I started the book of Judges in my daily reading today and happened to look up Judges 1:7 in my Treasury of Scripture knowledge. It contains the following blurb about the practice of cutting off the conquered enemy's thumbs and toes... their thumbs. Heb. the thumbs of their hands and of their feet. This was not an unusual act of cruelty in ancient times towards enemies.--AEian informs us, that in after ages "the Athenians, at the instigation of Cleon, son of Cleoenetus, made a decree that all the inhabitants of the island of AEina should have the thumb cut off from the right hand, so that they might ever after be disabled from holding a spear, yet might handle an oar." It was a custom among those Romans who did not like a military life, to cut off their thumbs, that they might be incapable of serving in the army; and for the same reason, parents sometimes cut off the thumbs of their children. gathered. or, gleaned. as I have. Those last three words stick out to me. Is the author, R.A. Torrey, saying he did this to his children so they wouldn't be able to serve in the military? I know some branches of Christianity are pacifist, but this sounds extreme!