A Recipe To Save A Nation
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, 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. So it was, whenever Israel had sown, Midianites would come up; also Amalekites and the people of the East would come up against them. 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. 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. So Israel was greatly impoverished because of the Midianites, and the children of Israel cried out to the Lord.
And it came to pass, when the children of Israel cried out to the Lord because of the Midianites, 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; 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. 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.’ ”
Now the Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress, in order to hide it from the Midianites. And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, “The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!” 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?’ But now the Lord has forsaken us and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.” Then the Lord turned to him and said, “Go in this might of yours, and you shall save Israel from the hand of the Midianites. Have I not sent you?” So he said to Him, “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.” And the Lord said to him, “Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat the Midianites as one man.” /// Judges 6:1-16
This week, rather than continuing our “No Other Name” series on Jesus’ life as previously planned, Pastor Parkey shares a word given to him during worship out of Judges 6. Here, we read about how God sent a prophet after the people of Israel cried out because of being sent to a land full of enemies, living in fear and secrecy rather than living courageously in the bold call of God that they were in their promised land! He gave them direction, even gave them evidence, and had been with them all this time after delivering them from bondage in Egypt, yet they did not listen to His voice.
Some people are living under their call in some capacity but remain hidden or distant out of fear of the enemies around them; for example, it’s so much easier to remain quiet in today’s society rather than vocalize our beliefs and concerns in the current political landscape that seems so against Christianity and the Bible. What we need to realize is that God is the one allowing these things, just like he allowed the enemies to enter the promised land, to guide and direct His people to a specific destination. We are largely complacent in our call from God, and we aren’t living in the identity, so God is allowing the enemy to press in until we redirect our response to Him. The good news is that the Lord is showing up again! He is reminding us of who He is and who we are in Him.
We also get introduced to Gideon in Judges 6. God sent an Angel who called Gideon by his identity in God versus how he was actually living, saying “the Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!” Gideon responded in verse 13 just like many believers do today: “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?’ But now the Lord has forsaken us and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.” So many people question that if God truly exists, why is all this evil so prevalent in and around our lives?! God’s response is speaking identity over Gideon and then direction and authority that Gideon must simply act in faith through!
It doesn’t take a massive group or entire nation to make an impact. God told Gideon “you shall defeat the Midianites as one man!” We see time and time again throughout the Bible warriors walking in faith and taking on a number of enemies far greater than themselves, because they know God is with them! We need to remember who we are and who God created us to be.
- Judges 6:1-16
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