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secute this horrid purpose, he was struck with an incurable disease in the midst of his journey; but he was determined that nothing should stop him, and ordered the driver of his chariot to redouble his speed, by which the carriage was overturted, and Antiochus so miserably bruised, that he was obliged to be confined to his bed in a little town on the road. Here he was tor. mented with the most excruciating pains, and all the horrors of conscious wickedness, and in a short time died. Thus, according to the prediction of the prophet*, as he was going forth with great fury, to destroy, and utterly to make away many, he came to his end with none to help him.
How different was the latter end of the life of this tyrant, to that of ine good Mattathias ! We may here perceive the justice of God taking exemplary venge. ance on so notorious a sinner.
THE HISTORY OF JUDAS MACCABEUS, UNDER TAL
REIGN OF ANTIOCHUS EUPATOR.
ANTIOCHUS EPIPHANES was succeeded by his son Antiochus ; this prince was very young, and his father before his death recommended the care of him to one of his favourites, named 'Philipt, whom he also appointed regent of the kingdom during his son's minority: but when Philip came to Antioch, he found his office filled by Lgoian, who, as soon as he heard of the king's death, took the young prince then under his tuition, and placed him on the throne, giving him the name of Antiochus Eupator. Philip finding himself too weak to contend with Lysias, fled to Egypt; but was
* Dan, xi. 45.
+ Macc. vi. 14.
disappointed in his hopes of getting help from thence, as that kingdom was in the utmost confusion, occasioned by the disputes between Ptolemy Philometer, and his brother Physcon ; who were of such opposite disposi. tions, that it was-impossible harmony should long subsist between them. Philip, not meeting with success, returned into Syria, and seized upon Antioch. At this time Ptolemy Macron*, from being an enemy to the Jews, became their friend, on which he was called traitor by the Syrians ; and indeed deservedly, because he had treacherously delivered the island of Cyprus, of which he had been appointed governor by Ptolemy Philometer, to Antiochus Epiphanes. Ptolemy Macron was deprived of his government, and Lysias appointed in his room : when the former found he had not the means of living as he had been accustomed to do, he came to the desperate resolution of poisoning himself.
In the mean time Judas Maccabeus marched out with his forces, to chastise the neighbouring nations, who were confederated to cut off the Jews ; and gained several memorable victories, particularly over the Edomites t, who with Gorgias, the Syrian general, in conjunction, opposed him with an army consisting of twenty thousand men, who were all put to the sword. Judas had likewise great success against the Ammonites, who had exercised many cruelties towards the
* 2 Macc. x. 13. † The Idumea, or Edom, mentioned above, was a part of the land of Israel, formerly belonging to the inheritance of the tribes of Judah and Simeon, which the Edomites, who were driven out of their own country, had taken possession of during the Babylonian captivity. After their coming into this country, Hebron, which had formerly been the metropolis of Judah,,became the metropolis of the Idumeans,
Jews, Jęws; and also obtained a memorable victory over Ti. mnotheus *, who was governor in the land of the Ammonites, the same whom Judas so wonderfully defeated two years before. . In this battle fell,; of Timotheus's army, twenty thousand five hundred foot, and six hun. dred horsemen: Timotheus fled to Gazera, where he was slain ; and Chereas, his brother, who was governor of the place, and Apollophanes, another leader of the army, shared the same fate.
The theathen nations that lived about the land of Gilead, hearing of their defeat, resolved to attempt the destruction of all the Jews in those parts. The $ inhabitants of Tyre, Sidon, Ptolemais, and other places, deterinjned at the same time to cut off the Jews of Galilee; but the Jews all wrote to Judas for aid, and through the mercy of God they were delivered from the danger whigh threatened them. Judas y, by the advice of the Sanhedrim, or great council, had divided his army into three parts, each consisting of eight thousand men; with the first he and his brother Jonathan relieved the Gileadites; and with the second Simon, another of his brothers, assisted the Galileans; and the third were left at Jerusalem under the command of Joseph and Azarias, two principal leaders, for the defence of that city and adjacent country. The two parties who went forth on expeditions, returned with honour and triumph ; for they happily delivered many of their brethren who were shut up in prison in different cities, in order to be all massacred in one day; put the enemy to flight whereever they went, and slew an astonishing number of them. Simon || then collected together all those he had rescued from their foes, and carried them with him into
* % Mirc. x. 24. + 1 Macc. v. 9.
i Macc. y. 16.
| Ibid. 15. l Ibid. 21.
the land of Judea, and they were so dispersed, as to re-people the places which had been desolated by Antiochus Epiphanes.
Joseph*and Azarias hearing of the noble exploits performed by Judas and Jonathan, being ambitious of fame, contrary to the orders which had been given them by Judas at his departure, they led forth their forces on an ill-projected expedition against Jamnia, a sea port on the Mediterranean; but Gorgias falling upon their whole army, slew about two thousand men. Thus this rash attempt ended in the confusion of those who undertook it; but Judas and his brethren were honoured and renowned in the sight of all Israel, and even amongst the heathens.;
Demetrius, the son of Seleucus Philopater, hearing of the death of Antiochus Epiphanes, and the suceession of Eupator his son to the throne of Syria, applied to the senate for assistance in regaining the kingdom of Syria, . which properly belonged to him : but they, consulting the interest of Rome, resolved to support the claim of Eupator, and sent three ambassadors into Syria to settle his'affairs, and regulate them according to the articles: of peace which had been made with his grandfather Antiochus the Great.
Lysiastenraged at the great success of Judas and his brethren, collected an army, consisting of eighty thóik-_sand men, with all the horse of the kingdom, and eighty elephants, and marched with this great power to invade Judea. He began the war with the siege of Bethsura; but Judas falling upon him, slew of his army eleven ; thousand foot and sixteen hundred horsemen, and put all the rest to flight ; upon which Lysiás, grown. weary of so unprosperous a' war, came to terms of peace with:
* 1 Mucc, v.56.
+ 2 Mace, xi,
Judas; and Antiochus ratified the treaty, granting the Jews liberty to live every where according to their own laws. In this affair the ambassadors from the Romans were very serviceable to the Jews.
But this peace was not of long continuance; for those who governed in the neighbouring provinces, not being pleased with it, broke' it as soon as Lysias was gone to Antioch, and took all opportunities of renewing their former hostilities against the Jews; but Judas overcame them, and they were soon obliged to sue for peace.
In the mean time Timotheus, having drawn all his forces together to the amount of one hundred and twenty thousand foot, and two thousand five hundred horse, pitched his camp at a place called Raphen, lying on the river Jabboc,
Here Judas found him with his numerous army, fell upon him, and having gained the victory, slew thirty thousand -men. Timotheus, * as he fled, was taken prisoner ; but on his promise to set at liberty many Jews who were captives in places under his command, he was released: a great part of the remainder of the vanquished army fled to Carnaim, where Judas continuing the pursuit, put numbers to the sword; and then gathering together all the race of Israel that were in the land of Gilead, he took them with him in his return to Judea, in order to do as Simon had done the year before. Shortly after he returned at Jerusalem then he and all his company went up to the temple, and
gave thanks to God for the great success which he had graciously given them ; for they had not lost one man, notwithstanding the dangerous enterprises they had been gaged in. This return was out the time
* 2 Macc, xii. 24, 25.