Gideon’s Valiant Three Hundred
1Then #Judg. 6:32Jerubbaal (that is, Gideon) and all the people who were with him rose early and encamped beside the well of Harod, so that the camp of the Midianites was on the north side of them by the hill of Moreh in the valley.
2And the Lord said to Gideon, “The people who are with you are too many for Me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel #Deut. 8:17; Is. 10:13claim glory for itself against Me, saying, ‘My own hand has saved me.’ 3Now therefore, proclaim in the hearing of the people, saying, #Deut. 20:8‘Whoever is fearful and afraid, let him turn and depart at once from Mount Gilead.’ ” And twenty-two thousand of the people returned, and ten thousand remained.
4But the Lord said to Gideon, “The people are still too many; bring them down to the water, and I will test them for you there. Then it will be, that of whom I say to you, ‘This one shall go with you,’ the same shall go with you; and of whomever I say to you, ‘This one shall not go with you,’ the same shall not go.” 5So he brought the people down to the water. And the Lord said to Gideon, “Everyone who laps from the water with his tongue, as a dog laps, you shall set apart by himself; likewise everyone who gets down on his knees to drink.” 6And the number of those who lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, was three hundred men; but all the rest of the people got down on their knees to drink water. 7Then the Lord said to Gideon, #1 Sam. 14:6“By the three hundred men who lapped I will save you, and deliver the Midianites into your hand. Let all the other people go, every man to his place.” 8So the people took provisions and their trumpets in their hands. And he sent away all the rest of Israel, every man to his tent, and retained those three hundred men. Now the camp of Midian was below him in the valley.
9It happened on the same #Gen. 46:2, 3; Judg. 6:25night that the Lord said to him, “Arise, go down against the camp, for I have delivered it into your hand. 10But if you are afraid to go down, go down to the camp with Purah your servant, 11and you shall #Gen. 24:14; 1 Sam. 14:9, 10hear what they say; and afterward your hands shall be strengthened to go down against the camp.” Then he went down with Purah his servant to the outpost of the armed men who were in the camp. 12Now the Midianites and Amalekites, #Judg. 6:3, 33; 8:10all the people of the East, were lying in the valley #Judg. 6:5as numerous as locusts; and their camels were without number, as the sand by the seashore in multitude.
13And when Gideon had come, there was a man telling a dream to his companion. He said, “I have had a dream: To my surprise, a loaf of barley bread tumbled into the camp of Midian; it came to a tent and struck it so that it fell and overturned, and the tent collapsed.”
14Then his companion answered and said, “This is nothing else but the sword of Gideon the son of Joash, a man of Israel! Into his hand #Judg. 6:14, 16God has delivered Midian and the whole camp.”
15And so it was, when Gideon heard the telling of the dream and its interpretation, that he worshiped. He returned to the camp of Israel, and said, “Arise, for the Lord has delivered the camp of Midian into your hand.” 16Then he divided the three hundred men into three companies, and he put a trumpet into every man’s hand, with empty pitchers, and torches inside the pitchers. 17And he said to them, “Look at me and do likewise; watch, and when I come to the edge of the camp you shall do as I do: 18When I blow the trumpet, I and all who are with me, then you also blow the trumpets on every side of the whole camp, and say, ‘The sword of the Lord and of Gideon!’ ”
19So Gideon and the hundred men who were with him came to the outpost of the camp at the beginning of the middle watch, just as they had posted the watch; and they blew the trumpets and broke the pitchers that were in their hands. 20Then the three companies blew the trumpets and broke the pitchers—they held the torches in their left hands and the trumpets in their right hands for blowing—and they cried, “The sword of the Lord and of Gideon!” 21And #Ex. 14:13, 14; 2 Chr. 20:17every man stood in his place all around the camp; #2 Kin. 7:7and the whole army ran and cried out and fled. 22When the three hundred #Josh. 6:4, 16, 20blew the trumpets, #Ps. 83:9; Is. 9:4the Lord set #1 Sam. 14:20; 2 Chr. 20:23every man’s sword against his companion throughout the whole camp; and the army fled to Beth Acacia, toward Zererah, as far as the border of #1 Kin. 4:12Abel Meholah, by Tabbath.
23And the men of Israel gathered together from #Judg. 6:35Naphtali, Asher, and all Manasseh, and pursued the Midianites.
24Then Gideon sent messengers throughout all the #Judg. 3:27mountains of Ephraim, saying, “Come down against the Midianites, and seize from them the watering places as far as Beth Barah and the Jordan.” Then all the men of Ephraim gathered together and #Judg. 3:28seized the watering places as far as #John 1:28Beth Barah and the Jordan. 25And they captured #Judg. 8:3two princes of the Midianites, #Ps. 83:11; Is. 10:26Oreb and Zeeb. They killed Oreb at the rock of Oreb, and Zeeb they killed at the winepress of Zeeb. They pursued Midian and brought the heads of Oreb and Zeeb to Gideon on the #Judg. 8:4other side of the Jordan.
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