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1 Hence we learn, that in the days of this excellent high priest, John Hyrcanus, the observation of the Sabbatic year, as Josephus supposed, required a rest from war, as did that of the weekly sabbath from work; I mean this, unless in the case of necessity, when the Jews were attacked by their enemies, in which case indeed, and in which alone, they then allowed defensive fighting to be lawful, even on the sabbath day, as we see in several places of Josephus, Antlq. B. XII. ch. 6. sect. 2; B. XIII. ch. 1. sect. 2; Of. the War, B. I. ch. 7. sect. 3. But then it must be noted, that this rest from war no way appears in the First Book of Maccabees, ch. 16., but the direct contrary; though indeed the Jews, in the days of Antiochus Epiphanes, did not venture upon fighting on the Sabbath day, even in the defense of their own lives, till the Asamoneans or Maccabees decreed so to do, 1 Macc. 2:32-41; Antiq. B. XII. ch. 6. sect. 2.
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