The king’s army prepares to do battle (1 Macc 6:33-6:39)

“Early in the morning the king set out. He took his army by a forced march along the road to Beth-zechariah. His troops made ready for battle and sounded their trumpets. They offered their elephants the juice of grapes and mulberries to arouse them for battle. They distributed the beasts among the phalanxes. With each elephant they stationed a thousand men armed with coats of mail and with brass helmets on their heads. Five hundred picked cavalry were assigned to each beast. These took their position beforehand wherever the beast was. Wherever it went, they went with it. They never left it. On the elephants were wooden towers, strong and covered. They were fastened on each beast by a special harness. On each were four armed men who fought from there. They also had an Indian driver. The rest of the cavalry were stationed on either side, on the two flanks of the army, to harass the enemy while being themselves protected by the phalanxes. When the sun shone upon the shields of gold and brass, the hills were ablaze with them. They gleamed like flaming torches.”

King Antiochus V, the 10 year old king, or Lysias, his general got ready for the battle with Judas Maccabeus. They had elephants all juiced up and roaring to go. Each elephant had 1,000 men and 500 cavalry with them. On top of the elephants they had wooden towers fastened by a harness with 4 armed men in each tower. Beside these men there was an Indian driver of the elephant. They were an extraordinary sight so that when the sun shone on them, their shields looks like flaming torches.

The army of King Uzziah (2 Chr 26:11-26:15)

“Moreover King Uzziah had an army of soldiers, fit for war. They were in divisions according to the numbers in the muster made by the secretary Jeiel and the officer Maaseiah, under the direction of Hananiah, one of the king’s commanders. The whole number of the heads of ancestral houses of mighty warriors was two thousand six hundred. Under their command was an army of three hundred and seven thousand five hundred, who could make war with mighty power, to help the king against the enemy. King Uzziah provided for all his army. He gave them shields, spears, helmets, coats of mail, bows, and stones for slinging. In Jerusalem he set up machines, invented by skilled workers, to be on the towers and the corners, to shoot arrows and large stones. His fame spread far, for he was marvelously helped, until he became strong.”

King Uzziah had a great army under Hananiah, his chief commander. He had a secretary and official to organize the 2,600 heads of families or the captains. Then he had 307,500 troops led by his 2,600 captains. They had all the weapons of war that he handed out to his warriors, shields, spears, helmets, coats of mail, bows, and sling shot stones. Who could ask for more? Notice that there were no guns, because the Chinese had not yet invented gun powder. He had a mechanized machine on the top of the towers in Jerusalem that could shoot arrows and great stones. These machines were invented and put together by skilled workers in Jerusalem. His fame spread far and wide.