From The Work of God's Children
THE BOOK OF TOBIT
This Book takes its name from the holy man Tobit, whose wonderful virtues are herein recorded. It contains most excellent documents of great piety, extraordinary patience, and of a perfect resignation to the will of God. His humble prayer was heard, and the Angel Raphael was sent to relieve him: he is thankful and praises the Lord, calling on the children of Israel to do the same. Having lived to the age of one hundred and two years, he exhorts his son and grandsons to piety, foretells the destruction of Nineveh and the rebuilding of Jerusalem: he dies happily.
Tobit's early piety: his works of mercy, particularly in burying the dead.
1:1. Tobit of the tribe and city of Naphtali, (which is in the upper parts of Galilee above Naasson, beyond the way that leads to the west, having on the right hand the city of Sephet,)
1:2. When he was made captive in the days of Salmanasar king of the Assyrians, he did not forsake the way of truth, even in his captivity,
1:3. But every day gave all he could get to his brethren his fellow captives, that were of his kindred.
1:4. When he was younger than any of the tribe of Naphtali, yet he did no childish thing in his work.
1:5. Moreover when all went to the golden calves which Jeroboam king of Israel had made, he alone fled the company of all,
1:6. Went to Jerusalem to the temple of the Lord, and there adored the Lord God of Israel, offering faithfully all his first fruits, and his tithes,
1:7. So that in the third year he gave all his tithes to the proselytes, and strangers.
1:8. These and such like things did he observe when but a boy according to the law of God.
1:9. But when he was a man, he took to wife Anna of his own tribe, and had a son by her, whom he called after his own name,
1:10. From his infancy he taught him to fear God, and to abstain from all sin.
1:11. When by the captivity he with his wife and his son and all his tribe were brought to the city of Nineveh,
1:12. (When all ate of the meats of the Gentiles) he kept his soul and never was defiled with their meats.
1:13. Because he was mindful of the Lord with all his heart, God gave him favor in the sight of Salmanasar the king.
1:14. He gave him leave to go wherever he wished, with liberty to do whatever he had a mind.
1:15. He therefore went to all that were in captivity, and gave them wholesome admonitions.
1:16. And when he had come to Rages, a city of the Medes, and had ten talents of silver of that with which he had been honored by the king:
1:17. When among a great multitude of his kindred, he saw Gabelus in want, who was one of his tribe, taking a note of his hand he gave him the aforesaid sum of money.
1:18. But after a long time, Salmanasar, the king, being dead, when Sennacherib his son, who reigned in his place, had a hatred for the children of Israel:
1:19. Tobit daily went among all his kindred and comforted them, and distributed to every one as he was able, out of his goods:
1:20. He fed the hungry, and gave clothes to the naked, and was careful to bury the dead, and those who were slain.
1:21. When king Sennacherib had come back, fleeing from Judea by reason of the slaughter that God had made about him for his blasphemy, and being angry slew many of the children of Israel, Tobit buried their bodies.
1:22. But when it was told the king, he commanded him to be slain, and took away all his substance.
1:23. But Tobit fleeing away ungarbed with his son and with his wife, lay concealed, for many loved him.
1:24. But after forty-five days, the king was killed by his own sons.
1:25. Tobit returned to his house, and all his substance was restored to him.
Tobit left his dinner to bury the dead: he lost his sight by God's permission, for manifestation of his patience.
2:1. But after this, when there was a festival of the Lord, and a good dinner was prepared in Tobit's house,
2:2. He said to his son, “Go, and bring some of our tribe that fear God, to feast with us.”
2:3. When he had gone, returning he told him, that one of the children of Israel lay slain in the street. And he forthwith leaped up from his place at the table, and left his dinner, and came fasting to the body.
2:4. Taking it up carried it privately to his house, that after the sun was down, he might bury him cautiously.
2:5. When he had hid the body, he ate bread with mourning and fear,
2:6. Remembering the word which the Lord spoke by Amos the prophet: Your festival days shall be turned into lamentation and mourning.
2:7. So when the sun was down, he went and buried him.
2:8. Now all his neighbors blamed him, saying, “Once already commandment was given for you to be slain because of this matter, and you did scarce escape the sentence of death, and do you again bury the dead?”
2:9. But Tobit fearing God more than the king, carried off the bodies of them that were slain, and hid them in his house, and at midnight buried them.
2:10. Now it happened one day that being wearied with burying, he came to his house, and cast himself down by the wall and slept,
2:11. As he was sleeping, hot dung out of a swallow's nest fell upon his eyes, and he was made blind.
