The punishment for Bel (Jer 51:44-51:44)

“I will punish Bel

In Babylon.

I will make him

Disgorge

What he has swallowed.

The nations shall no longer

Stream to him.

The wall of Babylon

Has fallen.”

Yahweh says that he was going to punish Bel, the god of Mesopotamia. Thus with the defeat of Babylon, the god Bel was also defeated. The punishment was that Bel had to throw up what he had eaten. All those nations where Bel was their god would no longer stream to his temple, because Babylon had fallen.

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Yahweh controls things (Prov 21:1-21:4)

“The king’s heart is a stream of water

In the hand of Yahweh.

He turns it wherever he will.

All deeds are right

In the sight of the doer.

But Yahweh weighs the heart.

To do righteousness

Is more acceptable to Yahweh than sacrifice.

To do justice

Is more acceptable to Yahweh than sacrifice.

Haughty eyes,

The lamp of the wicked,

Are sins.

A proud heart,

The lamp of the wicked,

Are sins.”

Yahweh has control of humans. Even the heart of a king is like a stream of water in the hand of Yahweh. He controls the heart of the king and turns it into whatever he wants. Most people think that they are doing the right thing, but Yahweh checks out the heart to see if they are truly righteous. To actually be righteous and do justice is more acceptable to Yahweh than sacrifice to Yahweh. Haughty eyes and a proud heart both indicate wickedness. Thus they are both sins.

Divine justice is correct (Job 11:13-11:20)

“If you direct your heart rightly,

You will stretch out your hands toward him.

If iniquity is in your hand,

Put it far away!

Do not let wickedness reside in your tents!

Surely then you will lift up your face without blemish.

You will be secure.

You will not fear.

You will forget your misery.

You will remember it as waters that have passed away.

Your life will be brighter than the noonday.

Its darkness will be like the morning.

You will have confidence,

Because there is hope.

You will be protected.

You will take your rest in safety.

You will lie down.

No one will make you afraid.

Many will entreat your favor.

But the eyes of the wicked will fail.

All way of escape will be lost to them,

Their hope is to breathe their last.”

Now Zophar turned on Job directly. He told him to pray with his hands stretched out. He wanted him to put away the iniquity in his heart. He was to get rid of the wickedness in his tents. Then his face would be without blemishes. Job would be secure and not fearful. All his misery would be like a stream that passed by. His life would be brighter than the noon day sun. He would have confidence and hope again. He would be protected and safe. He would not be afraid to lie down. People would come to him for favors. The wickedness would fade so that the only escape for the evil people was to wish for a quick death. This was a personal attack on Job.

Job is not happy with his companions (Job 6:14-6:20)

“Those who withhold kindness from a friend

Reject the fear of the Almighty Shaddai.

My companions are as treacherous as a flood.

My companions are like streams of water that pass away.

They are like dark spots on ice.

They are like murky spots on melting snow.

In time of heat they disappear.

When it is hot,

They vanish from their place.

The caravans turn aside from their course.

They go up into the waste.

They perish.

The caravans of Tema look.

The travelers of Sheba hope.

They are disappointed

Because they were confident.

They come there

But they are confused.”

Job then turned on his 3 companions. He said that they were not so friendly. However, they did come to spend some time with him. He, however, called them treacherous. He compared them to a flood of water, an uncontrolled stream of water. He also compared them to a flash flood. In other words, they were like quick and destructive flows of water. He also compared them to dark ice and murky snow in that when it got hot, they would disappear. Then he compared them to caravans from Tema, an Arab tribe descendent from Ishmael, and Sheba that got lost in the desert. Both these caravans in ancient times were very confident but in the end they were confused. Job was comparing his 3 friends to these lost confusing caravans. They were not helping him with their torrent of confusing words.

John defeats Cendebeus (1 Macc 16:4-16:10)

“John chose out of the country twenty thousand warriors and cavalry. They marched against Cendebeus. They camped for the night in Modein. Early in the morning they started out and marched into the plain. There a large force of infantry and cavalry was coming to meet them. A stream lay between them. Then he and his army lined up against them. He saw that the soldiers were afraid to cross the stream, so he crossed over first. When his troops saw him, they crossed over after him. Then he divided the army. He placed the cavalry in the center of the infantry. The cavalry of the enemy were very numerous. They sounded the trumpets. Cendebeus and his army were put to flight. Many of them were falling wounded. The rest fled into the stronghold. At that time Judas the brother of John was wounded. However, John pursued them until Cendebeus reached Kedron that he had built. They also fled into the towers that were in the fields of Azotus. John burned it with fire. About two thousand of them fell. He then returned to Judea safely.”

John, the son of Simon, had 20,000 warriors and cavalry. This is the first mention of cavalry on the Israelite side. They stopped at Modein one night on their march to meet Cendebeus. The next day on the plain they saw a large army coming at them. There was a stream between the 2 armies. John led his troops across the stream because they seemed afraid. He put the cavalry in the middle of his foot soldiers. They sounded the trumpets. Suddenly the army of Cendebeus fled. Judas, the brother of John, was wounded. John took after the fleeing army chasing them to the fields of Azotus where he burned the fields. About 2,000 of the enemy fell. Then John returned to Judea.

The attack on Carnaim (1 Macc 5:42-5:44)

“When Judas approached the stream of water, he stationed the officers of the people at the stream. He gave them this command.

‘Permit no man to encamp!

But make them all enter the battle!’

Then he crossed over against them first. The whole army followed him. All the gentiles were defeated before him. They threw away their arms and fled into the sacred precincts at Carnaim. But he took the town. He burned the sacred precincts with fire, together with all who were in them. Thus Carnaim was conquered. They could stand before Judas no longer.”

When Judas Maccabeus arrived at the water area, he told his officers to not let them stop and camp. This is what Timothy had wanted them to do. Then Judas led the charge across the stream as his whole army followed him. The gentiles were destroyed, but they fled to the sacred place in Carnaim, where there was worship of a Syrian fish goddess. However, Judas took the town of Carnaim and the sacred precincts with all the people in it. He burned it so that the city was conquered.