Judith 8Good News Translation (GNT)
Judith, the Israelite Widow
8 At that time, Judith heard about Uzziah's decision. She was the daughter of Merari, the granddaughter of Ox and the great-granddaughter of Joseph. Joseph's ancestors were Oziel, Elkiah, Ananias, Gideon, Raphaim, Ahitub, Elijah, Hilkiah, Eliab, Nathanael, Salamiel, Sarasadai, and Israel. 2 Judith's husband Manasseh, who belonged to the same tribe and clan, had died during the barley harvest. 3 He had suffered a sunstroke while in the fields supervising the farm workers and later died in bed at home in Bethulia. He was buried in the family tomb in the field between Dothan and Balamon.
4 For three years and four months, Judith had lived as a widow. 5 In her grief she built a little shelter on the roof of her house and lived there, wearing sackcloth. 6 She fasted during that entire period except when fasting was forbidden: the day before the Sabbath and the Sabbath itself, the eve of the New Moon Festival and the Festival itself, and all the festivals and holidays observed by the people of Israel. 7 Judith was a very beautiful woman. Her husband had left her gold and silver, servants and slaves, livestock and fields. She continued to supervise the estate, 8 and no one ever said anything bad about Judith. She was a very religious woman.
Judith Meets with the Town Officials
9 Judith heard how the people were complaining bitterly against Uzziah, now that the water shortage had broken their morale. She learned that in answer to their complaints he had promised to surrender the town to the Assyrians after five days. 10 Judith sent a slave, the woman who managed her business affairs, to invite Uzziah,[a] Chabris, and Charmis, the town officials, to her home.
11 When the officials arrived, Judith said to them,
21 If our town is taken by the enemy, the entire region of Judah will then fall, and our Temple in Jerusalem will be looted. And God will make us pay with our lives for allowing the Temple to be defiled. 22 He will hold us responsible for the slaughter and captivity of our people and for the destruction of the land we have inherited. We will be despised and mocked by the people in those nations to which we will be taken as slaves. 23 We are not going to win the favor of our enemies by surrendering to them now.[b] If we do surrender, the Lord our God will see that we are put to shame.
24 No, my friends, we should set an example for our own people. Not only their lives, but the fate of the Temple and the altar depend on us. 25 The Lord our God is putting us to the test, just as he tested our ancestors, and we should be thankful for that. 26 Remember how he put Abraham and Isaac to the test, and what happened to Jacob while he was working as a shepherd for his uncle Laban in Mesopotamia. 27 God is not testing our loyalty as severely as he did theirs. God is not sending this punishment on us as revenge, but as a warning to us who worship him.
28 Then Uzziah answered Judith,
32 All right, Judith replied,
35 Uzziah and the other officials said to her,
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