2:12. Now this trial the Lord therefore permitted to happen to him, that an example might be given to posterity of his patience, as also of holy Job.
2:13. For whereas he had always feared God from his infancy, and kept his commandments, he repined not against God because the evil of blindness had befallen him,
2:14. But continued immovable in the fear of God, giving thanks to God all the days of his life.
2:15. For as the kings insulted over holy Job: so his relations and kinsmen mocked at his life, saying,
Kings. . .So Job's three friends are here called, because they were princes in their respective territories.
2:16. "Where is your hope, for which you gave alms, and buried the dead?”
2:17. But Tobit rebuked them, saying, “Speak not so:
2:18. For we are the children of saints, and look for that life which God will give to those that never change their faith from Him.”
2:19. Now Anna his wife went daily to weaving work, and she brought home what she could get for their living by the labor of her hands.
2:20. Whereby it came to pass, that she received a young kid, and brought it home:
2:21. When her husband heard it bleating, he said, “Take heed, lest perhaps it be stolen: restore ye it to its owners, for it is not lawful for us either to eat or to touch any thing that comes by theft.”
2:22. At these words his wife being angry answered, “It is evident the hope is come to nothing, and thy alms now appear.”
2:23. With these and other, such like words she upbraided him.
The prayer of Tobiah, and of Sara, in their several afflictions, are heard by God, and the Angel Raphael is sent to relieve them.
3:1. Then Tobit sighed, and began to pray with tears,
3:2. Saying, “Thou art just, O Lord, and all Thy judgments are just, and all Thy ways mercy, and truth, and judgment:
3:3. And now, O Lord, think of me, and take not revenge of my sins, neither remember my offenses, nor those of my parents.
3:4. For we have not obeyed Thy commandments, therefore are we delivered to spoil and to captivity, and death, and are made a fable, and a reproach to all nations, among which Thou has scattered us.
3:5. Now, O Lord, great are Thy judgments, because we have not done according to Thy precepts, and have not walked sincerely before Thee.
But continuing in prayer with tears besought God, that He would deliver her from this reproach.Tobit 3:11
3:6. Now, O Lord, do with me according to Thy will, and command my spirit to be received in peace: for it is better for me to die, than to live.”
3:7. Now it happened on the same day, that Sara daughter of Raguel, in Rages a city of the Medes, received a reproach from one of her father's servant maids,
Rages. . .In the Greek it is Ecbatana, which was also called Rages. For there were two cities in Media of the name of Rages. Raguel dwelt in one of them, and Gabelus in the other.
3:8. Because she had been given to seven husbands and a devil named Asmodeus had killed them, at their first going in unto her.
3:9. So when she reproved the maid for her fault, she answered her, saying, “May we never see son, or daughter of yours upon the earth, you murderer of your husbands.
3:10. Will you kill me also, as you have already killed seven husbands?” At these words, she went into an upper chamber of her house: and for three days and three nights did neither eat nor drink:
3:11. But continuing in prayer with tears besought God, that He would deliver her from this reproach.
3:12. It came to pass on the third day when she was making an end of her prayer, blessing the Lord,
3:13. She said, “Blessed is thy name, O God of our fathers, Who when Thou has been angry, will show mercy, and in the time of tribulation forgive the sins of them that call upon Thee.
3:14. To Thee, O Lord, I turn my face, to Thee I direct my eyes.
3:15. I beg, O Lord, that Thou loose me from the bond of this reproach, or else take me away from the earth.
3:16. Thou know, O Lord, that I never coveted a husband, and have kept my soul clean from all lust.
3:17. Never have I joined myself with them that play: neither have I made myself partaker with them that walk in lightness.
3:18. But a husband I consented to take, with thy fear, not with my lust.
3:19. Either I was unworthy of them, or they perhaps were not worthy of me: because perhaps Thou has kept me for another man,
3:20. For Thy counsel is not in man's power.
3:21. But this every one is sure of that worship Thee, that his life, if it be under trial, shall be crowned and if it be under tribulation, it shall be delivered: and if it be under correction, it shall be allowed to come to Thy mercy.
3:22. For Thou art not delighted in our being lost, because after a storm Thou makes a calm, and after tears and weeping Thou pour in joyfulness.
3:23. Be Thy Name, O God of Israel, blessed forever.”
3:24. At that time the prayers of them both were heard in the sight of the glory of the Most High God:
3:25. The Holy Angel of the Lord, Raphael, was sent to heal them both, whose prayers at one time were rehearsed in the sight of the Lord.
