Aug10SunAugust 10, 2014
After seven years of being raided and victimized by the Midianites (strife, contention), God sends His Angel to visit a man from the tribe of Manasseh (Joseph’s firstborn-made to forget) by the name of Gideon (destroyer, mighty warrior, hewer-one who cuts down, feller-tree cutter). Gideon himself, now fed up with the enemy raids, has taken his harvest of wheat not to the threshing floor which was common and expected, but to the winepress where the enemy would not think to come. As the Angel addresses him, “The Lord is with thee, thou mighty man of valour”, Gideon’s response is like many today: If He is…why is all this happening?...where are the miracles?…He’s forsaken us and given us over to the Midianites….
The truth of the matter was and during this time, is that they had forsaken God, not that God had forsaken them. David says it like this to King Solomon, “…if thou seek Him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake Him, he will cast thee off for ever (I Chron 28:9).” It is not the will of God to subject us to our enemy/enemies. If the enemy ever gets the upper hand on us, we need to pause and consider our ways. God will use our adversary to bring about obedience and perfection but not annihilation or destruction. He desires mercy and not sacrifice (Hos 6:6).
Gideon was ready for change and it showed by the fact that he went to a winepress, where the blood of grapes flowed, to preserve his harvest. He was bold enough to do something different. Seven years of the same harassments was just too much for him. After seven years God met him there to rally His people together to defeat the Midianites.
Many of us know the story of Gideon’s army and the awesomeness of how God delivered the children of Israel with only 300 men from the hands of the Midianites. But, what we should look at is WHY God could only use 300 out of 32,000 men of war? According to Wikipedia the United States has nearly 247 million Christians but of that number, how many are available for service? And of that number, how many can Jesus count on to deliver a backslidden nation such as ours? To be continued.