|“When you understand that life is a test, you realize that nothing is insignificant in your life.” Rick Warren
Thoughts from the Diary of a Desperate Man by Walter A Henrichsen (“Walt”)
“And Gideon made an ephod of it and put it in his city, in Ophrah; and all Israel played the harlot after it there, and it became a snare to Gideon and to his family.” Judges 8:27
God commissioned Gideon, the fifth judge, with the task of driving the Midianites out of Israel. The job was so great that God allowed Gideon to test Him three times, and then encouraged Gideon with a fourth test of His own choosing. Once convinced, Gideon was willing to face the enemy with 300 men.
After a complete victory, the Hebrews wanted to make Gideon their king. Gideon said to them, “I will not rule over you, and my son will not rule over you; the Lord will rule over you.”354 After this wise decision, he did something foolish. He gathered from the spoils of the Midianites enough gold to fashion an ephod, which is a breastplate worn by the High Priest when carrying out the responsibilities of the Tabernacle. We don’t know precisely the way this caused sin, but we do know that Gideon infringed upon the Levitical priesthood when he made it.
God does not want our help; He wants our obedience. What Gideon did illustrates the author’s statement, “He did that which is right in his own eyes.”355 Gideon saw the nation slipping toward becoming a monarchy. To check the tide, he improvised a solution that he thought appropriate, even though it violated the Law. He reasoned that a lesser evil is better than a greater evil. He was wrong. He sinned. Never try to do battle for God by compromising His commands.
354 Judges 8:23
Isaiah 11-13 Ephesians 4 (New King James Version)
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Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
Therefore, I tell you, whatever you ask for in Prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24
Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. James 5:16
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” Psalm 91:2
Devote yourselves to Prayer, being watchful and thankful. Colossians 4:2
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The Prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16
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