Tobit thinking he shall die, gave his son godly admonitions: and tells him of money he had lent to a friend.
4:1. Therefore when Tobit thought that his prayer was heard that he might die, he called Tobiah, his son, to him,
4:2. and said to him, “Hear, my son, the words of my mouth, and lay them as a foundation in your heart.
4:3. When God shall take my soul, you shall bury my body: and you shall honor your mother all the days of her life:
4:4. For you must be mindful what and how great perils she suffered for you in her womb.
4:5. When she also shall have ended the time of her life, bury her by me.
4:6. All the days of your life have God in your mind: and take heed to never consent to sin, nor transgress the commandments of the Lord our God.
4:7. Give alms out of your substance, and turn not away your face from any poor person: for so it shall come to pass that the face of the Lord shall not be turned from you.
4:8. According to your ability be merciful.
4:9. If you have much give abundantly: if you have little, take care even so to bestow willingly a little.
4:10. For thus you store up for yourself a good reward for the day of necessity.
4:11. For alms deliver from all sin, and from death, and will not suffer the soul to go into darkness.
4:12. Alms shall be a great confidence before the Most High God, to all them that give it.
4:13. Take heed to keep yourself, my son, from all fornication, and beside your wife never endure to know a crime.
4:14. Never suffer pride to reign in your mind, or in your words: for from it all perdition took its beginning.
4:15. If any man has done any work for you, immediately pay him his hire, and let not the wages of your hired servant stay with you at all.
4:16. See you never do to another what you would hate to have done to you by another.
4:17. Eat your bread with the hungry and the needy, and with your garments cover the naked,
4:18. Lay out your bread, and your wine upon the burial of a just man, and do not eat and drink thereof with the wicked.
4:19. Seek counsel always of a wise man.
4:20. Bless God at all times: and desire of Him to direct your ways, and that all your counsels may abide in Him.
4:21. I tell you also, my son, that I lent ten talents of silver, while you were yet a child, to Gabelus, in Rages, a city of the Medes, and I have a note of his hand with me:
4:22. Now, therefore, inquire how you may go to him, and receive of him the foresaid sum of money, and restore to him the note of his hand.
4:23. Fear not, my son: we lead indeed a poor life, but we shall have many good things if we fear God, and depart from all sin, and do that which is good.”
Young Tobiah seeking a guide for his journey, the Angel Raphael, in the shape of a man, undertook this office.
5:1. Then Tobiah answered his father, and said, “I will do all things, father, which you have commanded me.
5:2. But how I shall get this money--I cannot tell; he does not know me, and I do not know him? What token shall I give him? Nor did I ever know the way which leads thither.”
5:3. Then his father replied to him, “I have a note of his hand with me, which when you shall show him, he will presently pay it.
5:4. But go now, and seek out some faithful man, to go with you for his hire: that you may receive it, while I yet live.”
5:5. Then Tobiah going forth, found a beautiful young man, standing girded, and as it were, ready to walk.
5:6. Not knowing that he was an Angel of God, he saluted him, and said, ”From where are you, good young man?”
5:7. But he answered, “Of the children of Israel.” And Tobiah said to him, “Do you know the way that leads to the country of the Medes?”
5:8. He answered, “I know it: and I have often walked through all the ways thereof, and I have abode with Gabelus our brother, who dwells at Rages, a city of the Medes, which is situated in the mount of Ecbatana.”
5:9. Tobiah said to him, “Stay for me, I beseech you, till I tell these same things to my father.”
5:10. Then Tobiah going in told all these things to his father. Upon which his father being in admiration, desired that he would come in unto him.
5:11. So going in he saluted him, and said, “Joy be to you always.”
5:12. Tobit said, “What manner of joy shall be to me, who sit in darkness and see not the light of heaven?”
5:13. The young man said to him, “Be of good courage, your cure from God is at hand.”
5:14. Tobit said to him, “Can you conduct my son to Gabelus at Rages, a city of the Medes and when you shall return, I will pay you your hire?”
5:15. The Angel said to him, “I will conduct him thither, and bring him back to you.”
5:16. Tobit said to him, “I pray thee, tell me, of what family, or what tribe are you?”
5:17. Raphael, the Angel, answered, “Do you seek the family of him you hire, or the hired servant himself to go with your son?
5:18. But lest I should make you uneasy, I am Azarias the son of the great Ananias.”
Azarias. . .The Angel took the form of Azarias: and therefore might call himself by the name of the man whom he personated. Azarias, in Hebrew, signifies the help of God, and Ananias the grace of God.
