Wk 4 Gideon:
“Fear of the Unknown”
The angel of the LORD came and sat down under the oak in Ophrah that belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, where his son Gideon was threshing wheat in a winepress to keep it from the Midianites.
- God’s Word Gives Us Assurance.
- God’s Word Gives Us Confidence
When the angel of the LORD appeared to Gideon, he said, “The LORD is with you, mighty warrior. ”
“Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but if the LORD is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all his wonders that our ancestors told us about when they said, ‘Did not the LORD bring us up out of Egypt?’ But now the LORD has abandoned us and given us into the hand of Midian.”
1 John 5:14
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.
- God’s Word Challenges
The LORD turned to him and said, “Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?” “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family. ”
Gideon said to God, “If you will save Israel by my hand as you have promised— look, I will place a wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there is dew only on the fleece and all the ground is dry, then I will know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you said.” And that is what happened. Gideon rose early the next day; he squeezed the fleece and wrung out the dew—a bowlful of water. Then Gideon said to God, “Do not be angry with me. Let me make just one more request. Allow me one more test with the fleece, but this time make the fleece dry and let the ground be covered with dew.” That night God did so. Only the fleece was dry; all the ground was covered with dew.
- God’s Word Gives Us Confirmation
- It’s All About God!
Early in the morning, Jerub-Baal (that is, Gideon ) and all his men camped at the spring of Harod. The camp of Midian was north of them in the valley near the hill of Moreh. The LORD said to Gideon, “You have too many men. I cannot deliver Midian into their hands, or Israel would boast against me, ‘My own strength has saved me.’ Now announce to the army, ‘Anyone who trembles with fear may turn back and leave Mount Gilead. ’” So twenty-two thousand men left, while ten thousand remained. But the LORD said to Gideon, “There are still too many men. Take them down to the water, and I will thin them out for you there. If I say, ‘This one shall go with you,’ he shall go; but if I say, ‘This one shall not go with you,’ he shall not go.” So Gideon took the men down to the water. There the LORD told him, “Separate those who lap the water with their tongues as a dog laps from those who kneel down to drink.” Three hundred of them drank from cupped hands, lapping like dogs. All the rest got down on their knees to drink. The LORD said to Gideon, “With the three hundred men that lapped I will save you and give the Midianites into your hands. Let all the others go home.” So Gideon sent the rest of the Israelites home but kept the three hundred, who took over the provisions and trumpets of the others.
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely, I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Trusting God with your future means there is no need to fear the unknown.
Because of course, God knows everything.
Small Group Questions:
- Why can the unknown be so terrifying?
- Is it easy to know what God wants us to be? Does it usually match with what we want to be or what we see ourselves as becoming? If God sees you differently than how we see ourselves, how do you think he see you?
- Read Judges 6: 34-40, Gideon appears to be still doubting himself at this point and asks God for confirmation. Do you do this in your life before proceeding? What if you don’t hear from God when you ask for confirmation? What should you do then?
- Read Judges 7:1-8, it appears that God was in the message when messengers were sent out to the other tribes for support and several thousand came. What do you thing was going through Gideon’s mind when God chopped down his troop size from 32,000 to 300? Does God chop down your ideas that you think may be successful only to show His glory? Any examples?
- Read Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus’ last commandment was to make disciples of all the nations, do you think this commandment has already been fulfilled? What does baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit mean? Why does it seem fear gets in the way of sharing God’s message?
- Is there someone in your life God is calling you to share with? What may be holding you back?