Gideon’s dad comes through

(Click here for a video of John reading this Catch.)


In some ways, what Gideon had to do before he ever went after the enemy from without was the hardest thing of all. He had to defeat the enemy from within. The enemy from within consisted of the local pagan idols the children of Israel had adopted as their own — the stone Baal and the wooden Asherah pole that his clan had erected atop their designated hill of worship. This was obviously an abomination to God and had to be removed before God would give them any success against their enemies less they think the power to win a victory had come from the false gods. So God gave Gideon specific instructions to smash the Baal, build an altar to the Lord out of the stones, cut up the Asherah pole and use it for wood, and sacrifice a bull on the reconstructed altar to the God of Israel. Gideon did all that under cover of darkness, not because he feared Baal, but he feared his family’s reaction — proof of the fact that idols have no power but the power that we give them.

Sure enough, when the rest of the clan found out what had happened, they went to Gideon’s house intent on killing him, and this is where Gideon’s dad, Joash, came through big time. Joash totally shut down the mob that confronted his house by shouting, “Why are you defending Baal? Will you argue his case? … If Baal truly is a god, let him defend himself and destroy the one who broke down his altar!” And when nothing happened, they gave Gideon a new name, Jerub-baal, which means “Let Baal defend himself.” Imagine your name coinciding with the name of an ineffective false god. Gideon was walking proof of the powerlessness of idols. The first step in freeing his people from the Midianites was freeing them from the imaginary power of false gods. 

Who or what do you give power to in your life that you need to break free from. Is it money or lack of it (that’s mine)? Is it a person? Is it power or influence? Is it an addiction? Whatever it is, tear it down and see if it can defend itself without you propping it up. Gideon’s dad was onto something.


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3 Responses to Gideon’s dad comes through

  1. John A Fagliano says:

    Jerub-money? Not sure about that name. It’s not that money is the root of all sorts of evil, but the love of money is. Just like Baal wasn’t evil (he wasn’t anything at all) but the love of Baal was wrong. Idols aren’t bad till we love them more than God. When we do, we defend them a lot. They can’t defend themselves, not as gods, and not without our help.

    What about defending the true God? When doubters question His goodness we tend to want to do that, but is God asking us to be His attorneys? Is He on trial? He once was and He stood without counsel. Jesus never blamed His crucifixion on people not defending Him. It needed to happen and no one understood why. If we don’t understand all of the why’s today we shouldn’t be too concerned because God will always rise and defend himself. Just like He did to Saul who became Paul. And yet the irony is Jesus did not need too defend himself. His glory did that just fine. Instead it was Jesus who asked “Why” and asked Saul to defend his actions.

    God still asks “Why” to everyone who is against Him. They will need to defend themselves and their idols and like Saul, they will have nothing to say. Then, when they have their names changed they will speak of the true God, not in His defense, but in praise of Him.

  2. Toni Petrella says:

    I have always believed that false Gods and or idols were kind of creepy. I am so thankful each day we have the real deal and he will be with us always. Take care, God Bless, and thanks for a great message.

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