Second Maccabees Chapters (English Bible : Catholic Public Domain Version – CPDV)
1 But Maccabeus and those who were with him, the Lord protecting them, even recovered the temple and the city.
2 Then he demolished the altars, which the foreigners had constructed in the streets, and likewise the shrines.
3 And, having purged the temple, they made another altar. And, taking glowing stones from the fire, they began to offer sacrifices again after two years, and they set out incense, and lamps, and the bread of the Presence.
4 Having done these things, they petitioned the Lord, lying prostrate on the ground, lest they should fall once more into such evils, but also, if they should at any time sin, that they might be chastised by him more mildly, and not be delivered over to barbarians and blasphemous men.
5 Then, on the day that the temple had been polluted by the foreigners, it happened on the same day that the purification was accomplished, on the twenty-fifth day of the month, which was Kislev.
6 And they celebrated for eight days with joy, in the manner of the Feast of Tabernacles, remembering that, a little time before, they had celebrated the solemn days of the Feast of Tabernacles in mountains and caves, in the manner of wild beasts.
7 Because of this, they now preferred to carry boughs and green branches and palms, for him who had prospered the cleansing of his place.
8 And they decreed a common precept and decree, that all the people of the Jews should keep those days every year.
9 Now certainly Antiochus, who was called illustrious, held himself to be so at the passing of his life.
10 But next we will describe what happened with Eupator, the son of the impious Antiochus, abridging the evils which happened in the wars.
11 For when he assumed the kingdom, he appointed, over the affairs of the kingdom, a certain Lysias, leader of the Phoenician and Syrian military.
12 For Ptolemy, who was called Macer, decided to be strict in justice toward the Jews, especially because of the iniquity that had been done to them, and to deal with them peacefully.
13 But, for this reason, he was accused before Eupator by his friends, and was frequently called a traitor. For he had deserted Cyprus, which Philometor had entrusted to him. And so, transferring to Antiochus the illustrious, he even withdrew from him. And he ended his life by poison.
14 But Gorgias, when he was the leader of the places, taking to him new arrivals, frequently made war against the Jews.
15 In truth, the Jews, who held the strategic fortresses, took in those who were fleeing from Jerusalem, and they attempted to make war.
16 In fact, those who were with Maccabeus, petitioning the Lord through prayers to be their helper, made a forceful attack upon the fortresses of the Idumeans.
17 And, persevering with much force, they obtained the places, killing those they met, and cutting down in all no less than twenty thousand.
18 Yet certain ones, when they had fled into two well-fortified towers, gave all appearance of fighting back.
19 So Maccabeus left behind Simon and Joseph, and likewise Zachaeus, and those who were with them, to fight against them. And since those who were with them were sufficient in number, he turned back to those who attacked more forcefully.
20 In truth, those who were with Simon, being led by avarice, were persuaded by money from certain ones who were in the towers. And accepting seventy thousand didrachmas, they allowed certain ones to flee.
21 But when what was done had been reported to Maccabeus, gathering together the leaders of the people, he accused those who had sold their brothers for money, having sent away their adversaries.
22 Therefore, he executed these who had acted as traitors, and he quickly captured the two towers.
23 And so, having success in arms and in all things that he took in hand, he destroyed more than twenty thousand in the two fortresses.
24 And Timothy, who had been overcome by the Jews before, calling together a multitude of foreign troops and gathering horsemen from Asia, arrived as if he would capture Judea with arms.
25 But Maccabeus, and those who were with him, as he was approaching, beseeched the Lord, sprinkling dirt on their heads and wrapping their waists with haircloth.
26 And lying prostrate at the pedestal of the altar, they beseeched him to be forgiving to them, but to be an enemy to their enemies, and an adversary to their adversaries, just as the law says.
27 And so, after prayer, taking up arms, they proceeded further from the city, and, reaching close proximity to the enemies, they settled in.
28 But, as soon as the sun rose, both sides joined battle: these ones having the guarantee of victory and success by the strength of the Lord, yet the others having courage as their leader in battle.
29 But, while they were fighting vehemently, to the adversaries there appeared from heaven five men on horses, which were adorned with bridles of gold, providing leadership to the Jews.
30 Two of them, having Maccabeus in the middle and surrounding him with their weapons, kept him safe. But, at the enemy, they cast darts and lightning, so that they fell down, being both confused with blindness and filled with disturbances.
31 Moreover, there were slain twenty thousand five hundred, along with six hundred horsemen.
32 In fact, Timothy fled away to Gazara, to a fortified stronghold, where Chaereas was in charge.
33 Then Maccabeus, and those who were with him, joyfully besieged the stronghold for four days.
34 But those who were inside, trusting to the strength of the place, spoke evil without limit and cast out nefarious words.
35 But when the fifth day began to dawn, twenty youths of those who were with Maccabeus, inflamed in soul because of the blasphemy, manfully approached to the wall, and, advancing with fierce courage, ascended it.
36 Moreover, others also getting up after them, went to set fire to the towers and the gates, and to burn the blasphemers alive.
37 Then, having continued throughout two days to lay waste to the fortress, they killed Timothy, who was found hiding himself in a certain place. And they also killed his brother Chaereas, and Apollophanes.
38 When this was done, they blessed the Lord with hymns and confessions, who had done great things in Israel and had given them the victory.