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to whom it was meet, as Debora my Judges 4. 6.
3 I Tobit have walked all the days father's mother had commanded me,
of mine d own kindred, and of her I 4 Numb. .
13 And the most High gave me 5 Now all the tribes which toge- grace and favour before Enemessar,
ther revolted, and the house of my so that I was his † purveyor. + Gr. buyer. · || Or, to the father Nephthali, sacrificed || unto the 14 And I went into Media, and power of Baal, or, the bheifer Baal.
left in trust with Gabael, the brother b 1 Kings 12. 2. 6 But I alone went often to Jeru- of Gabrias, || at Rages a city of Media Of, in te
land, of, salem at the feasts, as it was ordained ten talents of silver.
country ef unto all the people of Israel by an 15 Now when Enemessar was dead, c Exod. 22. everlasting decree, having the first- Sennacherib his son reigned in his Deut. 12. 6. fruits and tenths of increase, with that stead; † whose estate was troubled, Gr.themen
which was first shorn; and them gave that I could not go into Media. unsellied.
I gave many alms to my brethren,
ministered at Jerusalem: another tenth and if I saw any of my nation dead,
buried him. i Chron. v. 26, under Tiglath-pileser. It is thought that usages and impieties of the heathens among whom they it occurred about B.C. 721, and that Tobit was at the were dispersed. Thus they abstained from all meats time about forty-four years old. Arnald.
and drinks that came from the heathens, and forbore to -- Thisbe, 1 This was probably the native city of eat promiscuously with them, from the fear of contractElijah. See note at i Kings xvii. 1.
ing a pollution, and of partaking of food which had at the right hand of &c.] That is, to the south been offered to idols. Arnald. See Dan. i. 8, and the of &c.; for the Jews in their description of places sup- note there. pose the speaker to face the east. Dr. Gray.
13. — was his purveyor.) Was made his steward, had - which is called properly Nephthali] Or Kadesh- the general superintendence of his house and family. nephthali. This being the principal city in the tribe | Munster. of Nephthali, was, for brevity's sake, sometimes called | 14. — at Rages a city of Media] This is thought to Nephthali.
be the same with Ragau, mentioned at Judith i. 15. 3. — I did many almsdeeds &c.] We should observe, Dr. Wells. It was situated in the south part of Media. that Tobit's misfortunes never induce him to leave the in the mountains which separate that country froii path of virtue; and his charity to his brethren under | Parthia. Calmet. the same captivity is most extraordinary and amiable. 15. — whose estate was troubled, &c.] From the tire Human prudence proceeds on maxims very different : of Tiglath-pileser, the Medes had continued in subjecit is natural for a captive, at a distance from his coun- tion to the Assyrians; but under Sennacherib, the Astry, and reduced in his circumstances, to manage and syrian monarchy fell into decay, either by his imprudeno reserve the little that remains, in order to subsist him or bad fortune.' The Medes taking advantage perhaps self and his family; and to think that giving to others of his long absence, revolted, and were never after may be the way to bring poverty on himself: but the brought again under the Assyrian yoke, though Esarfaith of Tobit judged otherwise, and “had respect unto haddon, the successor of Sennacherib, in the course a the recompense of the reward.” Arnald.
his reign, seems to have been both a valourous and suc11. But I kept myself from eating ;] Many of the cessful prince. These are the troubles which prevented Jews, and Tobit, as here appears, among them, who | Tobit from going into Media according to his custom were carried into captivity, still retained the true wor- or intention. Arnald. ship of God; and, observing in a strange land the ordi. 17. - if I saw any of my nation dead, &c.] The acnances appointed by the law, fell not into the idolatrous count given in this part of the book of Tobit of the
Apocrypha. 18 And if the king Sennacherib' in work to get her living. 14 Her husband
had slain any, when he was come. ' and she fall out about a kid. 1 2 Kings 19. and 'fled from Judea, I buried them N OW when I was come home Isai. 37. 36, privily; for in his wrath he killed IV again, and my wife Anna was Ecclus. 48.
8. many; but the bodies were not found, restored unto me, with my son To
when they were sought for of the king. bias, in the feast of Pentecost, which 2 Mac. 8. 19. 19 And when one of the Ninevites is the holy feast of the seven weeks,
went and complained of me to the there was a good dinner prepared me,
what poor man soever thou shalt find
3 But he came again, and said,
fifty days, before two of his sons and is cast out in the marketplace.
donus his son reigned in his stead; into a room until the going down of
22 And Achiacharus intreating for 6 Remembering that prophecy of
made a grave, and buried him. CHAP. II.
