13 When Seron, the commander of the Syrian army, heard that Judas had gathered a large company, including a body of faithful soldiers who stayed with him and went out to battle, 14he said, I will make a name for myself and win honour in the kingdom. I will make war on Judas and his companions, who scorn the kings command. 15Once again a strong army of godless men went up with him to help him, to take vengeance on the Israelites.
16 When he approached the ascent of Beth-horon, Judas went out to meet him with a small company. 17But when they saw the army coming to meet them, they said to Judas, How can we, few as we are, fight against so great and so strong a multitude? And we are faint, for we have eaten nothing today. 18Judas replied, It is easy for many to be hemmed in by few, for in the sight of Heaven there is no difference between saving by many or by few. 19It is not on the size of the army that victory in battle depends, but strength comes from Heaven. 20They come against us in great insolence and lawlessness to destroy us and our wives and our children, and to despoil us; 21but we fight for our lives and our laws. 22He himself will crush them before us; as for you, do not be afraid of them.
23 When he finished speaking, he rushed suddenly against Seron and his army, and they were crushed before him. 24They pursued them* down the descent of Beth-horon to the plain; eight hundred of them fell, and the rest fled into the land of the Philistines. 25Then Judas and his brothers began to be feared, and terror fell on the Gentiles all around them. 26His fame reached the king, and the Gentiles talked of the battles of Judas.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011