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1 Maccabees 9 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 9

Death of Judas. When Demetrius heard that Nicanor and his army had fallen in battle, he again sent Bacchides and Alcimus into the land of Judah, along with the right wing of his army. They took the road to Galilee, and camping opposite the ascent at Arbela, they captured it[a] and killed many people. In the first month of the one hundred and fifty-second year,[b] they encamped against Jerusalem. Then they set out for Berea with twenty thousand men and two thousand cavalry. Judas, with three thousand picked men, had camped at Elasa. When they saw the great number of the troops, they were very much afraid, and many slipped away from the camp, until only eight hundred of them remained.

When Judas saw that his army was melting away just as the battle was imminent, he was brokenhearted, because he had no time to gather them together. In spite of his discouragement he said to those who remained: “Let us go forward to meet our enemies; perhaps we can put up a good fight against them.” They tried to dissuade him, saying: “We certainly cannot. Let us save our own lives now, and come back with our kindred, and then fight against them. Now we are too few.” 10 But Judas said: “Far be it from me to do such a thing as to flee from them! If our time has come, let us die bravely for our kindred and not leave a stain upon our honor!”

11 Then the army of Bacchides moved out of camp and took its position for combat. The cavalry were divided into two squadrons, and the slingers and the archers came on ahead of the army, and in the front line were all the best warriors. Bacchides was on the right wing. 12 Flanked by the two squadrons, the phalanx attacked as they blew their trumpets. Those who were on Judas’ side also blew their trumpets. 13 The earth shook with the noise of the armies, and the battle raged from morning until evening.

14 When Judas saw that Bacchides was on the right, with the main force of his army, all the most stouthearted rallied to him, 15 and the right wing was crushed; Judas pursued them as far as the mountain slopes.[c] 16 But when those on the left wing saw that the right wing was crushed, they closed in behind Judas and those with him. 17 The battle became intense, and many on both sides fell wounded. 18 Then Judas fell, and the rest fled.

19 Jonathan and Simon took their brother Judas and buried him in the tomb of their ancestors at Modein. 20 All Israel wept for him with great lamentation. They mourned for him many days, and they said, 21 “How the mighty one has fallen, the savior of Israel!” 22 The other acts of Judas, his battles, the brave deeds he performed, and his greatness have not been recorded; but they were very many.

III. Leadership of Jonathan

Jonathan Succeeds Judas. 23 After the death of Judas, the lawless raised their heads in every part of Israel, and all kinds of evildoers appeared. 24 In those days there was a very great famine, and the country deserted to them. 25 Bacchides chose renegades and made them masters of the country. 26 These sought out and hunted down the friends of Judas and brought them to Bacchides, who punished and derided them. 27 There was great tribulation in Israel, the like of which had not been since the time prophets ceased to appear among them.

28 Then all the friends of Judas came together and said to Jonathan: 29 “Ever since your brother Judas died, there has been no one like him to lead us against our enemies, both Bacchides and those of our nation who are hostile to us. 30 Now therefore we have chosen you today to be our ruler and leader in his place, to fight our battle.” 31 From that moment Jonathan accepted the leadership, and took the place of Judas his brother.

Bacchides Pursues Jonathan. 32 When Bacchides learned of it, he sought to kill him. 33 But Jonathan and his brother Simon and all who were with him discovered this, and they fled to the wilderness of Tekoa[d] and camped by the waters of the pool of Asphar. [34 ][e]

35 Jonathan sent his brother[f] as leader of the convoy to implore his friends, the Nabateans, to let them deposit with them their great quantity of baggage. 36 But the tribe of Jambri from Medaba[g] made a raid and seized and carried off John and everything he had.

37 After this, word was brought to Jonathan and his brother Simon: “The tribe of Jambri are celebrating a great wedding, and with a large escort they are bringing the bride, the daughter of one of the great princes of Canaan, from Nadabath.” 38 Remembering the blood of John their brother, they went up and hid themselves under cover of the mountain. 39 As they watched there appeared a noisy throng with much baggage; then the bridegroom and his friends and kinsmen had come out to meet them with tambourines and musicians with their instruments. 40 Jonathan and his party rose up against them from their ambush and killed them. Many fell wounded; the rest fled toward the mountain; all their spoils were taken. 41 Thus the wedding was turned into mourning, and the sound of their music into lamentation. 42 Having taken their revenge for the blood of their brother, they returned to the marshes of the Jordan.

