And when the men of the city arose early in the morning, behold, the altar of Baal was cast down, and the grove was cut down that was by it, and the second bullock was offered upon the altar that was built. 29 And they said one to another, Who hath done this thing? And when they enquired and asked, they said, Gideon the son of Joash hath done this thing. (Judges 6:28-29)Here we see the single action of obedience to Yahuweh that brought notoriety to Gideon among his neighbours, and also gives us an important prophetic picture of the Bride. In this passage we see that Gideon reveals the Overcomer quality of the Bride.
Gideon: The Removal of IdolatryHere, Gideon shows us the Bride's willingness to break down, to destroy, and remove all the graven images and idols in her life, even at the expense of a ruined reputation among her peers. What many consider mere toys, or art objects, or figurines — the Bride considers graven images and idols. She will not "make, have, or acquire" them, as the Scriptures teach. Neither will she even bring them into her house, lest her house fall under the same curse the item is under [See Exodus 20:4; Deut 7:26, and study the meanings of the Hebrew word <06213> "asah"].
As a result of Gideon's obedience in removing the stronghold of Idolatry in the Land, we see that Yahuweh then begins to use Gideon to bring deliverance to the rest of Yahuweh's people. We see next that Gideon goes through a time of testing the word of Yahuweh, and then Gideon gathers an army. We will then notice that Yahuweh tests Gideon's army.
As we look at Gideon's army, we see that it is composed of thirty-two thousand men:
And the LORD said unto Gideon, The people that are with thee are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel vaunt themselves against me, saying, Mine own hand hath saved me. (Judges 7:2)
Now therefore go to, proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, Whosoever is fearful and afraid, let him return and depart early from mount Gilead. And there returned of the people twenty and two thousand; and there remained ten thousand. (Judges 7:3)Notice in the above passage, how the original army of 32,000 is separated into two parts, by selective removal of certain soldiers, based on certain of their personal qualities. Notice next what happens next to the 10,000 that remained:
And the LORD said unto Gideon, The people are yet too many; bring them down unto the water, and I will try [test] them for thee there: and it shall be, that of whom I say unto thee, This shall go with thee, the same shall go with thee; and of whomsoever I say unto thee, This shall not go with thee, the same shall not go. (Judges 7:4)In the above passage, we see that it is Yahuweh's choice as to who goes, and who does not go, based on His testing.
So he brought down the people unto the water: and the LORD said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink. (Judges 7:5)
And the number of them that lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, were three hundred men: but all the rest of the people bowed down upon their knees to drink water. (Judges 7:6)
And the LORD said unto Gideon, By the three hundred men that lapped will I save you, and deliver the Midianites into thine hand: and let all the other people go every man unto his place. (Judges 7:7)Now we see a further separation. The 10,000 are separated into two groups, one group of 300 men, another of 9,700 men. This separation was made based on some action the men took, and even Gideon did not know beforehand which group was which. We can see it was the natural inclination of some to drink the water one way, but of others to drink another way. Each man made a choice as to how he would drink. Notice that Yahuweh chose them based on their actions.
At the future separating out of the Bride harvest, it will be exactly the same — but in reverse order from how Gideon's men were separated. In the Bride Harvest, the remnant representative 300 of the Bride will be removed first; then the 9,700 will be separated out, and finally the 22,000. Just as Gideon did not have three armies, but only one; so the harvest separations will be 3 separate phases of the one Harvest.
Dear Reader, might these separations be seen as a parallel to the separation of the Wise Believers from the Foolish Believers — and then a final separation of the teeming multitude of non-Believers? Might these separations be prophetically related?
The final piece of the Gideon puzzle appears in verse 13:
And when Gideon was come, behold, there was a man that told a dream unto his fellow, and said, Behold, I dreamed a dream, and, lo, a cake [loaf] of barley bread tumbled into the host of Midian, and came unto a tent, and smote it that it fell, and overturned it, that the tent lay along. (Judges 7:13)In the above passage we will note two things that speak of the Bride-Company.
First, the the Midianite soldier's dream is a prophetic picture of Gideon's army, seen as a Barley loaf tumbling into, and smiting the army of Midian. Barley speaks of the Firstfruit of the harvest, and the Company of many Believers are seen prophetically as 'one unleavened [azumos] bread [artos] loaf,' just as the apostle Paul describes in two passages (1Corinthians 5:7, 10:17).
This prophetic picture tells us that they who, like Gideon, first remove the idolatry from their lives, are those who will be able to overcome, and to receive Messiah's promises to those who overcome, as given in (Rev 2:7 through 3:21).
Second, we can learn from the chapter and verse numbers. We have learned from Prophetic Numbers In Scripture that even these numbers are "flags" or indicators in themselves. Even though these numbers have been assigned by men, many years later than the original writings. Nevertheless, they were overseen and arranged by Yahuweh, the true Author of the Scriptures. Even the chapter and verse numbers are used to "flag" Scriptures for the Bride-Candidates.
The chapter number 7, along with the verse number 13, together with the mention of the Firstfruit grain Barley, confirms that this passage is of great importance to the Bride's preparation. The number 7 speaks of the preparation, or perfecting, of the Bride; The number 13 speaks of love, and together speak of the perfecting of love within the Bride.
These items, within the context of Midian, Barley, and the loaf, all speak of the overcoming victory that Yahuweh will bring for the Bride Company, even to overcoming the last enemy of Death. For we have been told that Love is stronger than — and prevails over — Death (See Song 8:6).
ConclusionWe have seen how Gideon obtained the victory, after removing the stronghold of idolatry from his house. We have also seen how the multiple separations of Gideon's army speak prophetically of the separation of Believers today, based on their individual actions. We see also a parallel separation between the Wise Believers from the Foolish Believers, between those who overcome, and those who do not.
Beloved, the Bridegroom is calling all Believers to prepare, and to overcome. Let us begin our preparation to overcome, by removing the many idolatries we practice unknowingly in our daily lives.
Only after we break down these idols, and begin to walk in obedience to Messiah, can we obtain the full victory — even as Gideon, and his army of 300!