he sent them a prophet,1 who said, "This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: I brought you up out of Egypt,2 out of the land of slavery.39
I snatched you from the power of Egypt and from the hand of all your oppressors.4 I drove them from before you and gave you their land.510
I said to you, 'I am the LORD your God; do not worship6 the gods of the Amorites,7 in whose land you live.' But you have not listened to me."
The angel of the LORD 8 came and sat down under the oak in Ophrah9 that belonged to Joash10 the Abiezrite,11 where his son Gideon12 was threshing13 wheat in a winepress14 to keep it from the Midianites.
When the angel of the LORD appeared to Gideon, he said, "The LORD is with you,15 mighty warrior.16"
"But sir," Gideon replied, "if the LORD is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all his wonders17 that our fathers told18 us about when they said, 'Did not the LORD bring us up out of Egypt?' But now the LORD has abandoned19 us and put us into the hand of Midian."
The LORD turned to him and said, "Go in the strength you have20 and save21 Israel out of Midian's hand. Am I not sending you?"
"But Lord,a " Gideon asked, "how can I save Israel? My clan22 is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.23"
The LORD answered, "I will be with you24, and you will strike down all the Midianites together."
Gideon replied, "If now I have found favor in your eyes, give me a sign25 that it is really you talking to me.
Please do not go away until I come back and bring my offering and set it before you." And the LORD said, "I will wait until you return."