43 When Bacchides heard of it, he came on the sabbath to the banks of the Jordan with a large force. 44 Then Jonathan said to his companions, “Let us rise up now and fight for our lives, for today is not like yesterday and the day before. 45 The battle is before us, behind us are the waters of the Jordan, on either side of us, marsh and thickets; there is no way of escape.[h] 46 Cry out now to Heaven so that you may be delivered from the hand of our enemies.” 47 When they joined battle, Jonathan raised his hand to strike Bacchides, but Bacchides backed away from him. 48 Jonathan and those with him jumped into the Jordan and swam across to the other side, but the enemy did not pursue them across the Jordan. 49 About a thousand men on Bacchides’ side fell that day.

50 On returning to Jerusalem, Bacchides built strongholds in Judea: the Jericho fortress, as well as Emmaus, Beth-horon, Bethel, Timnath, Pharathon, and Tephon, with high walls and gates and bars.[i] 51 In each he put a garrison to harass Israel. 52 He fortified the city of Beth-zur, Gazara and the citadel, and put troops in them and stores of provisions. 53 He took as hostages the sons of the leading people of the country and put them in custody in the citadel at Jerusalem.

54 In the one hundred and fifty-third year, in the second month,[j] Alcimus ordered the wall of the inner court of the sanctuary to be torn down, thus destroying the work of the prophets. But he only began to tear it down. 55 Just at that time Alcimus was stricken, and his work was interrupted; his mouth was closed and he was paralyzed, so that he could no longer utter a word or give orders concerning his household. 56 Alcimus died in great agony at that time. 57 Seeing that Alcimus was dead, Bacchides returned to the king, and the land of Judah was at rest for two years.

58 Then all the lawless took counsel and said: “Jonathan and those with him are living in peace and security. Now then, let us have Bacchides return, and he will capture all of them in a single night.” 59 So they went and took counsel with him. 60 When Bacchides was setting out with a large force, he sent letters secretly to all his allies in Judea, telling them to seize Jonathan and his companions. They were not able to do this, however, because their plan became known. 61 In fact, Jonathan’s men seized about fifty of the men of the country who were leaders in the conspiracy and put them to death.

62 Then Jonathan and those with him, along with Simon, withdrew to Bethbasi[k] in the wilderness; he rebuilt its ruins and fortified it. 63 When Bacchides learned of this, he gathered together his whole force and sent word to those who were in Judea. 64 He came and camped before Bethbasi, and constructing siege engines, he fought against it for many days.

65 Leaving his brother Simon in the city, Jonathan, accompanied by a small group of men, went out into the countryside. 66 He struck down Odomera and his kindred and the tribe of Phasiron in their encampment; these men had begun to attack and they were going up with their forces. 67 Simon and those with him then sallied forth from the city and set fire to the siege engines. 68 They fought against Bacchides, and he was crushed. They caused him great distress, because the enterprise he had planned was in vain. 69 He was enraged with the lawless men who had advised him to invade the province. He killed many of them and resolved to return to his own country.

70 Jonathan learned of this and sent ambassadors to agree on peace with him and to obtain the release of the prisoners. 71 He agreed to do as Jonathan asked. He swore an oath to him that he would never try to do him any harm for the rest of his life; 72 and he released to him the prisoners he had previously taken from the land of Judah. Thereupon he returned to his own land and never came into their territory again. 73 Then the sword ceased from Israel. Jonathan settled in Michmash;[l] he began to judge the people and he eliminated the renegades from Israel.


  1. 9:2 They took the road…Arbela, they captured it: this passage is restored, in part, by conjectural emendation. The present Greek text could be translated, “They took the road to Gilgal, and camping opposite Mesaloth at Arbela, they captured it.” But Arbela (modern Khirbet Irbid) was in Galilee, on a high hill overlooking the western shore of the Sea of Galilee. Gilgal, on the contrary, was in the Jordan valley near Jericho. “Mesaloth” is probably a corrupt form of a Hebrew word meaning “steps, ascent.” It is possible, however, that all these terms referred to places in the Judean hills.
  2. 9:3 The first month of the one hundred and fifty-second year: April/May 160 B.C., by the Temple calendar.
  3. 9:15 As far as the mountain slopes: conjectural emendation. The Greek text has “as far as Mount Azotus”; this is most unlikely. Apparently the Greek translator mistook the Hebrew word ashdot, “slopes,” for ashdod, “Azotus.”
  4. 9:33 Tekoa: home of the prophet Amos in the wild country above the Dead Sea, southeast of Jerusalem.
  5. 9:34 Omitted, it is a dittography of v. 43.
  6. 9:35 Jonathan sent his brother: this was John who was called Gaddi (2:2; cf. 9:36, 38).
  7. 9:36 Medaba: northeast of the Dead Sea.
  8. 9:45 Jonathan’s force may have been trapped in one of the many oxbows of the lower Jordan. Bacchides had crossed and caught them still on the east bank.
  9. 9:50 These sites constitute a ring on the edges of the province of Judea.
  10. 9:54 In the one hundred and fifty-third year, in the second month: May, 159 B.C. The work of the prophets: probably Haggai and Zechariah, who were instrumental in building the Second Temple after the Babylonian exile; cf. Hg 1:12–14; Zec 4:8–10; Ezr 5:1–2.
  11. 9:62 Bethbasi: two miles east of Bethlehem and six miles north of Tekoa.
  12. 9:73 Michmash, southeast of Bethel, famous for the exploits of Jonathan, son of Saul; see 1 Sm 14. It was Jonathan’s base from 157 to 152 B.C. Began to judge: exercise the governing authority as in the Book of Judges. With Jerusalem and the garrison towns (v. 50) firmly in Seleucid hands, Jonathan’s freedom of action was greatly restricted.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Song of Songs 3 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 3

Loss and Discovery

W On my bed at night I sought him[a]
    whom my soul loves—
I sought him but I did not find him.
“Let me rise then and go about the city,[b]
    through the streets and squares;
Let me seek him whom my soul loves.”
    I sought him but I did not find him.
The watchmen found me,
    as they made their rounds in the city:
    “Him whom my soul loves—have you seen him?”
Hardly had I left them
    when I found him whom my soul loves.[c]
I held him and would not let him go
    until I had brought him to my mother’s house,
    to the chamber of her who conceived me.
I adjure you, Daughters of Jerusalem,
    by the gazelles and the does of the field,
Do not awaken or stir up love
    until it is ready.

Solomon’s Wedding Procession

D Who is this coming up from the desert,[d]
    like columns of smoke
Perfumed with myrrh and frankincense,
    with all kinds of exotic powders?
See! it is the litter of Solomon;
    sixty valiant men surround it,
    of the valiant men of Israel:
All of them expert with the sword,
    skilled in battle,
Each with his sword at his side
    against the terrors[e] of the night.
King Solomon made himself an enclosed litter
    of wood from Lebanon.
10 He made its columns of silver,
    its roof of gold,
Its seat of purple cloth,
    its interior lovingly fitted.[f]
Daughters of Jerusalem, 11 go out
    and look upon King Solomon
In the crown with which his mother has crowned him
    on the day of his marriage,
    on the day of the joy of his heart.


  1. 3:1–5 See the parallel in 5:2–8.
  2. 3:2 The motif of seeking/finding here and elsewhere is used by later Christian and Jewish mystics to speak of the soul’s search for the divine.
  3. 3:4 Whom my soul loves: the fourfold repetition of this phrase in vv. 1–4 highlights the depth of the woman’s emotion and desire. Mother’s house: cf. 8:2; a place of safety and intimacy, one which implicitly signifies approval of the lovers’ relationship.
  4. 3:6–11 This may be an independent poem. In context it portrays the lover as King Solomon, escorted by sixty armed men, coming in royal procession to meet a bride.
  5. 3:8 Terrors: cf. Ps 91:5; perhaps bandits lying in wait, unidentified dangers lurking in darkness.
  6. 3:10 Lovingly fitted: translation uncertain. The phrase “Daughters of Jerusalem” is read here with the following verse.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Luke 9:1-26 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 9

The Mission of the Twelve.[a] He summoned the Twelve and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal [the sick]. He said to them, “Take nothing for the journey,[b] neither walking stick, nor sack, nor food, nor money, and let no one take a second tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there and leave from there. And as for those who do not welcome you, when you leave that town, shake the dust from your feet[c] in testimony against them.” Then they set out and went from village to village proclaiming the good news and curing diseases everywhere.

Herod’s Opinion of Jesus. [d]Herod the tetrarch[e] heard about all that was happening, and he was greatly perplexed because some were saying, “John has been raised from the dead”; others were saying, “Elijah has appeared”; still others, “One of the ancient prophets has arisen.” [f]But Herod said, “John I beheaded. Who then is this about whom I hear such things?” And he kept trying to see him.

