New Foundations Ministries
The Sword of
By George Kirkpatrick
As we look at the days of Gideon and compare it to our day, it becomes clear that what God has revealed through Gideon is where we are today. Every time Israel turned their back on God and fell into sin, God sent in an enemy to bring them to their knees.
In the time of Gideon, Israel worshiped the false god, Baal. Baal was the god of increase. This is all this nation thinks about - - - accumulate, accumulate, accumulate - - - to have more, more, more.
In the time of Gideon, God sent in the Midianites to capture Israel. The Midianites were confederate with Amalek, the king of Jordan. The Midianites stripped Israel of their sheep, asses, and oxen. They also destroyed their crops. Because of this destruction, Israel had to make dens in the mountains, and live in caves to survive. This Midianite oppression ruled in Israel for seven years. Then . . .
". . . there came an angel of the Lord, and sat under an oak which was in Ophrah, that pertained unto Joash the Abiezrite: and his son Gideon threshed wheat by the winepress, to hide it from the Midianites." Judges 6:11
All Israel was living in total fear in Ophrah which was on the other side of the Jordan River, in the country of Gilead. Gideon was hiding here to thresh out what little wheat they had salvaged from the Midianites.
"And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him, and said unto him, The Lord is with thee, thou mighty man of valor." Judges 6:12
I do not think Gideon felt much like a mighty man of valor. The word valor means "man of strength, wealth, and ability." This only goes to prove, God does not see us as we see ourselves. He sees us as He designed and anointed us to be. To become what God wants us to be, we must follow His Word.
"And Gideon said unto Him, Oh my Lord, if the Lord be with us, why then is all this befallen us? And where be all His miracles which our fathers told us of, saying, Did not the Lord bring us up from Egypt? But now the Lord hath forsaken us, and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites." Judges 6:13
Many of God's people are feeling the same way today, when we see the kind of government we have and the laws they are passing. But this nation, as Israel, has turned their back on God, and because of this God has sent in an enemy to drive His people to their knees.
Then the angel of the Lord directed Gideon:
"And the Lord looked upon him, and said, Go in this thy might, and thou shalt save Israel from the hand of the Midianites: have not I sent thee?" Judges 6:14
Gideon was not a military man, so he had to depend totally upon the Lord's direction. Gideon was to go in the power of God's Word.
When the angel spoke to Gideon, he began to make excuses:
"And he said unto Him, Oh my Lord, wherewith shall I save Israel? Behold, my family is poor in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father's house. And the Lord said unto him, Surely I will be with thee, and thou shalt smite the Midianites as one man." Judges 6:15-16
When we do not understand God or His ways, then we cannot see how God can use our vessels of clay. But when we move on God's Word we can never fail.
"And Gideon went in, and made ready a kid, and unleavened cakes of an ephah of flour: the flesh he put in a basket, and he put the broth in a pot, and brought it out unto him under the oak, and presented it." Judges 6:19
Gideon also wanted to show his hospitality to this man (angel), so he told him to tarry until he returned. And Gideon hastened to prepare a kid in its broth, and made unleavened cakes. Gideon put all he prepared in a basket, and brought it to the man (angel) under the oak tree. The angel informed Gideon to take the kid and the unleavened cakes and lay them upon the rock and pour out the broth:
"Then the angel of the Lord put forth the end of the staff that was in his hand, and touched the flesh and the unleavened cakes; and there rose up fire out of the rock, and consumed the flesh and the unleavened cakes. Then the angel of the Lord departed out of his sight." Judges 6:21
Gideon wanted a sign, and God gave him a sign. The fire rose up out of the stone and consumed the kid, the broth, and the unleavened cakes. It was then Gideon knew he had been in the presence of an angel. And Gideon feared for his life.
"And the Lord said unto him, Peace be unto thee, fear not: thou shalt not die." Judges 6:23
And Gideon built an altar and called it Jehovah Shalom which means "God our peace, Judges 6:24." But God had to try Gideon to see if he would be obedient to follow His Word to the letter.
