Apocrypha / Deuterocanonical Books

2 Machabees (Douay-Reims Bible)

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15

Cruelty and Violence
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Dwindling in Unbelief


2 Machabees: Absurdity

  1. The amazing rock-burning "thick water" that spontaneously bursts into flame! 1:20-32

  2. "It is a foolish thing to make a long prologue, and to be short in the story itself."
    Seems like a strange thing to say after making a long prologue. 2:33

  3. God sent a horse, a terrible rider, and two beautiful young men in comely attire to deal with Heliodorus. The horse kicked him, the young men scourged him, and God struck him speechless. Heliodorus's friends begged the high priest Onias to ask God to undo the damage. So Onias offered a sacrifice and the young men told him to thank God he didn't kill him. 3:24-33

  4. When the wicked, impious, and abominable wretch, Jason, became the Jewish high priest he set up brothel houses and (horrors!) places of exercise. 4:7-12

  5. "The priests ... hastened to be partakers of the games, and ... the exercise of the discus ... They esteemed the Grecian glories." 4:14-15

  6. "Jason ... having the mind of a cruel tyrant, and the rage of a savage beast." 4:24-25

  7. When King Antiochus (who according to 2 Machabees 1:16 was already dead) heard about Onias's death, he was "moved to pity, shed tears, remembering the sobriety ad modesty of the deceased." 4:37
  8. Horses and soldiers appear in the sky above Jerusalem, and stay there for forty days. 5:2-3

  9. The evil, wicked Greeks send an old man to Jerusalem with one important mission: destroy the faith of the Jews. He defiles the temple, causes the Jewish women to go wild in the holy places, and forces an old Jew to eat pork. When he refuses, he is killed (after his Jewish friends try to save him through "wicked pity"). 6:1-31

  10. A mother and her seven sons are tortured to death for refusing to eat pork. The mother watches and encourages her sons to "die manfully" as, one by one, their flesh is ripped off and they are fried in the king's frying pan. Finally, the king finished the torture fest off with the mother.
    God enjoyed the tortured death of the seven sons just as much as their mother. After all, they deserved what they got. Still God will torment the tormentor (and all of his descendants) even more. 7:1-42

  11. Antiochus drives his chariot non-stop to Jerusalem. But before he gets there, God gives him "an incurable and invisible plague" that caused "a dreadful pain in his bowels ... and bitter torments of the inner parts." 9:1-5

  12. "And indeed very justly, seeing he had tormented the bowels of others."
    (If you torment the bowels of others, God will torment your bowels as well.) 9:6

    While Antiochus suffered from his God-given bowel disease, worms swarmed out of his body, "his flesh fell off, and the filthiness of his smell was noisome." No one could get near him because of the "intolerable stench." 9:9-12

  13. Antiochus becomes a Jew and prays to God for mercy. But God ignored his prayers and killed him anyway. (See verse 28.) 9:13-17, 10:4

  14. "They besought the Lord, lying prostrate on the ground, that they not be delivered up to barbarians and blasphemous men." 10:4

  15. Judas and his companions sprinkled dirt on their heads, gird their loins with haircloth, and begged God to help them kill some more Gentiles. 10:25-26

  16. When the Jews attacked the Gentiles they had God on their side. To prove it, God sent from heaven five men on horses, who cast darts and fireballs at the Gentiles, confounding them with blindness and filling them with trouble, and killing 20,500 soldiers and 600 horsemen. 10:28-31

  17. Timotheus fled to a strong hold, where he and his companions "blasphemed exceedingly, and cast forth abominable words. Twenty of Judas's young men were especially offended by their bad language, so they burned the blasphemers alive. After that, they blessed the Lord who helped them burn Gentiles alive. 10:32-38

  18. When Lysias heard about the slaughter of the Greeks by Judas Machabeus (see the last chapter), he gathered 80,000 men and 80 elephants to fight the Jews. 11:1-4

  19. "Machabeus and ... all the people besought the Lord with lamentations and tears, that he would send a good angel to save Israel." 11:6

  20. God sent an angel from heaven (a horseman "in white clothing, with golden armour, shaking a spear"). 11:8-10

  21. The Jews attacked like lions, killing 11,000 footmen and 1,600 horsemen. The Greek survivors ran away naked, including Lysias. 11:11-12

  22. Lysias figured out why he couldn't defeat the Jews: they had God on their side. So he agreed to persuade the king to be their friend. 11:13-14

  23. God ("the King of Kings") inspired Antiochus and Lysias to kill Menelaus (the "sinner", "transgressor", and "sacrilegious wretch") by throwing him off a 75-foot tower. 13:4-8

  24. Judas commanded the people to pray day and night, lying prostrate on the ground for three days continually." 13:10-12

  25. "So committing all to God ... having exhorted his people to fight manfully" using the watchword "the victory of God", Judas killed 4000 men and "the greatest of the elephants." "All this was done ... by the protection and help of the Lord." 13:14-17

  26. The chief priest (Alcimus) defiled himself by "mingling with the heathens." He (correctly) accused Judas and his followers of causing wars and seditions against Antiochus. 14:3-10

  27. When Nicanor "the comander over the elephants" came, the Jews threw dirt on their heads. 14:12-15

  28. When Razias, the father of the Jews, was about to be captured, he tried to kill himself with his sword. As he was dying, he prayed to God while grabbing his bowels with both hands and throwing them at the crowd -- thereby showing for Catholics everywhere that God approves of suicide. 14:37-46

  29. Nicanor decided to attack the Jews on the Sabbath day, denying the existence of a God who commanded the Sabbath day to be kept. 15:1-3

  30. But Judas trusted in God, telling the people "a dream worthy to be believed." 15:7-11

  31. After Onias prayed for the people, Jeremiah the prophet showed up, delivering to Judas a gift from God: a holy, golden, gentile-killing sword. 15:12-16

  32. The people were inspired by Judas to fight -- not to protect their families and friends, but for the sake of "the holiness of the temple." 15:17-18

  33. Judas reminds the people of how good God is at killing people. After all, didn't he send an angel to kill 185,000 sleeping soldiers? Maybe, if they ask him nicely, he'll send another "good angel" to terrorize and kill blasphemers again. 15:21-24

  34. So the Jews prayed with their hearts and fought with their hands, killing 35,000, while "being greatly cheered with the presence of God." 15:26-27

  35. When the Jews found out that Nicanor had been killed, "they made a great noise and Blessed the Almighty Lord." 15:28-29

  36. Judas showed everyone Nicanor's head and "wicked hand." Then he had his tongue cut out and fed, piece by piece, to the birds. Finally, he hung his hand and head over the temple and castle, respectively, as "an evident and manifest sign of the help of God." 15:32-35

  37. The author of 2 Machabees claims neither to be inspired by God nor inerrant. 15:39

  38. It is hurtful to drink always wine, or always water, but pleasant to use sometimes the one, and sometimes the other." 15:40