Judges Chapters 6 &7


Judges 6:1-2

Then the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD. So the LORD delivered them into the hand of Midian for seven years, 2 and the hand of Midian prevailed against Israel. Because of the Midianites, the children of Israel made for themselves the dens, the caves, and the strongholds which are in the mountains.

A)Once again we see this cycle – Judge dies – Israel rebels – God delivers them into the hand of an oppressor – this time Midian


B) What is interesting about Midian is yrs earlier they had been defeated by Moses – BALAAM –

1)   But they were not completely destroyed – and when Israel settled in the Land – there was a remnant of Midian still around –


C) 200yrs have past since they settled in the Land – that remnant has grown

1)   Now it has become powerful – Now they are oppressing God’s people


3 So it was, whenever Israel had sown, Midianites would come up; also Amalekites and the people of the East would come up against them. 4 Then they would encamp against them and destroy the produce of the earth as far as Gaza, and leave no sustenance for Israel, neither sheep nor ox nor donkey. 5 For they would come up with their livestock and their tents, coming in as numerous as locusts; both they and their camels were without number; and they would enter the land to destroy it


Now the Midianites weren’t strong enough to Possess the land – but what they would do is once a year during the harvest time swoop in

A)They would plunder Israel – of their Harvest – [ Like having someone take your paycheck every week] Camels – swift – carry loads


B)This is a good example of what happens when we allow sin to linger in our lives – don’t totally deal with an issue – it grows & takes over

1)Bitterness / lust / Jealousy / compromising Practice – Not obedient to God’s Voice  to put that thing away/ Heart gets hard/ Sin Grows – take over /

6 So Israel was greatly impoverished because of the Midianites, and the children of Israel cried out to the LORD.

A)So Israel was suffering under the hand of Midian for Seven yrs – completely impoverished – finally they cry out to the Lord


B) This time God does something different – before He sends a Judge He sends a Prophet – Because He had a message He wanted the people to hear

 7 And it came to pass, when the children of Israel cried out to the LORD because of the Midianites, 8 that the LORD sent a prophet to the children of Israel, who said to them, "Thus says the LORD God of Israel: 'I brought you up from Egypt and brought you out of the house of bondage; 9 and I delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians and out of the hand of all who oppressed you, and drove them out before you and gave you their land. 10 Also I said to you, "I am the LORD your God; do not fear the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell." But you have not obeyed My voice.'"


C) See there is a great difference between a cry for help & a cry of Repentance for sin

1)   Israel had called on God but they had not dealt with their sin !!! – that is what the Lord sends this prophet to tell them.


You know sometimes when we are going thru difficulties it is easy to excuse it as a cycle of life – things happen – trials come

A)People lose their jobs / people suffer financial hardship / things like that happen – TRUE – but often result of SIN search our hearts


B) So God sends this Prophet to make them aware of their sin – but He is not going to leave them in that place of being aware of their sin & defeated by it

1)   He was going to deliver them, and His first step was His Preparation of the Deliver – RD V 11-16


C) ANGEL OF THE LORD – Christophony

1) One Example Gen 22:10-12



Gen 22:10-12

10 And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.

11 But the Angel of the LORD called to him from heaven and said, "Abraham, Abraham!"    So he said, "Here I am."

12 And He said,"Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me."

A)Another Ex. 3 The Angel of the Lord appears to Moses & the Lord spoke to Moses from the burning Bush


B) So the Lord finds Gideon threshing wheat in the Wine press in Ophrah –

1) She is every where -   HE IS HIDING OUT HERE !!!!


C) MIGHTY MAN OF VALOR – Wrong Wine press !!!!!!

1) Gideon has this major INFERIORITY COMPLEX 

"O my Lord, how can I save Israel? Indeed my clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father's house."


D)Reminds me of the man Psychiatrist –Help me I feel worthless everything is going wrong -  My friends say I have a terrible inferiority complex –

Well the Doctor does some test comes back & says I have some good news and some bad news – Good news is you do not have a complex

The Bad news is YOU ARE INFERIOR !!!!


