BibleAsk Team

Why was Gideon included among the Heroes of faith in Hebrews 11?

Gideon the son of Joash the Abiezrite was the fifth judge over Israel (Judges 6:11). When the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, He delivered them into the hands of Midian for seven years (Judges 6:1). And this enemy destroyed their land, crops, and left them without sustenance that they were greatly impoverished (Judges 6:6).

The Lord raised a deliverer

In their distress, the Israelites cried to the Lord for deliverance and help (Judges 6: 4-7). And He heard their prayer and sent them Gideon. The angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon calling him to deliver Israel and assured him that God is with him (Judges 6:12).

But before Gideon can carry on his mission, he needed to cleanse his father’s house from idolatry. The Lord commanded him to “cut down the wooden image … and build an altar to the LORD …and offer a burnt sacrifice … So Gideon… did as the LORD had said to him” (Judges 6:25-27). Consequently, the men of the city got angry and said to Gideon’s father, give us your son that we may kill him for what he did to the alter of Baal. But his father, Joash, defended his son and said, “Would you plead for Baal? … If he is a god, let him plead for himself” (Judges 6:30-32).

The Lord gave Israel victory

At that time, all the Midianites and Amalekites gathered together to war against Israel. And the Spirit of the LORD came upon Gideon and he gathered his people to war (Judges 6:34). But Gideon asked God for a sign or a fleece to make sure that God will give him victory (Judges 6:37-40). In mercy, God assured him twice that He would be with him.

The number of Gideon’s troops was 32,000, but the Lord asked him to reduce it to 22,000 (Judges 7:2-3), then to 10,000, and finally to 300 men (v. 7-8). In comparison, the enemy’s army was as “thick as locusts” with “camels as numerous as the grains of sand on the seashore” (Judges 7:12).

Again, before the battle the Lord assured Gideon through a dream (in the enemy camp) that he will win the battle with the 300 soldiers (Judges 7:13,14). And the Lord was faithful to His Words and the Israelites defeated the Midianites (Judges 7:25).

Gideon’s faithfulness to God

After obtaining the victory over the enemies, the people asked Gideon to be a ruler over them but he refused saying, “the LORD shall rule over you” (Judges 8:22-23). Gideon realized that his victories were due solely to the power of God working in his behalf.

During his life, Gideon showed that he was a strong soldier of war, a godly leader (Judges 7:17), and a man of faith (Judges 8:1-3). For this he was included among the great men of faith in Hebrews 11:32-34.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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