Jdt 61 But when they had ceased speaking, it happened that Holofernes, being very indignant, said to Achior: 2 “Because you have prophesied to us, saying that the people of Israel may be defended by their God, and so as to reveal to you that there is no God, except Nebuchadnezzar: 3 when we will have struck them all as one man, then you also will pass away with them by the sword of the Assyrians, and all Israel will perish into perdition with you. 4 And you will be shown that Nebuchadnezzar is the lord of the whole earth. And then, the sword of my army will pass through your sides, and, being stabbed, you will fall among the wounded of Israel, and you will breathe no longer, when you have been destroyed with them. 5 And furthermore, if you consider your prophecy to be true, do not let your countenance fall, and let the paleness that has taken hold of your face depart from you, if you claim that these my words cannot be fulfilled. 6 But so that you may know that you will experience these things together with them, behold, from this hour you will be associated with their people, so that, when they receive the punishment that they deserve from my sword, you will fall under the same vengeance.” 7 Then Holofernes instructed his servants to apprehend Achior, and to lead him through to Bethulia, and to deliver him into the hands of the sons of Israel. 8 And, taking him, the servants of Holofernes traveled through the plains. But when they approached close to the mountains, the slingers of stones went forth against them. 9 Then, diverting by the side of the mountain, they tied Achior, hands and feet, to a tree, and so they abandoned him, bound with ropes, and they returned to their lord. 10 Thereafter, the sons of Israel, descending from Bethulia, came to him. Releasing him, they brought him to Bethulia. And so, standing him in the midst of the people, they interrogated him as to what event caused the Assyrians to abandon him, bound. 11 In those days, the rulers of that place were Uzziah, the son of Micah of the tribe of Simeon, and Chabris, also called Gothoniel. 12 And so, in the midst of the elders and in the sight of everyone, Achior explained all that he had said in reply to the questioning of Holofernes, and in what manner the people of Holofernes wanted to have him killed because of this word, 13 and how Holofernes himself, being angry, had ordered him to be handed over to the Israelites, for this reason: so that when he would prevail over the sons of Israel, then he would also command Achior himself to be executed by diverse torments, because he had said that the God of heaven is their defender. 14 And when Achior had declared all these things, all the people fell on their faces, adoring the Lord, and, communing together with mourning and weeping, they poured out their prayers with one mind to the Lord, 15 saying: “O Lord, God of heaven and earth, behold their arrogance, and gaze upon our humility, and attend to the face of your holy ones, and reveal that you do not abandon those who rely on you, and that those who rely on themselves and who glory in their own strength, you humble.” 16 And so, when their weeping was ended, and the prayer of the people throughout the entire day was completed, they consoled Achior, 17 saying: “The God of our fathers, whose power you have predicted, will give to you this in return: that you, instead, will see the destruction of them. 18 Truly, when the Lord our God will give this freedom to his servants, may God also be with you in our midst, so that, just as it pleases you, everyone who is with you may keep company with us.” 19 Then Uzziah, after the council was ended, received him into his own house, and he made him a great supper. 20 And all the elders were invited; together they refreshed themselves at the completion of their fast. 21 In truth, after this, all the people were called together, and they prayed throughout the entire night within the assembly, petitioning help from the God of Israel.
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