It took a year to read the Bible, then almost 9 months to read the Apocrypha. Now, I'm going to try to offer reflections on the Narrative Lectionary. But, I won't be posting daily--at least, for a while.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Reflection on reading Judith 12-13

Judith remained in camp three days eating and drinking only from the supplies she had brought with her rather than their food, which would have been considered unclean for her. Each day for three days, she bathed in the spring and prayed to God for directions on how to help her people triumph.

On the fourth day, Holofernes sent for her to come to a banquet. As he told his personal servant, "If I let her leave here without having intercourse with her, she'll laugh at me." Judith did come to the banquet, dressed in her finery. Holofernes, overcome with passion, asked her to have a drink and to be merry." She agreed saying, "This is the greatest day in my whole life," but furnished the wine from the supply that she had brought. Holofernes showed his pleasure at the situation by drinking more wine than he ever had before.

The slaves withdrew, closing the tent so no one would be able to enter. Judith was left alone with Holofernes who had passed out. Judith took the sword hanging above the bedpost and praying to God for strength, with two blows, cut off his head.

Judith and her maid went back to Bethulia, taking Holofernes' head with them. The people were astounded that they had returned safely. Judith asserted that God was still extending mercy to the people of Israel and had destroyed their enemies. For proof, she showed them Holofernes's head. She swore that the Lord had protected her from being defiled. They were astonished. They offered prayers of praise to God, and Uzziah predicted that no one would forget her accomplishments. The people agreed.

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