In Ezra 9:7, the people’s iniquities are blamed for their political oppression. According to 2 Maccabees, the people’s political plight is the result of their “sins” (2 Maccabees 7:32). Philo of Alexandria’s treatise De Praemiis et Poenis expounds the principle of rewards and punishments involving both the individual and the nation (79–92), and thus conditions the eschatological gathering of the diaspora on the people’s repentance and God’s forgiveness of their sins (164–67). Josephus’ retelling of the Esther story has Mordecai pray to God “not to look away now from his nation, which is perishing, but as he at first had often provided and forgiven (the nation) when it sinned, so also now rescue (ρυσσασθαι) it from threatening destruction” (Antiquities, 11.229).