God asks us to do strange things
The 'Mighty warrior' Gideon is finally gaining the courage to fight. God has done what Gideon asked Him to do, to prove Himself to Gideon!
Gideon asked God to do some strange things in the last chapter to prove that He was indeed with Gideon. God had humored Gideon and did what he asked.
Now God is going to ask Gideon to prove himself to HIM! And He is going to ask Gideon to do some strange things!
Early in the morning Jerub-Baal (also called Gideon) and all his men set up their camp at the spring of Harod.
The Midianites were camped north of them in the valley at the bottom of the hill called Moreh. Then the Lord said to Gideon, “You have too many men to defeat the Midianites.
I don’t want the Israelites to brag that they saved themselves. So now, announce to the people, ‘Anyone who is afraid may leave Mount Gilead and go back home.’ ” So twenty-two thousand men returned home, but ten thousand remained. (Judges 7:1-3 NCV)
I think Gibeon was wanting all the help he could get, and now there was some
men going home. 22 thousand of them!
If that were not enough to get Gibeon feeling uneasy God said something more..
Then the Lord said to Gideon, “There are still too many men. Take the men down to the water, and I will test them for you there. If I say, ‘This man will go with you, he will go. But if I say, ‘That one will not go with you,’ he will not go.”
So Gideon led the men down to the water. There the Lord said to him, “Separate them into those who drink water by lapping it up like a dog and those who bend down to drink.”
There were three hundred men who used their hands to bring water to their mouths, lapping it as a dog does. All the rest got down on their knees to drink.
Then the Lord said to Gideon, “Using the three hundred men who lapped the water, I will save you and hand Midian over to you. Let all the others go home.” (Judges 7:4-7 NCV)
Can you feel the tension in Gibeons neck? I can see him gulping and clearing his throat, I can feel Him wondering is this God or the devil telling me this?
But he does it!
So Gideon sent the rest of Israel to their homes. But he kept three hundred men and took the jars and the trumpets of those who left.
Now the camp of Midian was in the valley below Gideon. (Judges 7:8 NCV)
300 men to fight an army so large you couldn't count them!
The Midianites, the Amalekites, and all the peoples from the east were camped in that valley. There were so many of them they seemed like locusts. Their camels could not be counted because they were as many as the grains of sand on the seashore! (Judges 7:12 NCV)
Gibeon sneaks down to take a peek at them.
He just had to see how many there were to fight!
And when he goes near he hears them talking...
When Gideon came to the enemy camp, he heard a man telling his friend about a dream. He was saying, “I dreamed that a loaf of barley bread rolled into the camp of Midian. It hit the tent so hard that the tent turned over and fell flat!”
The man’s friend said, “Your dream is about the sword of Gideon son of Joash, a man of Israel. God will hand Midian and the whole army over to him!” (Judges 7:13, 14 NCV)
Now I can feel that smile starting to come across Gibeon's face! Once again God gave him the affirmation that he could do this. With God He could! He is ready to do battle!
When Gideon heard about the dream and what it meant, he worshiped God. Then Gideon went back to the camp of Israel and called out to them, “Get up! The Lord has handed the army of Midian over to you!” (Judges 7:15 NCV)
He's a commander of his army. This little weakling that God found hiding out as we read in last chapter is ready to fight!
Gideon divided the three hundred men into three groups. He gave each man a trumpet and an empty jar with a burning torch inside.
Gideon told the men, “Watch me and do what I do. When I get to the edge of the camp, do what I do. Surround the enemy camp. When I and everyone with me blow our trumpets, you blow your trumpets, too. Then shout, ‘For the Lord and for Gideon!’ ” (Judges 7:16-18 NCV)
These 300 men didn't go home out of fear...they believed in God, in Gibeon and in themselves! They did as they were ordered, no questions asked!
So Gideon and the one hundred men with him came to the edge of the enemy camp just after they had changed guards. It was during the middle watch of the night.
Then Gideon and his men blew their trumpets and smashed their jars. All three groups of Gideon’s men blew their trumpets and smashed their jars. They held the torches in their left hands and the trumpets in their right hands.
Then they shouted, “A sword for the Lord and for Gideon!” Each of Gideon’s men stayed in his place around the camp, but the Midianites began shouting and running to escape.
When Gideon’s three hundred men blew their trumpets, the Lord made all the Midianites fight each other with their swords!
The enemy army ran away to the city of Beth Shittah toward Zererah. They ran as far as the border of Abel Meholah, near the city of Tabbath. (Judges 7:19-22 NCV)
Isn't God awesome! This vast, numerous army begins to cut each others throats! They're scared and they're confused!
Gibeon wins this round without having to do much of anything except to be there!
But the ones who do get away, he goes after them and gets them! He's no longer fearful! He really is the MIGHTY WARRIOR
that God said he was when he found him scared and hiding.
He tested God! God tested him. Sometime
God answers our request to prove that He is asking us to do something. We can set out a fleece as Gibeon did, maybe not a fleece of wool, but maybe a fleece of "if this is really you God, asking me to do this, would you make the way, open the door? It seems impossible to me but if the doors open I'll know it's YOU that is telling me!"
We can do that...
But sometimes we just have to walk by faith, not by sight. We just have to move ahead and trust God! We have to test the waters but not test God!
We learn from experience what to do. There is no set formula! We need to listen closely, to seek God, learn to know His voice...and we don't always know right away because Satan disguises himself as God, as an angel of light! So we constantly have to move in closer to God to hear Him! We search His Word, ask HIS people, we pray...
When you're close enough to hear God whisper "you can do this thing...mighty warrior..." get a little closer, just to make sure you heard right, and them TRUST HIM and DO IT!
And remember, God may ask you to do some strange things.....something you're a little uncomfortable with! I can see Him smiling now!
Created about 1 year ago