For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. – Isaiah 55:8
Read: Judges 7:1-15 (KJV)
1 Then Jerubbaal, who is Gideon, and all the people that were with him, rose up early, and pitched beside the well of Harod: so that the host of the Midianites were on the north side of them, by the hill of Moreh, in the valley.
2 And the LORD said unto Gideon, The people that are with thee are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel vaunt themselves against me, saying, Mine own hand hath saved me.
3 Now therefore go to, proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, Whosoever is fearful and afraid, let him return and depart early from mount Gilead. And there returned of the people twenty and two thousand; and there remained ten thousand.
4 And the LORD said unto Gideon, The people are yet too many; bring them down unto the water, and I will try them for thee there: and it shall be, that of whom I say unto thee, This shall go with thee, the same shall go with thee; and of whomsoever I say unto thee, This shall not go with thee, the same shall not go.
5 So he brought down the people unto the water: and the LORD said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink.
6 And the number of them that lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, were three hundred men: but all the rest of the people bowed down upon their knees to drink water.
7 And the LORD said unto Gideon, By the three hundred men that lapped will I save you, and deliver the Midianites into thine hand: and let all the other people go every man unto his place.
8 So the people took victuals in their hand, and their trumpets: and he sent all the rest of Israel every man unto his tent, and retained those three hundred men: and the host of Midian was beneath him in the valley.
9 And it came to pass the same night, that the LORD said unto him, Arise, get thee down unto the host; for I have delivered it into thine hand.
10 But if thou fear to go down, go thou with Phurah thy servant down to the host:
11 And thou shalt hear what they say; and afterward shall thine hands be strengthened to go down unto the host. Then went he down with Phurah his servant unto the outside of the armed men that were in the host.
12 And the Midianites and the Amalekites and all the children of the east lay along in the valley like grasshoppers for multitude; and their camels were without number, as the sand by the sea side for multitude.
13 And when Gideon was come, behold, there was a man that told a dream unto his fellow, and said, Behold, I dreamed a dream, and, lo, a cake of barley bread tumbled into the host of Midian, and came unto a tent, and smote it that it fell, and overturned it, that the tent lay along.
14 And his fellow answered and said, This is nothing else save the sword of Gideon the son of Joash, a man of Israel: for into his hand hath God delivered Midian, and all the host.
15 And it was so, when Gideon heard the telling of the dream, and the interpretation thereof, that he worshipped, and returned into the host of Israel, and said, Arise; for the LORD hath delivered into your hand the host of Midian.
God’s directions may not always make sense to us, because as humans, we are too short-sighted to see what He does and too dull to think as He (Isaiah 55:8-9).
Gideon experienced the seemingly illogicality of God’s directions firsthand. He thought he had been mistaken for someone else when the angel of God called him a man of valour. Gideon was cowardly but God had decided to use him to lead His people to victory over their enemy. Even when Gideon eventually accepted to lead the Israelites in battle, God still went ahead to prune his army of thirty-two thousand soldiers down to just three hundred! Three hundred men against an army! Although it looked like an impossible mission, at the end of the day, Gideon was victorious. No matter how unreasonable an instruction from God may be, as long as it is from Him, it will surely end in Victory. Isaiah 30:21 says:
“And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.”
We were preparing for a crusade in Benin many years ago. Everything had been set when I thought to talk to God about it. He told me we should go to Ede instead. We had just concluded a crusade in Ilesha (very close to Ede), and so I felt that anyone who wanted to come from Ede should have been at that crusade. However, since I have learnt never to disobey God, I told my people “God said we are going to Ede.” We went to Ede and when it was time for the monarch of the town to greet the people during the crusade, he said he did not have money, but offered us land – in any quantity we desired. After the crusade, I called my people together and we decided to ask for fifty acres of land. That seemed like a lot, but when I went back to ask God, He said we should ask for five hundred hectares. This did not make any sense at all because the developed part of Ede was not that large, but I asked anyway. We got the land and today, the Mission School of the RCCG as well as the Redeemer’s University are sited on that land.
Even if His instruction does not make sense, just trust Him and obey.
Bible In One Year: Acts 15-16
Hymn 15: In Christ Alone
1. In Christ alone my hope is found,
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid Ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand.
2. In Christ alone! – who took on flesh,
Fullness of God in helpless babe.
This gift of love and righteousness,
Scorned by the ones He came to save
‘Til on that cross as Jesus died,
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live.
3. There in the ground His body lay,
Light of the world by darkness slain:
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me,
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ
4. No guilt in life, no fear in death,
This is the power of Christ in me
From life’s first cry to final breath,
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man,
Can ever pluck me from His hand
Till He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand.
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