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HAYDOCK CATHOLIC BIBLE COMMENTARY ON THE OLD TESTAMENT



JUDITH 5

 

CHAPTER V.

 

Ver. 1.  Mountains.  Gr. adds, "and had fortified every summit of a high mountain, and had placed scandals in the plains," obstructing the passage (H.) with ditches, trees, (C.) and snares of every description.  H.

 

Ver. 2.  Ammon.  Gr. adds, "and the satraps of the maritime country," (H.) the Philistines, who had submitted like the rest.
 

Ver. 3.  Them.  Gr. adds, "Ye sons of Chanaan tell."  He was not acquainted with their origin: the title belonged only to the Phœnicians, (C.) who might also be present.  H.

 

Ver. 4.  East.  Gr. "west," which seems more accurate, unless Holofernes was on the sea-coast, (C.) or that part of the country went by this name, as it does at present.  H. --- He was not absolutely unacquainted with the Jews, but spoke in contempt, (v. 27.  W.  M.) and wished to know if they had formed a league with the Egyptians, &c.  C.

 

Ver. 5.  My.  Gr. "the mouth of thy slave."  H.

 

Ver. 6.  Chaldeans.  Abraham was a native of Ur.  Gen. xii.  C. --- This tended to conciliate the favour of the general, who as of the same country.  M.

 

Ver. 9.  Heaven.  Gr. adds, "the God whom they had known, and they (the Chaldean idolaters) cast them out from the face of the gods, and they fled into Mesopotamia, and dwelt there many days: (H. that is, about two years.  C.) and their God commanded them to leave their abode, and to go into the land of Chanaan; and they dwelt there, and were enriched;...and when," &c. --- There.  Gr. "and where there till they returned; and there they became innumerable."  H.

 

Ver. 10.  Oppressed.  Gr. "craftily inveigled them."  Ex. i. 10.

 

Ver. 11.  Plague.  Gr. adds, "for which there was no remedy.  And the Egyptians cast them out from among them.  And God dried up the Red Sea before them, and conducted them to Mount Sinai and Cades-Barne, and cast out all the inhabitants of the desert; and they dwelt in the land of the Amorrhites, and exterminated all the Hesebon, by their power.  Then crossing the Jordan, they took as their inheritance all the mountainous parts, and ejected the Chanaanite, Pherezite, Jebusite, Sichem, and all the Gergesites, and dwelt therein many days.  And, " v. 21.  H. --- The environs of Sichem belonged to the Hevites.  C.

 

Ver. 14.  Rested.  This is attested, Deut. xxxii. 10. and Jer. ii. 6.  M.

 

Ver. 16.  Overcame, in the days of Josue, (M.) at Jericho, &c.  H.

 

Ver. 22.  Battles.  He seems to speak of the captivity of Manasses, (W.) of the ten tribes, and of the loss sustained by Achaz.  2 Par. xxviii. 5.  M. --- By many.  Gr. "exceedingly; and they were led captive into a land which was not their own, and the temple of their God became as a pavement, and their cities were taken by the enemies.  But now, returning to their God, they are come up from the places to which they had been scattered, and have possession of Jerusalem, where is their sanctuary; and they have inhabited the mountainous country, for it was a desert."  H. --- Our adversaries would infer from this, and similar passages, that the siege of Bethulia could not have taken place till after the captivity of Babylon; and this many Catholics allow.  But the proof is not conclusive, as all this might be verified under Manasses: (C.) "the temple was trampled on," (Syr. egennhqh eiV edafoV) and profaned.  See C. iv. 2. and 1 Mac. iii. 51. and Luke xxi. 24.  It had been pillaged by Sesac and the Assyrians, and had stood in need of great repairs under Ezechias, Josias, &c.  Several of the Israelites had escaped from the hands of their oppressors, (2 Par. xxxiv. 9.) and the Jews had regained their strength after the captivity of Manasses, (C.) having retired before into their strong holds in the deserts.  H.

 

Ver. 25.  Cannot.  Gr. "let my lord indeed pass by, lest their Lord should cover them with a shield, for their God is for them, and we," &c.

 

Ver. 26.  All the.  Gr. "all the people round the tent murmured; and the great men of Holofernes, and all who dwelt in the maritime country, and in Moab, threatened to cut him to pieces.  For we shall not fear the children of Israel.  Lo! a people without power, strength, or army in battle array!  We shall then go up, and they shall be for food to all thy army, lord Holofernes.  And," C. vi.

 

Ver. 27.  Who.  They speak thus through indignation, though they knew Achior well enough.  W. --- Their blasphemous presumption was soon punished.  M.

 

Ver. 29.  Other.  This foolish attempt was not peculiar to this king.  The great Nabuchodonosor was infected with the same vanity, (Dan. vi. 7.) and was imitated by many of the Persian monarchs, and by Alexander.  Persas non piè tantum sed etiam prudenter Reges suos inter deos colere: Majestatem enim imperii salutis esse tutelam.  Curtius viii.  Yet most of the Greeks could not brook such flattery, though they were not influenced by religion, but by reason, and their own haughty temper.  See Justin vi.  Mart. x. 62.

 

 








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