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Armed conflict between two or more opposing peoples. War was so common in the biblical period that the OT makes specific reference to times of peace (Judg 3:11; 1Kgs 5:4; 2Chr 14:1; 2Chr 5:1-7:1). Wars were fought for political, economic, and religious reasons, and Palestine’s position near the land bridge between Africa and Asia greatly multiplied the number of wars in which the inhabitants were involved. Since the Hebrew conquest and settlement of Canaan was partly accomplished by means of armed conflict, Israel’s early history (ca. 1225–1025 BCE) is, to some degree, a history of the wars of Israel. Later, the Hebrew monarchy (ca. 1025–586 BCE) was established and maintained by means of war. The events and thoughts of the later centuries were molded by the wars that brought Israel under the dominion of Egyptian, Assyrian, Babylonian, Persian, Hellenistic, and Roman conquerors. Furthermore, one of the fundamental images of God in the OT is that of a warrior (Exod 15:3; Ps 24:8; Isa 42:13) who assists Israel in times of war (Exod 14:13-14; Josh 10:11; Josh 24:12; 1Sam 17:45). Divinely sanctioned wars are mentioned frequently (Josh 8:1; Judg 4:14-15; 1Sam 23:4; 2Kgs 3:18), and the idea that God “used” war to punish an apostate Israel also appears again and again (Isa 5:26-28; Jer 5:15-17; Ezek 21:1-32; Ezek 23:22-28). Because war was such a well-known phenomenon and such a serious matter, it was also used as a symbol for the Christian life (2Cor 10:3-4; Eph 6:11-17; 1Tim 1:18; 2Tim 2:3-4; Jas 4:1-2; 1Pet 2:11).