His name means: “Hewer, Slasher, Hacker”
His work: A farmer called to bring Israel back to the Lord (a task in which he
partially succeeded) and to deliver God’s people from their Midianite
His character: A fearful man, living in a time when Israel had plenty to fear,
Gideon questioned the Lord, demanding signs that would reassure him of God’s
faithfulness. Even though he was a reluctant warrior, he won a brilliant
military victory and became one of Israel’s greatest judges.
His triumph: That God’s vision for his life turned out to be far greater than
Key Scriptures: Judges 6-8
A Look at the Man
Gideon’s story reminds us of the story of another man, centuries earlier, who
also felt inadequate for the role God assigned him. His name was Moses, a man
who had been hiding out just as Gideon had when God called him. Both Gideon
and Moses made excuses, plausible-sounding ones to us though not to God. To
both men God simply said, “I am sending you.”
When Gideon pleaded that his clan was the weakest in Israel and he the least
of his family, he was unwittingly expressing his qualifications for the job.
God wasn’t looking for a born leader, a man who would be great in the eyes of
his own people. He wasn’t searching for a self-reliant man who would take
credit for every victory. He needed someone whose weakness he could use, a man
whose apparent unsuitability would eventually convince his people that their
God was still with them, still powerful, still loving.
It’s interesting that God called Gideon a mighty warrior precisely at the
moment when such a description was hardest to believe. How could Gideon
comprehend it when his own idea of himself was so contrary to God’s idea?
Because of the Lord’s remarkable patience, Gideon was eventually able to
overcome his doubts and become the man God intended him to be. By believing in
God, he lived out his life, not as a timid man, but as a warrior who had won a
Many of us are like Moses and Gideon were at the moment God first called them.
We are hiding out, living our own lives, reluctant to alter the status quo,
unable to believe we are capable of any kind of greatness. But God describes
his plan for our lives, not in our terms, but in his. And that’s how it should
be, because he’s the only one who knows who we really are and what his power
can do within us. If we want to experience God shaping our lives and using
us—in our families, our churches, and our communities—we will have to set
aside our own vision for ourselves in order to embrace his. Anyone who does
that will one day look back, not with regret, but with gratitude, amazed at
the great things God has done in a life yielded to him.
Reflect On: Judges 6:36–40
– Bible Gateway.Com