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HAYDOCK CATHOLIC BIBLE COMMENTARY ON THE OLD TESTAMENT



1 MACHABEES 3

 

CHAPTER III.

 

Ver. 1.  Judas, the eldest.  Jos. Bel. i. 1. --- His skill and valour also entitled him to this post.  C. --- He did not claim this honour, but received it from his father, and was obeyed by the virtuous people.  W.

 

Ver. 7.  Kings.  Epiphanes, Eupator,and Demetrius, with their generals.  C. --- Judas gained four great battles against Apollonius, Seron, Gorgias, and Lysias.  C. iv. 1, 28.  W.

 

Ver. 8.  Wrath.  Making the enemy retire, (H.) and purifying the temple, &c.

 

Ver. 9.  Perishing.  So the Jews style the miserable.  C. --- Go to 2 B. viii. 1.  W.

 

Ver. 10.  Apollonius, who had pillaged Jerusalem.  2 Mac. v. 24.

 

Ver. 15.  Wicked apostates.  C. --- They are the most virulent.  H.

 

Ver. 16.  Bethoron, seven leagues north of Jerusalem.

 

Ver. 17.  Fasting.  Judas thus laudably prepared for battle.  C. --- Human frailty fears to engage a strong enemy.  But true confidence in God gives courage and victory.  W.

 

Ver. 25.  Them.  Philip wrote from Jerusalem to Ptolemy, to send aid.  He immediately despatched Nicanor and Gorgias, who doubted not of success, so that they brought the merchants to buy the Jews.  2 Mac. viii.

 

Ver. 29.  Land.  He formerly received three hundred talents from Judea; now he was forced to send money thither.  Sulp. ii.  C. --- Times.  He not only disturbed the Jews, but other nations, which rebelled.  W. --- Though he had plundered the temple, he was still poor: the usual fate of wicked princes.  M. --- Sacrilege seldom prospers.  When Henry VIII. took the revenues of monasteries, he was still needy.  They had amply provided for the poor.  Soon after, however, the poor rates commenced; and in the 39th Eliz. no less than eleven bills were brought into Parliament for their relief.  Dugdale.  See Hist. of Prot.  Ch.  H.

 

Ver. 30.  Liberal.  Epiphanes left many vestiges of his magnificence.  Vaillent. --- The very year when Apollonius was defeated, (Usher, A. 3838.  C.) he exhibited most costly games at Daphne, near Antioch, to excel those of P. Emilius, at Amphipolis.  Yet he disgusted the company with his apeish conduct.  Athen. v. 4.

 

Ver. 31.  Persia.  The Arab. (2 Mac. vii.) says the king had revolted.  C.

 

Ver. 37.  Countries, and took Artaxias, king of Armenia.  S. Jer.

 

Ver. 38.  Ptolomee.  He had been governor of Cyprus, under Philometor, and gave him the revenue only when he was capable of acting for himself.  Polyb. --- He afterwards betrayed the island to Epiphanes.  2 B. viii.

 

Ver. 40.  Emmaus, two leagues west of Jerusalem, (C.) different from that mentioned in S. Luke.  Reland.

 

Ver. 41.  Servants.  Josephus (xii. 11.) adds "chains," which were all turned against them by Judas.  Nicanor had promised ninety Jews for a talent.  2 Mac. viii. 10.  C.

 

Ver. 44.  Pray.  This, with fasting and other penitential works, is the best armour in holy wars of religion.

 

Ver. 46.  Maspha.  Silo had been, and Jerusalem was afterwards, the place for public prayer.  W. --- As the Jews could not go to Jerusalem, they performed their duty as well as they could at Maspha, where Israel had often met.  Judg. xx. and xxi. and 1 K. vii. 5. and x. 17.

 

Ver. 48.  In which.  The Greek text seems corrupt.  By a small change we might render, "while."  C. --- From some passages abused, the pagans sought to establish their religion.  Salien. --- For.  Many Greek copies add, "to inscribe," (M.) or "draw upon them the likenesses of their idols."  H. --- Thus they wished to defile the books, as they had done the temple, (M.) and render them useless to the Jews.  H. --- Syr. "law, before the sanctuary on account of the Gentiles, who wished to make them imitate their idolatry."  C. --- The sacred books would be a good preservative.  H.

 

Ver. 49.  Ornaments, which they had rescued from plunder.  It seems they had also set up a sort of tabernacle, and had some ornament from the sanctuary. --- Days.  They ought then to offer victims, which was now impossible.

 

Ver. 54.  Trumpets.  Protection seemed to be promised.  Num. x. 9.

 

Ver. 56.  Law.  Deut. xx. 5.  C. --- Yet his forces were already few.  H.

 

Ver. 60.  Done.  This godly resolution inspired them with courage, and procured the victory.  W.

 

 








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