Learning from Gideon

I believe all of God’s word. When it says, “God is the same yesterday, today and forever!” that is truth. We see this in both the Old and New Testament. Today, some feel the Old Testament is not as important but here is where God makes it clear that there is a need for a sacrifice for sin. This requirement was fulfilled in Jesus’ death on the cross and His resurrection thus eliminating the need for the “animal sacrifices” written about in the Old Testament. It is all woven together into one beautiful story of redemption.

Don’t miss out on all there is to learn from the Old Testament. One of the most significant things I have learned from study of it is a greater understanding of the character of God and then applying that knowledge to my everyday life. For example, I love to read the account of Gideon when God called him to do a special task, one that was hard and extremely scary. I think it is important to note that God spoke to him while he was working.

An angel of the Lord spoke to Gideon and while I have never heard personally from “an angel of the Lord,“ I do believe in angels. If God chose to, He could and would speak to me or anyone in that way. After Jesus’s death and resurrection, the Holy Spirit was given to dwell within believers. I do believe that it is the Holy Spirit who is the voice of God for us most of the time in our inner being and thoughts.

When God called Gideon to the very hard task Gideon questioned God, “’Pardon me, my Lord,’ Gideon replied, ‘but how can I save Israel?’” (see Judges 6:15). He continued to point out his weaknesses to God (LOL–like God didn’t know). Gideon also asked God to give him a sign so that he would know that it was really God talking to him.

I don’t know about you but sometimes when I feel that God is speaking to me, especially telling me to do something hard which requires courage on my part, I need clarifying. God doesn’t mind. Remember, HE sees and knows our heart and if we have the right and sincere heart of wanting to obey HIM…HE WILL MAKE IT CLEAR as He did for Gideon. In verse 17 of chapter 6 Gideon asked the Lord to wait (this was the sign) and the Lord said, “I will wait until you return.”

Note here: Gideon obeyed God and tore down Baal’s altar and built an altar to God. He stepped even though he was afraid.

Courage is stepping even when you feel fear.

“So Gideon took ten of his servants and did as the Lord told him. But because he was AFRAID of HIS FAMILY and the townspeople, he did it at night rather than the daytime” (verse 27). It is so important here to not glaze over the fact that God called Gideon to do something that MIGHT UPSET HIS FAMILY!!!

So my THIRD point is this…God may call you to do something in life that makes your family mad or might ENRAGE THEM….seriously. When we are following God and not man, it may mean your family will not be happy with you!

Fourth point…as Gideon continued to obey God and the task got harder and scarier…and even though Gideon felt the spirit of the Lord, “Then the Spirit of the Lord came on Gideon” (verse 34), He continued to ask God for reassurance (a sign).

Judges 6:37, “Look, I will place a wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there is any dew ONLY on the fleece and all the ground is dry, then I will KNOW that you will save Israel by my hand as you said” [emphasis added]. God honored his request.

In verse 39 we see Gideon ask for yet another sign, ”Do not be angry with me. Let me make just one more request…” God honored that request as well! I have to believe that sometimes when God calls us, we need to JUST DO IT. Abraham of the Old Testament did this. When God called him to sacrifice Isaac, he didn’t ask for a sign from God. He acted. But Gideon asked for multiple confirmations of God’s will.

As our relationship grows with God and we know that He reads hearts, we can be confident of God’s heart, no matter what, to show us. And, as we grow in our relationship with God and become spiritually mature, sometimes signs aren’t necessary.

There is more to learn from the life of Gideon and the character of God, which is unchanging, but from this post understand:

God speaks to us throughout our day…not just in our quiet time.
God can speak through an “angel of the Lord” that we can see, but often, today, He speaks through His Holy Spirit which lives in us.
It is okay to question God. Remember, God reads our hearts and knows if we have a true desire to obey and know.
God will confirm to us His will, but sometimes we must step before He confirms….sometimes He will confirm before we step.
God understands when we are AFRAID, but it doesn’t mean that HE won’t ask us to do scary things.
God may call you to a task that even angers your family.

We can be confident, just from looking at the life of Gideon, of God’s unchanging character. When God calls us to a task, even a scary one, HE will be with us and equip us for the journey. Remember, we were created by God for God. We can either obey and be used by Him or go our own way. The consequences of OBEDIENCE? Leading a life of Significance…

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