1. Simon heard that Trypho had assembled a great army to invade Judea and devastate it.
2. As the people were frightened and apprehensive, he went up to Jerusalem.
3. There he called the people together and encouraged them with this exhortation: "All of you know what I, my brothers, and the family of my father have done for the laws and for the Holy Place. You also know the wars and the hardships we endured.
4. All my brothers died for Israel and now I alone am left.
5. God forbid that I should seek my own safety when things go wrong! For my life is not of more worth than the lives of my brothers. Now that all the nations have united in their hatred in order to destroy us,
6. I will defend my nation and the Holy Place, your wives and your children."
7. All were encouraged with these words
8. and they exclaimed in a loud voice: "Be our leader in place of Judas and your brother Jonathan.
9. Lead us in the war and we will obey your commands."
10. So Simon assembled all the men able to fight and hastened to finish building the walls of Jerusalem, which was fortified on all sides.
11. Then he sent Jonathan, son of Absalom, with a strong army to Joppa. They drove out those who occupied it and remained there.
12. Meanwhile, Trypho left Ptolemais with a large army to invade Judea, taking Jonathan with him as prisoner.
13. Simon encamped in Adida facing the plain.
14. But when Trypho learned that Simon had taken command in place of his brother Jonathan and was prepared to fight him, he sent some envoys to him with this message:
15. "We have in our custody your brother Jonathan because of the money he owes to the royal treasury for the offices he held.
16. So, send a hundred talents of silver and two of his sons as hostages lest he slip away when we release him, and come back against us. Then we shall let him go."
17. Simon knew that Trypho was deceiving him, but he still sent for the money and the boys so as not to draw upon himself the anger of the people of Israel who might say:
18. "They killed Jonathan because Simon refused to send Trypho the money and the boys."
19. He therefore sent the boys and the hundred talents, but Trypho broke his word and did not set Jonathan free.
20. After this, Trypho advanced to invade Judea and plunder it. He moved along the way to Adora, but Simon and his army kept confronting him wherever he went.
21. Then the men in the Citadel sent messengers to Trypho urging him to come at once to their rescue by way of the desert and to bring them food.
22. Trypho prepared his entire cavalry to go, but it snowed so heavily that night that he was not able to go. So he left for Gilead,
23. and when he approached Baskama he killed Jonathan and buried him there.
24. Then Trypho returned to his own land.
25. Simon sent men to look for the remains of Jonathan, his brother, and he buried him in Modein, the city of their fathers.
26. All Israel deeply mourned and wept for Jonathan for many days.
27. Simon built a monument over the tomb of his fathers and brothers, high enough to be seen even from afar, with the back and front covered with marble.
28. He erected seven pyramids facing each other, for his father and mother and his four brothers.
29. He surrounded the pyramids with great columns, and he had trophies of arms carved upon the columns as a lasting remembrance; and beside the armor, sculptured ships were to be seen by all who sailed the sea.
30. This is the tomb he constructed in Modein and it is still there today.
31. Trypho treated the young King Antiochus in bad faith, and put him to death.
32. He then made himself king in his place, put on the crown of Asia and caused great havoc in the country.
33. Now Simon rebuilt the fortresses of Judea, surrounded them with high towers and great walls with barred gates, and stored food in them.
34. Simon chose men whom he sent to King Demetrius in his attempt to obtain tax exemption for the region, on the grounds that all that Trypho did was to plunder.
35. King Demetrius responded favorably to his request and wrote to him as follows,
36. "King Demetrius greets Simon, High Priest and Friend of the King, the elders and the Jewish nation.
37. We have received the golden crowns and the palm you have sent us and we are disposed to make a lasting peace with you, and to write to the officials to grant you remission of your debts.
38. All our concessions in your favor are definitive and the fortresses you have built are yours.
39. Moreover, we pardon all errors and offenses committed to this day, as well as the crown tax you owe. From now on, any other tax that used to be paid in Jerusalem shall no longer be collected.
40. If any of your men are qualified to enlist in our army, they can do so. And let peace reign between us."
41. So, in the year one hundred and seventy (142 B.C.), Israel became free from the yoke of the pagans.
42. They began to write in their documents and contracts, "In the first year of Simon, high priest, general and leader of the Jews."
43. In those days, Simon encamped against Gazard and surrounded it with his army. He constructed a mobile tower, brought it up to the city, attacked and occupied one tower.
44. Then the men of the mobile tower entered the city, causing great dismay.
45. The inhabitants with their wives and children went up on the walls, tore their garments, cried out in a loud voice to Simon and sought peace.
46. They said to him, "Treat us not as our wickedness deserves, but according to your mercy."
47. Simon was reconciled with them and did not treat them according to the rigor of war. But he expelled them from the city and purified the houses where idols were kept. He then entered the city singing hymns of thanksgiving.
48. After cleansing it from all its impurity, he settled in it men who observed the Law. He fortified it and built a house there for himself.
49. The men who occupied the Citadel in Jerusalem could no longer come out or go into Jewish territory to buy or sell. So they were desperately in need of food, many of them dying of hunger.
50. They begged Simon for peace, and he granted it to them. But he expelled them from there and cleansed the Citadel from all that reminded them of the presence of the pagans.
51. On the twenty-third day of the second month of the year one hundred and seventy-one (141 B.C.), the Jews entered it with songs and palm branches to the accompaniment of zithers, cymbals and harps, and with hymns and songs, for a great plague had been crushed and removed from Israel.
52. Simon decreed that this day be celebrated as a day of annual rejoicing. He strengthened the fortifications of the Temple hill by the side of the military Citadel, and dwelt there with his men.
53. John, son of Simon, had come to manhood, so his father appointed him general in command of all the troops, and John lived in Gazara.