Judges 8:1-12 – All Hands On Deck

Read Judges 8:1-12

hands holding a red heart shape

God will prevail with or without us. We see three instances of people questioning or refusing to help Gideon. No matter the level of involvement, God’s victory was set.

It seems the Ephraimites were disgruntled that they were called so late to the party. Perhaps they were thinking about how much more they could have done to help Gideon and his measly 300 men. They didn’t understand that God was making a statement by equipping Gideon with so few.

Gideon graciously reminded them of their great importance. The role they had been allowed to play, by doing away with the escaping Oreb and Zeeb was monumental and something Gideon could not have accomplished. In that, they had been God’s instruments.

How often we feel disappointed in our level of involvement in something monumental. Can you recall a time when you believed you could have made a bigger impact than you were allowed to give? Perhaps you were limited by time and opportunity, much like the grumbling Ephraimites.

Then we have the leaders of the towns of Succoth and Peniel. I lump them together because they each had a hard heart and blind eye. What was their motivation to turn Gideon and his hungry crew away? They showed no mercy only the hunger for power, perhaps justice. I’m unclear why they were so concerned with the Midianite kings unless they, too, were under siege by them.

It’s like they were looking the other way and not coming to the aid of someone in need. Imagine how much stronger those 300 men would fight with some sustenance. They would be all the more likely to be able to complete the mission of capturing the kings, Zebah and Zalmunna. They chose not to help. They must not have been part of God’s game plan.

It’s clear that Gideon is not a fan of their refusal to help. He has confidence in God’s victory, and he makes bold statements of doom to each of the town leaders. We shall wait to see how this all plays out.

We never know how God is going to call us. We never know the people around us who may be in need of God. God knows it all. He knows who to employ for his purposes and when.

I think of something that just happened to us today on our walk. We were on the scene of an accident involving a dog and a car on the highway. Without hesitation, my angel husband stopped traffic and rescued the limp dog from the highway and returned him to the arms of his owner. We prayed with the family and called the emergency vet line because it was after hours. We were used by God in that emotional moment to comfort the family on God’s behalf. Such an honor and a privilege!

There are opportunities all around us to make a difference acting as God’s army on earth. Take some time today to reflect on what you can do, how God is calling you to serve.

praying hands looking up

Let’s pray …
Father, thank you for using us today to touch the lives of others in need. May I listen for your voice and follow your guidance so I can be your hands and feet here on earth. I trust that you will equip me in the ways necessary.  In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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