“Meanwhile King Trypho embarked on a ship as he escaped to Orthosia. Then King Antiochus made Cendebeus the commander-in-chief of the coastal country. He gave him troops of infantry and cavalry. He commanded him to encamp against Judea. He commanded him to build up Kedron and fortify its gates. He was to make war on the people. However, the king was going to pursue Trypho. So Cendebeus came to Jamnia. He began to provoke the people and invade Judea. He took the people captive and killed them. He built up Kedron. Then he stationed horsemen and troops there, so that they might go out and make raids along the highways of Judea, as the king had ordered him.”
The siege at Dor did not work that well. King Trypho escaped from King Antiochus VII as he got on a boat and went to Orthosia, which was north of Tripolis. At the same time, King Antiochus VII was concerned about Simon and Judea. He made Cendebeus the commander of the coastal country with cavalry troops and infantry. His orders were to harass Judea, while the king went after King Trypho, so that he could claim the throne. Cendebeus built up the town of Kedron, probably southwest of Ekron, where he stationed horses and troops so that they could go out and make raids on the Judea highways, as he had been ordered to do.
“When Jonathan heard the words of Apollonius, his spirit was aroused. He chose ten thousand men and set out from Jerusalem. His brother Simon met him to help him. He encamped before Joppa, but the men of the city closed its gates. Apollonius had a garrison in Joppa. So they fought against it. Then the people of the city became afraid. They opened their gates so that Jonathan gained possession of Joppa.”
When Jonathan heard the words of the message from Apollonius who represented King Demetrius II, he was annoyed. This time Jonathan had a large force of 10,000 men when he also met with his brother Simon. He decided to go to Joppa, one of the ancient Mediterranean seaports, about 35 miles northwest of Jerusalem. Apollonius had a garrison there, but Jonathan fought against them. The people in the city became afraid so that they opened the gates and let Jonathan take over.
“Then Judith with her maid went out together, as they were accustomed to do for prayer. They passed through the camp. They circled around the valley. Then they went up the mountain to Bethulia. They came to its gates. From a distance, Judith called out to the sentries at the gates.
‘Open, open the gate!
God, our God,
Is still with us.
He shows his power in Israel.
He shows his strength against our enemies,
As he has done today!’”
After the killing, Judith and her maid walked out together as they had the previous 3 nights. They went through the camp as if to pray. However, then they circled around the valley and went up the mountain to their town of Bethulia. As they approached the gate, she cried out to the sentries so that they would not be attacked. She wanted them to open the gates. She proclaimed that God was still with the people of Israel since he had shown his strength against their enemies that day.