"And it came to pass the same night, that the Lord said unto him, take thy father's young bullock, even the second bullock of seven years old, and throw down the altar of Baal that thy father hath, and cut down the grove that is by it: and build an altar unto the Lord thy God upon the top of this rock, in the ordered place, and take the second bullock, and offer a burnt sacrifice with the wood of the grove which thou shalt cut down." Judges 6:25-26
Gideon was ordered by God to take two of his father's bullocks. With one, he was to throw down the altar of Baal, and cut down the grove around it. The other, he was to offer upon the altar he was to build before the Lord. He was to use the wood he cut down from the grove to offer a burnt offering unto the Lord. This was not an easy thing to do. Gideon lived in his father's house, so we must assume Gideon was required to worship this false god, Baal, with his father and his household. But we know Gideon instead chose to be obedient to the voice of God.
"Then Gideon took ten men of his servants, and did as the Lord had said unto him: and so it was, because he feared his father's household, and the men of the city, that he could not do it by day, that he did it by night." Judges 6:27
If Gideon had tried to destroy the altar of Baal and cut down the grove in the daytime, his father and the men of the city would have stopped him.
"And when the men of the city arose early in the morning, behold, the altar of Baal was cast down, and the grove was cut down that was by it, and the second bullock was offered upon the altar that was built. And they said one to another, Who hath done this thing? And when they enquired and asked, they said, Gideon the son of Joash hath done this thing." Judges 6:28-29
When they inquired to find out who had done this thing, it was discovered that Gideon had been responsible. It would be safe to assume they had questioned some of the men who had helped Gideon. It goes without saying that when we operate our lives by the Word of the Lord, people are going to be against us.
"Then the men of the city said unto Joash, Bring out thy son, that he may die: because he hath cast down the altar of Baal, and because he hath cut down the grove that was by it." Judges 6:30
The men of the city wanted to kill Gideon for what he had done. But Gideon's father wisely calmed the crowd when he stated, "Will ye plead for Baal? If he be God let him plead for himself," Judges 6:31. So from that day forward, they called Gideon, Jerubbaal which means "Baal will be contended with."
"Then all the Midianites and the Amalekites and the children of the East were gathered together, and went over, and pitched in the valley of Jezreel." Judges 6:33
The Midianites had amassed an army of one hundred and thirty-five thousand.
"But the Spirit of the Lord came upon Gideon, and he blew a trumpet; and Abiezer was gathered after him. And he sent messengers throughout all Manasseh; who also was gathered after him: and he sent messengers unto Asher, and unto Zebulun, and unto Naphtali; and they came up to meet them." Judges 6:34-35
Gideon, in his own thinking, knew he needed a vast army if he had a chance against the Midianites.
"And Gideon said unto God, If thou wilt save Israel by mine hand as thou hast said," Judges 6:36
As stated before, Gideon was not a military man. He did not understand military ways. He only knew God had spoken to him and said he would deliver the Midianites into his hand. We know Gideon felt the weight of this responsibility, and that he wanted to make sure he heard God correctly. So Gideon asked the Lord to assure him as to what He spoke:
"Behold, I will put a fleece of wool in the floor; and if the dew be on the fleece only, and it be dry upon all the earth beside, then shall I know that thou wilt save Israel by mine hand, as Thou hast said. And it was so: for he rose up early on the morrow, and thrust the fleece together, and wringed the dew out of the fleece, a bowl full of water." Judges 6:37-38
Many believe Gideon showed a lack of faith when he put out the fleece. But Gideon was faced with an overwhelming army, and he wanted God's assurance he heard him properly. When Gideon rose up in the morning, the fleece was wet with dew and the ground around it was dry. Dew in the Bible is a sign of the power of God, praise the Lord!
But Gideon, to be absolutely sure he was moving in the power of the Word of God, asked Him to once again prove His Word.
"And Gideon said unto God, Let not thine anger be hot against me, and I will speak but this once: let me prove, I pray thee, but this once with the fleece; let it now be dry only upon the fleece, and upon all the ground let there be dew. And God did so that night: for it was dry upon the fleece only, and there was dew on all the ground." Judges 6:39-40
In Gideon's mind, he was given an impossible job. He wanted nothing left to chance. Israel and Gideon's family had been down-trodden seven years. We should also remember, all Israel had no armament, and Gideon was to face this vast army with only the Word of God.
