2 Maccabees 7

1 {\cf2 It came to passe also, that seuen brethren, with their mother, were taken to be compelled by the King against the Lawe, to taste swines flesh, & were tormented with scourges and whippes.}

2 {\cf2 But one of them, which spake first, said thus, What seekest thou? and what wouldest thou know of vs? we are ready to die, rather then to transgresse the Lawes of our fathers.}

3 {\cf2 Then was the King angry, and commanded to heate pannes and cauldrons, which were incontinently made hote.}

4 {\cf2 And he commanded the tongue of him that spake first, to be cut out, and to slay him, & to cut off the vtmost partes of his body in the sight of his other brethren and his mother.}

5 {\cf2 Nowe when he was thus mangled in all his members, he commanded him to be brought aliue to the fire, and to frye him in the panne: and while the smoke for a long time smoked out of the panne, the other brethren with their mother, exhorted one another to die couragiously, saying in this maner,}

6 {\cf2 The Lord God doeth regard vs, and in deede taketh pleasure in vs, as Moyses declared in the song wherein he testified openly, saying, That God will take pleasure in his seruants.}

7 {\cf2 So when the first was dead after this maner, they brought the second to make him a mocking stocke: and when they had pulled the skinne with the heare ouer his head, they asked him, if he would eate, or he were punished in all the members of the body.}

8 {\cf2 But he answered in his owne language, and sayd, No. Wherefore he was tormented forthwith like the first.}

9 {\cf2 And when he was at the last breath, he sayd, Thou murtherer takest this present life from vs, but the king of the world wil rayse vs vp, which die for his Lawes, in the resurrection of euerlasting life.}

10 {\cf2 After him was the thirde had in derision, and when they demaunded his tongue, hee put it out incontinently, and stretched forth his handes boldely,}

11 {\cf2 And spake manfully, These haue I had from the heauen, but nowe for the Law of God I despise them, and trust that I shall receiue them of him againe.}

12 {\cf2 Insomuch that the King & they which were with him, marueiled at the yong mans courage, as at one that nothing regarded the paynes.}

13 {\cf2 Now when he was dead also, they vexed & tormented the fourth in like maner.}

14 {\cf2 And when he was now ready to die, he sayd thus, It is better that we shoulde change this which we might hope for of men, and wayte for our hope from God, that we may be raised vp againe by him: as for thee, thou shalt haue no resurrection to life.}

15 {\cf2 Afterward they brought the fifth also and tormented him,}

16 {\cf2 Who looked vpon the King, and sayd, Thou hast power among men, and though thou be a mortall man, thou doest what thou wilt: but thinke not, that God hath forsaken our nation.}

17 {\cf2 But abide a while, & thou shalt see his great power, how he will torment thee and thy seede.}

18 {\cf2 After him also they brought the sixt, who being at the poynt of death, sayde, Deceiue not thy selfe foolishly: for we suffer these things, which are worthy to be wondered at for our owne sakes, because we haue offended our God.}

19 {\cf2 But thinke not thou, which vndertakest to fight against God, that thou shalt be vnpunished.}

20 {\cf2 But the mother was marueilous aboue all other, & worthy of honourable memory: for when she sawe her seuen sonnes slaine within the space of one day, shee suffred it with a good will, because of the hope that she had in the Lord.}

21 {\cf2 Yea, shee exhorted euery one of them in her owne language, and being full of courage and wisdome, stirred vp her womaly affections with a manly stomacke, and sayd vnto them,}

22 {\cf2 I cannot tell how ye came into my wombe: for I neyther gaue you breath nor life: it is not I that set in order the members of your body,}

23 {\cf2 But doutles the Creator of the world, which formed the birth of man, and found out the beginning of all things, will also of his owne mercy giue you breath and life againe, as yee now regarde not your owne selues, for his Lawes sake.}

24 {\cf2 Now Antiochus thinking himselfe despised, & considering the iniurious wordes, while the yongest was yet aliue, he did exhort him not only with wordes, but swore also vnto him by an othe that he would make him rich and wealthy, if he would forsake the Lawes of his fathers, & that he would take him as a friend, and giue him offices.}

25 {\cf2 But when the yong man woulde in no case hearken vnto him, the King called his mother, and exhorted that she should counsell the yong man to saue his life.}

26 {\cf2 And when he had exhorted her with many wordes, shee promised him that she would counsell her sonne.}

27 {\cf2 So shee turned her vnto him, laughing the cruell tyrant to scorne, and spake in her owne language, O my sonne, haue pitie vpon me, that bare thee nine monethes in my wombe, and gaue thee sucke three yeeres, & nourished thee, & tooke care for thee vnto this age, and brought thee vp.}

28 {\cf2 I beseech thee, my sonne, looke vpo the heauen and the earth, and all that is therein, and consider that God made them of things that were not, and so was mankinde made likewise.}

29 {\cf2 Feare not this hangman, but shewe thy selfe worthy such brethren by suffring death, that I may receiue thee in mercy with thy brethren.}

30 {\cf2 While she was yet speaking these words, the yong man said, Whom wayte ye for? I wil not obey the Kings commaundement: but I will obey the commandement of the Lawe that was giuen vnto our fathers by Moyses.}

31 {\cf2 And thou that imaginest all mischiefe against the Hebrewes, shalt not escape the hande of God.}

32 {\cf2 For we suffer these thinges, because of our sinnes,}

33 {\cf2 But though the liuing Lorde be angry with vs a litle while for our chastening & correction, yet wil he be reconciled with his owne seruants.}

34 {\cf2 But thou, O man without religion and most wicked of all men, lift not thy selfe vp in vayne, which art puffed vp with vncertaine hope, & liftest thine hands against the seruants of God.}

35 {\cf2 For thou hast not yet escaped the iudgemet of almightie God, which seeth all things.}

36 {\cf2 My brethren that haue suffred a litle payne, are nowe vnder the diuine couenant of euerlasting life: but thou through the iudgement of God, shalt suffer iust punishments for thy pride.}

37 {\cf2 Therefore I, as my brethren haue done, offer my body & life for the Lawes of our fathers, beseeching God, that he will soone be merciful vnto our nation, and that thou by torment and punishment mayst confesse, that he is the only God,}

38 {\cf2 And that in mee and my brethren the wrath of the almightie, which is righteously fallen vpon all our nation, may cease.}

39 {\cf2 Then the King being kindled with anger, raged more cruelly against him then the others, and tooke it grieuously, that he was mocked.}

40 {\cf2 So he also dyed holily, & put his whole trust in the Lord.}

41 {\cf2 Last of all after the sonnes, was the mother put to death.}

42 {\cf2 Let this now be ynough spoken concerning the bankets, and extreeme cruelties.}