E) That is how Gideon felt – How He sees himself - But God sees what Gideon Can’t – He sees the finished Product – Mighty man of Valor


Have you ever noticed how often the Lord deals with people in this way in the Bible:

A)He comes to Childless Abram & says I am going to change your name Abraham – the father of a Multitude – By God’s power Abe has a Son …


B) Jesus comes to an impetuous – unstable and emotional man – Simon

And says to him – I am going to call you Peter – Rock

1)   He would go on to become a Pillar in the Church

C) The Lord shows up at Gideon’s and says – You mighty man of Valor – He was seeing what Gideon was going to become


D) You tonight: Timid, afraid, full of inabilities  –He is  Seeing a Pastor/ a Missionary  seeing a Leader { Some of you respond to that call

1) Frustrated Single  person : He is seeing a great wife or Husband


E) Listen other people can look at us & see our flaws & failings – But when God looks at us He sees our possibilities thru His transforming presence

1)   Important that we see things from that Perspective !!!


He was saved at the age of 18 in 1855– Little religious back ground

A)The teacher of his new believer class – declared  of him I have seen few persons whose minds were spiritually darker than was his when he came into my class.


B) He knew so little they enrolled him in a yr. Long instruction program aimed at sharing the basic Christian truths

1)   Learning was tough for this young man since he was barely literate and his spoken grammar was atrocious


C) Few if any men looked upon the young man as a Candidate for service in the Ministry –



D) After some yrs of walking with the Lord & learning the truths of the scriptures – God raised up this young man – great Evangelist



E) One of the great truths of Scripture is that when God looks at us, He doesn’t see us for what we are but for what we can become as He does that transforming work in our lives


F) V. 16 – The Lord gives Gideon all he needed / the promise of His Presence!!!   V.14 Go in this might – I WILL BE WITH YOU!!!!!

Matt 28:18-20

18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.  19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen.

A)So the Lord commissioned Gideon here to be the next deliverer – But God didn’t just commission Gideon- he confirmed that call         v.17-24


B) Now this is interesting here that Gideon is seeking confirmation – is this really you Lord

1) Good thing to do !!! Not jump out haphazardly or spontaneously in things

Lord are you really in this


C) God brings confirmation and it results in PEACE


D) I love it when God does this in my life – So often – I pray about things – sense the Lord is directing – HARD STUFF – Lord are you sure

1)   Confirmation thru a scripture or something I might read in book - / something someone says : Peace


E) Often as soon as I act on that – step out – peace leaves – Fear

1)   The very next day in morning devotions – God speaks ………….


V25 Now it came to pass the same night that the LORD said to him, "Take your father's young bull, the second bull of seven years old, and tear down the altar of Baal that your father has, and cut down the wooden image that is beside it; 26 and build an altar to the LORD your God on top of this rock in the proper arrangement, and take the second bull and offer a burnt sacrifice with the wood of the image which you shall cut down."

A)Before dealing with the Midianites – The Lord tells Gideon – we need to deal with things on the home front !!!!


B) Gideon’s Father had this altar to Baal – in his backyard – it was the community  altar – God tells Gideon tear it down

C) 3 things that we learn from this scene : 1st Baal must go before Midian can go !!! – Same for us

1)   Before we can have Victory in our lives over the sins / the habits or the problems we are dealing with that are defeating us of discouraging us


D) Jesus must be the unquestioned Lord of our Lives !!! There is no Victory where there is Idolatry or a Divided heart


2nd God’s altar cannot be built until Baal’s altar is Destroyed

A)God doesn’t allow mixing –The Lord’s altar cannot stand alongside of Baal’s -   Dagon the fish god – The Ark –


B) There can be no worship acceptable to God until we remove the false altars from our hearts & lives


3rd  The Place where we must start is in our own Backyards

A)Before Gideon could lead the whole nation in faith against the Midianites He had to deal with the Baal in his family


B) It is very easy to get worked up about what others are doing / when in reality we should be concerned about our lives –first & foremost

1) We have no voice with others because of the Hypocrisy in our own lives


V27 So Gideon took ten men from among his servants and did as the LORD had said to him. But because he feared his father's household and the men of the city too much to do it by day, he did it by night.

A)So Gideon was Obedient to the instruction of the Lord – though still fearful – He is no mighty man of Valor yet


B) The transformation of a man by God will often involve tough choices

1)   Standing for Righteousness




Before James Garfield became the Pres of the U.S. he was the President of Hiram College – One day a father asked him about the curriculum . Mr. Garfield began to list the courses his son would take – after a minute the father stopped him and said Mr. Garfield that is far too much for the degree that he will get couldn’t you make it easier ? Garfield replied : Yes I suppose I could – but then I am reminded of the fact that when God wants to build a tall Oak tree, He takes a hundred  yrs. But when he wants to make a squash he takes only 3 months . Which do you want your son to be !


