Judges 7:1-8

Early in the morning, Jerub-Baal (that is, Gideon) and all his men camped at the spring of Harod. The camp of Midian was north of them in the valley near the hill of Moreh. 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.’ Now announce to the army, ‘Anyone who trembles with fear may turn back and leave Mount Gilead.’” So twenty-two thousand men left, while ten thousand remained.

But the Lord said to Gideon, “There are still too many men. Take them down to the water, and I will thin them out for you there. If I say, ‘This one shall go with you,’ he shall go; but if I say, ‘This one shall not go with you,’ he shall not go.”

So Gideon took the men down to the water. There the Lord told him, “Separate those who lap the water with their tongues as a dog laps from those who kneel down to drink.” Three hundred of them drank from cupped hands, lapping like dogs. All the rest got down on their knees to drink.

The Lord said to Gideon, “With the three hundred men that lapped I will save you and give the Midianites into your hands. Let all the others go home.” So Gideon sent the rest of the Israelites home but kept the three hundred, who took over the provisions and trumpets of the others.

Now the camp of Midian lay below him in the valley.

Listening guide

“I’ll do it myself.”  

Gideon = least likely to succeed at Ophrah High 

We need _______________ for _____________. 

Strength often breeds ______________ and ______________. 

God makes ____________ those who give up their __________. 

Discussion questions

  1. “I’ll do it myself.” When do you most often find yourself saying this? Is it a good plan?  

  2. Skim Judges 6, 7, and 8. Summarize the story of Gideon.  

  3. The external idolatry in Gideon’s life is pretty obvious. How would you describe the idolatry of his heart?  

  4. Gideon must have been terrified to go to war with only 32,000 men against 135,000. I have to imagine his terror increased when he only had 300. When have you experienced something similar in your own life?  

  5. It’s almost always easy to see in retrospect when we have relied on our own strength. How can we learn to see it in the moment and so avoid doing it?  

  6. How is Gideon’s victory over the Midianites a picture of the gospel?  

  7. How we can get God’s power in our weakness?  

  8. Judges 8:28-35 What is the sad ending of Gideon’s story? How does that serve as a reminder for all of our lives?