Jdt 12:10-13:9

Judith Attends Holofernes' Banquet 10On the fourth day Holofernes held a banquet for his personal attendants only, and did not invite any of his officers.11He said to Bagoas, the eunuch who had charge of his personal affairs, “Go and persuade the Hebrew woman who is in your care to join us and to eat and drink with us.12For it would be a disgrace if we let such a woman go without having intercourse with her. If we do not seduce her, she will laugh at us.”13So Bagoas left the presence of Holofernes, and approached her and said, “Let this pretty girl not hesitate to come to my lord to be honored in his presence, and to enjoy drinking wine with us, and to become today like one of the Assyrian women who serve in the palace of Nebuchadnezzar.”14Judith replied, “Who am I to refuse my lord? Whatever pleases him I will do at once, and it will be a joy to me until the day of my death.”15So she proceeded to dress herself in all her woman's finery. Her maid went ahead and spread for her on the ground before Holofernes the lambskins she had received from Bagoas for her daily use in reclining.16Then Judith came in and lay down. Holofernes' heart was ravished with her and his passion was aroused, for he had been waiting for an opportunity to seduce her from the day he first saw her.17So Holofernes said to her, “Have a drink and be merry with us!”18Judith said, “I will gladly drink, my lord, because today is the greatest day in my whole life.”19Then she took what her maid had prepared and ate and drank before him.20Holofernes was greatly pleased with her, and drank a great quantity of wine, much more than he had ever drunk in any one day since he was born.Chapter 13Judith Beheads Holofernes 1When evening came, his slaves quickly withdrew. Bagoas closed the tent from outside and shut out the attendants from his master's presence. They went to bed, for they all were weary because the banquet had lasted so long.2But Judith was left alone in the tent, with Holofernes stretched out on his bed, for he was dead drunk.3Now Judith had told her maid to stand outside the bedchamber and to wait for her to come out, as she did on the other days; for she said she would be going out for her prayers. She had said the same thing to Bagoas.4So everyone went out, and no one, either small or great, was left in the bedchamber. Then Judith, standing beside his bed, said in her heart, “O Lord God of all might, look in this hour on the work of my hands for the exaltation of Jerusalem.5Now indeed is the time to help your heritage and to carry out my design to destroy the enemies who have risen up against us.”6She went up to the bedpost near Holofernes' head, and took down his sword that hung there.7She came close to his bed, took hold of the hair of his head, and said, “Give me strength today, O Lord God of Israel!”8Then she struck his neck twice with all her might, and cut off his head.9Next she rolled his body off the bed and pulled down the canopy from the posts. Soon afterward she went out and gave Holofernes' head to her maid,