Today will wrap up this series of posts on the books of the Apocrypha. I know these last few weeks have been a bit of a different type of fact sharing as it isn't on anything in the Bible or Biblical history. However, I think it's always good to learn at least a little bit about these types of things as it better helps us to understand why or why not we believe a certain way.
So, without further adieu, here's some info about the Book of Judith...
For largely doctrinal reasons, this book was removed by Protestants from the Old Testament during the Reformation. The book of Judith is the fictitious account of the deliverance of Israel from a foreign army by Judith. Judith was a devout and beautiful heroine that first beguiled and then beheaded the Assyrian commander Holofernes.
The book of Judith dated to the 2nd century BC and was written by an unknown author. It is the fourth book of the Old Testament Apocrypha and falls into two parts. The first part being the first seven chapters where King Nebuchadnezzar sends his general Holofernes to punish the western nations because they have refused to join in a war against Media. The second part, chapters 8-16, is where the widow Judith volunteers to deliver the Israelites after rebuking them for losing faith in God. After dining with Holofernes, they retire to his tent, he falls asleep in drunkenness and Judith takes his sword and beheads him.
Though King Nebuchadnezzar is very much a real person, it is historically impossible that the Nebuchadnezzar we read of in the Bible is the same Nebuchadnezzar as is written of in the Book of Judith. Nebuchadnezzar died in 562BC and the story of Judith took place sometime around the end of 538BC. There are similar impossiblities with the geographic location of the story, as well.
I think next week we may start looking into various words used in the Bible and their meanings. Have you ever read a scripture (particularly in the King James Version of the Bible) and run across a word that you just didn't know what it meant? If so, this was probably because it just isn't a word that is used much in our culture. I've found some definitions and explainations for some of these words. Come back next week and I'll share some of what I've found.
Have a great weekend!