20 When thou shalt go out to wage war against thine enemy, and shalt see the horses and chariots of a people more in number than thou, thou shalt not be afraid of them,—for Yahweh thy God is with thee, who brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.
2 And it shall be, when ye are coming nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall approach and speak unto the people;
3 and shall say unto them,—Hear, O Israel, ye are coming near to-day unto battle against your enemies,—let not your heart faint, do not fear, nor start, nor quake, because of them.
4 For Yahweh your God is he that is going with you,—to fight for you against your enemies to save you.
5 Then shall the officers speak unto the people, saying, Who is the man that hath built a new house and hath not dedicated it? let him go and return unto his house,—lest he die in the battle, and another man dedicate it.
6 And who is the man that hath planted a vineyard and hath not thrown it open? let him go and return unto his house,—lest he die in the battle, and another man throw it open.
7 And who is the man that hath betrothed a wife and hath not taken her? let him go and return unto his house,—lest he die in the battle, and another man take her.
8 Then shall the officers further speak unto the people, and say—Who is the man that is fearful and faint-hearted? let him go and return unto his house,—lest his brethren’s heart melt as well as his heart.
9 And it shall be when the officers have made an end of speaking unto the people, then shall they appoint captains of hosts at the head of the people.
10 When thou shalt come nigh unto a city, to fight against it,—then shalt thou proclaim unto it—peace.
11 And it shall be, if peace be the answer it giveth thee, and it open unto thee, then shall it be that all the people that are found therein shall become thy tributaries, and shall serve thee.
12 But if it will not make peace with thee, but will make war with thee, then shalt thou lay siege to it;
13 and Yahweh thy God will deliver it into thy hand,—and thou shalt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword;
14 but the women and the little ones and the cattle and all that shall be in the city—all the spoil thereof shalt thou take as thy prey,—so shalt thou eat the spoil of thine enemies, whom Yahweh thy God hath delivered unto thee.
15 Thus shalt thou do unto all the cities that are very far away from thee,—which are not of the cities of those nations.
16 But of the cities of these peoples, which Yahweh thy God is giving unto thee as an inheritance, shalt thou not save alive any breathing thing.
17 But thou shalt devote them to destruction—the Hittites and the Amorites, the Canaanites and the Perizzites, the Hivites and the Jebusites,—as Yahweh thy God hath commanded thee:
18 lest they teach you to do, according to all their abominations which they have done unto their gods,—and so ye sin against Yahweh your God.
19 When thou shalt besiege a city for many days to fight against it, to take it thou shalt not destroy the trees thereof by wielding against them an axe, when of them thou mightest eat, them therefore shalt thou not cut down,—for, Is the tree of the field a man, that it should enter because of thee into the siege?
20 Nevertheless, the tree of which thou knowest that it is not a tree yielding food, the same mayest thou destroy and cut down,—and so build up a siege-work against the city which is making war with thee until thou hast subdued it.