8 But my neighbours mocked me, i Tobit leaveth his meat to bury the dead, and said, This man is not yet afraid
10 and becometh blind. 11 His wife taketh to be put to death for this matter :
treatment experienced by the poor Jews in their cap- ' 21. — mountains of Ararath ;] In Armenia. See 2 tivity, of their being often arbitrarily put to death, and Kings xix. their bodies left unburied, is very different from what - Sarchedonus] Or Esar-haddon. See the same takes place under regular governments, but is perfectly related at 2 Kings xix. conformable to what is to this day practised in the despotick countries of the East. Harmer.
Chap. II. ver. 1. - I sat down to eat.] The expression 18. – and fled from Judea, &c.] It appears that Sen- in the Greek is, “I lay down to eat:" which proves that nacherib, after his return to Nineveh from his signal | the custom of reclining at meals, which prevailed among defeat on the angel of the Lord smiting his army, (2 the Jews in our Saviour's time, had obtained at this Kings xix. 35,) grew cruel and tyrannical, especially period. Calmet. towards the Jews, numbers of whom he caused to be It has been supposed by many, that the custom of slain and cast into the street. Arnald.
| reclining at meals was derived to the Jews from the - I buried them privily : 1 It was always held an | Romans; but this passage seems to prove the contrary. act of great justice and mercy to bestow burial on the Drusius. See the notes on Amos ii. 8; Matt. viii. 11. dead; the want of burial having been deemed by most 2. - bring what poor man soever thou shalt find &c.] nations of antiquity one of the greatest punishments | The Hebrews were accustomed, on their great festivals. that could be inflicted. Jehoiakim the son of Josiah is to allow themselves better fare than ordinary; and Tobit, threatened with the want of burial, Jer. xxii. 19. St. it appears, on such occasions, was not content with proAmbrose, speaking of this charitable action of Tobit, viding good entertainment for himself, but chariiably says, that there is not a more excellent duty than to do gave a portion of it to the poor and stranger. Calmet.' good to them that cannot repay, and to rescue a fellow - 6. Remembering that prophecy of Amos, &c.] Amos creature from the violence of the fowls of the air and prophesied under the reign of Uzziah king of Judah, the beasts of the field. Arnald.
and Jeroboam II. king of Israel, about eighty years 19. - complained of me to the king, that I buried them,] | before the event here mentioned. Amos, in the place It is still held to be highly criminal in despotick coun- referred to, either foretells the misery of the captivity, tries to bury without permission persons who are exe- in which the Israelites were involved under the Assycuted. Windus, speaking of what takes place in the rians, of which Tobit now bewailed the accomplishment; empire of Morocco, says, that nobody dares bury the or else Tobit accommodates the words of the Prophet body of a person executed till the emperour has given to their present unhappy state and circumstances, when, orders for it. Harmer.
| instead of celebrating their feasts with joy and gladness,
! Or, swallows.
Or, while films.
Apocrypha. b Chap. I. 19. b who fled away; and yet, lo, he maids, prayeth also. 17 An angel is sent burieth the dead again.
to help them both.
O Lord, thou art just, and all
mandments: wherefore thou hast de11 And my wife Anna || did take | livered us a for a spoil, and unto a Deut. 28. in the women's women's works to do.
captivity, and unto death, and for a 15,37. 12 And when she had sent || them I proverb of reproach to all the nations home to the owners, they paid her among whom we are dispersed. wages, and gave her also besides a 5 And now thy judgments are many kid.
and true: deal with me according to 13 And when it was in my house, my sins and my fathers : because we and began to cry, I said unto her, have not kept thy commandments,
From whence is this kid ? is it not neither have walked in truth before c Deut. 22. 1. stolen? render it to the owners; for thee.
it is not lawful to eat any thing that l 6 Now therefore deal with me as
seemeth best unto thee, and command d Job 2. 9. 14 d But she replied upon me, It my spirit to be taken from me, that I
was given for a gift more than the may be || dissolved, and become earth: 101,
thine alms and thy righteous deeds ? | may now be delivered out of this dis9. Or, ln, all || behold, thou and all thy works are
tress, and go into the everlasting known.
place : turn not thy face away from CHAP. III.
me. i Tobit, grieved with his wife's taunts, pray- |
7 It came to pass the same day, eth. 11 Sara, reproached by her father's that in Ecbatane a city of Media
things are known to thee.
as was usual in their own country, they groaned under upbraids him with his tenderness of conscience, and the the yoke and tyranny of their oppressors, being denied little good it had done him. You need indeed reproach even the innocent liberty and commendable right of me; behold, your disgrace is known to every one; the burying their murdered countrymen, without manifestly charities which you have exercised all your life profit incurring the danger of their lives. Arnald.
