Too Many Men
Today’s scripture selection: Judges 7-11
Key verses: Judges 7:2
Ever feel outnumbered?
Sure – it’s an all too common feeling – pressures mount around us and soon we find our strength failing; our resolve melting. And before long we hear that enticing whisper in our ears, “If only you had a few more on ‘your’ side.”
Well, a long time ago, one of the great leaders of Israel – a fellow named Gideon – learned an important lesson about that.
He was going up against an enemy. To say that enemy, the Midianites, were a formidable force is quite an understatement. The scripture says they numbered in the tens of thousands. So, naturally, Gideon gathered his forces too – as many as he could get, also in the tens of thousands.
But right before he went into battle God told him to wait. Why? Because he had too few soldiers? Nope – according to the old tale – Gideon had way too many on his side.
“The LORD said to Gideon, “You have too many men. I cannot deliver Midian into their hands, or Israel would boast against me, ‘My own strength has saved me.’”
So, under God’s guidance, the general told some of his soldiers to go home. Then, he sent some more, and then even more. In the end – Gideon only had a few hundred men to go up against the tens of thousands of Midian. Of course, you know how the story ends – because they didn’t rely on their strength, but God’s, they sent the enemy packing.
Now, some Biblical scholars dismiss these “exaggerated” numbers – talking about how clearly impossible such an outcome could be. But – that’s the whole point, isn’t it? God is in the business of handling the impossible.
So when you are clearly “outnumbered” remember – it’s not about your strength or wisdom – it’s all about God’s – that leads to victory. Don’t waste time counting whose on “your” side and who isn’t because, if you are in God’s will, God is. And that’s all that matters.
Prayer: Almighty God, in the battles of life – personal and otherwise – lead me to rely on you – and you alone. AMEN.