With the fleece coming to pass, Gideon was ready to fight, but God was not ready:
"And the Lord said unto Gideon, The people that are with thee are too many for Me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel vaunt themselves against Me, saying, mine own hand hath saved me." Judges 7:2
Gideon's army was too large to give God the glory. This was to be God's victory, not Gideon's. So God informed Gideon he had to reduce the number of men that he had amassed. When Gideon sorted the army according to God's direction, we discover Gideon ended up with three groups. With Spiritual eyes, we can see these are the same three groups which were foretold in the tabernacle Moses built in the wilderness:
The Outer Court group
The Holy Place group 10,000
and the Most Holy Place group 300
The Twenty-Two Thousand
The first sorting Gideon had to eliminate were the fearful and afraid:
"Now therefore go to, proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, Whosoever is fearful and afraid, let him return and depart early from Mount Gilead. And there returned of the people twenty and two thousand; and there remained ten thousand." Judges 7:3
As we can see, Gideon had amassed an army of thirty-two thousand to go up against the Midianite army of one hundred and thirty-five thousand. Gideon told the fearful or afraid to return to their families. Twenty-two thousand of these left and went home. Gideon's heart must have sank.
But as we discover, these are the outer court saints. The only thing between the outer court saints and the world is the gate they had entered. And it was a short trip from the outer court realm back into the world. Everyday the outer court saints must make this decision to remain or go back into the world. Joel wrote about these outer court saints:
"Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision." Joel 3:14
Twenty-two thousand of Gideon's army were in the Outer Court realm. These are in the valley of decision. Many today like the twenty-two thousand in Gideon's army, because of their fear of the days ahead, will not share in God's glory. If they would only believe what God's Word declares, they could be part of the overcoming realm. Paul disclosed to Timothy in his second letter:
"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." II Timothy 1:7
The Ten Thousand
Those who have received the spirit of fear which does not come from God will never partake of God's glory. So when the twenty-two thousand left, Gideon had only ten thousand left.
Now Gideon was ready to engage the enemy - - - but God was not yet ready.
"And the Lord said unto Gideon, The people are yet too many; bring them down unto the water, and I will try them for thee there: and it shall be, that of whom I say unto thee, This shall go with thee, the same shall go with thee; and of whomsoever I say unto thee, This shall not go with thee, the same shall not go." Judges 7:4
The next sorting God had planned would take place at the water. As we all know, the water represents the Word of God. Here God would sort out the Holy Place saints and the Holy of Holies saints:
"So he brought down the people unto the water: and the Lord said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink." Judges 7:5
So Gideon brought his ten thousand down to the water. Gideon set off all those who lapped up the water as a dog to the side, as the Lord had instructed.
But those who bowed down and had their face in the water were to be excused from the final victory.
Here we see two kinds of people:
Those who lap water like a dog
And those who constantly have their face in the water
First let's look at those who constantly have their face in the water (God's Word). These can only see what is written on the page. They never look beyond what they have been taught by their denominational orders. These have no spiritual eyes to see beyond the `logos' written word. In his letter to Timothy, Paul described these as:
"Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth." II Timothy 3:7
These memorize Scriptures, write them down, and paste them on their mirrors and refrigerators. Yet, these do not depend on the Holy Spirit to bring these Scriptures to remembrance when they need to use them to minister. Paul declared these to Timothy:
"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;" II Timothy 4:3
These are the Holy Place saints. These have passed through the door of the tabernacle into the presence of the candlestick. This is where the church begins. But there is still a going on through the veil into the presence of God. The only problem is, those in the Holy Place think and have been taught they have arrived. They believe they have all God has for them. So they become complacent. Most of these end up believing only what their teachers teach. Paul addressed this in his letter to Timothy:
"And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables." II Timothy 4:4
The word fable means "a narrative story or an invention of a falsehood." Their teachers read a Scripture, and then tell their stories. If they do not know a story, then they make up one, or repeat an experience someone else has had. But they tell it as if it happened to them. Paul described such as these to Timothy:
"Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." II Timothy 3:5
These who only believe what their denominations teach are only a form religion. And those who attend their meetings are all given names. Most call themselves `evangelist or prophet'. Some go by the name `apostle'. These should remember the words the Holy Spirit spoke through the pen of Job:
"For I know not to give flattering titles; in so doing my Maker would soon take me away." Job 32:22
Only God can ordain evangelists, prophets, and apostles, pastors, and teachers. Man can call himself anything he wants to, but it is God who will deal with this error. Those who constantly have their face in the water can see no further than the written page. These should remember the words of Jesus as recorded by John:
"How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?" John 5:44
No matter how many agree with an error and give honor to that error, it is only God who can give us the true honor that comes from Him.
