Gideon & Abimelech
A. Review of the time leading up to the Judges:
- Deuteronomy 20:16-18: Israel is commanded to eliminate the “giants” from the promised land.
- By the time of Gideon, Israel was into their sixth or seventh generation since the Exodus from Egypt.
- The “judges” were scattered throughout the promised land and battled different foes.
B. This passage of Judges can be divided into five main sections:
- Gideon’s follow-on battle with the Midianites (8:1-21)
- Gideon’s ephod and his death (8:22-35)
- Abimelech’s conspiracy and rise to power (9:1-21)
- The downfall of Abimelech (9:22-57)
- Two other judges ruled for a period of 45 years (10:1-5)
C. Key passages in this section of Judges (8:1-10:5)
- Gideon defeats the Midianites and then creates an ephod (8:22-28)
- Soon after Gideon’s death the Israelites “forget their God” (8:33-35)
- Jotham is used to place a curse on Abimelech and his supporters. It is later fulfilled (9:19-21; 9:52-57)
D. How do I apply this passage to my life today?
- Remember your God. Do not forget what He has done for you (Judges 8:34).
- Just as God rightly avenged Abimelech (Judges 9:52-57), God will one day rightly avenge all the wrongdoing on this earth (Jeremiah 51:6; Romans 12:19). It is His task. Leave that job to Him. We are to continue to love as He calls us to.
- We must resist the temptation to be ruled over or taken care of (Judges 8:22-23). Our dependency needs to be in God alone.
- There is to be no mixture in our lives. We are to drive out all the “giants” in our land (Deut. 20:16-18).