you nothing; they have not kept you from blindness, 9. — slept by the wall of my courtyard,] It seems he which deprives you of every comfort. You had great was unwilling to enter his house on account of the hopes that, living so piously, you could not fail to be pollution he had contracted from the dead body; since prosperous and happy, and that since you served God, every person or thing, that touched one thus defiled, He would most certainly repay you, chap. iv. 14. But was polluted thereby. Arnald.
where are your alms and righteous deeds now? Hare being polluted,] This pollution from touching a they kept blindness or adversity from you ? Have not dead body lasted seven days, Numb. xix. ll, &c. your extensive and indiscreet charities brought us to Calmet.
the distressed condition we now are in? Arnald. 10. — sparrows &c.] Rather, “ swallows," as the margin states. The excrement of these animals, as Chap. III. ver. 1. - and in my sorrow prayed,] We appears from Pliny and other naturalists, is hot and have here a further instance of Tobit's good disposition, acrimonious, and may cause blindness. Dr. Gray, Cal- and particular sweetness of temper; he does not return met. The Greek word here used signifies generally any railing for railing, but, going to some retired place, as small birds. Grotius.
it should seem from ver. 17,) pours forth his complaints 11. — did take women's works) Such was Tobit's to God of the great injustice done him, but confesses at extreme poverty at this time, that his wife was under the same time, in the spirit of humility, that his sins the necessity of seeking out an employment for the had deserved a worse treatment. Arnald. purpose of subsistence. Arnald.
7.- in Ecbatane a city of Media] Ecbatane seems to 14.-behold, thou and all thy works are known.] She I have been built not long after Babylon. We find that Apocrypha.
Apocrypha. Sara the daughter of Raguel was earth, that I may hear no more the also reproached by her father's reproach. maids;
14 Thou knowest, Lord, that I am 8 Because that she had been mar-pure from all sin with man, ried to seven husbands, whom Asmo- 15 And that I never polluted my deus the evil spirit had killed, before name, nor the name of my father, in they had lain with her. Dost thou the land of my captivity: I am the not know, said they, that thou hast only daughter of my father, neither strangled thine husbands ? thou hast bath he any child to be his heir, neihad already seven husbands, neither ther any near || kinsman, nor any son Or, brother. wast thou named after any of them. of his alive, to whom I may keep my
9 Wherefore dost thou beat us for self for a wife: my seven husbands them? if they be dead, go thy ways are already dead; and why should I after them, let us never see of thee live ? but if it please not thee that I either son or daughter.
should die, command some regard to 10 When she heard these things, be had of me, and pity taken of me, she was very sorrowful, so that she that I hear no more reproach. thought to have strangled herself; 16 So the prayers of them both
of my father, and if I do this, it shall great God.
whiteness of Tobit's eyes, and to give
time came Tobit home, and entered 12 And now, O Lord, I set mine into his house, and Sara the daughter eyes and my face toward thee, of Raguel came down from her upper
13 And say, Take me out of the chamber.
Semiramis the wife of Ninus, in a war against the others. Neglected at length by the kings of the Parthian Medes, who had then rebelled, taking an affection to race, it became a ruin. Dr. Wells. the place, caused watercourses to be made to it, digging 8. — whom Asmodeus the evil spirit had killed,] The a passage through the hills with great labour and charge. name Asmodeus seems to be derived from a Hebrew Being destroyed by the injury of time, it was rebuilt by word which signifies “to ruin, to destroy, to make deDeioces, the sixth king of the Medes, and afterwards solate;" and therefore most properly belongs to those much beautified and enlarged by Seleucus Nicanor, one evil spirits whose aim it is to ruin and destroy the souls of the successors of Alexander the Great in his Asian of men. It has been thought by some that the evil conquests. For beauty and magnificence it was little spirit here mentioned is the demon of impurity, and that inferiour to Babylon or Nineveh. In compass it was God permitted him to punish with death those who said to be 180 or 200 furlongs, which make about twenty- approached Sara with evil and criminal dispositions. four of our miles. The walls thereof are affirmed in the Calmet. book of Judith to be seventy cubits high, fifty cubits 11.- toward the window,] Toward the window which broad, and the towers upon the gates an hundred cubits opened towards Jerusalem. See Dan. vi. 10. Arnald. higher; all built of hewn and polished stones, each 15. — neither any near kinsman, &c.] That is, her fastone being six cubits in length, and three in breadth.ther had no son to inherit his substance, nor any near But this is to be understood only of the innermost wall, kinsman or relation, neither brother, nor brother's son, there being seven in all about it, each of them higher to whom, as the law required, she might dispose of herthan the other, and each distinguished by the colour of self in marriage. Those women of Israel, who had no their several pinnacles, which gave to the eye a most brothers of the same blood, were enjoined by the law of pleasant prospect. It was the ordinary residence of Moses to marry the next of kin, Numb. xxvii. 8, &c. the kings of Persia in the heat of summer, as Susa was Arnald. in the cold of winter. The royal palace was about a 17.— Raphael was sent to heal them] The name mile in compass, and built with all the cost and skill“ Raphael" signifies “the medicine of God,” or “God that a stately edifice required. Some of its beams are who heals." Calmet. said to have been of silver, and the rest of cedar, which - came down from her upper chamber.] It seems to were strengthened with plates of gold. Josephus, the have been customary among the devout persons of the Jewish historian, relates, that it was built by the Pro-Jewish nation of both sexes, to set apart some upper phet Daniel, which must be understood no otherwise, room where they might attend the business of prayer than that he overlooked the work, or contrived the without noise or disturbance : see Dan. vi. 10; Acts model, appointed to do so by the order of Darius the i. 13 : or else this might be a female apartment, where Mede, to whom the building of the same is ascribed by 1 she sat to work ; for it was the custom of antiquity to
Apocrypha. | little, be not afraid to give according CHAP. IV.
