My muscles had more energy than a cheetah out for a run. The Lord showed me He'd lead the Israelites to victory by setting my bone dry fleece in a puddle of water. Not one drop on the fleece!
Israelite soldiers traveled from near and far to fight for Israel. I'd say thirty-two thousand men came ready to conquer the Midianites. We camped together on the south side of the Midianites. Many soldiers couldn't sleep-could you the night before something exciting would happen?
I walked away from the camp to have a quiet time with the Lord. I'd hoped He share a fantastic battle plan.
To my surprise the Lord said, "Gideon, you have too many men with you for Me to give Israel a victory. The men will think they won the battle by themselves."
I listened to His words. I could see His point, but wondered how Israel could win with less men. He then said, "Call the soldiers and say, 'Whoever is afraid can leave. Go to Mount Gilead.'"
My heart pounded louder with each step the departing soldiers took. Twenty-two thousand men left! Just like that! How could God win the battle with only ten thousand soldiers?
I looked at the camp. So few men left! I decided to talk with the Lord again. Maybe I misunderstood the directions. I returned to the same place and sat, waiting to see if the Lord would speak to me. He said, "Gideon you still have too many men."
Ten thousand soldiers--too many? The Lord then said, "Take the men down to the water. I will tell you who should stay and who should go home."
I grew quite curious about the battle. God must have had a big miracle in mind. I instructed the men to go to the water. Soon after we arrived the Lord said to me, "Everyone who laps water like a dog by scooping water with a hand to their mouth must be set aside. Those who bend low on their knees to drink should be sent home."
I walked along as the men drank and told all who lapped the water to stand by the tree. I sent the other men home after they finished their drink.
The small group of men who stood by the tree had great strength and skill. I counted three hundred men.
Only three hundred to conquer thousand of Midianites! Now this will take a miracle!
1. What did the Lord tell Gideon the first time?
2. What happened when Gideon obeyed?
3. What did the Lord tell Gideon to do the second time?
4. What happened when Gideon obeyed?
5. Who do you think will win the battle?
Come back to read what happened next.