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Judges 7. Gideon, part 38: Spiritual weapons of warfare.

JUDGES-7-170414
length: 65:01 - taught on Apr, 14 2017
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Title: Judges 7. Gideon, part 38: Spiritual weapons of warfare.      

 

 

“It is in vain, O men, that you seek within yourselves the cure of all your miseries. All your insight only leads you to the knowledge that it is not in yourselves that you will discover the true and the good. The philosophers promised them to you, and have not been able to keep their promise…Your principal maladies are pride, which cuts you off from God; sensuality, which binds you to the earth; and they have done nothing but foster at least one of these maladies.

 

If they have given you God for your object, it has only been to pander to your pride; they made you think that you were like Him and resembled Him by your nature. And those who have grasped the vanity of such a pretension have cast you down into the other abyss by making you believe that your nature was like that of the beasts of the field, and have led you to seek your good in lust, which is the lot of animals.”

-Blaise Pascal

 

Written by him about 350 years ago.

 

Gideon falls down and worships God. When the final miracle of the Midianite dream was revealed, finally God becomes to Gideon's heart the very God that He is. This led us to look a bit at what worship of God is and what its benefits are to the human heart.

 

We noted that worship is only due God and not any other creature, not even a mighty angel; that worship of God will mean healing to all that ails the soul; that God’s awesomeness demands worship from all creatures, and that we worship Him even when it may seem that God is saying no to our deepest desire.

 

Worship performed for the sake of getting a personal desire is false, as its reverence is pointed towards self.

   

MAT 20:20 Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to Him with her sons, bowing down, and making a request of Him.

 

MAT 20:21 And He said to her, "What do you wish?" She said to Him, "Command that in Your kingdom these two sons of mine may sit, one on Your right and one on Your left."

 

Worship of the Lord in one’s heart will mean an outpouring of love when we finally see Him face to face.

 

MAT 28:1 Now after the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to look at the grave.

 

MAT 28:2 And behold, a severe earthquake had occurred, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled away the stone and sat upon it.

 

MAT 28:3 And his appearance was like lightning, and his garment as white as snow;

 

MAT 28:4 and the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men.

 

Verses 2-4 are parenthetical, happening some time before the arrival of the women.

 

MAT 28:5 And the angel answered and said to the women, "Do not be afraid; for I know that you are looking for Jesus who has been crucified.

 

MAT 28:6 "He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying.

 

MAT 28:7 "And go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead; and behold, He is going before you into Galilee, there you will see Him; behold, I have told you."

 

MAT 28:8 And they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy and ran to report it to His disciples.

 

MAT 28:9 And behold, Jesus met them and greeted them. And they came up and took hold of His feet and worshiped Him.

 

Would they have done this if they hadn't already known Him? The two men that He walked with on the road to Emmaus only saw Him as a common traveler. Mary Magdalene only saw Him as a common gardener. When they didn't know Him they didn't worship Him.

 

MAT 28:10 Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid; go and take word to My brethren to leave for Galilee, and there they shall see Me."

 

What is abundantly clear in studying Gideon:

 

True worship of God only comes from those who are completely confident in God's person, power, and way. No one can "sort of" worship God with doubt and fear in his mind.

 

JDG 7:16 And he divided the 300 men into three companies, and he put trumpets and empty pitchers into the hands of all of them, with torches inside the pitchers.

 

JDG 7:17 And he said to them, "Look at me, and do likewise. And behold, when I come to the outskirts of the camp, do as I do.

 

JDG 7:18 When I and all who are with me blow the trumpet, then you also blow the trumpets all around the camp, and say, 'For the Lord and for Gideon.'"

 

The Jewish army had to face the Midianite swarm with just three things, trumpets [shofars of animal horns], empty pitchers, and torches.

 

2CO 10:3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh,

 

2CO 10:4 for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses.

 

2CO 10:5 We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,

 

2CO 10:6 and we are ready to punish all disobedience [false teachers in Corinth], whenever your obedience is complete [the believers repent of their carnality].

 

Paul had an enemy in Corinth who was also God's enemy and they were the false teachers. The believers in Corinth were duped by them and they fell into disobedience. Paul did not face his enemy with any weapon of the flesh; any carnal weapon.

 

Paul's enemies were false teachers. Paul's weapons were divinely powerful. Truth was his sword, faith was his shield, and the Holy Spirit was his confidence and power.

 

No enemy can stand or maintain its fortress against such divine weapons.

 

JDG 7:16 And he divided the 300 men into three companies, and he put trumpets and empty pitchers into the hands of all of them, with torches inside the pitchers.

 

JDG 7:17 And he said to them, "Look at me, and do likewise. And behold, when I come to the outskirts of the camp, do as I do.

 

JDG 7:18 When I and all who are with me blow the trumpet, then you also blow the trumpets all around the camp, and say, 'For the Lord and for Gideon.'"

 

The sleeping enemy was to be surrounded on three sides, and the sudden exposure of light out of the darkness of the night, in conjunction with the loud sounds of three hundred trumpets, would spread consternation and panic in the camp.

 

They were to blow the trumpets and then shout, "For the Lord and for Gideon." The basic purpose was to make as much noise as possible. They would have continued to blow the trumpets and shout the phrase.

 

Adding his own name to the Lord's name: "For the Lord and for Gideon," may have been the first step towards his downfall. Confidence to do God's will can so easily turn into confidence in self alone.

 

Why "for Gideon?" In what way is any of this being done for him?

 

JDG 7:19 So Gideon and the hundred men who were with him came to the outskirts of the camp at the beginning of the middle watch, when they had just posted the watch; and they blew the trumpets and smashed the pitchers that were in their hands.

 

Beginning of the middle watch - 10 pm. New sentries would have been posted.

 

The timing is smart since it is dark and new sentries would not have their eyes yet adjusted to the dark, making it harder for them to discover the approaching hundred men.

 

JDG 7:20 When the three companies blew the trumpets and broke the pitchers, they held the torches in their left hands and the trumpets in their right hands for blowing, and cried, "A sword for the Lord and for Gideon!"

 

JDG 7:21 And each stood in his place around the camp; and all the army ran, crying out as they fled.

 

The torches were somehow hidden by the pitchers or else they would have been very easily spotted.

 

A sudden burst of light, a sudden sound of broken pitchers, the sudden blast of trumpet, and then the sudden shout of "Jehovah" all created confusion and panic in the camp and the Midianites fought themselves. All Israel had to do was stand there: grace.

 

The Midianites would have believed that there was a large army upon them. This is God using psychological warfare. In the dark they imagined that Jewish troops were in the camp, but they were not. Not knowing who was friend and who was foe they fought one another, and by Israel standing outside the camp, they were protected by God from the slaughter.

 

Just like Israel at the bank of the Red Sea some 200 years prior to this, they just need to stand still and watch the deliverance of the Lord.

 

EXO 14:13

"Do not fear! Stand by and see the salvation of the Lord which He will accomplish for you today;"

 

Midian is killing himself in confusion. God turned the great oppressor of His people to massive infighting and self-destruction, which His people stand and watch.

 

The wicked will eventually fall into their own traps:

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