Chapter 4ד׳
1 א

רְשׁוּת יֵשׁ לַמֶּלֶךְ לִתֵּן מַס עַל הָעָם לִצְרָכָיו אוֹ לְצֹרֶךְ הַמִּלְחָמוֹת. וְקוֹצֵב לוֹ מֶכֶס וְאָסוּר לְהַבְרִיחַ מִן הַמֶּכֶס. שֶׁיֵּשׁ לוֹ לִגְזֹר שֶׁכָּל מִי שֶׁיִּגְנֹב הַמֶּכֶס יִלָּקַח מָמוֹנוֹ אוֹ יֵהָרֵג שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח יז) "וְאַתֶּם תִּהְיוּ לוֹ לַעֲבָדִים". וּלְהַלָּן הוּא אוֹמֵר (דברים כ יא) "יִהְיוּ לְךָ לָמַס וַעֲבָדוּךָ". מִכָּאן שֶׁנּוֹתֵן מַס וְקוֹצֵב מֶכֶס וְדִינָיו בְּכָל אֵלּוּ הַדְּבָרִים וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן דִּין. שֶׁכָּל הָאָמוּר בְּפָרָשַׁת מֶלֶךְ מֶלֶךְ זוֹכֶה בּוֹ:

The king has the right to levy a tax for his own needs or for wars, and to set rates for the tax. It is forbidden to avoid paying his tax. The king has the right to decree that anyone who fails to pay his taxes can have his property confiscated or he can be executed, as it says, “and you shall be slaves unto him” (I Samuel 8:17). Further, it says, “and they shall be for you a tribute, and they shall serve you” (Deut. 20:11). From here we learn that he can levy a tax and set the rates for the tax. His laws in these, and all similar matters, are binding. For the king is entitled to everything about which is written in the Chapter Regarding Kings25I Samuel 8..

2 ב

וְשׁוֹלֵחַ בְּכָל גְּבוּל יִשְׂרָאֵל וְלוֹקֵחַ מִן הָעָם הַגִּבּוֹרִים וְאַנְשֵׁי חַיִל וְעוֹשֶׂה מֵהֶן חַיִל לְמֶרְכַּבְתּוֹ וּבְפָרָשָׁיו וּמַעֲמִיד מֵהֶן עוֹמְדִים לְפָנָיו. וּמַעֲמִיד מֵהֶן אֲנָשִׁים לָרוּץ לְפָנָיו. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח יא) "וְשָׂם לוֹ בְּמֶרְכַּבְתּוֹ וּפָרָשָׁיו וְרָצוּ לִפְנֵי מֶרְכַּבְתּו"ֹ. וְלוֹקֵחַ מִן הַיָּפִים שֶׁבָּהֶם לִהְיוֹת שַׁמָּשִׁים וְעוֹמְדִים לְפָנָיו שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח טז) "וְאֶת בַּחוּרֵיכֶם הַטּוֹבִים" (שמואל א ח טז) "יִקָּח וְעָשָׂה לִמְלַאכְתּוֹ":

He can recruit and conscript, from anywhere in Israel, courageous and strong men and make them soldiers for his chariots, horsemen, and members of his guard. He can draft men who will run before him, as it says, “and will appoint them for his chariots and horsemen, and they will run before his chariots” (I Samuel 8:11). He can take of the handsomest ones and make them his attendants, as it says, “and your best youth and your asses…he will take for his work” (I Samuel 8:16).

3 ג

וְכֵן לוֹקֵחַ מִן בַּעֲלֵי הָאֻמָּנֻיּוֹת כָּל מַה שֶּׁהוּא צָרִיךְ וְעוֹשִׂין לוֹ מְלַאכְתּוֹ וְנוֹתֵן שְׂכָרָן. וְלוֹקֵחַ כָּל הַבְּהֵמוֹת וְהָעֲבָדִים וְהַשְּׁפָחוֹת לִמְלַאכְתּוֹ וְנוֹתֵן שְׂכָרָן אוֹ דְּמֵיהֶן. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח יב) "וְלַחֲרשׁ חֲרִישׁוֹ וְלִקְצֹר קְצִירוֹ וְלַעֲשׂוֹת כְּלֵי מִלְחַמְתּוֹ וּכְלֵי רִכְבּוֹ". (שמואל א ח טז) "וְאֶת עַבְדֵיכֶם וְאֶת שִׁפְחוֹתֵיכֶם וְאֶת בַּחוּרֵיכֶם הַטּוֹבִים וְאֶת חֲמוֹרֵיכֶם יִקָּח וְעָשָׂה לִמְלַאכְתּוֹ":

