The Holy War
Sung Psalm 60:1-6
Reading Deuteronomy 20.
This topic is related to death and issues in that clearly death is inevitable in war and men who had intercourse were unclean and not to fight till ceremonially clean (evidence to come).
We discussed the “just war” (Augustine), crusades, jihad, genocide, ethnic cleansing etc.
The key issue is God’s justice and his sovereign prerogative. I see many of the Old Testament wars and killing as the eternal judgement of God brought into time.
This passage is prescriptive. The key issue for God’s people is faith versus fear (spiritual). Key issues today are weaponry, tactics, numbers and money.
Four kinds of men were excused: just built a house but not dedicated, just planted a vineyard but never had a crop, just been betrothed to a wife and the fearful. First three are social issues and the last one of morale (see example of Judges 7:3). Today there are few issues that preclude national service like health or perhaps bereavement (short term)
The captains were to lead from the front.
The city was offered terms of peace or alternatively siege and war.
Plunder was an incentive to the troops.
The Christian’s Holy War is the inevitable consequence of the ANTITHESIS (Gen.3:15).
In our spiritual battle against world, flesh and devil our Captain had led and still leads from the front, has already been victorious and enables us to fight and win using spiritual weapons including armour, sword and all prayer.