Page images

XX. 10,

[ocr errors]

GE Then follow Instructions relating to
El their Conduct before they began any At-
i tack, and to the Treatment of those of

their Enemies that should be conquer'd by
them. When thou comest nigh unto a city Deut.
to fight against it, then proclaim peace unto

it. And it mall be, if it make thee answer 2 of peace, and open unto thee, then it shall

be that all the people that is found therein, i Mall be tributaries unto thee, and they hall o serve thee. And, if it will make no peace

with thee, but will make war against thee, then thou shalt behege it. And when the LORD thy God hath delivered it into thine hands, thou: Malt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword. But the women, and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, even all the spoil thereof shalt thou take unto thy self; and thou fhalt eat the Spoil of thine enemies which the LORD thy God hath given thee.

This was to be the Rule for their Conduct in regard to those who did not inhabit the Land of Canaan, and might fome time or other shew themselves to be their Enemies. Thus Malt thou do unto all the Deut. cities which are very far off from thee, xx. 15.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]



which are not of the cities of these nations. To them, a different Conduct was to be shewn: For, as by their insufferable Immoralities and detestable Vices of all Kinds, they were no longer to be tolerated upon the Face of the Earth, God was pleas'd to give their Land, according to his Promise, to these his Servants, and confequently his chosen People; who were therefore (as far as they were able) utterly

to extirpate and destroy them and all that Deut. belong’d to them. But of the cities of these XX. 16. people which the LORD thy God doth give

thee for an inheritance, thou shalt fave alive nothing that breatheth. But thou shalt utterly destroy them: namely, the Hittites, and the Amorites, the Canaanites, 'and the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; as the LORD thy God bath commanded thee. That they teach you not to do after their abominations, which they have done unto their gods; so should ye fin against the LORD

your God.

In other Cases, where they were accidentally induc'd to make War, upon Account of some national Misunderstanding, or Injury done, they were not to be out

rageously rageously cruel, or wantonly to commit Waste and Depredations. For Example, though it might be convenient, and was therefore allowable for them, to cut down Timber Trees of all Sorts to make their Works and Fortifications with, when they laid Siege to any Place, yet they were always to spare the Fruit Trees of all kinds ; as what would be necessary to support the Lives of the Inhabitants, in future Times; when the little Rancour which was the Occasion of their present Hoftilities (hould be remov'd and done away. When thou shalt Deut. besiege a city a long time, in making war against it to take it, thou shalt not destroy the trees, (Fruit Trees) thereof, byl forcing an ax against them: For thou mayst eat of them, and thou shalt not cut them. down (for the tree of the field is man's life) to employ them in the hege. Only the trees which thou knowest that they be not trees for meat, thou shall destroy and cut them down; and thou shalt build bulwarks against the city that maketh war with thee, until it be subdued.

In another place, there are Instructions relating to the Use and Management of


xx, 19.

[ocr errors]

X. 9.

pets; and

xxi. 10.

Trumpets in Time of War, as well as upon Numb. opher Occasions. If ye go to war in your

land against the enemy that opprefsetb you, then ye shall blow an alarm with the trum

ye shall be remember'd before the LORD your God, and ye shall be saved from your enemies.

Those whom they took, Captives in the War; they were allow'd to sell, if they

thought fit; as appears from the followDeut.} ing Exception. When thou goeft forth to

war against thine enemies, and the LORD thy God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them captive, and

feest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hajt a desire unto her, that thou wouldst have ber to thy wife:. Then thou shalt bring ber bome to thine house, and

she shall

save her head, and pare her nails. And she fall put the raiment of her captivity from off her, and Mall remain in thine house, and bewail ker father and ber mother a full month: And after that thou shalt go in unto her, and be her husband, and he hall be thy wife. And it shall be, if thou have no delight in her, then thou Malt let ber go whither she will; But thou shalt not sell ber


[ocr errors]

at all for money, thou shalt not make mer5) chandise of ber; because thou haft humbled

ber. How amiable do the Manners of
chose appear, in

every Light, in every Cir-
cumstance of Life, who are the People of
God, and continually adjust their Beha-
viour according to his Laws! They are,
not barely just, buc humane, tender, and
susceptible of the softest Passions, even in

the Hurry of the Battle, and amidst the | Spoils of War.

SECT. IÍ. The CAPTAIN of the Host. The Person who in Scripture is callid Captain of the Hoft, is of the same Nature with him whom in the modern Phrase, we style Generalismo; one who had the entire Command of the whole Army. Such were Joshua and the Judges, under the primitive Constitution of their Government, as it was settled by God himself; and such, under Saul their first King; was Abner. We read that Abner (the son of Ner) cap- 2 Sark. tain of Saul's Hoft, took Ilhboshech the son

ii. 8, of Saul (after his Father's Death) and brought him over to Mahanaim; and made him king over Gilead, and over the Afhu

I i


[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »