5Then Tobias answered his father Tobit, I will do everything that you have commanded me, father; 2but how can I obtain the money* from him, since he does not know me and I do not know him? What evidence* am I to give him so that he will recognize and trust me, and give me the money? Also, I do not know the roads to Media, or how to get there. 3Then Tobit answered his son Tobias, He gave me his bond and I gave him my bond. I* divided his in two; we each took one part, and I put one with the money. And now twenty years have passed since I left this money in trust. So now, my son, find yourself a trustworthy man to go with you, and we will pay him wages until you return. But get back the money from Gabael.*
4 So Tobias went out to look for a man to go with him to Media, someone who was acquainted with the way. He went out and found the angel Raphael standing in front of him; but he did not perceive that he was an angel of God. 5Tobias* said to him, Where do you come from, young man? From your kindred, the Israelites, he replied, and I have come here to work. Then Tobias* said to him, Do you know the way to go to Media? 6Yes, he replied, I have been there many times; I am acquainted with it and know all the roads. I have often travelled to Media, and stayed with our kinsman Gabael who lives in Rages of Media. It is a journey of two days from Ecbatana to Rages; for it lies in a mountainous area, while Ecbatana is in the middle of the plain. 7Then Tobias said to him, Wait for me, young man, until I go in and tell my father; for I do need you to travel with me, and I will pay you your wages. 8He replied, All right, I will wait; but do not take too long.
9 So Tobias* went in to tell his father Tobit and said to him, I have just found a man who is one of our own Israelite kindred! He replied, Call the man in, my son, so that I may learn about his family and to what tribe he belongs, and whether he is trustworthy enough to go with you.
10 Then Tobias went out and called him, and said, Young man, my father is calling for you. So he went in to him, and Tobit greeted him first. He replied, Joyous greetings to you! But Tobit retorted, What joy is left for me any more? I am a man without eyesight; I cannot see the light of heaven, but I lie in darkness like the dead who no longer see the light. Although still alive, I am among the dead. I hear people but I cannot see them. But the young man* said, Take courage; the time is near for God to heal you; take courage. Then Tobit said to him, My son Tobias wishes to go to Media. Can you accompany him and guide him? I will pay your wages, brother. He answered, I can go with him and I know all the roads, for I have often gone to Media and have crossed all its plains, and I am familiar with its mountains and all of its roads.
11 Then Tobit* said to him, Brother, of what family are you and from what tribe? Tell me, brother. 12He replied, Why do you need to know my tribe? But Tobit* said, I want to be sure, brother, whose son you are and what your name is. 13He replied, I am Azariah, the son of the great Hananiah, one of your relatives. 14Then Tobit said to him, Welcome! God save you, brother. Do not feel bitter towards me, brother, because I wanted to be sure about your ancestry. It turns out that you are a kinsman, and of good and noble lineage. For I knew Hananiah and Nathan,* the two sons of Shemeliah,* and they used to go with me to Jerusalem and worshipped with me there, and were not led astray. Your kindred are good people; you come of good stock. Hearty welcome!
15 Then he added, I will pay you a drachma a day as wages, as well as expenses for yourself and my son. So go with my son, 16and* I will add something to your wages. Raphael* answered, I will go with him; so do not fear. We shall leave in good health and return to you in good health, because the way is safe. 17So Tobit* said to him, Blessings be upon you, brother.
Then he called his son and said to him, Son, prepare supplies for the journey and set out with your brother. May God in heaven bring you safely there and return you in good health to me; and may his angel, my son, accompany you both for your safety.
Before he went out to start his journey, he kissed his father and mother. Tobit then said to him, Have a safe journey.
18 But his mother* began to weep, and said to Tobit, Why is it that you have sent my child away? Is he not the staff of our hand as he goes in and out before us? 19Do not heap money upon money, but let it be a ransom for our child. 20For the life that is given to us by the Lord is enough for us. 21Tobit* said to her, Do not worry; our child will leave in good health and return to us in good health. Your eyes will see him on the day when he returns to you in good health. Say no more! Do not fear for them, my sister. 22For a good angel will accompany him; his journey will be successful, and he will come back in good health.
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