Tuesday, August 4, 2009


III Maccabees 2: 1-20

Technically speaking, this book is not part of the Tanach because the Jews do not recognise this book of the Bible, which is recognised by the Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox. For those of of you who are not familiar with I and II Maccabees, the four books relate to the event relating to the history of the Jewish people just after the time of Alexander the Great, when Antiochus Epiphanes attempted to force the Jewish people to adopt the pagan Greek religion. Judas Maccabees and his sons lead the rebellion.

Anyway, leading up to this chapter, Ptolemy wants to enter the Holy of Holies, and verse 1-20 are the high priest's prayer. Verses 1-13 describe what God has done for the people. Verses 14-15 relate to God's promises. Verses 16-20 are a confession of sin.

This prayer is very much a model prayer for us. When we begin our prayers, we should begin with what God has done for us, both the miracles in the Bible, our salvation, and the things he has done for us individually. We also need to remember what God has promised us. In addition, we need to be very consious of our sins, and to bear in mind that many of our problems are of our own making because of our sinful nature.

To see this wonderful prayer go to: http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/nets/edition/22-3makk-nets.pdf

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