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Judges 6-8

3/12/2019

A Devotional Journey
     led by Dr. Gene Pearson                                                                                                                  
Thru the Bible in a Year
 
       This is the story of Gideon, a man of great faith, courage and spiritual failure.  His call is one of the most typical:  he is found by an angel engaged in the common tasks of his life, told that God is with him, and immediately questions how that can be so when his people’s enemies, the Midianites, are so thoroughly oppressing them.  When the angel points out that God has commissioned him to save Israel he replies the his clan is the weakest in his tribe, and he is the least in [his] family.  Gideon then asks for a sign, and the angel provides it.
        Now this new judge begins with a vengeance.  He destroys the idol to the Canaanite god Baal (even though he does so at night), and when he is accused of this crime, his father insists that if Baal were truly a god, he could have defended himself. 
        However, even this initial success is not enough for Gideon.  He asks for another sign seting out a fleece to determine if God is with him.  When it works, he insists on doing it again.  God answers Gideon’s prayers and his finally gain his trust.
        Now Gideon prepares to fight the Midianites.  However, God tells him that his army is too big.  It must be small enough to leave no doubt of God’s intervention or the Israelites’ inability to succeed without Him.  The army of 32,000 is reduced to 300, and God says, “With the army of three hundred men ... I will save you...” 
        The strategy is worth studying as is the selection process to determine who may be a part of Israel’s forces.  Gideon and a servant go down to the camp of the Midianites and are encouraged by what they hear.  In the middle of the night, Gideon and his army, all pretending to be the trumpeters and light bearers of a greater army feign an attack, and the Midianites end up killing each other and are completely defeated.
        After the battle, Gideon rejects an offer to become king, insisting only God can rule Israel, but then made an idolatrous object and “All Israel prostituted themselves by worshiping it there...”  With Gideon’s death, the cycle of sin repeats itself immediately.
 
       How much knowledge do you need to serve God?  How spiritual do you need to be to serve God?  How much help do you need to serve God?  Gideon complained that he was too weak, unimportant and insignificant to serve.  Still God used him anyway.  He can use you too.  What could you do to serve God which you are not doing now?  Why not start today?
 
A. Eugene Pearson 2011