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Deuteronomy 20:1-9

Note: here is another proposal for this passage. Why the three exceptions for military service? Is the connection between the three to do with  a man  setting up a home and family before he dies – build a house, plant a vineyard and get a wife?

A. 1 When thou goest out to battle against thine enemies, and seest horses, and chariots, and a people more than thou, be not afraid of them: for the LORD thy God is with thee, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

B. 2 And it shall be, when ye are come nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall approach and speak unto the people, 3 And shall say unto them, Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them; 4 For the LORD your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

C. 5 And the officers shall speak unto the people, saying,

 a. What man is there that hath built a new house, and hath not dedicated it? let him go and return to his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man dedicate it.

b. 6 And what man is he that hath planted a vineyard, and hath not yet eaten of it? let him also go and return unto his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man eat of it.

c. 7 And what man is there 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.

B’. 8 And the officers shall speak further unto the people, and they shall say, What man is there that is fearful and fainthearted? let him go and return unto his house, lest his brethren’s heart faint as well as his heart.

A’. 9 And it shall be, when the officers have made an end of speaking unto the people, that they shall make captains of the armies to lead the people.

Romans 9:25-29

Note: Russell Ebbs in the Testimony Magazine, June  2000, in an article entitled “Structural Symmetry in the Bible” shows that the four OT quotations in Romans 9:25-29 have an ABBA pattern in regard to the promises to Abraham of a seed and a land.

A. – the seed.
25 As he saith also in Osee, I will call them my people, which were not my people; and her beloved, which was not beloved.

B. the land
26 And it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people; there shall they be called the children of the living God.

B’. the land
27 Esaias also crieth concerning Israel, Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved: 28 For he will finish the work, and cut it short in righteousness: because a short work will the Lord make upon the earth.

A’. the seed
29 And as Esaias said before, Except the Lord of Sabaoth had left us a seed, we had been as Sodoma, and been made like unto Gomorrha.

Romans 7:7-25

Note: this is a revised proposal of a complex passage. The first section deals with the nature and purpose of the law – to reveal sin. The second part addresses our innate inability to do good. The problem is not with the law of God but with human nature. The third part identifies the solution!

A. 7 What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay,
I had not known sin, but by the law:
for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.

B. 8 But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence (lust).

C. For without the law sin was dead. 9 For I was alive without the law once:

D. but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.

C. 10 And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.

B’. 11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.

A’. 12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good. 13 Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid.  But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.

A.  14 For we know that the law is spiritual:  but I am carnal, sold under sin. 15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.

B.16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. 17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

C. 18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing:  for to will is present with me;  but how to perform that which is good I find not.

A’. 19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.

B’. 20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

C’. 21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.

A. 22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: 23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.

B. 24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

B’. 25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

A’. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

Deuteronomy 24:1-7

A. (first husband) 1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house.

B.(marriage permitted)  2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s wife.

A’. (second husband) 3 And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife;

B’. (marriage not permitted) 4 Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the LORD: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.

A. 5 When a man hath taken a new wife,

B. he shall not go out to war,

C. neither shall he be charged with any business:

C’. but he shall be free

B’. at home one year,

A’. and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken.

A. 6 No man shall take [ to pledge:]

B. the nether or the upper millstone [to pledge]

B’. for he taketh a man’s life

A’. to pledge.

A. 7 If a man be found stealing any of his brethren of the children of Israel,

B. and maketh merchandise of him,

B’. or selleth him;

A’. then that thief shall die; and thou shalt put evil away from among you.

Deuteronomy 24:10-16

Note: small structures that point up the equity of the law.

A. 10 When thou dost lend thy brother any thing,

B. thou shalt not go into his house  to fetch his pledge.

C. 11 Thou shalt stand abroad,

A’. and the man to whom thou dost lend

B’. shall bring out the pledge

C’. abroad unto thee.

A. 12 And if the man be poor [only has the one garment],

B. thou shalt not sleep with his pledge:

B’. 13 In any case thou shalt deliver him the pledge again when the sun goeth down,

A’. that he may sleep in his own raiment, and bless thee: and it shall be righteousness unto thee before the LORD thy God.

A. 14 Thou shalt not oppress an hired servant

B. that is poor and needy,whether he be of thy brethren, or of thy strangers that are in thy land within thy gates:

C. 15 At his day thou shalt give him his hire,

C’. neither shall the sun go down upon it;

B’. for he is poor, and setteth his heart upon it:

A’. lest he cry against thee unto the LORD,  and it be sin unto thee.

A. 16 The fathers

B. shall not be put to death

C. for the children,

C’. neither shall the children

B’. be put to death

A’. for the fathers:

A. every man

B. shall be put to death

A’. for his own sin.

Deuteronomy 20:19-20

A. 19 When thou shalt besiege a city a long time, in making war against it to take it,

B. thou shalt not destroy the trees thereof by forcing an axe against them: for thou mayest eat of them, and thou shalt not cut them down

C. (for the tree of the field is man’s life)

B’. to employ them in the siege: 20 Only the trees which thou knowest that they be not trees for meat, thou shalt destroy and cut them down;

A’. and thou shalt build bulwarks against the city that maketh war with thee, until it be subdued.

Deuteronomy 19:15-21

Note: this short section about false witnesses is a warning to take the judicial system very seriously.  A and A’ provide the boundaries by re-stating judicial principles – 2 or 3 witnesses (v15) and the impartial application of a just law (v21). The passage implies that a witness may give false evidence in order to gain reward or satisfy a grudge, and therefore should be cross-examined. The punishment for such is perfectly proportional – the same as was demanded for the accused!

A. 15 One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.

B. 16 If a false witness rise up against any man to testify against him that which is wrong; 17 Then both the men, between whom the controversy is, shall stand before the LORD, before the priests and the judges, which shall be in those days;

C. 18 And the judges shall make diligent inquisition:

B’. and, behold, if the witness be a false witness, and hath testified falsely against his brother; 19 Then shall ye do unto him, as he had thought to have done unto his brother:  so shalt thou put the evil away from among you. 20 And those which remain shall hear, and fear, and shall henceforth commit no more any such evil among you.

A’. 21 And thine eye shall not pity; but life shall go for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.

Isaiah 2-12

Guido Benzi -A PROPHETIC MENORAH: STRUCTURE AND RHETORIC OF ISAIAH 2,1-12,6. Salesianum 80 (2018) 7-14

Menorah Isa 2-12

The structure is taken from A.H. Bartelt, The Book around Immanuel. Style and Structure in Isaiah 2-12 , Biblical and Judaic Studies 4, Winona Lake 1996.

Galatians 2:15-18

A. 15 We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles,

B. 16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law,

C. but but the faith of Jesus Christ,

D. even we have believed in Jesus Christ,

C’.  that we might be justified by the faith of Christ,

B’.  and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

A’. 17 But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? By no means. 18 For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.

Galatians 2:11-14

A a.2:11 But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.

 b. 2:12 For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.

B. 2:13 And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him;

B’. insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation.

A’. a’ (2:14) But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all,

b’. If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?