Friday, 22 May 2009

Joshua 9

1And it came to pass, when all the kings which were on this side Jordan, in the hills, and in the valleys, and in all the coasts of the great sea over against Lebanon, the Hittite, and the Amorite, the Canaanite, the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite, heard thereof;

2That they gathered themselves together, to fight with Joshua and with Israel, with one accord.

Who could blame them

3And when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done unto Jericho and to Ai,

4They did work wilily, and went and made as if they had been ambassadors, and took old sacks upon their asses, and wine bottles, old, and rent, and bound up;

5And old shoes and clouted upon their feet, and old garments upon them; and all the bread of their provision was dry and mouldy.

Have I got this right ?...........Supplicants are sent to the Israelites. Pretending to be from a land far far away. For provenance they carry mouldy bread and wear old shoes.

6And they went to Joshua unto the camp at Gilgal, and said unto him, and to the men of Israel, We be come from a far country: now therefore make ye a league with us.

7And the men of Israel said unto the Hivites, Peradventure ye dwell among us; and how shall we make a league with you?

8And they said unto Joshua, We are thy servants. And Joshua said unto them, Who are ye? and from whence come ye?

9And they said unto him, From a very far country thy servants are come because of the name of the LORD thy God: for we have heard the fame of him, and all that he did in Egypt,

10And all that he did to the two kings of the Amorites, that were beyond Jordan, to Sihon king of Heshbon, and to Og king of Bashan, which was at Ashtaroth.

11Wherefore our elders and all the inhabitants of our country spake to us, saying, Take victuals with you for the journey, and go to meet them, and say unto them, We are your servants: therefore now make ye a league with us.

12This our bread we took hot for our provision out of our houses on the day we came forth to go unto you; but now, behold, it is dry, and it is mouldy:

13And these bottles of wine, which we filled, were new; and, behold, they be rent: and these our garments and our shoes are become old by reason of the very long journey.

Well I am convinced!!...........Who could doubt the veracity of such a story.

14And the men took of their victuals, and asked not counsel at the mouth of the LORD.

15And Joshua made peace with them, and made a league with them, to let them live: and the princes of the congregation sware unto them.

Cos we all know you can trust the word of the Israelites.

16And it came to pass at the end of three days after they had made a league with them, that they heard that they were their neighbours, and that they dwelt among them.

It took three days, I am always suspicious when these "mystical numbers" occur, is this supposed to have happened at the winter solstice by any chance ?

17And the children of Israel journeyed, and came unto their cities on the third day. Now their cities were Gibeon, and Chephirah, and Beeroth, and Kirjathjearim.

18And the children of Israel smote them not, because the princes of the congregation had sworn unto them by the LORD God of Israel. And all the congregation murmured against the princes.

I thought one of the reasons given for this "campaign" was to kill the unbelievers that break the commandments of de lard. I am sure there was one about not bearing false witness, and yet again we have the servants of de lard rewarding deceit.

19But all the princes said unto all the congregation, We have sworn unto them by the LORD God of Israel: now therefore we may not touch them.

Since when was the Israelites, or de lards worth as much as half a wank ? Why this sudden attack of honour ? I suspect as with many of these tales, there is something we are not being told.

Things like ....How many men were lost, or wounded enough not to be able to fight during the battle of Ai ?

Would the combined might of the four cities be able to cast serious doubt on the outcome of any battle ?

There must have been some time before the supplicants arrived, was the combined time enough for these cities to gain support or a promise of retribution from a larger force, possibly an existing empire ?

So regardless of the suggestion I suspect cowardice as the reason for allowing these cities to become slaves, as opposed to their initial orders to "execute every motherfuckin' last one of them".

20This we will do to them; we will even let them live, lest wrath be upon us, because of the oath which we sware unto them.

21And the princes said unto them, Let them live; but let them be hewers of wood and drawers of water unto all the congregation; as the princes had promised them.

22And Joshua called for them, and he spake unto them, saying, Wherefore have ye beguiled us, saying, We are very far from you; when ye dwell among us?

Joshua has already shown himself to be a superior tactician, so it follows that he is an intelligent man. So why does he ask this ? to paraphrase "why did you lie to me" has got to go down in the annals of history as one of the most stupidest questions ever asked by a major leader of men, until of course GW Bush hit the world stage.

23Now therefore ye are cursed, and there shall none of you be freed from being bondmen, and hewers of wood and drawers of water for the house of my God.

24And they answered Joshua, and said, Because it was certainly told thy servants, how that the LORD thy God commanded his servant Moses to give you all the land, and to destroy all the inhabitants of the land from before you, therefore we were sore afraid of our lives because of you, and have done this thing.

Careful boys, Moses never liked people admitting doubt in de lard.

25And now, behold, we are in thine hand: as it seemeth good and right unto thee to do unto us, do.

Unless of course they now say they are behind him.

26And so did he unto them, and delivered them out of the hand of the children of Israel, that they slew them not.

27And Joshua made them that day hewers of wood and drawers of water for the congregation, and for the altar of the LORD, even unto this day, in the place which he should choose.

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