The Three Hundred
Let's look again at Judges, chapter seven, verse five:
"So he brought down the people unto the water: and the LORD said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink." Judges 7:5
So, out of the ten thousand Gideon took to the water, only three hundred lapped the water as a dog. Those who lapped the water as a dog are the Holy of Holy saints. These have passed through the veil, and have become part of Gideon's army. These are those who hold the water (God's Word) in their hand, and lap up the Word of life. They not only want to see the Word, but they want to totally apply it to their life and their walk with God.
These are not part of those who are in the valley of decision, or those who are ever learning but unable to come to the knowledge of the truth. These are those who are able to feed themselves from the Word of God. Jesus explained this to His disciples:
"He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven, but to them it is not given." Matthew 13:11
Those who lap up the water as a dog are those who know and understand the teachings God has shown them. The mysteries of the Kingdom of God have been revealed to them. To all others, it is not given.
Those who understand the Kingdom of God are not looking for their reward in some far off place called heaven, but it is in the overcoming of all things in this life that these will rule and reign with Christ right here on earth. Jesus declared through the pen of the beloved John:
"But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God." John 3:21
Those who lap up the Word of God with their eyes wide open are those who do the truth. The apostle James wrote about those who are doers of the Word:
"For if any be a hearer of the Word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:" James 1:23
Those who only know what they hear from the pulpit are those who are only hearers of the Word, but are not doers of the Word. These are those who, when looking in a mirror, only see the natural man. These have no spiritual eyes to look beyond the printed page.
"For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was." James 1:24
When the hearers - - - not the doers - - - of God's Word turn away from the mirror, they forget what kind of man they really are. It's the same when they come from church after hearing a sermon. They cannot believe it was for them so they go their way, forgetting what they have heard, and deceiving themselves into believing they are alright with God. James continues:
"But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed." James 1:25
Those who lap the water like a dog live by the perfect law of liberty. These have been freed from the law of sin and death. These are not forgetful hearers, but doers of the work God has given them to do. These are those who have come to the light of God's Word and have applied it to their life and their walk. And because of this their deeds are blessed of God, because their works are wrought in God.
When Gideon got done sorting his army, he had three hundred of the original thirty-two thousand. When God gets done with His sorting in our day, He may only have the same percentage. This is why Jesus told His disciples:
"Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the Kingdom." Luke 12:32
When God's sorting is complete, He like Gideon, will only have a little flock. As we witness God's sorting process, we understand it is the fulfillment of His Word. Jesus spoke to His disciples:
"For many are called, but few are chosen." Matthew 22:14
Yes, Gideon sent messengers to the tribes of Manasseh, Asher, Zebulum, and Naphtali to gather a vast army.
But he sent home all those who were fearful and afraid.
These are the called
the Outer Court saints
And he sent home all those who kept their face in the water
the Holy Place saints
But those who lapped the water as a dog are
The elect of God
the Holy of Holy saints who will do battle with the enemy
To use three hundred men to go against an army of one hundred and thirty-five thousand men would seem foolish to all those who know anything about military strategy. But as Paul wrote to the Corinthians:
"But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;" I Corinthians 1:27
Now, God was ready to do battle, but Gideon was not ready. He had to be absolutely sure he was hearing God correctly when He told him He would deliver the Midianites into his hand. So Gideon asked God how He was going to do this:
"And the Lord said unto Gideon, By the three hundred men that lapped will I save you, and deliver the Midianites into thine hand: and let all the other people go every man unto His place." Judges 7:7
So Gideon was left with three hundred men to fight the multitude. As we look at the number three hundred, we discover
three is the number of completion
and one hundred is the number of divine order
So three hundred is the number of God's complete divine order.
Now God was ready for Gideon to advance with his army of three hundred.
"And he divided the three hundred men into three companies, and he put a trumpet in every man's hand, with empty pitchers, and lamps within the pitchers." Judges 7:16
We must remember the Midianites had defeated Israel and had taken all their weapons of war. Again this seemed like an impossible task. But God was about to do a great miracle in the midst of the battle.
Every man in Gideon's army was provided with a
1 - a trumpet
2 - an empty pitcher
3 - and a lamp (a torch)
What a way to fight an overwhelming army. But as Paul wrote to the Corinthians, "God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise." Gideon had his directions from God, and he gave the following command to his army:
"And he said unto them, Look on me, and do likewise: and, behold, when I come to the outside of the camp, it shall be that, as I do , so shall ye do. When I blow with a trumpet, I and all that are with me, then blow ye the trumpets also on every side of all the camp, and say, The sword of the Lord, and of Gideon." Judges 7:17-18
The trumpets were ram horns called shofars.
