Deuteronomy Chapter 20 (Original 1611 KJV Bible)
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1 The Priests exhortation to encourage the people to battell. 5 The officers proclamation who are to be dismissed from the warre. 10 How to vse the Cities that accept or refuse the proclamation of peace. 16 What Cities must bee deuoted. 19 Trees of mans meat must not be destroyed in the siege.
1 When thou goest out to battell against thine enemies, and seest horses and charets, and a people more then thou, be not afraid of them: for the Lord thy God is with thee, which brought thee vp out of the land of Egypt.
3 And shall say vnto them, Heare O Israel, you approach this day vnto battell against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, feare not, and doe not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them.3
5 ¶ And the Officers shall speake vnto the people, saying, What man is there that hath built a new house, and hath not dedicated it? let him goe and returne to his house, lest hee die in the battell, and an other man dedicate it.
8 And the Officers shall speake further vnto the people: and they shall say, What man is there that is fearefull and faint hearted? let him goe and returne vnto his house, lest his brethrens heart faint as well as his heart.8
14 But the women, and the litle ones, and the cattell, and all that is in the citie, euen all the spoile thereof, shalt thou take vnto thy selfe, and thou shalt eate the spoile of thine enemies, which the Lord thy God hath giuen thee.14
19 ¶ When thou shalt besiege a citie a long time, in making warre against it to take it, thou shalt not destroy the trees thereof, by forcing an axe against them: for thou mayest eate of them, and thou shalt not cut them downe ( for the tree of the field is mans life) to employ them in the siege.19
20 Only the trees which thou knowest that they be not trees for meate, thou shalt destroy, and cut them downe, and thou shalt build bulwarkes against the city that maketh warre with thee, vntil it be subdued.20
View Wesley's Notes for Deuteronomy Chapter 20
20:2 Speak unto the people - Probably to one regiment of the army after another.
20:5 What man - This and the following exceptions are to be understood only of a war allowed by God, not in a war commanded by God, not in the approaching war with the Canaanites, from which even the bridegroom was not exempted, as the Jewish writers note.
20:6 A vineyard - This and the former dispensation were generally convenient, but more necessary in the beginning of their settlement in Canaan, for the encouragement of those who should build houses or plant vineyards, which was chargeable to them, and beneficial to the common - wealth. Eaten of it - Heb. made it common, namely, for the use of himself and family and friends, which it was not, 'till the fifth year.
20:9 Make captains - Or rather, as the Hebrew hath it, they shall set or place the captains of the armies in the head or front of the people under their charge, that they may conduct them, and by their example encourage their soldiers. It is not likely they had their captains to make when they were just going to battle.
20:16 Nothing - No man. For the beasts, some few excepted, were given them for a prey.
20:19 Thou shalt not destroy - Which is to be understood of a general destruction of them, not of the cutting down some few of them, as the conveniency of the siege might require. Man's life - The sustenance or support of his life.
Deuteronomy Chapter 20 Sidenote References (from Original 1611 KJV Bible):
3 Hebr. be tender. , Hebr. make haste.
6 Heb. made it common See Leuit. 19.23.
7 Chap.24. 5.
8 Iudg. 7.3. , Hebr. melt.
9 Hebr. to be in the head of the people.
14 Iosh.8.2. , Heb. spoile
19 Or, for, O man the tree of the field is to be employed in the siege. , Heb. to goe from before thee.
20 Hebr. it come downe.
* Courtesy of Rare Book and Manuscript Library, University of Pennsylvania
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