He can enlist artisans26Or, craftsmen., any he so needs, to do his work. But, he must pay them their wages. He can draft all the animals and slaves and maid-servants he needs for his service, but he must pay their wages or pay their worth, as it says, “and to plough his ploughings, and to harvest his harvests, and to make the implements of war and the tools for his chariots…and the best of your slaves and maid-servants and youth and your asses…he shall take; and they shall do his work” (I Samuel 8:12-16).

4 ד

וְכֵן לוֹקֵחַ מִכָּל גְּבוּל יִשְׂרָאֵל נָשִׁים וּפִילַגְשִׁים. נָשִׁים בִּכְתֻבָּה וְקִדּוּשִׁין. וּפִילַגְשִׁים בְּלֹא כְּתֻבָּה וּבְלֹא קִדּוּשִׁין. אֶלָּא בְּיִחוּד בִּלְבַד קוֹנֶה אוֹתָהּ וּמֻתֶּרֶת לוֹ. אֲבָל הַהֶדְיוֹט אָסוּר בְּפִילֶגֶשׁ אֶלָּא בְּאָמָה הָעִבְרִיָּה בִּלְבַד אַחַר יִעוּד. וְיֵשׁ לוֹ [רְשׁוּת] לַעֲשׂוֹת הַפִּילַגְשִׁים שֶׁלּוֹקֵחַ לְאַרְמוֹנוֹ טַבָּחוֹת וְאוֹפוֹת וְרַקָּחוֹת. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח יג) "וְאֶת בְּנוֹתֵיכֶם יִקָּח לְרַקָּחוֹת וּלְטַבָּחוֹת וּלְאֹפוֹת":

He can take, from anywhere in Israel, wives and concubines; wives being those with a Kesuba (marriage contract) and Kedushin (being sanctified), while concubines are those without a Kesuba and Kedushin. He need only sequester himself with her in private to make her a concubine. She is then permitted to him. However, an ordinary man is forbidden to have a concubine, but may have a Hebrew maidservant, but only after she was so designated27To be his wife.. The king makes those concubines who has brought to his palace into cooks and bakers and perfumers28I do not know why the Rambam’s order is different than that in the verse., as it says, “and your daughters he shall take for perfumers and cooks and bakers” (I Samuel 8:13).

5 ה

וְכֵן כּוֹפֶה אֶת הָרְאוּיִין לִהְיוֹת שָׂרִים וּמְמַנֶּה אוֹתָם שָׂרֵי אֲלָפִים וְשָׂרֵי חֲמִשִּׁים. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח יב) "וְלָשׂוּם לוֹ שָׂרֵי אֲלָפִים וְשָׂרֵי חֲמִשִּׁים":

He can compel those who are qualified to be his ministers, and may appoint them to be the officers in charge of the thousands and the fifties, as it says, “and he shall set up for himself, officers of the thousands and officers of the fifties” (I Samuel 8:12).

6 ו

וְלוֹקֵחַ הַשָּׂדוֹת וְהַזֵּיתִים וְהַכְּרָמִים לַעֲבָדָיו כְּשֶׁיֵּלְכוּ לַמִּלְחָמָה וְיִפְשְׁטוּ עַל מְקוֹמוֹת אֵלּוּ אִם אֵין לָהֶם מַה יֹּאכְלוּ אֶלָּא מִשָּׁם. וְנוֹתֵן דְּמֵיהֶן. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח יד) "וְאֶת שְׂדוֹתֵיכֶם וְאֶת כַּרְמֵיכֶם וְזֵיתֵיכֶם הַטּוֹבִים יִקָּח וְנָתַן לַעֲבָדָיו":

He may seize any of the fields and olives and vineyards for his servants when they go to war. He may deploy his army in any of these places and take from there if they have from nowhere else to feed themselves. But, he must pay its worth, as it says, “and your good fields and vineyards and olives…he shall take; and he will give to his servants” (I Samuel 8:14).

