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August 9, 2015

“Gideon and His 300” (Judges 7: 9-23), (1907), Source, Author Providence Lithograph Co., (PD-US)

You may recall that before battle Gideon was instructed by God to reduce his forces from 32,000 to 300 men.

Who among us would have the faith – and courage – to do this? Yet Gideon did, so that the glory of victory would be the Lord’s alone. Victory, in fact, followed with God striking fear into the enemy at the sound of Gideon’s trumpets.

What does this teach us?

First, God does not look to our weakness, but rather His strength. Gideon’s leadership credentials were not impressive in a worldly sense. He was the youngest in his father’s house, and came from the weakest clan in the tribe of Manasseh. Still the Lord favored him.

Second, God knows our nature, and is merciful toward us.  Gideon was very human. His reaction to news of the Lord’s favor was cautious, at best. Gideon asked twice for confirmation which God gave him.

Third, we may be called on to step out in faith, when reason would dictate otherwise.  Gideon could “reasonably” have declined the Lord’s direction. Instead, he chose to act on God’s assurances. Despite his doubts. Despite his fears. That took real courage.

Often the challenges facing us seem overwhelming; the problems of the world seem so large as to be beyond the ability of any single individual to address. Helen Keller said, “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something.”

And the One who can do all things stands beside us.

And 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’ ” (Judges 7: 15).

Lord God, Your power is beyond our understanding. Protect the men and women of our Armed Forces, wherever they stand guard across the globe.  Make them vigilant.  Grant them courage, in these dangerous times.

Remember, also, those of us on the home front. Our faith so easily falters. We wrestle with doubts and distractions, despite a desire to believe.

Grant us fortitude that worldly culture may not undermine our faith; grant us courage that we, too, may serve Your purposes, whenever You call upon us.



  1. I always have liked Gideon’s story. I always get a chuckle at the beginning, as Gideon is fearfully trying to thresh wheat down in the winepress, hiding basically, when the angel refers to him as “Gideon, thou mighty man of valor.” That was certainly a look at what was coming, for at that moment Gideon was anything but a might man of valor. God certainly changed Gideon, and as you pointed out, He will change and use us too. Good one, Anna.

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