5:19. Tobit answered, “You are of a great family. But I pray you are not angry that I desired to know your family.”
5:20. The Angel said to him, “I will lead your son safely, and bring him to you again safely.”
5:21. Tobit answering, said, “May you have a good journey, and God be with you in your way, and his Angel accompany you.”
5:22. Then all things being ready, that were to be carried in their journey, Tobiah bade his father and his mother farewell, and they both set out together.
5:23. When they were departed, his mother began to weep, and to say, “You have taken the staff of our old age, and sent him away from us.
5:24. I wish the money for which you have sent him, had never been.
5:25. For our poverty was sufficient for us, that we might account it as riches, that we saw our son.”
5:26. Tobit said to her, “Weep not, our son will arrive thither safe, and will return safe to us, and your eyes shall see him.
5:27. For I believe that the good Angel of God does accompany him, and does order all things well that are done about him, so that he shall return to us with joy.”
5:28. At these words his mother ceased weeping, and held her peace.
By the Angel's advice young Tobiah took hold on a fish that assaulted him and reserved the heart, the gall, and the liver for medicines. They lodge at the house of Raguel, whose daughter Sara, Tobiah is to marry; she had before been married to seven husbands, who were all slain by a devil.
6:1. Tobiah went forward, and the dog followed him, and he lodged the first night by the river of Tigris.
6:2. He went out to wash his feet, and behold a monstrous fish came up to devour him.
6:3. Tobias being afraid of him, cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Sir, he comes upon me.”
6:4. The Angel said to him, “Take him by the gill, and draw him to you.” And when he had done so, he drew him out upon the land, and he began to pant before his feet.
6:5. Then the Angel said to him, “Take out the entrails of this fish, and lay up his heart, and his gall, and his liver for you: for these are necessary for useful medicines.”
6:6. When he had done so, he roasted the flesh thereof, and they took it with them in the way: the rest they salted as much as might serve them, till they came to Rages, the city of the Medes.
6:7. Then Tobiah asked the Angel, and said to him, “I beseech you, Brother Azarias, tell me what remedies are these things good for, which you have bid me keep of the fish?”
6:8. The Angel, answering, said to him, “If you put a little piece of its heart upon coals, the smoke thereof drives away all kind of devils, either from man or from woman, so that they come no more to them.
Its heart, etc. The liver (ver. 19). . .God was pleased to give these things a virtue against those proud spirits, to make them, who affected to be like the Most High, subject to such mean corporeal creatures as instruments of his power.
6:9. The gall is good for anointing the eyes, in which there is a white speck, and they shall be cured.”
6:10. Tobiah said to him, “Where do you will that we lodge?”
6:11. The Angel answering, said, “Here is one whose name is Raguel, a near kinsman of your tribe, and he has a daughter named Sara, but he has no son nor any other daughter beside her.
6:12. All his substance is due to you, and you must take her to be your wife.
6:13. Ask her therefore of her father, and he will give her you to be your wife.“
6:14. Then Tobiah answered, and said, “I hear that she has been given to seven husbands, and they all died: moreover, I have heard that a devil killed them.
6:15. Now I am afraid, lest the same thing should happen to me also: and whereas I am the only child of my parents, I should bring down their old age with sorrow to hell.”
Hell. . .That is, to the place where the souls of the good were kept before the coming of Christ.
6:16. Then the Angel Raphael said to him, “Hear me, and I will show you who they are, over whom the devil can prevail.
6:17. For they who in such manner receive matrimony, as to shut out God from themselves, and from their mind, and to give themselves to their lust, as the horse and mule, which have not understanding, over them the devil hath power.
6:18. But you, when you shall take her, go into the chamber, and for three days keep yourself continent from her, and give yourself to nothing else but to prayers with her.
6:19. On that night lay the liver of the fish on the fire, and the devil shall be driven away.
6:20. But the second night you shall be admitted into the society of the holy Patriarchs.
6:21. The third night you shalt obtain a blessing that sound children may be born of you.
6:22. When the third night is past, you shalt take the virgin with the fear of the Lord, moved rather for love of children than for lust, that in the seed of Abraham you may obtain a blessing in children.”
They are kindly entertained by Raguel. Tobiah demanded Sara as wife.
7:1. They went in to Raguel, and Raguel received them with joy.
7:2. Raguel looking upon Tobiah, said to Anna his wife, “How like is this young man to my cousin?”
7:3. When he had spoken these words, he said, “Whence are ye young men our brethren?”
