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Summary: Gideon & His Fleece - PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: gcurley@gcurley.info

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SERMON OUTLINE:

The Negatives:

• Gideon already knew God’s will.

• Gideon’s fleece setting was evidence of his distrust, not his faith.

• Fleece setting is dictating to God.

• Fleece setting doesn’t really solve the problem.

The Positives:

• We see God’s love & patience (vs 40).

• We see Gideon maturing.

SERMON BODY:

Ill:

Famous or well-known sayings and phrases from the Bible Quiz

(1). ‘Can a leopard change its spots?’

From the Bible, Jeremiah 13:23 (King James Version):

“Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.”

(2). ‘Give up the ghost’

There are many uses of this phrase in the Bible, including this, from Miles Coverdale's Version, 1535, Acts 12:23:

“Immediatly the angell of the LORDE smote him, because he gaue not God the honoure: And he “was eaten vp of wormes, and gaue vp the goost.”

(3). ‘By the skin of your teeth’

The phrase first appears in English in the Geneva Bible, 1560, in Job 19:20, which provides a literal translation of the original Hebrew:

"I haue escaped with the skinne of my tethe."

(4). ‘The apple of my eye’

It also appears several times in the Bible; for example, in Deuteronomy 32:10 (King James Version, 1611) and in Zechariah 2:8:

“He found him in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he led him about, he instructed him, he kept him as the apple of his eye.”

“For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye.”

(5). ‘No rest for the wicked’

Isaiah 57 verses 20-21.

The expression was first printed in English in Miles Coverdale's Bible, 1535:

“But the wicked are like the raginge see, that ca not rest, whose water fometh with the myre & grauel. Eueso ye wicked haue no peace, saieth my God.”

(6). ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’

From the Bible, Acts 20:35 (King James Version):

“I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.”

(7). ‘A wolf in sheep's clothing’

The King James Version of the Bible, 1611, gives this warning in Matthew 7:15:

“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.”

(8). ‘Wit’s End’.

From Psalm 107:27 (KJV),

“They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wits’ end.” And the Psalm does not refer to the Whit’s End with the Imagination Station.

TRANSITION:

• There is an expression and well-known saying used by Christians:

• Which is; “To put out your fleece”

• This concept of putting out a "fleece" is found in our study passage today;

• Judges chapter 6,

• Where Gideon was afraid to attack Midian until heaven “proved” its support

• So Gideon comes up with a cunning plan,

• He tests God by putting out a fleece.

• And he does this not once but twice;

• A wet fleece, and then then a dry fleece.

• Many Christians today;

• Use this same idea when they have big or important decisions to make;

• They ask God for a sign to show them what to do.

• A sign to give clarity on a certain issue or decision.

• And they refer to it as ‘putting out a fleece’.

Note:

• Now one of the questions we will look at this morning is;

• Was it a wise thing for Gideon to do and can we as Christians copy this principle today?

• i.e. You want to know who to marry – put out a fleece for confirmation.

• i.e. You want to know which university to go to – put out a fleece for confirmation.

• i.e. You want to know what job to take – put out a fleece for confirmation.

• i.e. You want to know if God is calling you to the mission field…etc.

• We all face bog decisions in life;

• Is ‘putting out a fleece’ a good and simple way of finding guidance?

• Note: By ‘putting out a fleece’ today;

• I am not referring to laying a sheepskin on the floor;

• But the idea of asking God for a specific sign.

Ill:

• Fleece by Adrian Plass.

• http://www.sermonspice.com/product/36592/adrian-plass-fleece

ill:

• In my own experience as a Christian;

• It seems to me that God rarely makes things clear to us;

• He never shows us the way ahead i.e. A to Z.

• But rather he shows us things one step at a time.

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