War and warfare can serve different purposes. Both the Roman Empire during the Golden Age, under the auspices of Rome’s first emperor, Caesar Augustus and the Israel’s who followed the Hebrew Bible engaged warfare. However, the wars had a different focuses and different goals. The wars of the Old Testament were wars of extermination, while the Romans had limited wars. Wars of extermination occurred during Israel’s theocracy, and are often cited by non-believers as a reason to reject following a religion. However, the wars of extermination were specific to the period when Israel was a theocracy. Israel, we learn from the Hebrew Bible, followed a unique form of government in which God himself is recognized as the supreme civil ruler, and His laws are taken as the statute book of the kingdom. Israel’s theocracy existed from the period of Moses, Joshua, and the twelve judges, as the appointees and agents of Jehovah. The books of the Hebrew Bible serve not only for religious teachings, but also for historical accounts. Similarly the epic poem writer Virgil had a purpose to write a myth of Rome’s origins that would emphasize the grandeur and legitimize the success of an empire that had conquered most of the known world. Virgil works backward, connecting the political and social situation of his own day with the inherited tradition of the Greek gods and heroes, to show the former as historically derived from the latter. Order and good government triumph emphatically over the Italian peoples, whose world prior to the Trojans’ arrival is characterized as a primitive existence of war, chaos, and emotional irrationality. By contrast, the empire under Augustus was generally a world of peace, order, and emotional stability. Virgil himself would appear to advocate for a more stoic Roman state in terms of conquest and violence in general. Specifically, that Rome was an Empire not driven by blood lust but rather by invasions... [continues]
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(2009, 09). War, Violence, the Hebrew Bible & the Aeneid. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 09, 2009, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/War-Violence-The-Hebrew-Bible-229947.html
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