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New American Bible

2002 11 11
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Chapter 15


On hearing what had happened, those still in their tents were amazed,


and overcome with fear and trembling. No one kept ranks any longer; they scattered in all directions, and fled along every road, both through the valley and in the mountains.


Those also who were stationed in the mountain district around Bethulia took to flight. Then all the Israelite warriors overwhelmed them.


Uzziah sent messengers to Betomasthaim, to Choba and Kona, and to the whole country of Israel to report what had happened, that all might fall upon the enemy and destroy them.


On hearing this, all the Israelites, with one accord, attacked them and cut them down as far as Choba. Even those from Jerusalem and the rest of the mountain region took part in this, for they too had been notified of the happenings in the camp of their enemies. The Gileadites and the Galileans struck the enemy's flanks with great slaughter, even beyond Damascus and its territory.


The remaining inhabitants of Bethulia swept down on the camp of the Assyrians, plundered it, and acquired great riches.


The Israelites who returned from the slaughter took possession of what was left, till the towns and villages in the mountains and on the plain were crammed with the enormous quantity of booty they had seized.


The high priest Joakim and the elders of the Israelites, who dwelt in Jerusalem, came to see for themselves the good things that the Lord had done for Israel, and to meet and congratulate Judith.


1 When they had visited her, all with one accord blessed her, saying: "You are the glory of Jerusalem, the surpassing joy of Israel; You are the splendid boast of our people.


With your own hand you have done all this; You have done good to Israel, and God is pleased with what you have wrought. May you be blessed by the Lord Almighty forever and ever!" And all the people answered, "Amen!"


For thirty days the whole populace plundered the camp, giving Judith the tent of Holofernes, with all his silver, his couches, his dishes, and all his furniture, which she accepted. She harnessed her mules, hitched her wagons to them, and loaded these things on them.


All the women of Israel gathered to see her; and they blessed her and performed a dance in her honor. She took branches in her hands and distributed them to the women around her,


and she and the other women crowned themselves with garlands of olive leaves. At the head of all the people, she led the women in the dance, while the men of Israel followed in their armor, wearing garlands and singing hymns.


Judith led all Israel in this song of thanksgiving, and the people swelled this hymn of praise:



1 [9] You are the glory of Jerusalem, the surpassing joy of Israel; you are the splendid boast of our people: these words are used in the liturgy of the church in regard to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

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