Before you attack a town that is far from your land, offer peace to the people who live there. If they surrender and open their town gates, they will become your slaves. But if they reject your offer of peace and try to fight, surround their town and attack. Then, after the Lord helps you capture it, kill all the men. Take the women and children as slaves and keep the livestock and everything else of value.
When you come up against a city to attack it, call out, “Peace?” If they answer, “Yes, peace!” and open the city to you, then everyone found there will be conscripted as forced laborers and work for you. But if they don’t settle for peace and insist on war, then go ahead and attack. God, your God, will give them to you. Kill all the men with your swords. But don’t kill the women and children and animals. Everything inside the town you can take as plunder for you to use and eat—God, your God, gives it to you. This is the way you deal with the distant towns, the towns that don’t belong to the nations at hand.
If any time thou shalt go to a city to overcome it, first thou shalt proffer peace to it. (Now anytime that thou shalt go to attack a city, thou shalt first make an offer of peace to them, that is, thou shalt give them a chance to surrender.)
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