The author of this blog does not advocate hate or unprovoked violence against any group. The purpose of this blog is to provide the very best information regarding philosophy, mindset training, and technique for the Christian Martialist in their broader Biblical, theological and cultural contexts. Nothing posted here should be construed as promoting or excusing hostile speech or acts toward anyone.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Christian Warrior Culture of the Old Testament, 2

Continued from "Christian Warrior Culture of the Old Testament"

Re: Culture

The Book of Exodus recounts the events surrounding God's work in bringing Israel out of Egypt. The book describes the actual moment of their taking leave in this way:

And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the LORD went out from the land of Egypt. (Exodus 12:41)

Notice that word hosts in the passage above. Brown-Driver-Briggs' Hebrew Lexicon defines tsebaoth (the word translated host) as follows:

1) that which goes forth, army, war, warfare, host

  • 1a) army, host
  • 1a1) host (of organised army)
  • 1a2) host (of angels)
  • 1a3) of sun, moon, and stars
  • 1a4) of whole creation
  • 1b) war, warfare, service, go out to war

Thus, the Bible describes the nation of Israel as the LORD's army. This becomes even more clear if you understand that the Book of Numbers begins with a mustering of Israel's fighting force.

From twenty years old and upward, all that are able to go forth to war in Israel: thou and Aaron shall number them by their armies. (Numbers 1:3)

Brown-Driver-Briggs tells us that the word rendered number (paqad) in that verse can mean to visit, oversee or muster, depending on the context. Even a cursory examination of that verse -- indeed of the whole chapter -- reveals that this is not a mere census, but a divinely ordered muster of the LORD's troops.

James Jordan elaborates on this as follows:

In Numbers 1, all the men twenty and older were enrolled in the Israelite militia, God’s army. As God’s army, Israel was in one sense a heavenly host,” captained by the Lord of heaven. In this respect, they are spoken of as stars in Deuteronomy 1:10, and as a heavenly host they are commanded by an angel, the Angel of the Lord (Joshua 5:13-6: 2; Exodus 23:20-21). (Through New Eyesp.58)

God commissioned Israel, as His army, to conquer the land of Canaan. This presupposes a cultural disposition toward training in the warrior's craft.

To recap what we've seen so far, the twelve tribes had descended from Abraham, a God-called nomad chieftain whose household included a highly trained force of elite warriors. God's calling to Israel perpetuated the warrior culture among them, and integrated it into their national identity.

To be continued

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