0 The Midianite massacre: Have you saved all the women alive?


The Midianite massacre: Have you saved all the women alive?

This is a Bible story that everyone should know.

It begins with God telling Moses to take vengeance on the Midianites. (He doesn't say for what, but I guess it was for the sex and dinner party that brought on God's 25th killing.)

The LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Avenge the children of Israel of the Midianites. Numbers 31:1-2

So Moses does what he's told and sends off 12,000 men led by Phinehas (the guy who stopped God from killing everyone by impaling the interracial couple in the last killing) with his "holy instruments" and trumpets.

Moses spake unto the people, saying, Arm some of yourselves unto the war, and let them go against the Midianites, and avenge the LORD of Midian ... So there were delivered ... twelve thousand armed for war. And Moses sent them to the war, a thousand of every tribe, them and Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, to the war, with the holy instruments, and the trumpets to blow in his hand. 31:3-6

First they killed every male "as the LORD commanded Moses."

They warred against the Midianites, as the LORD commanded Moses; and they slew all the males. 31:7

Next they killed five kings,

They slew the kings of Midian ... namely, Evi, and Rekem, and Zur, and Hur, and Reba. 31:8a

Along with Balaam [the nice guy with the talking ass (Numbers 22:28-30)].

aam also ... they slew with the sword. 31:8b

Then they took the women and children captive, collected their animals and valuables, burned the cities, and returned to Moses.

The children of Israel took all the women of Midian captives, and their little ones, and took the spoil of all their cattle, and all their flocks, and all their goods. And they burnt all their cities ... And they brought the captives, and all the prey, and the spoil, unto Moses. 31:9-12

But Moses wasn't pleased. Here's what he said:

Moses was wroth with the officers ... Have ye saved all the women alive? Behold, these caused the children of Israel ... to commit trespass against the LORD ... and there was a plague. 31:14-16

Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves. 31:17-18

[You see, it was the Midianite women who had sex with the Israelites (27).]

So that's what they did. They went back and killed all the non-virgin women, keeping the 32,000 virgins alive for themselves. (I'm not sure how they separated the virgins from the non-virgins, but God probably helped out with that.)

The booty, being ... thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him. 31:32-35

Since there were 32,000 virgin women saved alive as booty, I figured there must have been about 200,000 killed in this episode, which would include all of the males (men, boys, babies) and non-virgin females.

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