Judges Chapter 7  PDF  MSWord

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Go to Commentary on Judg 7
 
The Selection of Gideon’s Army

1Then Jerubbaal, who is Gideon, and all the people who were with him rose up early and encamped beside the spring of Harod, and the camp of Midian was on the north side of them by the hill of Moreh in the plain.
  2And Yahweh said to Gideon, “The people who are with you are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hand, lest Israel glorify themselves over me, saying, ‘My own hand has saved me.’
  3So now proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, ‘Whoever is fearful and trembling, let him return and depart from Mount Gilead.’” 22,000 of the people returned and 10,000 remained.
 

4Yahweh said to Gideon, “The people are still too many. Bring them down to the water and I will separate them for you there. And he of whom I say to you, ‘This one can go with you,’ he will go with you; and of whomever I say to you, ‘This one cannot go with you,’ he cannot go.”
  5So he brought down the people to the water and Yahweh said to Gideon, “You are to separate everyone who laps of the water with his tongue like a dog laps, as well as everyone who bows down on his knees to drink.”
  6Now the number of those who lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, was 300 men; but all the rest of the people bowed down on their knees to drink water.
  7And Yahweh said to Gideon, “By the 300 men who lapped will I save you and give the Midianites into your hand. Let all the other people go, each to his own place.”
  8So they took the people’s food in their hand, and their shofars, and he sent all the men of Israel, each one, to his tent, but retained the 300 men. And the camp of Midian was beneath him in the plain.
 

Gideon Spies on the Midianite Camp

9And it came to pass the same night, that Yahweh said to him, “Arise, go down against the camp, for I have given it into your hand.
  10But if you are afraid to go down and attack, you go down with Purah your servant to the camp
  11and hear what they say, and afterward your hands will be strengthened to go down against the camp.” Then he went down with Purah his servant to the edge of the armed men who were in the camp.
 

12Now the Midianites and the Amalekites and all the children of the east had settled in the plain like locusts in abundance, and their camels were without number, like the sand that is on the seashore in abundance.
  13When Gideon had come, behold, a man was telling a dream to his friend, and he said, “Behold, I dreamed a dream, and behold, a loaf of barley bread tumbled into the camp of Midian and came to the tent and struck it and it fell. And it turned it upside down, and the tent fell down.”
 

14His friend answered, “This is none other than the sword of Gideon the son of Joash, a man of Israel. God has given into his hand Midian and all the camp.”
 

15And it came to pass when Gideon heard the telling of the dream and its interpretation, that he bowed down in worship; and he returned to the camp of Israel and said, “Arise, for Yahweh has given the camp of Midian into your hand!”
  16And he divided the 300 men into three companies, and he put into the hands of all of them shofars and empty jugs, with torches inside the jugs.
 

17And he said to them, “Watch me and do likewise. Behold, when I come to the edge of the camp, as I do, you must do also.
  18When I blow the shofar, I and all who are with me, then you also are to blow the shofars all around the entire camp and shout, ‘For Yahweh and for Gideon!’”
 

Gideon Defeats Midian

19So Gideon and the 100 men who were with him came to the edge of the camp in the beginning of the middle watch, when they had just set the watch; and they blew the shofars and broke in pieces the jugs that were in their hands.
  20The three companies blew the shofars and broke the jugs; and they held the torches in their left hands and in their right hands held the shofars to blow; and they shouted, “A sword for Yahweh and for Gideon!”
  21They each stood in his place around the camp, and all the army ran: they cried out and fled.
  22And they blew the 300 shofars, and Yahweh set every man’s sword against his fellow and against all the army; and the army fled as far as Beth-shittah toward Zererah, as far as the border of Abel-meholah by Tabbath.
  23And the men of Israel were gathered together out of Naphtali and out of Asher and out of all Manasseh, and pursued after Midian.
 

24Gideon sent messengers throughout all the hill country of Ephraim, saying, “Come down against Midian and capture the fords ahead of them as far as Beth-barah, even the Jordan!” So all the men of Ephraim were gathered together and captured the fords as far as Beth-barah, even the Jordan.
  25And they captured the two commanders of Midian, Oreb and Zeeb, and they killed Oreb at the rock of Oreb and Zeeb they killed at the winepress of Zeeb. And they pursued Midian, and they brought the heads of Oreb and Zeeb to Gideon beyond the Jordan.
 


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