to that little :
20 and telleth him of money left with Ga-sure for thyself against the day of
I money which he had committed to from death, and suffereth not to come
son, and chiefly take a wife of the 3 And when he had called him, he seed of thy fathers, and take not a
said, My son, when I am dead, bury strange woman to wife, which is not a. Exod. 20. me; and despise not thy mother, a but of thy father's tribe: for we are the Ecclus. 7. 27. honour her all the days of thy life, children of the prophets, Noe, Abra
and do that which shall please her, ham, Isaac, and Jacob: remember,
my son, that our fathers from the
5 My son, be mindful of the Lord 13 Now therefore, my son, love our God all thy days, and let not thy thy brethren, and despise not in thy will be set to sin, or to transgress his heart thy brethren, the sons and commandments : do uprightly all thy daughters of thy people, in not taking life long, and follow not the ways of a wife of them: for in pride is deunrighteousness.
struction and much trouble, and in 6 For if thou deal truly, thy doings lewdness is decay and great want: shall prosperously succeed to thee, for lewdness is the mother of famine. and to all them that live justly.
14 Let not the f wages of any man, fLef. 19.13 7 b Give alms of thy substance; which hath wrought for thee, tarry 15. and when thou givest alms, let not with thee, but give him it out of thine eye be envious, neither turn thy hand: for if thou serve God, he will face from any poor, and the face of also repay thee: be circumspect, my God shall not be turned away from son, in all things thou doest, and be thee.
wise in all thy conversation. Ecclus. 35. 8 If thou hast abundance, give 15 & Do that to no man which thou Matth. 7.
alms accordingly: if thou have but a hatest: drink not wine to make thee Luke 6. 31.
Dent 24. 14.
b Prov. 3, 9. Ecclus. 4. I. & 14. 13. Luke 14.13.
assign the uppermost rooms to the women, that they 10.-- alms do deliver from death, &c.] Meaning, that might be secluded from all intrusion and interruption. charity, through the blessing of God, often proves the Arnald.
means and occasion of long life, as seems to be more
fully expressed at chap. xii. 9; or the meaning may be, Chap. IV. ver. 3. — when he had called him, he said, that charity is effectual for procuring God's favour and &c.] The advice which Tobit in this chapter gives his mercy, and will make the latter days of the beneficent son, when he presumed that death was approaching, and man easy and comfortable : or, lastly, that charity wipes that God had heard his petition to be removed from the away sins, and delivers from death, the consequence a miseries of life, has always been esteemed an excellent them. Arnald. abridgment of moral duties. The precepts are very - to come into darkness.] Our Saviour expresses plain and obvious, and require only sincerity and a good the state of the wicked in death by a similar term, disposition to apply them. We should observe, that he "outer darkness,” Matt. viii. 12 ; xxii. 13. Calmei. enters on this advice before he settles his worldly affairs. 13. — in lewdness is decay &c.] The word, translated Arnald.
“lewdness," signifies rather, “idleness, unprofitable4. — bury her by me in one grave.] The ancient patri-ness ;” and to this the observation seems to be applied. archs expressed the same care and concern respecting Arnald. their interment in this particular. Thus Abraham pur | 14. Let not the wages — tarry with thee, In conforchased the cave of Machpelah for the burying-place of mity with this was the merciful provision of the Mosaick Sarah, Gen. xxiii. 19, and was afterwards himself depo- | law, not to let “the wages of him that is hired abide al sited in the same, Gen. xxv. 10: Isaac and Jacob with night until the morning," Levit. xix. 13; Deut. II. their wives were buried there also, Gen. xlix. 31. | 15. Calmet. See also James v. 4. Arnald.
15. Do that to no man which thou hatest :) This pre