Surviving in Tough Times Part 4

Thursday, June 15, 2006

In the story of Gideon the plan most often used by the enemy to attack God’s people is clearly laid out for us. His ultimate desire is to destroy God’s people and take away from us all that God has blessed us with. The enemy is never satisfied with just a little of what belongs to us. He wants it all; and if we never come to the point where we understand this about him, he becomes embedded in our situation and when he feels the time is right and we are at our weakest, he joins forces with other of his ilk and attempts to destroy us totally and completely. This was his plan for the people of Israel in the day of Gideon, and his plan is still the same today. His modus operandi hasn’t changed since the days of Adam. He wanted what Adam possessed, and he wanted Adam dead because Adam was a threat to him. He wants what God has blessed us with, and he wants us dead because as long as we are alive, we, too, are a threat to him. Jesus tells us in John 10:10 “The thief comes only to steal, kill and to destroy” If we allow the enemy to join forces with others of his kind and we do nothing to prevent that from happening, it will be too late for us to remove him by ourselves as it was for the Israelites in the day of Gideon. In the end the Israelites needed a miracle from God to remove him from their situation, and so will we.

Now I want to outline the different steps in this event that led to the enemy becoming embedded in Israel and the steps the Lord instructed Gideon to take to drive the enemy out of their land.

1. God’s people turned away from God to serve idols.

2. God’s people cried out to the Lord for deliverance.

3. The angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon.

4. Gideon tears down the altar made to the enemy idols and used the wood to make a burnt sacrifice to the Lord.

5. Gideon asked others to get involved in their deliverance.

6. The Lord weeds out the fearful, the doubters, and the less attentive ones.

7. The Lord chooses the weaponry Gideon and his men will use in the battle with the Midianites.

8. The Lord laid out His plan of attack to Gideon.

9. Gideon leads his men by example.

10. The Lord creates confusion in the enemy camp which led them to destroy themselves.

11. Gideon and his men return home victorious.

12. Gideon is appointed judge over Israel.

The steps to our failures and the step we will take to defeat our enemy will probably not be the same as those of Gideon even though our needs may be similar in nature, but we can expect the Lord to have a plan in place for our victory. If we implement the plan given to us by the Lord; we are assured of victory just as surely as Gideon was assured of the defeat of the Midianites on the day the angel of the Lord appeared to him. After the angels visitation; all Gideon had to do to defeat the Midianites was to follow the instructions of the Lord. DThrash

*** This next paragraph is being added after the fact and was not part of the original Journal Entry. The plight of the Israelites in the story of Gideon is a clear picture of what happens to a group of people when there is no one in charge. It doesn’t matter whether that group of people is a family, a business, or a country. When no one is in charge; confusion is going to set in and the enemy will embed himself in the situation and begin to make our life so miserable it will take a miracle from God to get us out of the jam just as it did for the Israelites in this story. After the enemy was defeated by the hand of Gideon; he was appointed judge over Israel. He became the decision maker for the rest of the people. God always needs some one He can work through to bring peace into the lives of people whether it is within a family, a business, or a country. When there is no one in charge we see in this story how much havoc the enemy can create and how much work it takes to remove him from the situation. Unfortunately many marriages, businesses and countries do not survive these turbulent times because they do not serve God and many times after they have allowed the enemy to become so entrenched in their lives the marriage ends in divorce, the business goes bankrupt, or a country is absorbed into another country. This is not what God intended when He set up these people groups, but it does happen when people refuse to accept responsibility for their actions. DThrash

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