Joshua 9:25
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
And now, behold, we are in your hand. Whatever seems good and right in your sight to do to us, do it.”

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

American Standard Version
And now, behold, we are in thy hand: as it seemeth good and right unto thee to do unto us, do.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And now we are in thy hand: deal with us as it seemeth good and right unto thee.

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

Webster's Bible Translation
And now, behold, we are in thy hand: do as it seemeth good and right to thee to do to us,

Joshua 9:25 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

"The Israelites smote them not," sc., with the edge of the sword, "because the princes of the congregation had sworn to them," sc., to let them live (Joshua 9:15); but, notwithstanding the murmuring of the congregation, they declared that they might not touch them because of their oath. "This (sc., what we have sworn) we will do to them, and let them live (החיה, inf. abs. with special emphasis instead of the finite verb), lest wrath come upon us because of the oath." Wrath (sc., of God), a judgment such as fell upon Israel in the time of David, because Saul disregarded this oath and sought to destroy the Gibeonites (2 Samuel 21:1.).

But how could the elders of Israel consider themselves bound by their oath to grant to the Gibeonites the preservation of life which had been secured to them by the treaty they had made, when the very supposition upon which the treaty was made, viz., that the Gibeonites did not belong to the tribes of Canaan, was proved to be false, and the Gibeonites had studiously deceived them by pretending that they had come from a very distant land? As they had been absolutely forbidden to make any treaties with the Canaanites, it might be supposed that, after the discovery of the deception which had been practised upon them, the Israelitish rulers would be under no obligation to observe the treaty which they had made with the Gibeonites in full faith in the truth of their word. And no doubt from the stand-point of strict justice this view appears to be a right one. But the princes of Israel shrank back from breaking the oath which, as is emphatically stated in Joshua 9:19, they had sworn by Jehovah the God of Israel, not because they assumed, as Hauff supposes, "that an oath simply regarded as an outward and holy transaction had an absolutely binding force," but because they were afraid of bringing the name of the God of Israel into contempt among the Canaanites, which they would have done if they had broken the oath which they had sworn by this God, and had destroyed the Gibeonites. They were bound to observe the oath which they had once sworn, if only to prevent the sincerity of the God by whom they had sworn from being rendered doubtful in the eyes of the Gibeonites; but they were not justified in taking the oath. They had done this without asking the mouth of Jehovah (Joshua 9:14), and thus had sinned against the Lord their God. But they could not repair this fault by breaking the oath which they had thus imprudently taken, i.e., by committing a fresh sin; for the violation of an oath is always sin, even when the oath has been taken inconsiderately, and it is afterwards discovered that what was sworn to was not in accordance with the will of God, and that an observance of the oath will certainly be hurtful (vid., Psalm 15:4).

(Note: "The binding power of an oath ought to be held so sacred among us, that we should not swerve from our bond under any pretence of error, even though we had been deceived: since the sacred name of God is of greater worth than all the riches of the world. Even though a person should have sworn therefore without sufficient consideration, no injury or loss will release him from his oath." This is the opinion expressed by Calvin with reference to Psalm 15:4; yet for all that he regards the observance of their oath on the part of the princes of Israel as a sin, because he limits this golden rule in the most arbitrary manner to private affairs alone, and therefore concludes that the Israelites were not bound to observe this "wily treaty.")

By taking an oath to the ambassadors that they would let the Gibeonites live, the princes of Israel had acted unconsciously in violation of the command of God that they were to destroy the Canaanites. As soon therefore as they discovered their error or their oversight, they were bound to do all in their power to ward off from the congregation the danger which might arise of their being drawn away to idolatry-the very thing which the Lord had intended to avert by giving that command. If this could by any possibility be done without violating their oath, they were bound to do it for the sake of the name of the Lord by which they swore; that is to say, while letting the Gibeonites live, it was their duty to put them in such a position, that they could not possibly seduce the Israelites to idolatry. And this the princes of Israel proposed to do, by granting to the Gibeonites on the one hand the preservation of their lives according to the oath they had taken, and on the other hand by making them slaves of the sanctuary. That they acted rightly in this respect, is evident from the fact that their conduct is never blamed either by the historian or by the history, inasmuch as it is not stated anywhere that the Gibeonites, after being made into temple slaves, held out any inducement to the Israelites to join in idolatrous worship, and still more from the fact, that at a future period God himself reckoned the attempt of Saul to destroy the Gibeonites, in his false zeal for the children of Israel, as an act of blood-guiltiness on the part of the nation of Israel for which expiation must be made (2 Samuel 21:1.), and consequently approved of the observance of the oath which had been sworn to them, though without thereby sanctioning the treaty itself.

Joshua 9:25 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

we are

Genesis 16:6 But Abram said to Sarai, Behold, your maid is in your hand; do to her as it pleases you. And when Sarai dealt hardly with her...

Judges 8:15 And he came to the men of Succoth, and said, Behold Zebah and Zalmunna, with whom you did upbraid me, saying...

2 Samuel 24:14 And David said to Gad, I am in a great strait: let us fall now into the hand of the LORD; for his mercies are great...

Isaiah 47:6 I was wroth with my people, I have polluted my inheritance, and given them into your hand: you did show them no mercy...

Jeremiah 26:14 As for me, behold, I am in your hand: do with me as seems good and meet to you.

Jeremiah 38:5 Then Zedekiah the king said, Behold, he is in your hand: for the king is not he that can do any thing against you.

as it seemeth

Judges 10:15 And the children of Israel said to the LORD, We have sinned: do you to us whatever seems good to you; deliver us only, we pray you...

1 Samuel 3:18 And Samuel told him every whit, and hid nothing from him. And he said, It is the LORD: let him do what seems him good.

Matthew 11:26 Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in your sight.

Cross References
Genesis 16:6
But Abram said to Sarai, "Behold, your servant is in your power; do to her as you please." Then Sarai dealt harshly with her, and she fled from her.

Joshua 9:26
So he did this to them and delivered them out of the hand of the people of Israel, and they did not kill them.

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