Day Eleven: Gideon Pt. 2
Written by Ian Prentice
“That night the Lord said to Gideon, “Take the second bull from your father’s herd, the one that is seven years old. Pull down your father’s altar to Baal, and cut down the Asherah pole standing beside it. Then build an altar to the Lord your God here on this hilltop sanctuary, laying the stones carefully. Sacrifice the bull as a burnt offering on the altar, using as fuel the wood of the Asherah pole you cut down.”
So Gideon took ten of his servants and did as the Lord had commanded. But he did it at night because he was afraid of the other members of his father’s household and the people of the town.” (Judges 6:25-27)
God again talks to Gideon and tells him to remove his father’s pole to Baal and the Asherah pole (a symbol of the goddess Asherah) and burn a sacrifice to God using the poles as fuel. This is a giant step against the status quo. Gideon is no doubt afraid of the townsfolk, and the inevitable reaction he might get. So he chooses to act at night.
Does God chastise Gideon for not being brave enough to do it in the daytime? No!
The townsfolk are upset but Gideon’s father stands up for him, warning them off and challenging the people to let their god Baal defend himself. Gideon is obedient in his response, even though he is still somewhat afraid of what others might do to him. God again seems okay with Gideon, his seeming weakness and his somewhat hesitant actions.
Is God training Gideon for what is to come?
Yes. I think God is allowing Gideon to test God because God is going to put Gideon to the ultimate test later – in a situation requiring total faith in God in order to achieve an impossible victory.
We need to be open to what God is doing in our lives, even in the midst of our weaknesses and the challenges we are facing today. It may be something simple and uncomplicated, but it still carries risk. It might bring or generate some negative feedback. But these small faith building exercises today are essential in preparation for the days ahead when we face an impossible challenge. A time when we need to be completely dependent on God, knowing that only He could work through whatever we are facing and accomplish His purposes.