Judges | Day Six
By: Taylor Cage | Gideon's Faith
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Read Judges 7:1-8.
It’s almost time for the battle and God tells Gideon there are too many Israelites. God wants to make sure He gets the glory, not His children. And honestly, it sounds to me like God is helping Gideon do some faith exercising. He’s stretching Gideon’s faith, requiring Gideon to trust Him more. By stretching Gideon’s faith, He is strengthening Gideon’s faith.
Now think of a time that your faith was stretched. Did it strengthen your faith? If so, how?
In this part of the story, God is putting Israel in an impossible situation. Just 300 men?! It seems crazy, yet God is positioning them for an incredible miracle, a victory that can only be explained by God.
Can you relate to feeling like you’re in an impossible situation? How can you lean in and exercise your faith in your own impossible situation?
Read Judges 7:9-18. What did God do for Gideon before the battle?
How cool of God? This time Gideon didn’t ask for a sign but God gave him one. And this time, because Gideon didn’t ask for it, It strengthened his faith rather than weakened it.
This time, Gideon didn’t ask for another sign. What did he do instead?
This time, because Gideon didn’t ask for it, God’s sign inspired him to worship. Can you think of a time when you’ve been inspired to worship this same way?
Read Judges 7:19-25. How does God defeat the Midianites?
How does God use Gideon?
Read Judges 8:1-21.
How does God continue to use Gideon to fight for His people?
Read Judges 8:22-28. Who did the people ask to rule over them?
Here are the children of God, still searching for who will rule over them. They continually reject God as their ruler, but now they’ve asked Gideon. And they like him so much, they say they’ll follow his son and his grandson too, just like a king.
So why do they ask Gideon to be their leader?
They asked Gideon to be their leader because Gideon defeated their enemies for them. They wanted Gideon to be their king because Gideon fought for them. Do you see the irony? Gideon didn’t win the battles and neither did Deborah or Shamgar or Ehud or Othniel. God won the battles, God fought for them, and still, they hadn’t made Him king.
How did Gideon respond to the people’s request to rule over them?
Seems like Gideon was getting it right, right? But then Gideon makes a huge mistake.
What did Gideon make for the people?
What does the Bible say the people did?
Read Judges 8:29-35. When Gideon dies, how long does it take for the people to turn away from God again?
The Israelites did not remain faithful to God or to Gideon and his family. Are you surprised by this?
Before we go on with studying the book of Judges, let’s stop and evaluate where the children of Israel are at spiritually. The situation is getting worse and worse every time the people turn away from God. The judges themselves seem to be making bigger and bigger mistakes too. God is not only showing the Israelites that they need Him by allowing their enemies to defeat them, but He is also showing them that even the best among them is no substitute for Him as king.
Take some time to ask God who (or what) you’re allowing to rule your life before Him. Even good things (or people) can still become bad things when we put them before God.