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Literacy Merit of Judith

             Finding a "good" story in the Bible is a hard thing to come by. Many of the books are filled with constant repetitions that bog the flow of the story and seem to never get to the point of the book. The book of Judith is a work of fiction no doubt, but it is one of the best examples of a literary work in the Bible. The Book of Judith's plot is so consistent; it is assumed that one author wrote it. A feature not many books of the Bible can claim. For a story to have literary merit it must meet a few certain criteria, namely, a good flow, a good versus evil theme, and a moral.
             For a story to have good flow it must have a certain consistency that allows a reader to easily follow from one main point to another. It is believed that the Book of Judith had only one author. That special quality, one that not many books from the Bible can boast, is a key factor in making the Judith story flow with ease. The Book of Judith opens with an in depth plot summary and set up the major themes of the narrative. The story begins with a quick and effective introduction to the main dilemma of the book. "It was the twelfth year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, who ruled over the Assyrians in the great city of Nineveh King Nebuchadnezzar made war against King Arphaxad" (Jdt 1.1-1.6). This introduction goes on to tell of how Nebuchadnezzar oppressed many peoples and declared that he was a god, and everyone should worship only him. He sent out messengers to "all who were in Samaria and its towns, and beyond the Jordan as far as Jerusalem and Bethany and Chelous and Kadesh, and the river of Egypt and as far as the boarders of Ethiopia" (Jdt 1.9-1.10). These people would not worship him though and Nebuchadnezzar became very angry and swore that he would take revenge on all of these peoples. This decree sets up the entire plot of this book and it develops further once Judith is introduced in chapter eight.

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