Deuteronomy 20:5-7 (JDV)
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Deuteronomy 20:5 “The officers are to address the army, and this is what you should say: ‘Has any man built a new house and not dedicated it? Let him leave and return home. Or else, he may die in battle and another man dedicate it.
Deuteronomy 20:6 Has any man planted a vineyard and not begun to enjoy its fruit? Let him leave and return home. Or else he may die in battle and another man enjoy its fruit.
Deuteronomy 20:7 Has any man become engaged to a woman and not married her? Let him leave and return home. Otherwise he may die in battle and another man marry her.
pep talk 1
I wish I could say that I heard lots of inspirational pep talks from my leaders when I was in the army. But I was blessed with a unit that nobody took seriously, not even the leaders. The only talk I remember was the First Sergeant’s weekly admonition that we enjoy ourselves on the weekend, but don’t overdo it. Meanwhile, the unit issued ration cards to each soldier allowing for consumption of enough alcohol to drown a hippo.
The Israelites were quite serious about their pep talks. It sounds like they are trying to weed out the less committed in today’s text. It was probably meant to encourage commitment. Those engaged in battle have to have their minds on the battle.
I think I am more committed to God and his kingdom now than I have ever been in my life, but I still need pep talks. I thank God that he got me hooked on seeking him in his word daily. I never fail to draw strength and courage from my time with him.
Lord, make us single-minded in our commitment to you.