The Book of Judith is part of the Old Testament. Bible is divided in two parts: The Old Testament and The New Testament. The Old Testament was written before Jesus Christ was born and The New Testament was written after that.
“Biblos” in Greek language means a book. Biblos was also a Phoenician port. It was a centre of the trade where people sold the tools for writing.
The texts from the Bible are not only historical descriptions of that period. A lot of people believe that the book is actually a word of God.
Many artists were inspired by biblical motives. Such motive was a widow Judith who tried to save her people from the enemies.
The Book of Judith is in the Old Testament. The Jews believe that a book is holy only if it is written in Greek or Aramaic. The books are called Protocanonical. Books written in Greek are called Deuterocanonical.
The Book of Tobit and The Book of Judith are not Protocanonical books because there are only Greek translations of the books. The originals were in Hebrew, but they were lost.
Deuterocanonical books include the First Maccabees, the Second Maccabees, seven books of Tobit, Sirach, Wisdom, Baruch and parts of Esther and Daniel.
There are 46 books in the Old Testament and it has 5 groups: Pentateuch, The Historical Books, Psalm, the Wisdom Books, and The Prophetic Books.
The Book of Judith is a part of the Historical Books. Judith is the Jewish widow who decides to save her people from the enemies. Her people didn’t have the strength or the will to resist the enemies, so she sacrificed herself. In Hebrew language her name Judith means “praised Jew”. She becomes a symbol of faith and determination.
The setting takes place in the first and the second century B.C when the Jews were struggling against Hellenization. The people were hungry and weak due to long wars.
The Book of Judith consists of: Holoferne’s military invasion, Betulia’s blockade, Judith, Judith and Holoferens and Victory.
Summary of the Book
Holoferne’s military invasion
Nabuchodonosor was angry at Jews because they didn’t help him when he was fighting against his enemies. The people didn’t show him respect and he decided to attack them.
Nabuchodonosor lived in Ecbatane and one day he told his general Holofernes to organise an invasion on the west lands. Nabuchodonosor gave him the orders to be merciless. The people were very scared so decided to obey him. They called him their God and they even let him destroy their temples.