The pitchers were large urns or small barrels made of clay.
The lamps were a type of torch dipped in oil.
Gideon, then split his army into three groups, and they came upon the Midianites on three sides. When Gideon blew his trumpet, all the men were to blow their trumpets and shout, "The Sword of the Lord and of Gideon."
As we look at this, what sword did Gideon have? The only sword any of Gideon's army had was the Sword of the Spirit which is The Word of God. Beloved, the whole message we are to receive from Gideon is that the sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. Paul explained this when he informed us of the armor of God:
"And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirt, which is the Word of God." Ephesians 6:17
The sword of the Spirit is part of God's Spiritual armor. Those who want to depend on the arm of the flesh are on their own. God cannot, nor will He, defend those who depend on their own abilities.
"So Gideon, and the hundred men that were with him, came unto the outside of the camp in the beginning of the middle watch; and they had but newly set the watch: and they blew the trumpets, and brake the pitchers that were in their hands." Judges 7:19
So Gideon came with his army in the middle of the night to surround the army of the Midianites. What a picture of God's end time mighty army.
The trumpet is the symbol of the prophetic voice. The prophets of old spoke as the Lord said. Today's prophetic voice is to speak their revelation from the Word of God (as the Lord hath said). Today God's prophets are to prophesy as God has given them understanding in His Word. Jesus declared to His disciples:
"But take ye heed: behold, I have foretold you all things." Mark 13:23
Where has the Lord foretold us all things? He has foretold us all things in His Word. These are those who by the anointing have searched the Scriptures to know the mind of Christ. The all-wise Solomon knew this when he declared:
"It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter." Proverbs 25:2
Those who have spent their time in God's Word have become God's prophetic voice in the earth today. These are Gideon's army with the trumpet in their hands. Everything the prophets of today speak must be backed up by God's Word. If they speak outside what God's Word says, then their words are false. The prophet Ezekiel foretold about today's prophets who speak out of their own heart (mind).
"Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel that prophesy, and say thou unto them that prophesy out of their own hearts, hear ye the Word of the Lord; Thus saith the Lord God; Woe unto the foolish prophets, that follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing." Ezekiel 13:2-3
When Gideon blew his trumpet, all the men in his army were to blow their trumpets. Then they were to break their pitchers of clay. These clay pitchers are a symbol of our earthly bodies. These earthen vessels must be broken. Also Paul wrote to the Corinthians:
"For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." I Corinthians 15:22
The old, Adam nature must die if we are going to dwell in the glory of Christ. If we fail to break these vessels of clay and completely do away with the old, Adam nature, then we can never become part of God's overcoming army. Until we deal with the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, we will never enter through the veil into the presence of God. As long as we honor self and self-esteem more than we esteem Christ, then we still refuse to break our vessels of clay.
It is God's elect - - - those who have overcome the old, Adam nature - - - who will enter through the veil. Paul understood this when he wrote to the church at Rome:
"Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth." Romans 8:33
The elect of God are justified in everything they do because, as Gideon, they only act upon the direction they receive from the Holy Ghost. When Jesus was explaining the time of great tribulation to His disciples, He revealed:
"For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened." Matthew 24:21-22
God is going to shorten the time of great tribulation for the elect's sake. Those who remain in the outer court and holy place will have to suffer through the entire tribulation period, but God will shorten those days for the elect.
When it came time for Gideon and his army to fight, the Midianites discovered Gideon's way of fighting was not what they had expected:
"And the three companies blew the trumpets, and brake the pitchers, and held the lamps in their left hands, and the trumpets in their right hands to blow withal: and they cried, The sword of the Lord, and of Gideon." Judges 7:20
We must remember this attack came in the middle of the night when it was dark. The Midianites were sound asleep and Gideon's men were on three sides of the camp. So Gideon had them surrounded. When the Midianites heard three hundred trumpets blast and three hundred torches glare all around them, they became totally confused.
"And they stood every man in his place round about the camp: and all the host ran, and cried, and fled. And the three hundred blew the trumpets, and the Lord set every man's sword against his fellow, even throughout all the host: and the host fled to Bethshittah in Zererath, and to the border of Abelmeholah, unto Tabbath." Judges 7:21-22
Gideon's army stood in its place. They did not attack. In complete obedience, they did as they were commanded. Now God would take over, and get the victory. All the army of the Midianites ran and cried out for mercy. The complete army fled in confusion, killing each other as they fled. The victory was won, and Gideon and his army had not killed one man. Gideon had fulfilled all God had told him to do. Throughout the Bible, God has given us many examples of the victories He has wrought for His people when the enemy destroyed itself.
