Bible Myth #12: Horses were hamstrung

Bible Myth #12: Horses were hamstrung

The idea that horses were hamstrung by Joshua’s and David’s men is a myth.

Although some translations of the Hebrew Scriptures say they were hamstrung, the accurate translation is that they were gelded.

Joshua 11:6. And the LORD* said to Joshua, “Do not be in awe because of them! For tomorrow about this time I AM will deliver them up, all slain before Israel: you will make geldings of their horses and burn their chariots with fire. God specifically told Joshua to geld the horses.”

David also gelded horses, recorded in 2 Samuel 8:4 and 1 Chronicles 18:3.

And David smote Hadarezer king from Zobah to Hamath, as he went to establish his dominion by the river Euphrates. 4. And David took from him a thousand chariots and seven thousand horsemen and twenty thousand foot soldiers. David also castrated all the chariot horses, but reserved of them a hundred for chariots.

The literal translation is castrated, making geldings of the war horses.

To hamstring a horse would be terribly cruel and leave it crippled, so it could not be used at all to pull a wagon or to ride. Making the horse a gelding made it unsuitable for war as a chariot horse, but very useful for riding or pulling a wagon.

The word “hamstring” is from the Latin text, kept in various translations by tradition, but it not accurate.

*Excerpted from the One New Man Bible Companion


Special Offer

Free One New Man Bible and One New Man Bible Companion e-version (pdf) with pre-order of the 9th printing edition of the One New Man Bible. (click here for details)

This is a special pre-order offer! Bibles will arrive from the printer and individual orders will be shipped in December 2017.

Free, immediate download of the One New Man Bible and One New Man Bible Companion with your order.

Order 8 Bibles or more and receive a 50% bulk discount (discount is automatic at checkout)

Share This