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Chapter 12 1 Now when Jonathan saw that time served him, he chose certain men, and sent them to Rome, for to confirm and renew the friendship that they had with them.2 He sent letters also to the Lacedemonians, and to other places, for the same purpose.3 So they went unto Rome, and entered into the senate, and said, Jonathan the high priest, and the people of the Jews, sent us unto you, to the end ye should renew the friendship, which ye had with them, and league, as in former time.4 Upon this the Romans gave them letters unto the governors of every place that they should bring them into the land of Judea peaceably.5 And this is the copy of the letters which Jonathan wrote to the Lacedemonians:6 Jonathan the high priest, and the elders of the nation, and the priests, and the other of the Jews, unto the Lacedemonians their brethren send greeting:7 There were letters sent in times past unto Onias the high priest from Darius, who reigned then among you, to signify that ye are our brethren, as the copy here underwritten doth specify.8 At which time Onias entreated the ambassador that was sent honourably, and received the letters, wherein declaration was made of the league and friendship.9 Therefore we also, albeit we need none of these things, that we have the holy books of scripture in our hands to comfort us,10 Have nevertheless attempted to send unto you for the renewing of brotherhood and friendship, lest we should become strangers unto you altogether: for there is a long time passed since ye sent unto us.11 We therefore at all times without ceasing, both in our feasts, and other convenient days, do remember you in the sacrifices which we offer, and in our prayers, as reason is, and as it becometh us to think upon our brethren:12 And we are right glad of your honour.13 As for ourselves, we have had great troubles and wars on every side, forsomuch as the kings that are round about us have fought against us.14 Howbeit we would not be troublesome unto you, nor to others of our confederates and friends, in these wars:15 For we have help from heaven that succoureth us, so as we are delivered from our enemies, and our enemies are brought under foot.16 For this cause we chose Numenius the son of Antiochus, and Antipater he son of Jason, and sent them unto the Romans, to renew the amity that we had with them, and the former league.17 We commanded them also to go unto you, and to salute and to deliver you our letters concerning the renewing of our brotherhood.18 Wherefore now ye shall do well to give us an answer thereto.19 And this is the copy of the letters which Oniares sent.20 Areus king of the Lacedemonians to Onias the high priest, greeting:21 It is found in writing, that the Lacedemonians and Jews are brethren, and that they are of the stock of Abraham:22 Now therefore, since this is come to our knowledge, ye shall do well to write unto us of your prosperity.23 We do write back again to you, that your cattle and goods are our's, and our's are your's We do command therefore our ambassadors to make report unto you on this wise.