Moses (Wis 10:15-10:16)

“A holy people,

A blameless race,

Wisdom delivered

From a nation of oppressors.

She entered the soul

Of a servant of the Lord.

He withstood dread kings

With wonders and signs.”

Based on the stories in Exodus, chapters 2-12, this abbreviated history of the Israelites turns to Moses, who is called a servant of the Lord, not just a righteous man. Of course, wisdom was the one who delivered this holy, blameless (ἄμεμπτον) race or seed (σπέρμα) from its oppressors. She entered the soul (ψυχὴν) of this brave servant of the Lord (θεράποντος Κυρίου) who opposed the dreaded kings, while producing signs and wonders in Egypt.

Agur (Prov 30:1-30:1)

“The words of Agur

Son of Jakeh

Oracle”

Who is this Agur? Agur was the compiler of this collection of proverbs that bears a great similarity to the prophet Isaiah,  chapter 40. This Agur might be another name for Solomon. Another explanation is that Agur means someone brave in the pursuit of wisdom. It is highly unlikely that these two Hebrew terms refer to personal names since the names of Agur and Jakeh are not seen anywhere else in the Bible or in any other Israelite document. The lack of parallel language elsewhere makes it difficult to settle on a particular meaning. Perhaps Agur is a foreign sage from the East since sometimes this oracle is translated as Masa, a land east and outside of Israel. Either this was a real person, or as some have suggested, it was a fanciful or symbolic name for Solomon.

The further adventures of Judas Maccabeus (1 Macc 5:65-5:68)

“Then Judas and his brothers went out and fought the descendents of Esau in the land to the south. He struck Hebron and its villages. He tore down its strongholds and burned its towers on all sides. Then he marched off to go into the land of the Philistines. He passed through Marisa. On that day some priests, who wished to do a brave deed, fell in battle, for they went out to battle unwisely. But Judas turned aside to Azotus in the land of the Philistines. He tore down their altars. He burned with fire the carved images of their gods. He plundered the towns. Finally, he returned to the land of Judah.”

Judas and his brothers decided to attack south in Edom, the land of the descendents of Esau. It is not clear why they struck down Hebron, which had been a capital of Israel at the time of David. Perhaps, more gentiles had taken over there. Hebron was only about 20 miles south of Jerusalem. Then he went west to the land of the Philistines. I guess that those Philistine just never die out. For some reason, a few unwise priests went out to do battle and were killed. Then Judas attacked Azotus in the Philistine territory. Once again, he tore down their altars and burned their idols. There is no mention of killing the males, but he did plunder the Philistine towns, before he returned to Judea. He never really got to Edom since he went southwest instead of southeast.