Those whose faith is in the Almighty need not fear the days ahead, nor do we need to fear those who have chosen to be the enemy of our faith. Anyone who has read the Ninety-first Psalm can stand on God's promises. No one is sure who wrote the Ninety-first Psalm, but we can be assured he was directed by the Holy Spirit. The Psalm begins:
"I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in Him will I trust. Surely He shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence." Psalm 91:2-3
God will deliver us from the snare of the fowler, or those who try to trap us. He will deliver us from the noisome pestilence. These are the new diseases Science has no cure for. We cannot depend on the arm of flesh for our protection. We can only depend on the Great Physician:
"He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou trust: His truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;" Psalm 91:4-5
God will cover us, as a mother hen covers her chicks, if we put our trust in His Word (Truth). He will be our shield and buckler, and we need not be afraid of the terror, or terrorists who plot their deeds by night. We have already witnessed that the government cannot protect us from a terrorist attack. They may stop a few, but only one needs to slip their detection devices to cause much chaos and damage. We do not need to fear the arrow that flies by day. We do not need to fear a nuclear attack from anyone. We have Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego as our examples of walking through the fire. We do not need to fear "For the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor, for the destruction that wasteth at noonday." Psalm 91:6. Disease and destruction cannot touch us unless God allows it. Then the Psalmist gives us God's assurance:
"A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee." Psalm 91:7
This will not happen because we arm ourselves. This is God's doing. The Psalmist also promises:
"Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked." Psalm 91:8
As Gideon witnessed God's miracle, we too will witness the destruction of the wicked. Many other Psalmists also gave us God's assurance of His protection. The Psalmist David declared:
"My defense is of God, which saveth the upright in heart." Psalm 7:10
When David was fleeing from King Saul, David refused to defend himself. Twice he had Saul on the tip of his sword, but refused to kill him, because Saul was God's anointed. Again David wrote:
"He only is my rock and my salvation: He is my defense; I shall not be moved." Psalm 62:6
David depended totally upon God for his defense, and he was not about to be moved from his faith in God. Again we look to David for his wisdom:
"But I will sing of Thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of Thy mercy in the morning: for Thou hast been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble." Psalm 59:16
We can be assured the day of trouble is upon us. We need to constantly sing of the power of God (the Holy Spirit) in our lives, because God is the only defense we need. It comes down to one simple fact, we are going to depend on God, because the arm of flesh will fail.
With all the evidence of God's protection, those who are called by His name continue to arm themselves with everything from hand guns to automatic weapons. Some have even gone as far as stockpiling hand grenades and other explosive devices.
What do we need to learn from Gideon's army? We know the battle is coming, but are we to fight this battle with armament? NO!, Definitely, NO! We are to fight this battle with the light in our hand (the Word of God), and the trumpet (God's prophetic voice). But what about those who are arming themselves with guns and ammunition? Peter, who was given the keys to the Kingdom, warned God's people:
"But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men's matters." I Peter 4:15
We are not to suffer as a murderer. What was Peter warning us of? Those who arm themselves with the intent to protect themselves and their families are already murderers, because they have murder in their hearts. We also need to ask the question, "Who are we going to trust in when the ammunition runs out, or our guns jamb?" We need to determine in our hearts who, and what, we are going to put our trust in - - - God - - - or our own ability. Yes, there is a battle coming and as Paul wrote to the Romans:
"The night is far spent, the day is at hand: Let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light." Romans 13:12
The only armament we need is the armor of light. The Day of Salvation is far spent. We must cast off the works of darkness. Guns are part of the works of darkness. Those who plan to do their dastardly deeds with guns, do their planning in the dark of the night.
As God's people, we need to put on our armor of light and, as Gideon, witness God's miraculous deliverance. Praise the Lord!
Related Books by George Kirkpatrick
The Tabernacle in
Going On In God
The Mouth of the Prophet
Fear Not Little Flock
Even The Very Elect, If Possible
Becoming The Word
God's Young Men
Types and Symbols in the Bible
George and Jeannie Kirkpatrick, authors
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