7:4. But they said, “We are of the tribe of Naphtali, of the captivity of Nineveh.”
7:5. Raguel said to the, “Do you know Tobias, my brother?” And they said, “We know him.”
7:6. When he was speaking many good things of him, the Angel said to Raguel: Tobit, concerning whom you inquire, is this young man's father.
7:7. Raguel went to him, and kissed him with tears and weeping upon his neck, said: A blessing be upon you, my son, because you are the son of a good and most virtuous man.
7:8. Anna his wife, and Sara their daughter wept.
7:9. After they had spoken, Raguel commanded a sheep to be killed, and a feast to be prepared. And then he desired for them to sit down to dinner,
7:10. Tobiah said, “I will not eat nor drink here this day, unless thou first grant me my petition, and promise to give me Sara, your daughter.”
7:11. Now when Raguel heard this he was afraid, knowing what had happened to those seven husbands that went in unto her: He began to fear lest it might occur to him also in like manner: and as he was in suspense, and gave no answer to his petition,
7:12. The Angel said to him, “Be not afraid to give her to this man, for to him who fears God is your daughter due to be his wife: therefore another could not have her.”
7:13. Then Raguel said, “I doubt not but God has regarded my prayers and tears in His sight.
7:14. I believe He has therefore made you come to me, that this maid might be married to one of her own kindred, according to the law of Moses: and now doubt not but I will give her to you.”
7:15. Taking the right hand of his daughter, he gave it into the right hand of Tobiah, saying, “The God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob be with you, and may He join you together, and fulfill His blessing in you.”
7:16. Taking paper they made a writing of the marriage.
7:17. Afterwards they made merry, blessing God.
7:18. Raguel called to him Anna, his wife, and bade her to prepare another chamber.
7:19. She brought Sara, her daughter, in thither, and she wept.
7:20. She said to her, “Be of good cheer, my daughter: the Lord of heaven gives you joy for the trouble you have undergone.”
Tobiah burned part of the fish's liver, and Raphael bound the devil. Tobiah and Sara pray.
8:1. After they had supped, they brought in the young man to her.
8:2. Tobiah remembering the Angel's word, took out of his bag part of the liver, and laid it upon burning coals.
8:3. Then the Angel Raphael took the devil, and bound him in the desert of upper Egypt.
8:4. Then Tobiah exhorted the virgin, and said to her, “Sara, arise, and let us pray to God today, and tomorrow, and the next day: because for these three nights we are joined to God: and when the third night is over, we will be in our own wedlock.
8:5. For we are the children of saints, and we must not be joined together like heathens that know not God.”
8:6. So they both arose, and prayed earnestly both together that health might be given them,
8:7. Tobias said, “Lord God of our fathers, may the heavens and the earth, and the sea, and the fountains, and the rivers, and all Thy creatures that are in them, bless Thee.
8:8. Thou made Adam of the slime of the earth, and gave him Eve for a helper.
8:9. Now, Lord, Thou know, that not for fleshly lust do I take my sister to be my wife, but only for the love of posterity, in which Thy name may be blessed forever and ever.”
8:10. Sara also said, “Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us, and let us both grow old together in health.”
8:11. It came to pass about the cockcrowing, Raguel ordered his servants to be called for, and they went with him together to dig a grave.
8:12. For he said, “Lest perhaps it may have happened to him, in like manner as it did to the other seven husbands, that went in unto her.”
8:13. When they had prepared the pit, Raguel went back to his wife, and said to her,
8:14. “Send one of your maids, and let her see if he be dead, that I may bury him before it be day.”
8:15. So she sent one of her maidservants, who went into the chamber, and found them safe and sound, sleeping both together.
8:16. Returning she brought the good news: and Raguel and Anna his wife blessed the Lord,
8:17. and said, “We bless Thee, O Lord God of Israel, because it has not happened as we suspected.
8:18. For Thou has shown Thy mercy to us, and has shut out from us the enemy that persecuted us.
8:19. Thou hast taken pity upon two only children. Make them, O Lord, bless Thee more fully: and to offer up to Thee a sacrifice of Thy praise, and of their health, that all nations may know, that Thou alone art God in all the earth.”
8:20. Immediately Raguel commanded his servants, to fill up the pit they had made, before it was day.
8:21. He spoke to his wife to make ready a feast, and prepare all kind of provisions that are necessary for such as go on a journey.
8:22. He caused also two fattened oxen, and four rams to be killed, and a banquet to be prepared for all his neighbors, and all his friends,
8:23. Raguel adjured Tobiah, to abide with him two weeks.
