My local women's Bible study just finished Gideon using the guide which is shown above.
[for a promo: click here]
The series of lessons was written and taught via DVD by Priscilla Shirer - a graduate from Dallas Theological Seminary in Biblical studies. But Priscilla describes herself as a wife and mom first though, in my opinion, she is a wonderful teacher. She connects with students - whether in a classroom setting or on the other side of TV screen - and really knows her stuff.
This Old Testament story still is relevant in the 21st century. Human nature - its weakness, warts and all - have not changed. And today, so many of us may feel like Gideon - small, insignificant, weak - especially when oppressed by powerful foes. But God uses our weaknesses as the key to tap into His resources and give us His strength to open the door to victory.
For a taste of the series, check out the clip below:
Now for, a few ...
Though the story takes up three chapters, Judges 6-8, there are riches to be mined here and timeless lessons to be learned. In these few short chapters, patterns appear that repeat themselves throughout Scripture and history.
* Gideon did well - at first - when he was aware of his weakness and totally depended on God, checking in frequently to do His will. Following God's instruction, Gideon with his band of 300 scored a great victory over the Midianites.
* And in the New Testament, St. Paul received a word from the Lord concerning his "torn in the flesh" -
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)
But after great victories, Gideon became a victim of his own success. Pride moved in. And it was the undoing of his family as we see in Judges 8 and the decline of the nation after Gideon's passing in Judges 9.
And Moses gave warning that this would happen:
11 Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day.
12 Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down,
13 and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied,
14 then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
Deuteronomy 8 (NIV)
And the people did not heed the warning as this same theme repeats itself in the Old Testament. After the judges, such as Gideon, came the kings - Saul, David, Solomon ... Some did well until they forgot God. And the same can be said for us as well as our nation.
This series is a timeless lesson for all us Gideons - unsure of ourselves, aware of weaknesses, afraid of the powerful who seem to oppress us. But as it says in that great chapter of Faith:
32 And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets,
33 who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions,
34 quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies.
Hebrews 8 (NIV)
If you have a chance, please check out this study, as we continue our journey in the ...
Recent posts in this series:
Biblia Files (part 1) - Thru the Bible (2013)
Biblia Files (part 2) - What is the Bible Basically About? (2013)
Photo from: amazon/Gideon