7 ז

וְיֵשׁ לוֹ מַעֲשֵׂר מִן הַזְּרָעִים וּמִן הָאִילָנוֹת וּמִן הַבְּהֵמָה. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח טו) "וְזַרְעֵיכֶם וְכַרְמֵיכֶם יַעְשֹׂר" וְגוֹ'. (שמואל א ח יז) "צֹאנְכֶם יַעְשֹׂר":

He is entitled to a tithe from the seeds and the trees and the animals, as it says, “And he will take a tithe of your seeds and your vineyards…and he will take a tithe of your flocks” (I Samuel 8:15-17).

8 ח

הַמֶּלֶךְ הַמָּשִׁיחַ נוֹטֵל מִכָּל הָאֲרָצוֹת שֶׁכּוֹבְשִׁין יִשְׂרָאֵל חֵלֶק אֶחָד מִשְּׁלֹשָׁה עָשָׂר. וְדָבָר זֶה חֹק לוֹ וּלְבָנָיו עַד עוֹלָם:

The King Messiah may procure for himself 1/13th of all the lands conquered by Israel. This is a law for him and his sons, forever.

9 ט

כָּל הֲרוּגֵי הַמֶּלֶךְ מָמוֹנָן לַמֶּלֶךְ. וְכָל הַמַּמְלָכוֹת שֶׁכּוֹבֵשׁ הֲרֵי אוֹצְרוֹת הַמְּלָכִים לַמֶּלֶךְ. וּשְׁאָר הַבִּזָּה שֶׁבּוֹזְזִין בּוֹזְזִין וְנוֹתְנִין לְפָנָיו וְהוּא נוֹטֵל מֶחֱצָה בָּרֹאשׁ. וּמַחֲצִית הַבִּזָּה חוֹלְקִין אוֹתָהּ כָּל אַנְשֵׁי הַצָּבָא בְּיַחַד עִם הָעָם הַיּוֹשְׁבִין עַל הַכֵּלִים בַּמַּחֲנֶה לְשָׁמְרָם חוֹלְקִין בְּשָׁוֶה. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ל כד) "כִּי כְּחֵלֶק הַיֹּרֵד בַּמִּלְחָמָה וּכְחֵלֶק הַיּשֵׁב עַל הַכֵּלִים יַחְדָּו יַחֲלֹקוּ":

The king acquires the money of anyone29Those who rebelled against him. he executes. The treasuries of the king of any conquered kingdom are his. The spoils are laid out before him and he takes a half first. The remaining half of the booty is divided equally between all the soldiers (who went out to the battlefield) and all those who guarded the weapons in the camp, as it says, “and that part which goes down to the battle and the part which remains with the provisions and equipment…together they shall divide” (I Samuel 30:24).

10 י

כָּל הָאָרֶץ שֶׁכּוֹבֵשׁ הֲרֵי הִיא שֶׁלּוֹ וְנוֹתֵן לַעֲבָדָיו וּלְאַנְשֵׁי הַמִּלְחָמָה כְּפִי מַה שֶּׁיִּרְצֶה. וּמַנִּיחַ לְעַצְמוֹ כְּפִי מַה שֶּׁיִּרְצֶה. וּבְכָל אֵלּוּ הַדְּבָרִים דִּינוֹ דִּין. וּבְכָל יִהְיוּ מַעֲשָׂיו לְשֵׁם שָׁמַיִם. וְתִהְיֶה מְגַמָּתוֹ וּמַחְשַׁבְתּוֹ לְהָרִים דַּת הָאֱמֶת. וּלְמַלְּאוֹת הָעוֹלָם צֶדֶק. וְלִשְׁבֹּר זְרוֹעַ הָרְשָׁעִים וּלְהִלָּחֵם מִלְחֲמוֹת ה'. שֶׁאֵין מַמְלִיכִין מֶלֶךְ תְּחִלָּה אֶלָּא לַעֲשׂוֹת מִשְׁפָּט וּמִלְחָמוֹת. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמואל א ח כ) "וּשְׁפָטָנוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ וְיָצָא לְפָנֵינוּ וְנִלְחַם אֶת מִלְחֲמֹתֵנוּ":

All lands which he conquers are his. He can give them to his servants or his soldiers, however he so wishes. He retains for himself whatever he wants. However he so decides is the law. This is as long as all his doings are done for the Sake of Heaven, and his orientation and thoughts are to promote the True Religion, fill the world with righteousness, break the arm of the wicked, and fight G-d’s war. For we do not, a priori, appoint a king except to execute justice and fight wars, as it says, “and that our king will judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles” (I Samuel 8:20).