|The Martyrdom of Eleazar|
St. Eleazar lived about 170 years before the birth of Christ.
He lived during the vicious persecutions of Jews by King Antiochus IV of the Seleucid Empire (2 Maccabees 6:1-2).
Eleazar was an elderly scribe (2 Maccabees 6:18a).
An attempt was made through Antiochus IV to force Eleazar to eat pork - an unclean food to Jewish people (2 Maccabees 6:18b & Leviticus 11:7-8).
This good man was offered the "opportunity" to just pretend to eat pork (and discreetly eat some acceptable meat instead). However, Eleazar refused, for it was important to him to set a good example for the young and to avoid confusing them with false pretense (2 Maccabees 6:21, 24-25, 28).
St. Eleazar found joy in his tortuous death ...
I am not only enduring terrible pain in my body from this scourging, but also suffering it with joy in my soul because of my devotion to him [the Lord]." (2 Maccabees 6:30b)
Eleazar was 90 years old at the time of his martyrdom and left and example of great virtue for all Jewish people. (2 Maccabees 6:24 & 2 Maccabees 6:31).