Sunday, February 8, 2015
When we think of Gideon, I expect the fleece comes to mind first. We trusted the Lord, but let’s try one more time, just in case. Or maybe how his army was selected. God explained that one well – “lest Israel vaunt themselves against me, saying, Mine own hand hath saved me.”
How often do we do that when we do God’s work, instead of letting Him work through us. See the difference?
When Gideon was first called, there was one task set before him:
And it came to pass the same night, that the LORD said unto him, Take thy father's young bullock, even the second bullock of seven years old, and throw down the altar of Baal that thy father hath, and cut down the grove that is by it: And build an altar unto the LORD thy God upon the top of this rock, in the ordered place, and take the second bullock, and offer a burnt sacrifice with the wood of the grove which thou shalt cut down. (Judges 6:25-26 KJV)
The first part of the following verse sounds good, doesn’t it:
Then Gideon took ten men of his servants, and did as the LORD had said unto him:
God didn’t specify “when” this was to be done, so out of fear, Gideon went at night:
and so it was, because he feared his father's household, and the men of the city, that he could not do it by day, that he did it by night. (Judges 6:27 KJV)
He was right, wasn’t he. The next three verses describe the discovery, the anger and the judgment Baal worshipers made. Then we come to Joash, Gideon’s father, and his response:
And Joash said unto all that stood against him, Will ye plead for Baal? will ye save him? he that will plead for him, let him be put to death whilst it is yet morning: if he be a god, let him plead for himself, because one hath cast down his altar. (Judges 6:31 KJV)
Our world is reacting much as the Baal worshipers. There are battles across the globe where people are fighting to maintain/impose their societal/tribal ways of life that they believe are under risk of changing. Leaders believe they must impose strict laws and swift penalties to maintain control. Others fear entering into the fray will sweep them into greater battles.
Mankind hasn’t changed much in ensuing centuries, have we? Is that because we do not believe God can “plead for himself”? Do we not believe that He is able to keep that which we have committed? Are we not committed to Him to serve under any and all circumstances?
I know – I have many more questions than I do answers, yet I believe the Bible has the answers to those very questions – except whether or not we believe. I am the only one who can answer for myself, and testify to that answer by my actions.
I have feared, though the Bible continually tells me “fear not.” I have continually worked to achieve my own desires, even though the Bible tells me “wait on the Lord.” I continue to make requests, omitting the one thing He requires from me, “Thy will be done.” I believe He is able, but I understand the child’s father:
And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. (Mark 9:24 KJV)
So my prayer will be to grow in faith strong enough to not only proclaim but to live unto Him:
Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, (Jude 1:24 KJV)