12) When the men of the city saw them,
they seized their weapons and ran out of the city to the top of the hill, and
all the slingers kept them from coming up by hurling stones at them.
Naturally. They don’t know what’s
going on, just that the enemy has suddenly shown up. Holofernes hopes that Achior will die at the
hands of those he praised.
13) So, taking cover below the
hill, they bound Achior and left him lying at the foot of the hill; then they
returned to their lord.
don’t really believe that he would stay there voluntarily.
Israelites came down from their city and found him, untied him, and brought him
into Bethulia. They placed him before the rulers of the city,
COMMENTARY: How are they to know what to make of this
in those days were Uzziah, son of Micah of the tribe of Simeon, and
Chabris, son of Gothoniel, and Charmis, son of Melchiel.
name means “God is my Strength” This
name will prove ironic.
16) They then convened all the elders of the city, and all
their young men, as well as the women, gathered in haste at the place of
assembly. They placed Achior in the center of the people, and Uzziah questioned
him about what had happened.
is so important that the elders throw the assembly wide open to everyone.
17) He replied by giving them an
account of what was said in the council of Holofernes, and of all his own words
among the Assyrian rulers, and of all the boasting threats of Holofernes
against the house of Israel.
else could he do. But this tests whether
the people have as much faith as Achior.
18) At this the people
fell prostrate and worshiped God, and they cried out: 19)
“Lord, God of heaven, look at their arrogance! Have mercy on our people
in their abject state, and look with favor this day on the faces of those who
are consecrated to you.”
turn not to their military, but to their deity.