8:24. Of all things which Raguel possessed, he gave one half to Tobiah, and made a writing, that the half that remained should after their decease come also to Tobiah.
The Angel Raphael goes to Gabelus, receives the money, and brings him to the marriage.
9:1. Then Tobiah called the Angel to him, whom he took to be a man, and said to him, “Brother Azarias, I pray thee hearken to my words:
9:2. If I should give myself to be your servant I should not make a worthy return for your care.
9:3. However, I beseech you, to take with you beasts and servants, and to go to Gabelus to Rages the city of the Medes: and to restore to him his note of hand, and receive of him the money, and desire him to come to my wedding.
9:4. For you know that my father numbered the days: and if I stay one day more, his soul will be afflicted.
9:5. Indeed you see how Raguel has adjured me, whose adjuring I cannot despise.”
9:6. Then Raphael took four of Raguel's servants, and two camels, and went to Rages the city of the Medes: and finding Gabelus, gave him his note of hand, and received of him all the money.
9:7. He told him concerning Tobiah, the son of Tobit, all that had been done: and made him come with him to the wedding.
9:8. When he was come into Raguel's house he found Tobiah sitting at the table: and he leaped up, and they kissed each other: and Gabelus wept, and blessed God,
9:9. and said, “The God of Israel bless thee, because you are the son of a very good and just man, and that fears God, and does almsdeeds:
9:10. and may a blessing come upon thy wife and upon your parents.
9:11. May you see your children, and your children's children, unto the third and fourth generation: and may your seed be blessed by the God of Israel, Who reigns forever and ever.”
9:12. When all had said, Amen, they went to the feast: but the marriage feast they celebrated also with the fear of the Lord.
The parents lament the long absence of their son, Tobiah. He sets out to return.
10:1. But as Tobiah made longer stay upon occasion of the marriage, Tobit his father was solicitous, saying, “Why do you think my son does tarry, or why is he detained there?
10:2. Is Gabelus dead, do you think, and no man will pay him the money?”
10:3. He began to be exceeding sad, both he and Anna his wife with him: and they began both to weep together, because their son did not return to them on the day appointed.
10:4. But his mother wept and was quite disconsolate, and said, “Woe, woe is me, my son; why did we send him to go to a strange country, the light of our eyes, the staff of our old age, the comfort of our life, the hope of our posterity?
10:5. We, having all things together in him alone, ought not to have let him go from us.”
10:6. Tobit said to her, “Hold your peace, and be not troubled, our son is safe: that man with whom we sent him is very trustworthy.”
10:7. But she could by no means be comforted, but daily running out looked round about, and went into all the ways by which there seemed any hope he might return, that she might if possible see him coming afar off.
10:8. But Raguel said to his son-in-law, “Stay here, and I will send a messenger to Tobit, your father, that you are in good health.”
10:9. Tobiah said to him, “I know that my father and mother now count the days, and their spirit is grievously afflicted within them.”
10:10. When Raguel had pressed Tobiah with many words, and he by no means would hearken to him, he delivered Sara unto him, and half of all his substance in menservants, and womenservants, in cattle, in camels, and in oxen, and in much money, and sent him away safe and joyful from him,
10:11. saying, “The Holy Angel of the Lord be with you in your journey, and bring you through safe, and that you may find all things well about your parents, and my eyes may see your children before I die.”
10:12. The parents taking their daughter kissed her, and let her go:
10:13. Admonishing her to honor her father and mother-in-law, to love her husband, to take care of the family, to govern the house, and to behave herself irreprehensibly.
Tobiah anoints his father's eyes with the fish's gall, and he recovers his sight.
11:1. As they were returning they came to Charan, which is in the midway to Nineveh, the eleventh day.
11:2. The Angel said, “Brother Tobiah, you know how you did leave your father.
11:3. If it please you therefore, let us go before, and let the family follow softly after us, together with your wife, and with the beasts.”
11:4. As this their going pleased him, Raphael said to Tobiah, “Take with you of the gall of the fish, for it will be necessary.” So Tobiah took some of that gall and departed.
11:5. But Anna sat beside the way daily, on the top of a hill, from whence she might see afar off.
11:6. While she watched his coming from that place, she saw him afar off, and presently perceived it was her son coming: and returning she told her husband, saying, “Behold your son comes.”
11:7. Raphael said to Tobiah, “As soon as you shall come into your house, forthwith adore the Lord thy God: and giving thanks to Him, go to thy father, and kiss him.
