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"Separate those who lap the water with their tongues like a dog from those who kneel down to drink." 6 Three hundred men lapped with their hands to their mouths. All the rest got down on their knees to drink.
I think it is wiser,more efficient and more "human"if not dignified to lap water with your hands than with your tongue!!God looks at the heart...true but he does care about our actions.He certainly seemed to mind that his people were drinking like animals,he does care when we act like the enemy...the world.Do we by our actions show that we're "civilized"..that got my attention.
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I keep thinking about the thief that believed that Jesus was the saviour.Faith comes by hearing the word of God...even though it was written in irony and mockery on his cross,Jesus was the King of the Jews(was the King of Kings)...was it the words that came out of the soldiers...how did this thief hear and believe...I can only pray that the seeds we sow into the people around us bear fruit.The word of God has the power to save...we can't convince anyone,only the Holy Spirit can...It was a lesson I had to learn over and over(I'm not even still sure I got it).

Some thoughts on Psalm 98:
It occurred to me that "salvation" spoken of here is not the same as what automatically comes into my mind. I think of Jesus' salvation of me/us into God's kingdom. However, since Jesus had not yet come in the Psalms era, I think salvation from God is about physical/military defeats where it was clearly God that saved the Israelite people. In the light of Gideon's story, the "shouts of joy" and general bursting into jubilation makes sense. How amazing the victories must have felt, and I can imagine the party and praise for God that must have happened afterwards. (Of course, our salvation is also cause for celebration)

So now it's clearer to me why Jesus' followers just didn't understand when He died, even though he TOLD them that he would rise in three days (Luke 18:31-34). They understood physical salvation well from their history. Spiritual salvation must have been a hard concept to grasp. Which is why Jesus had such a hard time getting people to understand his teaching. Even to the end, people were expecting Jesus to be their saviour in the same way as Gideon etc were deliverers of Israel. I can start to understand why even Jewish people of today have difficulty with the idea of Jesus as the Messiah/Saviour.

Judges 7:1-8:17

How long will it take me to understand that I’m am just a spectator along for the ride when I am confronting my enemies. From Gideon to King Jehoshaphat, God is in the business of “small” beginnings, small army’s, ‘fraidey cat people, and wavering believers. He is in the business of working for them and through them in spite of their insufficiencies because in Him is everything we need.

He said, Hearken, all Judah, you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you King Jehoshaphat. The Lord says this to you: Be not afraid or dismayed at this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God's. Tomorrow go down to them. Behold, they will come up by the Ascent of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the ravine before the Wilderness of Jeruel. You shall not need to fight in this battle; take your positions, stand still, and see the deliverance of the Lord [Who is] with you, O Judah and Jerusalem. Fear not nor be dismayed. Tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you. (2 Chronicles 20:15-17 AMP)

As long as I know that God is sending me, that I am on God’s side, and not thinking that He is on mine, then it is God calling the charge, God doing the fighting and I’m only along for the ride. How cool is that?

It has to be God for three-hundred men to successfully take on and win, an army of 135,000.

In Judges 8:1-3 we get a marvelous lesson in how to handle jealousy!

“1 The men of Ephraim spoke to Gideon. They asked, "Why have you treated us like this? Why didn't you ask us to help you when you went out to fight against Midian?" They spoke very sharply against Gideon. 2 But he answered them, "What I've done isn't anything compared to what you have done. After Ephraim's grapes have been gathered, isn't what is left over better than all of the grapes that have been gathered from Abiezer's vines? 3 God handed Oreb and Zeeb over to you. They were Midianite leaders. So what was I able to do compared to what you did?" After Gideon had said that, they didn't feel angry with him anymore.”

Gideon didn’t argue or display anger with the men of Ephraim or chastise them or belittle them or shame them – instead he built them up and made them feel important! This is a lesson that all of us need to learn as adults and a lesson that we should be teaching our youth.

God Bless!
Pat

i love this story of Gideon. Looks like Gideon no longer is doubting the Lord, even wen he gets down to 300 men, he just seems to go with it. I would cup the water too, guess i'm going to battle too! :p But please, i dont want to cut off heads! yeckkk. Think this is where Jars of Clay got their name!?

I heard a sermon on the two thieves...kinda represent the two types of ppl, the humble/believing and the scoffer/doubter. Even on the edge of death this guy wouldnt repent! I hear ppl say they will repent on their deathbed..really? their heart may be to hardened by that time. I think that other criminal was very wise and was blessed to be crucified next to Jesus.
Also this is proof that faith in Christ is the only thing necessary for salvation. This guy didnt have time to do good works, he couldnt be baptized, etc.
I was hearing a radio show today and "Paradise" is also known as Hades. when i think of Hades, i thought that was hell, but i guess it was the "waiting room" if u will until Jesus opened heaven. So Hades was two sides...a gulf separated the two. like with the rich man n Lazarus. One where they were awaiting Jesus' victory, being comforted in Abraham's bosom, n one where they were in a miserable state.
Yes, i do know God has definitely protected me in times i'm aware and even more in things i'm not aware, especially from the enemy who has his bow aimed right at us, but he cannot touch us when we have a shield of protection around us. wow! to be God's child is amazing!

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