Wa-a-wa-a Wa-a-wa-a Wa-a-wa-a Wa-a-wa-a Wa-a-wa-a ...
Who's the Jewish Bethulian girl
that's a sex machine with Mesopotamian generals?
Ya darn right! Who is the woman
that would risk her neck for her brother man?
Can you dig it? Who's the cat that won't cop out
when there's danger all about?
They say this cat Judith is a bad mother ...
Shut your mouth!
I'm just talkin' 'bout
Judith Bat Merari.
Then we can dig it!
Stop! Can we please raise this up to a more academic level?
Sorry Jeff. I totally lose composure when the topic is my favorite book in the Apocrypha: Judith. It's the completely awesome tale of how a beautiful woman delivers her people from the most powerful army on earth. It's got some great lessons, but isn't exactly intended to be a historical account, as the author makes a few bogus factual blunders in regards to history. For example, the book opens by claiming Nebuchadnezzar was the king of Assyria, while we know he was actually king of Babylon.
I'm Nebuchadnezzar, beloved of Marduk, and former king of the world. I didn't write this story, but being that I did rule over many places, including Assyria, I can forgive the author of Judith for boasting about my credentials. My kingdom was HUGE, and come to think of it, this whole Judith thing started when I sought to expand my boundaries east by conquering the Medes. Even though I won the war, several of my vassal kingdoms, including Judah, didn't send troops, and so I sent my highest ranking general Holofernes to punish them for their disobedience.
I'm Nebuchadnezzar's general Holofernes, and you might wonder why I don't have a head. Good question, but first let me give you some background. Nebuchadnezzar appointed me to punish all those naughty regions that failed to fight against the Medes. It all started off good. My massive army followed the Euphrates north and defeated several armies, and then turned south and took Damascus. So great was our force that most of the major regions surrendered. All but one: the Judeans. This made me so angry! We surrounded the Judean city of Bethulia and cut off their water supply. They were about to give up. In fact their leader Uzziah promised to surrender in five days if nothing miraculous happened. THEN this lovely widow named Judith got involved. After her husband died from heat stroke three years earlier, Judith only ate on Fridays, Saturdays, and holidays. You might say that when it comes to skinny women, I lose my head. Isn't that right, Judith?
Well Holofernes, I'm glad you can joke about it after all these years. But I couldn't stand all the Judeans complaining when your army surrounded Bethulia. I personally vowed to deliver the city, and prayed to God for assistance. I ordered Bethulia's city gates opened and right for the Assyrian camp with my maid. I told the Assyrian army that I had information for you about how to capture the city. They brought me to your tent and I turned the ol' charm. You, Holofernes, were putty in my hands. We flirted for several days, and then, as Uzziah's five day limit was quickly expiring, I attended one of your. There was quite a bit of wine there, and it turns out that you're a bit of a lightweight when it comes to alcohol. Anyway, you got smashed. Later that night, when it was only me, my maid, and a drunk Holofernes right in your tent, I took the necessary steps to deliver my people. It wasn't pretty. I took Holofernes' sword from the bed post, and said "Give me strength this day, O Lord, God of Israel." Even though it took me two strikes, I severed your head and placed it in the food bag of my maid. We returned to Bethulia and put the head on the city wall. This served two purposes: it inspired the Israelites to fight knowing God was on their side, and terrified the Assyrian army so that they fled. It was a complete victory for the Israelites, and the story ends by saying: "And none ever again spread terror among the children of Israel in the days of Judith, or for a long time after her death."
But enough about me. Let's move on to the next topic of the Apocrypha, which happens to be about my role model: Esther.
Can I please have my head back?