by email

in reader




Old Testament Israel granted certain exemptions from military service: the "fearful and faint-hearted" (Deut. 20:8), newlyweds (Deut. 20:5; 24:5), engaged persons (Deut. 20:7), and persons in certain occupations (Deut. 20:6). These persons had their minds on other things besides fighting, and their inattentiveness could be a danger to others in the ranks. The "fearful and faint-hearted" were not conscientious objectors; their fearful temperament would affect others and hinder good discipline.
- John Eidsmoe, God & Caesar: Political Faith & Political Action 53 (1984).