XLV. (250) Therefore he passed by the cities of these nations; but a certain king of the neighbouring country, Canaan by name, when his spies reported to him that the army of the Hebrews, which was making in his direction was at no great distance, thinking that it was in a state of confusion and disorder, and that he should be able easily to conquer it if he were to attack it at once, proceeded forth with the youth of his nation well armed and equipped, and marched with all speed, and put the van of their host to flight as soon as he encountered them, inasmuch as they were not arrayed or prepared for battle; and having taken many prisoners, and being elated at the prosperity beyond his hopes which he had met with, he marched on thinking that he should defeat all the others also. (251) But the Hebrews, for they were not dismayed at the defeat of their advanced guard, but had rather derived even more confidence than they had felt before, being eager also to make amends by their eagerness for battle for the loss of those of their number who had been taken prisoners, exhorted one another not to faint nor to yield. “Let us rise up,” said they; “let us at once invade their land. Let us show that we are in no wise alarmed or depressed, by our vigour in action and our confidence. The end is very often judged of by the beginning. Let us seize the keys of the country and strike terror into the inhabitants as deriving prosperity from cities, and inflicting upon them in return the want of necessary things which we bring with us out of the wilderness.” (252) And they, at the same time, exhorted one another often with these words, and likewise began to dedicate to God, as the first fruits of the land, the cities of the king and all the citizens of each city. And he accepted their views and inspired the Hebrews with courage, and prepared the army of the enemy to be defeated. (253) Accordingly, the Hebrews defeated them with mighty power, and fulfilled the agreement of gratitude which they had made, not appropriating to themselves the slightest portion of the booty. And they dedicated to God the cities with all the men and treasures that were in them, and, from what had thus taken place, they called the whole country an offering to God; (254) for, as every pious man offers unto God the first fruits of the fruits of the year, which he collects from his own possessions, so in the same manner did the Hebrews dedicate the whole nation of this mighty country into which they had come as settlers, and that great spoil, the kingdom which they had so speedily subdued, as a sort of first-fruit of their colony; for they did not think it consistent with piety to distribute the land among themselves, or to inherit the cities, before they had offered up to God the first fruits of that country and of those cities.