For the sake of the Place

In The Second Book of Maccabees, Chapter 5 Verse 19 states:

The Lord, however, had not chosen the people for the sake of the Place, but the Place for the sake of the people.

Please explain.

His word heaven. go to Him listen.

God bless ya

This is similar to Jesus’ saying, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” (Mark 2:27) A commentary on Mark 2:27, says: “The fundamental principle is that the law of sabbath rest was intended to benefit mankind. Its observance is subordinate to the needs of men, who were not created merely in order to observe the Sabbath.” (A Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture, edited by Bernard Orchard, published in 1953, page 911)

The saying in 2 Mac 5:19 seems to mean that the Temple was intended to benefit the Jews. The Jews were not chosen merely in order to serve the Temple. With or without the Temple the Jews are still God’s Chosen People.

The Place is mentioned in Deuteronomy 12:5

But you shall seek the LORD at the place which the LORD your God will choose from all your tribes, to establish His name there for His dwelling, and there you shall come.

It was the designated place for exclusive worship to Yahweh. David believed the Lord was referring to Jerusalem.

D-R Bible, Haydock Commentary:

Ver. 19. Place. Temples and victims are for our own advantage, Isaias i. 11., Jeremias vi. 20., and 3 Kings viii. 27. God has often suffered sacred places to be profaned, when piety had been disregarded. (Calmet) — All religious rites are designed for God’s glory and men’s welfare; and hence, when they cease to serve God, the holy things are destroyed or taken away. (Worthington)

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.