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Judges 6. Gideon, part 11: Gideon finds a little faith and honors his Guest.

JUDGES-6-170308
length: 65:57 - taught on Mar, 8 2017
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Title: Judges 6. Gideon, part 10: Gideon finds a little faith and honors his Guest.        

 

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JDG 6:11 Then the angel of the Lord came and sat under the oak that was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite as his son Gideon was beating out wheat in the wine press in order to save it from the Midianites.

 

JDG 6:12 And the angel of the Lord appeared to him and said to him, "The Lord is with you, O valiant warrior."

 

Gideon's first response is denial.

 

JDG 6:13 Then Gideon said to him, "O my lord, if the Lord is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all His miracles which our fathers told us about, saying, 'Did not the Lord bring us up from Egypt?' [message of the prophet] But now the Lord has abandoned us and given us into the hand of Midian."

 

JDG 6:14 And the Lord looked at him and said, "Go in this your strength and deliver Israel from the hand of Midian. Have I not sent you?"

 

The Lord speaks to him authoritatively. Such confidence and assurance does not come from and ordinary man.

 

Encouragement comes from others at times, but our true encouragement comes from the authoritative words of God. He always speaks as one who knows.

 

When we encourage each other it is comforting, but we don't know the future of all things and we can't know every aspect of the soul we are comforting, but God always knows all things.

 

2CO 1:3-4

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort; who comforts us in all our affliction so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

 

JDG 6:15 And he said to Him, "O Lord, how shall I deliver Israel [it's possible, just not with him]? Behold, my family is the least in Manasseh, and I am the youngest in my father's house."

 

By now Gideon knows that this is the Lord. He addresses the man as Adonai instead of Adoni that he used before. Yet still, his faith is as weak as can be. It will need a lot of strengthening.

 

Gideon's human reaction then follows and explains why he's the wrong one for the job. He gives two reasons. He comes from the poorest family in Manasseh and that he is the least in his father's house.

 

We might be alongside Gideon and give him a nudge and remind him that Jehovah is sending him and so that's all that matters, but our vantage point gives us a great advantage over him. How many of us have clearly heard the call of God and had as our first reaction that we were not qualified or able? How many times have we thought to ourselves that the election of God to walk in the manner of Christ was impossible for us? We were too weak, too fleshly, too frail, too …

 

JDG 6:15 And he said to Him, "O Lord, how shall I deliver Israel? Behold, my family is the least in Manasseh, and I am the youngest in my father's house."

 

We might imagine that they are more like questions than doubts, but they are likely some mixture of the two.

 

He no longer speaks of Israel's deliverance as impossible, but being conscious of his own personal weakness doubts that he can be a deliverer.

 

The lesson to us is obvious. What God does for us and with us does not depend on our ability, only our faith. That is both exciting and comforting.

 

If salvation didn't depend on human ability then neither does election.

 

ROM 9:16

So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.

 

Gideon is called a valiant warrior, but that's only because God is able to see the finished product as a reality. God is going to make him a valiant warrior by showing him the way of faith. There are no heroes in this world, no superheroes, for there are none who do right, but God being rich in mercy works through them when they place their faith in Him. So there are no heroes, just those who by faith fully depend upon God.

 

Election in CA: Being chosen by God to receive His highest and best.

 

Election is God's will for your life. The plan that He has given you, or predestination, is God's provision so that you may realize that will in time. God's will will be a reality for every believer in heaven, but on earth there is a great amount of opposition to it, and so believers have failures, but in grace they are forgiven by the blood of Christ and in grace they can still realize the fulfillment of God's will for their lives; in spite of their sins.

 

It is clear here that your family and your past, what we might call genetic and environmental handicaps have no bearing on election.

 

This is a great relief to all of us since we all have an abundance of handicaps. We were born spiritually dead so we are spiritually handicapped, but we also develop our sin natures and we hone our genetic handicaps in areas of sin. We also absorb the handicaps of our upbringing. No parent, even amongst the best, is perfect. There are some very bad and abusive parents as well as physically and emotionally damaging home environments, but in God's election of you, these cannot hinder God's gifts nor the power to use them.

 

God's love heals all soul scars and binds and heals all handicaps.

 

We are often so embarrassed by these things that we even try to hide them from God. Weakness from low self-esteem also breeds stupidity. Open them up to God and speak to them about them as ask, seek, and knock again and again for guidance, wisdom, and assurance and God guarantees that it will be yours.

 

And no matter how old you are, it is never too late to realize your freedom in Christ and be free of the handicaps that you've been carrying around like a heavy bag of bricks. You can lay that aside, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble, and make straight paths for your feet, and run with endurance the race that is set before us.

 

JDG 6:15 And he said to Him, "O Lord, how shall I deliver Israel? Behold, my family is the least in Manasseh, and I am the youngest in my father's house."

 

JDG 6:16 But the Lord said to him, "Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat Midian as one man."

 

The excuse means nothing because surely, the Lord will be with him. The Lord's accompaniment in power and presence and providence nullifies all underlying facts that might spell failure.

 

Plus, the promise is that with the Lord it won't be very hard to defeat Midian. He will defeat Midian as if he is only an army of one, when in fact his army is over 100,000.

 

"Defeat Midian as one man." When the battle is the Lord's the battle is very decisive for the Lord.

 

This doesn't mean that there isn't a lot of hard work in preparation but that is joyous work.

 

JDG 6:17 So Gideon said to Him, "If now I have found favor in Thy sight, then show me a sign that it is Thou who speakest with me.

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