The Return of the Twelve and the Feeding of the Five Thousand. 10 When the apostles returned, they explained to him what they had done. He took them and withdrew in private to a town called Bethsaida. 11 The crowds, meanwhile, learned of this and followed him. He received them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and he healed those who needed to be cured. 12 As the day was drawing to a close, the Twelve approached him and said, “Dismiss the crowd so that they can go to the surrounding villages and farms and find lodging and provisions; for we are in a deserted place here.” 13 He said to them, “Give them some food yourselves.” They replied, “Five loaves and two fish are all we have, unless we ourselves go and buy food for all these people.” 14 Now the men there numbered about five thousand. Then he said to his disciples, “Have them sit down in groups of [about] fifty.” 15 They did so and made them all sit down. 16 Then taking[g] the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing over them, broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd. 17 They all ate and were satisfied. And when the leftover fragments were picked up, they filled twelve wicker baskets.

Peter’s Confession About Jesus.[h] 18 Once when Jesus was praying in solitude,[i] and the disciples were with him, he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” 19 They said in reply, “John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, ‘One of the ancient prophets has arisen.’” 20 Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said in reply, “The Messiah of God.”[j] 21 He rebuked them and directed them not to tell this to anyone.

The First Prediction of the Passion. 22 He said, “The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.”

The Conditions of Discipleship. 23 Then he said to all, “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily[k] and follow me. 24 For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. 25 What profit is there for one to gain the whole world yet lose or forfeit himself? 26 Whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.


  1. 9:1–6 Armed with the power and authority that Jesus himself has been displaying in the previous episodes, the Twelve are now sent out to continue the work that Jesus has been performing throughout his Galilean ministry: (1) proclaiming the kingdom (Lk 4:43; 8:1); (2) exorcising demons (Lk 4:33–37, 41; 8:26–39) and (3) healing the sick (Lk 4:38–40; 5:12–16, 17–26; 6:6–10; 7:1–10, 17, 22; Lk 8:40–56).
  2. 9:3 Take nothing for the journey: the absolute detachment required of the disciple (Lk 14:33) leads to complete reliance on God (Lk 12:22–31).
  3. 9:5 Shake the dust from your feet: see note on Mt 10:14.
  4. 9:7–56 This section in which Luke gathers together incidents that focus on the identity of Jesus is introduced by a question that Herod is made to ask in this gospel: “Who then is this about whom I hear such things?”(Lk 9:9) In subsequent episodes, Luke reveals to the reader various answers to Herod’s question: Jesus is one in whom God’s power is present and who provides for the needs of God’s people (Lk 9:10–17); Peter declares Jesus to be “the Messiah of God” (Lk 9:18–21); Jesus says he is the suffering Son of Man (Lk 9:22, 43–45); Jesus is the Master to be followed, even to death (Lk 9:23–27); Jesus is God’s son, his Chosen One (Lk 9:28–36).
  5. 9:7 Herod the tetrarch: see note on Lk 3:1.
  6. 9:9 And he kept trying to see him: this indication of Herod’s interest in Jesus prepares for Lk 13:31–33 and for Lk 23:8–12 where Herod’s curiosity about Jesus’ power to perform miracles remains unsatisfied.
  7. 9:16 Then taking…: the actions of Jesus recall the institution of the Eucharist in Lk 22:19; see also note on Mt 14:19.
  8. 9:18–22 This incident is based on Mk 8:27–33, but Luke has eliminated Peter’s refusal to accept Jesus as suffering Son of Man (Mk 8:32) and the rebuke of Peter by Jesus (Mk 8:33). Elsewhere in the gospel, Luke softens the harsh portrait of Peter and the other apostles found in his Marcan source (cf. Lk 22:39–46, which similarly lacks a rebuke of Peter that occurs in the source, Mk 14:37–38).
  9. 9:18 When Jesus was praying in solitude: see note on Lk 3:21.
  10. 9:20 The Messiah of God: on the meaning of this title in first-century Palestinian Judaism, see notes on Lk 2:11 and on Mt 16:13–20 and Mk 8:27–30.
  11. 9:23 Daily: this is a Lucan addition to a saying of Jesus, removing the saying from a context that envisioned the imminent suffering and death of the disciple of Jesus (as does the saying in Mk 8:34–35) to one that focuses on the demands of daily Christian existence.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.


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