C) God is in the Process of Transforming men – It takes time and it often takes dealing with difficult issues in our lives – facing them straight up

1)   Gideon had to deal with the Idolatry in his families life


D) Notice the result of Gideon's Obedience !! V . 28- 32


Here we see 3 specific results to Gideon’s Obedience

A)First the townspeople were angry – v.30 is probably one of the most graphic pictures of the total apostasy of Israel seen in the book of Judges


B) The Living God had done great things for Israel, but they had seen his name profaned, degraded and had openly given their approval

1)   But in the name of a god to whom they owed only defeat & degradation they were ready to Kill Gideon


C) SO first we see the Anger of the Townspeople – 2nd We see the Transformation of Joash : His Eyes are opened

1)   DO YOU NEED TO FIGHT FOR BAAL – What kind of God is Baal if we need to defend Him


D) 3rd The Reputation of Gideon: Joash gives Gideon a New name

Jerubbaal – Let Baal Contend.

1)   It came to mean Baal fighter or Baal Conqueror – That became Gideon's Reputation – the guy who took on Baal and Won


RD v.33 – 40

Fleeces ? A way for discovering God’s will

A) There are those who say that TESTING is not TRUSTING

              I do NOT believe that to be so


B) Gen 24:13-15 Eleazor looking for a wife for Isaac – comes to a WELL Lord if this is the right well – ask for a drink have her offer my camels a drink as well


C) 1 Sam 14: Jonathan & Armour Bearer – Lets go see what the Lord might want to do – show face – come here – we know it is the Lord


D) So there are two of many examples Isa 7:10 – The Lord declared –to Ahaz ask for a sign


So for that reason I believe It is BIBLICAL to do this

BUT - A fleece is ONLY valid if

A) The Word of the Lord has not already spoken


B)You can NOT say: "Lord, show me whether or not I should                                rob that bank by having the teller give me the money"


C) The Word of God is NOT to be tested-

1)   When God has already given clear direction a fleece is not necessary simply obedience !!!


D) IN Gideon's case a little time has elapsed from his initial call – so he is seeking further confirmation

1)   Was a double fleece necessary ? No – but God is gracious to grant this to Gideon – Lord I believe but help my unbelief


E) See God wants to direct us – He loves us that much –

James 1: 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.


Man car broken down – Limo – well dressed man – stops helps knows what to do – Surprised 1st that a important man like you would stop/ 2nd that you would know so much about cars – Man replied – See that name on the front of your Car – Ford – that is my name – Henry Ford – I made that car I know how it works and it is important to me because it has my name on it that it is functioning correctly


It is that very reason as believers we can be assured that God wants to direct us – His name is on us – Christians –

A)He made you / He has a plan for you – He wants to see you functioning in conjunction with that plan


 B) So the Lord doesn’t have a problem here with Gideon’s request of a fleece even twice !!!


Note v.34 again: Significant

34 But the Spirit of the LORD came upon Gideon; then he blew the trumpet, and the Abiezrites gathered behind him.

A)The phrase came upon – is literally – The spirit of the Lord clothed himself with Gideon


B) What an awesome picture: The HS wore Gideon the way a man puts on a suit of clothes

1)   It is a vivid way of saying that God the HS took possession of Gideon indwelling & controlling Him  -


C) That is what the HS wants to do in our lives as we yield ourselves to his voice speaking to our hearts

1)   And as we acknowledge our dependency upon him !!!



CH.7 v.1-2



A)Do you see the significance in that last statement: You can never be too small for God to use – but you can be too Big


B) If you want the credit for what God is doing, God will not use you. I am the Lord, that is my name He declares – I will not give my glory to another


C) This is why you can look around and see the Lord working in a powerful way in the lives of some very weak people.

1)   They are people who are careful to give God the Glory



A)Here is the Picture – some knees face in the water / some knee spear in hand lapped with the hand


B) Some were aware and mindful of the enemy – the others were oblivious

1)   God choose the ones who were aware !!!