11:8. Immediately anoint his eyes with this gall of the fish, which you carry with you. For be assured that his eyes shall be presently opened, and your father shall see the light of heaven, and shall rejoice in the sight of you.”
11:9. Then the dog, which had been with them in the way, ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, showed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail.
The dog, etc. . .This may seem a very minute circumstance to be recorded in sacred history: but as we learn from our Savior, St. Matt. 5.18, there are iotas and tittles in the word of God: that is to say, things that appear minute, but which have indeed a deep and mysterious meaning in them.
11:10. His father that was blind, rising up, began to run stumbling with his feet: and giving a servant his hand, went to meet his son.
11:11. Receiving him kissed him, as did also his wife, and they began to weep for joy.
11:12. When they had adored God, and given Him thanks, they sat down together.
11:13. Then Tobiah taking of the gall of the fish, anointed his father's eyes.
11:14. He stayed about half an hour: and a white skin began to come out of his eyes, like the skin of an egg.
11:15. Tobit took hold of it, and drew it from his eyes, and recovered his sight.
11:16. They glorified God, both he and his wife and all that knew him.
11:17. Tobit said, “I bless Thee, O Lord God of Israel, because Thou hast chastised me, and Thou hast saved me and behold I see Tobiah, my son.”
11:18. After seven days, Sara, his son's wife and all the family arrived safe, and the cattle, and the camels, and an abundance of money of his wife's: and that money also which he had received of Gabelus,
11:19. He told his parents all the benefits of God, which He had done to him by the man that conducted him.
11:20. Achior and Nabath the kinsmen of Tobit came, rejoicing for Tobit, and congratulating with him for all the good things that God had done for him.
11:21. For seven days they feasted and rejoiced all with great joy.
Raphael makes himself known.
12:1. Then Tobit called to him his son and said to him, “What can we give to this holy man, that has gone with you?”
12:2. Tobiah answering, said to his father, “Father, what wages shall we give him, or what can be worthy of his benefits?
12:3. He conducted me and brought me safe again, he received the money of Gabelus, he caused me to have my wife, and he chased from her the evil spirit, he gave joy to her parents, myself he delivered from being devoured by the fish, you also he has made to see the light of, heaven, and we are filled with all good things through him. What can we give him sufficient for these things?
12:4. But I beseech thee, my father, to desire him, that he would vouchsafe to accept one-half of all things that have been brought.”
12:5. So the father and the son calling him, took him aside: and began to desire him that he would vouchsafe to accept half of all things that they had brought,
12:6. Then he said to them secretly, “Bless ye the God of heaven, give glory to Him in the sight of all that live, because He hath shown His mercy to you.
12:7. For it is good to hide the secret of a king: to reveal and confess the works of God.
12:8. Prayer is good with fasting and alms more than to lay up treasures of gold.
12:9. For alms delivered from death, and the same is that which purged away sins, and makes to find mercy and life everlasting.
12:10. But they that commit sin and iniquity, are enemies to their own soul.
12:11. I discover then the truth unto you, and I will not hide the secret from you.
12:12. When you did pray with tears, and did bury the dead, and did leave your dinner, and hide the dead by day in thy house, and bury them by night, I offered your prayer to the Lord.
12:13. Because you were acceptable to God, it was necessary that temptation should prove you.
12:14. Now the Lord has sent me to heal you, and to deliver Sara, your son's wife, from the devil.
12:15. For I am the Angel Raphael, one of the seven, who stand before the Lord.”
12:16. When they had heard these things, they were troubled, and being seized with fear they fell upon the ground on their face.
12:17. The Angel said to them: “Peace be to you, fear not.
12:18. For when I was with you, I was there by the will of God: bless ye Him, and sing praises to Him.
12:19. I seemed indeed to eat and to drink with you but I use an invisible meat and drink, which cannot be seen by men.
12:20. It is time therefore that I return to Him that sent me: but bless ye God, and publish all His wonderful works.”
12:21. When he had said these things, he was taken from their sight, and they could see him no more.
12:22. Then they lying prostrate for three hours upon their face, blessed God, and rising up, they told all His wonderful works.
Tobit, the father, praised God, exhorting all Israel to do the same. He prophesied the restoration and better state of Jerusalem.
13:1. Tobit, the elder, opening his mouth, blessed the Lord, and said, “Thou art great O Lord, forever, and Thy Kingdom is unto all ages.
13:2. For Thou scourge, and Thou save: Thou lead down to hell, and bring up again: and there is none that can escape Thy hand.
