1That is how I ended my song of praise.
Tobit's Last Words
Tobit died peacefully at the age of 112 and was honored at his burial in Nineveh. 2He was 62 when he became blind, and after his sight was restored, he was once again wealthy and generous to the poor. He was always praising God and telling others about God's power.
3Just before Tobit died, he called in his son and said:
Tobias, take your children 4#Nh 1.2—3.19. and go to Media! I believe what God said when he told the prophet Nahum what will happen to Nineveh and Assyria. And time after time, God gave messages to other prophets in Israel, telling them what will happen. Every message they spoke will come true at the right time. You will be safe in Media, but not here in Assyria or in Babylonia.
Our relatives, the people of Israel, will be taken from that good land and scattered in other countries. The whole land of Israel, including the cities of Samaria and Jerusalem, will be deserted. Even God's temple will suffer and lie in ashes for a while. 5Then God will have mercy on Israel again, and he will return them to their own land. They will rebuild the temple, but it won't be as glorious a building, until the time that all of God's promises come true. And when that happens, God will bring Israel back from their exile, and they will rebuild Jerusalem into a truly glorious city. God's temple will also be rebuilt there, just as the prophets have said.
6All the Gentiles on earth will stop worshiping idols, because idols only deceive people and lead them away from the truth. The Gentiles will then turn to God and worship only him. 7They will praise and obey the eternal God.
God will protect those Israelites who are truly loyal to him, and at that time, he will gather them together and bring them back to Jerusalem. God will give them the land he once gave to Abraham, and they will live in safety there forever.
8-9Now, my son and my grandchildren, I give you these commands: Worship and obey the Lord. Be faithful and do what pleases him. Tell your own children to do right and to be generous to the poor. Always think about God, and don't just pretend to praise God—praise him with all your strength.
My son, you must leave Nineveh 10on the same day your mother dies and you bury her beside me. Don't even spend that night here. Nineveh is a very evil place, and its people aren't even ashamed that they are so dishonest. Just look at what Nadab did—he tried to kill Ahikar,#14.10 Nadab … Ahikar: See 1.21,22; 2.10,11; 11.18. who had raised him. Ahikar had to hide in a tomb to escape the deadly trap Nadab had set. Ahikar lived to see the light of day, because he had given so generously to poor people. But God punished Nadab for his treachery! Nadab was killed in his own trap and went down into the place of eternal darkness. 11So, my children, you can see that God will protect you if you give to the poor; but when you do what is evil, you will be killed. And now, my life is slipping away.
They helped Tobit lie down on his bed, and when he died, they buried him with honor.
Tobias Moves to Media
12Some time later, Tobias's mother Anna died, and he buried her beside his father. Then Tobias and his wife Sarah moved to the city of Ecbatana in Media, where he lived with his father-in-law Raguel and his mother-in-law Edna. 13He treated them with great respect and took care of them until they died; then he buried them. Tobias inherited all Raguel's property, in addition to what had belonged to his own father Tobit.
Everyone respected Tobias, 14and he died at the age of 117. 15#3 Macc 7.23. But he lived long enough to hear that Nineveh had been destroyed, and to see its people being led as prisoners into Media by Cyaxares,#14.15 Cyaxares: One possible meaning for the difficult Greek text. the king of Media. And from that time until the day Tobias died, he offered joyful praises to God for what he had done to Nineveh and Assyria.