“The king was angry.
He sent his troops.
ὁ δὲ βασιλεὺς ὠργίσθη, καὶ πέμψας τὰ στρατεύματα αὐτοῦ ἀπώλεσεν τοὺς φονεῖς ἐκείνους καὶ τὴν πόλιν αὐτῶν ἐνέπρησεν.
Well, yeah, the king was enraged and angry. First, he invited them to his son’s wedding feast. Then they would not come after two specific invitations. Finally, they mistreated and killed his own slaves. In the equivalent Luke parable, nobody died. But Matthew has a different story. Jesus said that he wanted revenge for the death of this king’s slaves. This king was very angry, provoked, and irritated (ὁ δὲ βασιλεὺς ὠργίσθη). He sent his army of troops (καὶ πέμψας τὰ στρατεύματα αὐτοῦ) to destroy those murderers (ἀπώλεσεν τοὺς φονεῖς ἐκείνους). Then he burned down their city (καὶ τὴν πόλιν αὐτῶν ἐνέπρησεν). This destruction of the city may have been a veiled reference to the fall of Jerusalem. Don’t mess with the king and his slaves!
“‘You have not remembered
The days of your youth.
But you have enraged me
With all these things.
I have returned
Upon your head.’
Says Yahweh God.
‘Have you not
Jerusalem did not remember the days of her youth when Yahweh was kind and compassionate towards her. Instead Jerusalem enraged Yahweh with her wicked actions. Thus Yahweh has returned these deeds back on her. Jerusalem has committed many lewd deeds, beyond all her abominations. Yahweh is portrayed as ungrateful man because his lover Jerusalem has left him for other lovers.
“King Antiochus was enraged when he heard this. He assembled all his friends, the commanders of his forces and those in authority. Mercenary forces also came to him from other kingdoms and from the islands of the seas. The number of his forces was one hundred thousand foot soldiers, twenty thousand cavalry, and thirty-two elephants accustomed to war. They came through Idumea. They encamped against Beth-zur. For many days they fought and built engines of war. However, the Jews sallied out and burned these with fire. They fought courageously.”
The 10 year old King Antiochus V was mad when he heard this. He called all his friends and the commanders of the army. Probably Lysias was in command of the army since he had fought and lost to Judas Maccabeus. They also had mercenary forces from other kingdoms and islands. The total force for King Antiochus V and Lysias was 100,000 foot soldiers, 20,000 horsemen, and 32 elephants. That is something new. They came from the south via Idumea. They camped at Beth-zur, 18 miles south of Jerusalem, where Judas had defeated Lysias 3 years earlier in 165 BCE in chapter 4 of this book. However, the Jews fought courageously here.