Summary: Gideon gets alone to pray and seek the Lord about this situation he is in. He is a little overwhelmed with the enormity of things and a little underwhelmed with his own confidence.
Gideon - The Mighty Man of Valor
“Looking for a Sign”
Part 3 of a Series
Play this video at the end of the sermon
We have been doing this series on the Life and Times of Gideon and it’s a fantastic study. We have already covered a lot of his events:
His initial meeting with the Angel of the Lord who called him a Mighty Man of Valor,
His attempts to talk the Lord out of using him,
His first supernatural sign, which was the Lord providing the fire for his sacrificial meal,
His tearing down of his father’s Altar to Baal
And so now, we pick up the story with…….
TEXT: Judges 6:33 Then all the Midianites and Amalekites, the people of the East, gathered together; and they crossed over and encamped in the Valley of Jezreel. 34 But the Spirit of the Lord came upon Gideon; then he blew the trumpet, and the Abiezrites gathered behind him. 35 And he sent messengers throughout all Manasseh, who also gathered behind him. He also sent messengers to Asher, Zebulun, and Naphtali; and they came up to meet them.
It appears that the enemies of Israel, the Midianites and Amalekites and others East of Israel have gathered together an army to invade the land. And they have set up their camp in the Valley of Jezreel.
Now this is not just any valley, it is Jezreel. The meaning of the name alone conjures up some interesting thoughts because Jezreel means Seed of God.
When studying this out, I thought to myself, what is the significance here concerning the Seed of God and I have got to thinking about all the times the enemy has tried to defeat me or steal my blessing when things were still in seed form, or at the formation, the beginning of something.
Things can be very vulnerable and delicate, very sensitive when still in seed form. And we must take great care to guard or protect things at this early stage.
It’s into this scenario that the Spirit of the Lord comes upon Gideon who blew the warning trumpet and he sent out runners to carry the message to these ancient Minute Men. Interestingly, he didn’t make the call to all of Israel, just to certain ones:
Abiezrites = Father of Help
Manasseh = He that has been forgotten
Asher = Happiness
Zebulun = Dwelling or Habitation
Naphtali = He that struggles
I find it extremely fascinating who God chooses.
1 Cor 1:26-29 NLT, “Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world's eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you. 27 Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. 28 God chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important. 29 As a result, no one can ever boast in the presence of God.
God never chooses the people we would expect, but he always makes champions of them.
And so, all the warriors from these tribes and clans have gathered together knowing that a vast enemy army has already set up camp in Jezreel, and they were out of time. It’s in light of all this that Gideon the Man of Valor, the Axe Man finds himself wondering about all this. He seems to be having second thoughts and perhaps a little doubt.
Gideon gets alone to pray and seek the Lord about all this, he is a little overwhelmed with the enormity of things and a little underwhelmed with his own confidence. It’s after he makes the Call to Arms….. and the word is getting out… and the Army is beginning to gather that Gideon has the fleece thing going on.
So we pick up at verse 36… Judges 6:36-40 So Gideon said to God, "If You will save Israel by my hand as You have said — 37 look, I shall put a fleece of wool on the threshing floor; if there is dew on the fleece only, and it is dry on all the ground, then I shall know that You will save Israel by my hand, as You have said." 38 And it was so. When he rose early the next morning and squeezed the fleece together, he wrung the dew out of the fleece, a bowlful of water. 39 Then Gideon said to God, "Do not be angry with me, but let me speak just once more: Let me test, I pray, just once more with the fleece; let it now be dry only on the fleece, but on all the ground let there be dew." 40 And God did so that night. It was dry on the fleece only, but there was dew on all the ground.”