13:3. Give glory to the Lord, you children of Israel, and praise Him in the sight of the Gentiles:
13:4. Because He hath therefore scattered you among the Gentiles, who know not Him, that you may declare His wonderful works, and make them know that there is no other Almighty God besides Him.
13:5. He hath chastised us for our iniquities: and He will save us for His own mercy.
13:6. See then what He hath done with us, and with fear and trembling give ye glory to Him: and extol the Eternal King of worlds in your works.
13:7. As for me, I will praise Him in the land of my captivity: because He hath shown His majesty toward a sinful nation,
13:8. Be converted therefore, you sinners, and do justice before God, believing that He will show His mercy to you.
13:9. I and my soul will rejoice in Him.
13:10. Bless ye the Lord, all His elect, keep days of joy, and give glory to Him.
13:11. Jerusalem, city of God, the Lord hath chastised you for the works of your hands.
Jerusalem. . .What is prophetically delivered here, and in the following chapter, with relation to Jerusalem, is partly to be understood of the rebuilding of the city after the captivity: and partly of the spiritual Jerusalem, which is the church of Christ, and the eternal Jerusalem in heaven.
13:12. Give glory to the Lord for thy good things, and bless the God eternal that He may rebuild his tabernacle in you, and may call back all the captives to you, and you may rejoice forever and ever.
13:13. You shall shine with a glorious light: and all the ends of the earth shall worship you,
13:14. Nations from afar shall come to you: and shall bring gifts, and shall adore the Lord in you, and shall esteem your land as holy.
13:15. For they shall call upon the Great Name in you,
13:16. They shall be cursed that shall despise you: and they shall be condemned that shall blaspheme you: and blessed shall they be that shall build you up,
13:17. But you shalt rejoice in your children, because they shall all be blessed, and shall be gathered together to the Lord.
13:18. Blessed are all they that love you, and that rejoice in your peace,
13:19. My soul, bless the Lord, because the Lord our God has delivered Jerusalem, His city, from all her troubles.
13:20. Happy shall I be if there shall remain of my seed, to see the glory of Jerusalem.
13:21. The gates of Jerusalem shall be built of sapphire, and of emerald, and all the walls thereof round about of precious stones.
13:22. All its streets shall be paved with white and clean stones: and Alleluia shall be sung in its streets,
13:23. Blessed be the Lord, Who hath exalted it, and may He reign over it forever and ever, Amen.”
Old Tobias died at the age of a hundred and two years, after exhorting his son and grandsons to piety, foreshowing that Nineveh shall be destroyed, and Jerusalem rebuilt. The younger Tobias returned with his family to Raguel, and died happily as he had lived.
14:1. The words of Tobit were ended. And after Tobit sight was restored, he lived two and forty years, and saw the children of his grandchildren.
14:2. After he had lived a hundred and two years, he was buried honorably in Nineveh.
14:3. For he was six and fifty years old when he lost the sight of his eyes, and sixty when he recovered it again.
14:4. The rest of his life was in joy, and with great increase of the fear of God he departed in peace.
14:5. At the hour of his death he called unto him his son Tobias and his children, seven young men, his grandsons, and said to them,
14:6. “The destruction of Nineveh is at hand: for the word of the Lord must be fulfilled: and our brethren, that are scattered abroad from the land of Israel, shall return to it.
14:7. All the land thereof that is desert shall be filled with people, and the house of God which is burnt in it, shall again be rebuilt: and all that fear God shall return thither.
14:8. The Gentiles shall leave their idols, and shall come into Jerusalem, and shall dwell in it.
14:9. All the kings of the earth shall rejoice in it, adoring the King of Israel.
14:10. Hearken therefore, my children, to your father: serve the Lord in truth, and seek to do the things that please Him:
14:11. Command your children that they do justice and almsdeeds, and that they be mindful of God, and bless Him at all times in truth, and with all their power.
14:12. Now, children, hear me, and do not stay here: but as soon as you shall bury your mother by me in one sepulchre, without delay direct your steps to depart hence:
14:13. For I see that its iniquity will bring it to destruction.”
14:14. It came to pass that after the death of his mother, Tobiah departed out of Nineveh with his wife, and children, and children's children, and returned to his father and mother-in- law.
14:15. He found them in health in a good old age: and he took care of them, and he closed their eyes: and all the inheritance of Raguel's house came to him: and he saw his children's children to the fifth generation.
14:16. After he had lived ninety-nine years in the fear of the Lord, with joy they buried him.
14:17. All his kindred, and all his generations continued in good life, and in holy conversation, so that they were acceptable both to God, and to men, and to all that dwelt in the land.
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