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12 All the women of Israel gathered to see her, and blessed her, and some of them performed a dance in her honor. She took ivy-wreathed wands in her hands and distributed them to the women who were with her; 13and she and those who were with her crowned themselves with olive wreaths. She went before all the people in the dance, leading all the women, while all the men of Israel followed, bearing their arms and wearing garlands and singing hymns.

Judith Offers Her Hymn of Praise

14 Judith began this thanksgiving before all Israel, and all the people loudly sang this song of praise.

1And Judith said,

Begin a song to my God with tambourines,

sing to my Lord with cymbals.

Raise to him a new psalm;

exalt him, and call upon his name.

2

For the Lord is a God who crushes wars;

he sets up his camp among his people;

he delivered me from the hands of my pursuers.

3

The Assyrian came down from the mountains of the north;

he came with myriads of his warriors;

their numbers blocked up the wadis,

and their cavalry covered the hills.

4

He boasted that he would burn up my territory,

and kill my young men with the sword,

and dash my infants to the ground,

and seize my children as booty,

and take my virgins as spoil.

 

5

But the Lord Almighty has foiled them

by the hand of a woman.

6

For their mighty one did not fall by the hands of the young men,

nor did the sons of the Titans strike him down,

nor did tall giants set upon him;

but Judith daughter of Merari

with the beauty of her countenance undid him.

 

7

For she put away her widow’s clothing

to exalt the oppressed in Israel.

She anointed her face with perfume;

8

she fastened her hair with a tiara

and put on a linen gown to beguile him.

9

Her sandal ravished his eyes,

her beauty captivated his mind,

and the sword severed his neck!

10

The Persians trembled at her boldness,

the Medes were daunted at her daring.

 

11

Then my oppressed people shouted;

my weak people cried out, and the enemy trembled;

they lifted up their voices, and the enemy were turned back.

12

Sons of slave-girls pierced them through

and wounded them like the children of fugitives;

they perished before the army of my Lord.

 

13

I will sing to my God a new song:

O Lord, you are great and glorious,

wonderful in strength, invincible.


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The Matthew Henry (Concise) commentary does not cover Judith 15:12-16:13.




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