The rebel army led by Judas Maccabeus was growing in strength. They had just inflicted a crushing defeat upon the Seleucid General Apollonius and now they faced the forces of Governor Seron, who was overconfident. With Maccabeus' superior knowledge of the terrain, the rebels prepared to ambush. Seron had anticipated this and spread out his force, but the Maccabees exhibited superior tactical skill by decimating the general's leading unit and killing Seron himself. With their leader dead, the shocked and disconcerted remnants of the Seleucid army took to the hills and ran.
The stubborn Seleucids refused to give up their phalanx-based tactics creating problems for them on the battlefield.
Another force was soon sent against Maccabaeus, which led to the Battle of Emmaus.