Gideon a Good Soldier Jud 6:12 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
Gideon a good soldier. Gideon is the perfect example of the soldier God wants us to be.
God chose Gideon to fight the Midianites because Gideon:
Fed himself while under enemy oppression. Jud 6:11 threshed wheat by the winepress. Jud 6:4 they had left no sustenance for Israel. As a soldier you have to go through survival training because you will not always be able to get food. There are many interesting stories of the means soldiers devise to feed themselves [looting, spoiling, harvesting, hunting, rooting, etc.]. When you are oppressed it’s hard to read your Bible. One POW 7 years in solitary in Vietnam survived on his memory of 18 years of Sunday School in his Baptist Church; never knew the value of scripture memory until he was faced with losing his mind in solitary and had no Bible or hymnbook. Other POW’s in Vietnam denied a Bible but because they had memorized the scriptures they were able to recreate a lot of the Bible so that they could study and witness. They used a knocking code language to witness and to testify to each other and they were able to devise crude writing utensils and parchments to record verses they had remembered.
Developed the character of a mighty man of valor. Jud 6:12 undoubtedly, the valor was instilled in him from his youth. He had it in him before he ever knew he had it. The fight with the Midianites didn’t make him tough but it revealed the toughness that was in him. Adversity will reveal what you are really made of. The letter Paul wrote, he wrote to Timothy who was his son in the ministry. He was a young man. Paul said, Let no man despise thy youth. He expected Timothy to be manly as a young man.
Did exactly what the Lord told him to do. Jud 6:25-27 he threw down the altar and killed the bullock and sacrificed it. He went against Baal worship. He went against the family religion. He did it at night but he did it. 7:2-7 He trimmed the ranks from 32,000 men to 300 men. Those are hard decisions and it is tough to keep going when every one else is quitting or being fired – it can be very discouraging – but he knew that fighting with 300 men chosen by God was a lot better than fighting with 10,000 who weren’t.
Made certain of the Lord’s will before attacking. Jud 6:36-40; 7:10-15 because he was afraid to attack with so few. But after 3 witnesses to the fact that God wanted him to fight this battle he went after it. Too often young men are so interested in going after a big thing to do for the Lord that they neglect to be certain if it is the Lord’s will for their lives [this is the difference between a veteran combat soldier and a recruit]. They are more interested in the challenge or in the notoriety. Be sure before you go and then when you are sure, get after it.
Devised a plan for defeating the Midianites with his small army. Jud 7:16-18. Solomon said that wisdom is better than strength [Ecc 9:14-16]. The Lord told us to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. Gideon knew that at the change of sentries there would be movement in the camp. He knew that 300 looked like 300 different companies of men. So the surprise at the sentry change caught men stabbing and killing their own soldiers in the chaos. Many times companies of men have retreated from platoons because they feared they were against a superior force.
Didn’t stop until he had finished the work God gave him to do. Jud 8:4 in spite of the fact that he and his men were faint and weary they still had to fight off 15,000 men [8:10]. And they weren’t getting help from the men of Succoth or the men of Penuel. That could have been very discouraging but he didn’t let it stop him. He went with what he had and didn’t quit until he had killed the princes and won the victory. Jud 8:28 Too many kings in Israel stopped short of killing off the enemy sufficiently and were soon attacked again.
Refused to rob God of the glory of the victory. Jud 8:23 the reason God had trimmed the ranks was not to make Gideon look so good but to make himself look great and to keep Israel from thinking that they had done something so wonderful [7:2]. Israel wanted to make Gideon a king and Gideon wouldn’t do it. He told them to let the Lord rule over them. You should do the same thing. Saul got jealous over David’s victories and it ruined him with envy. You let God win the victories however God wants to win the victories and let him have all the glory for what he does no matter through whom he does it even if it’s through you.
Conclusion: For us we should learn from Gideon to:
- Get full of the Bible. You’ll need it when you can’t get your hands on it
- Develop a manly, godly character. Be courageous for God
- Do what God says no matter what. You’ll find the instructions in the Bible
- Be sure of the Lord’s will for our lives. Through prayer, Bible and wise counsel
- Develop strength in wisdom. Don’t rely so much on the flesh
- Finish every job. This is a character problem if you can’t
- Never touch the glory. Do all to the glory of God