2When Arsaces, the king of Persia and Media, heard that Demetrius had come into his borders, he sent one of his princes to take him alive.
4The land had rest all the days of Simon. He sought the good of his nation. His authority and his honor was pleasing to them all his days.
5Amid all his honors, he took Joppa for a harbor, and made it an entrance for the islands of the sea.
6He enlarged the borders of his nation and took possession of the country.
7He gathered together a great number of captives, and took control of Gazara, Bethsura, and the citadel, and he removed its uncleannesses from it. There was no one who resisted him.
8They tilled their land in peace, and the land gave her increase, and the trees of the plains gave their fruit.
9The ancient men sat in the streets; they all conversed together about good things. The young men put on glorious and warlike apparel.
10He provided food for the cities and furnished them with means of defense, until the glory of his name was known to the end of the earth.
11He made peace in the land, and Israel rejoiced with great joy.
12Each man sat under his vine and his fig tree, and there was no one to make them afraid.
13No one was left in the land who fought against them. The kings were defeated in those days.
14He strengthened all those of his people who were brought low. He searched out the law, and every lawless and wicked person he took away.
15He glorified the sanctuary, and multiplied the vessels of the temple."wmb" "cv">16It was heard at Rome that Jonathan was dead, and even in Sparta, and they were exceedingly grieved.
17But as soon as they heard that his brother Simon was made high priest in his place, and ruled the country, and the cities in it,
18they wrote to him on brass tablets to renew with him the friendship and the confederacy which they had confirmed with his brothers Judas and Jonathan.
19These were read before the congregation at Jerusalem.
20This is the copy of the letters which the Spartans sent:
21The ambassadors who were sent to our people reported to us about your glory and honor. We were glad for their coming,
22and we registered the things that were spoken by them in the † Gr. counsels of the people. public records as follows: ‘Numenius son of Antiochus, and Antipater son of Jason, the Jews’ ambassadors, came to us to renew the friendship they had with us.
23It pleased the people to entertain the men honorably, and to put the copy of their words in the ‡ Gr. books that are appointed for the people. public records, to the end that the people of the Spartans might have a record of them. Moreover they wrote a copy of these things to Simon the high priest.’ ”"wmb" "cv">24After this, Simon sent Numenius to Rome with a great shield of gold of weighing one thousand minas,§ 1,000 minas is about 499 kg or 1,098 pounds. in order to confirm the confederacy with them. "wmb" "cv">25But when the people heard these things, they said, “What thanks shall we give to Simon and his sons?
27So they wrote on tablets of brass, and set them on pillars on mount Sion. This is the copy of the writing:
28 ‡ Perhaps a Hebrew title of Simon underlies these words. in Asaramel, in a great congregation of priests and people and princes of the nation, and of the elders of the country, § Gr. he made known. it was proclaimed to us:
29‘Forasmuch as oftentimes there have been wars in the country, but Simon the son of Mattathias, the son of the sons of Joarib, and his kindred, put themselves in jeopardy and withstood the enemies of their nation, that their sanctuary and the law might be established, and glorified their nation with great glory.
30Jonathan rallied the nation, became their high priest, and was gathered to his people.
31Their enemies planned to invade their country, that they might destroy their country utterly, and stretch out their hands against their sanctuary.
32Then Simon rose up and fought for his nation. He spent much of his own money to arm the valiant men of his nation and give them wages.
33He fortified the cities of Judea and Bethsura that lies on the borders of Judea, where the weapons of the enemies were had been stored, and there he placed a garrison of Jews.
34He fortified Joppa which is upon the sea, and Gazara which is upon the borders of Azotus, wherein the enemies used to live, and placed Jews there, and set in there all things necessary for their restoration.
35The people saw Simon’s * Some authorities read acts. faith, and the glory which he resolved to bring to his nation, and they made him their leader and high priest, because he had done all these things, and for the justice and the faith which he kept to his nation, and because he sought by all means to exalt his people.
36In his days, things prospered in his hands, so that the Gentiles were taken away out of their country, and they also that were in the city of David, those who were in Jerusalem, who had made themselves a citadel, out of which they used to go, and polluted everything around the sanctuary, and did great damage to its purity.
37He placed Jews in it and fortified it for the safety of the country and the city, and made high the walls of Jerusalem.
38King Demetrius confirmed to him the high priesthood according to these things,
40for he had heard that the Jews had been called by the Romans friends, allies, and kindred, and that they had met the ambassadors of Simon honorably;
41and that the Jews and the priests were well pleased that Simon should be their leader and high priest forever, until there should arise a faithful prophet;
42and that he should be captain over them, and should take charge of the sanctuary, to set them over their works, and over the country, and over the weapons, and over the strongholds; and that he should take charge of the sanctuary,
43and that he should be obeyed by all, and that all contracts in the country should be written in his name, and that he should be clothed in purple, and wear gold;
44and that it should not be lawful for any of the people or of the priests to nullify any of these things, or to oppose the words that he should speak, or to gather an assembly in the country without him, or to be clothed in purple, or wear a buckle of gold;
45but whoever should do otherwise, or nullify any of these things, he should be liable to punishment.’ ”
46All the people consented to ordain for Simon that he should do according to these words.48They commanded to put this writing on tablets of brass, and to set them up within the precinct of the sanctuary in a conspicuous place,
49and moreover to put copies of them in the treasury, so that Simon and his sons might have them.
*14:1 circa B.C. 141.
†14:22 Gr. counsels of the people.
‡14:23 Gr. books that are appointed for the people.
§14:24 1,000 minas is about 499 kg or 1,098 pounds.
*14:26 Gr. him.
†14:27 circa B.C. 141.
‡14:28 Perhaps a Hebrew title of Simon underlies these words.
§14:28 Gr. he made known.
*14:35 Some authorities read acts.
‡14:47 Gr. ethnarch.