted, and done great hurt in the land, and got the dominion of many places in my kingdom.
VERSE 30. Now therefore deliver up the cities which you have taken, and the tributes of the places whereof you have gotten dominion without the borders of Judea:
VERSE 31. or else give me for them five hundred talents of silver; and for the harm that you have done, and the tributes of the cities, other five hundred talents: or else we will come and subdue you.
VERSE 32. And Athenobius the king’s Friend came to Jerusalem; and he saw the glory of Simon, and the cupboard of gold and silver vessels, and his great attendance, and he was amazed; and he reported to him the king’s words.
VERSE 33. And Simon answered, and said to him, We have neither taken other men’s land, nor have we possession of that which appertains to others, but of the inheritance of our fathers; howbeit, it was had in possession of our enemies wrongfully for a certain time.
And Simon answered. Simon replies to the hostile messenger with grace and kindly dignity. He doesn’t get all hot and bothered. He doesn’t rage out.
VERSE 34. But we, having opportunity, hold fast the inheritance of our fathers.
VERSE 35. But as touching Joppa and Gazara, which you demand, they did great harm among the people throughout our country, we will give a hundred talents for them. And he answered him not a word,
VERSE 36. but returned in a rage to the king, and reported to him these words, and the glory of Simon, and all that he had seen: and the king was exceedingly angry.
CENDEBAEUS INVADES JUDEA
VERSE 37. But Tryphon embarked on board a ship, and fled to Orthosia.
VERSE 38. And the king appointed Cendebaeus chief captain of the sea coast, and gave him forces of foot and horse:
VERSE 39. and he commanded him to encamp before Judea, and he commanded him to build up Kidron, and to fortify the gates, and that he should fight against the people: but the king pursued Tryphon.
VERSE 40. And Cendebaeus came to Jamnia, and began to provoke the people, and to invade Judea, and to take the people captive, and to kill them.
VERSE 41. And he built Kidron, and set horsemen there, and forces of foot, to the end that issuing out they might make outroads upon the ways of Judea, according as the king commanded him.
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