Deut 17:16 - Why not horses?
It's interesting that God encourages the people to remind their future kings (which they shouldn't have wanted in the first place, but God granted them when they begged for one) that you are not to multiply horses for themselves. Why? Well, in Canaan there weren't an abundance of horses there - most everyone rode around on donkeys and mules. Also, while God was their king, which is the way it was supposed to be all along, His judges and prophets rode around on donkeys and mules. Why? Because God was their king and they didn't want to have the outward sign of "kingly status." Kings rode horses, servants did not. What Moses is saying here is that the king may have a horse, but he is not to multiply them for his guards and officials, thus making a show of his kingly status. That's how all the other kings did it - they would show up to a place and he and all of his retinue were riding stately horses, thus striking an "awe" in the minds of the people at the kings' majesty. God was Israel's king and no man should try to rival that, hence we see this command to not multiply that which would rob God of His glory.
Created 12 months ago