Judges 6 NCV/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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1 Again the Israelites did what the Lord said was wrong. So for seven years the Lord handed them over to Midian. 1 Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD, and for seven years he gave them into the hands of the Midianites.
2 Because the Midianites were very powerful and were cruel to Israel, the Israelites made hiding places in the mountains, in caves, and in safe places. 2 Because the power of Midian was so oppressive, the Israelites prepared shelters for themselves in mountain clefts, caves and strongholds.
3 Whenever the Israelites planted crops, the Midianites, Amalekites, and other peoples from the east would come and attack them. 3 Whenever the Israelites planted their crops, the Midianites, Amalekites and other eastern peoples invaded the country.
4 They camped in the land and destroyed the crops that the Israelites had planted as far away as Gaza. They left nothing for Israel to eat, and no sheep, cattle, or donkeys. 4 They camped on the land and ruined the crops all the way to Gaza and did not spare a living thing for Israel, neither sheep nor cattle nor donkeys.
5 The Midianites came with their tents and their animals like swarms of locusts to ruin the land. There were so many people and camels they could not be counted. 5 They came up with their livestock and their tents like swarms of locusts. It was impossible to count the men and their camels; they invaded the land to ravage it.
6 Israel became very poor because of the Midianites, so they cried out to the Lord. 6 Midian so impoverished the Israelites that they cried out to the LORD for help.
7 When the Israelites cried out to the Lord against the Midianites, 7 When the Israelites cried to the LORD because of Midian,
8 the Lord sent a prophet to them. He said, "This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: I brought you out of Egypt, the land of slavery. 8 he sent them a prophet, who said, "This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: I brought you up out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
9 I saved you from the Egyptians and from all those who were against you. I forced the Canaanites out of their land and gave it to you. 9 I snatched you from the power of Egypt and from the hand of all your oppressors. I drove them from before you and gave you their land.
10 Then I said to you, 'I am the Lord your God. Live in the land of the Amorites, but do not worship their gods.' But you did not obey me." 10 I said to you, 'I am the LORD your God; do not worship the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you live.' But you have not listened to me."
11 The angel of the Lord came and sat down under the oak tree at Ophrah that belonged to Joash, one of the Abiezrite people. Gideon, Joash's son, was separating some wheat from the chaff in a winepress to keep the wheat from the Midianites. 11 The angel of the LORD came and sat down under the oak in Ophrah that belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, where his son Gideon was threshing wheat in a winepress to keep it from the Midianites.
12 The angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon and said, "The Lord is with you, mighty warrior!" 12 When the angel of the LORD appeared to Gideon, he said, "The LORD is with you, mighty warrior."
13 Then Gideon said, "Sir, if the Lord is with us, why are we having so much trouble? Where are the miracles our ancestors told us he did when the Lord brought them out of Egypt? But now he has left us and has handed us over to the Midianites." 13 "But sir," Gideon replied, "if the LORD is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all his wonders that our fathers told us about when they said, 'Did not the LORD bring us up out of Egypt?' But now the LORD has abandoned us and put us into the hand of Midian."
14 The Lord turned to Gideon and said, "Go with your strength and save Israel from the Midianites. I am the one who is sending you." 14 The LORD turned to him and said, "Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian's hand. Am I not sending you?"
15 But Gideon answered, "Lord, how can I save Israel? My family group is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least important member of my family." 15 "But Lord, " Gideon asked, "how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family."
16 The Lord answered him, "I will be with you. It will seem as if the Midianites you are fighting are only one man." 16 The LORD answered, "I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midianites together."
17 Then Gideon said to the Lord, "If you are pleased with me, give me proof that it is really you talking with me. 17 Gideon replied, "If now I have found favor in your eyes, give me a sign that it is really you talking to me.
18 Please wait here until I come back to you. Let me bring my offering and set it in front of you." And the Lord said, "I will wait until you return." 18 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."
19 So Gideon went in and cooked a young goat, and with twenty quarts of flour, made bread without yeast. Then he put the meat into a basket and the broth into a pot. He brought them out and gave them to the angel under the oak tree. 19 Gideon went in, prepared a young goat, and from an ephah of flour he made bread without yeast. Putting the meat in a basket and its broth in a pot, he brought them out and offered them to him under the oak.
20 The angel of God said to Gideon, "Put the meat and the bread without yeast on that rock over there. Then pour the broth on them." And Gideon did as he was told. 20 The angel of God said to him, "Take the meat and the unleavened bread, place them on this rock, and pour out the broth." And Gideon did so.
21 The angel of the Lord touched the meat and the bread with the end of the stick that was in his hand. Then fire jumped up from the rock and completely burned up the meat and the bread! And the angel of the Lord disappeared! 21 With the tip of the staff that was in his hand, the angel of the LORD touched the meat and the unleavened bread. Fire flared from the rock, consuming the meat and the bread. And the angel of the LORD disappeared.
22 Then Gideon understood he had been talking to the angel of the Lord. So Gideon cried out, "Lord God! I have seen the angel of the Lord face to face!" 22 When Gideon realized that it was the angel of the LORD, he exclaimed, "Ah, Sovereign LORD! I have seen the angel of the LORD face to face!"
23 But the Lord said to Gideon, "Calm down! Don't be afraid! You will not die!" 23 But the LORD said to him, "Peace! Do not be afraid. You are not going to die."
24 So Gideon built an altar there to worship the Lord and named it The Lord Is Peace. It still stands at Ophrah, where the Abiezrites live. 24 So Gideon built an altar to the LORD there and called it The LORD is Peace. To this day it stands in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
25 That same night the Lord said to Gideon, "Take the bull that belongs to your father and a second bull seven years old. Pull down your father's altar to Baal, and cut down the Asherah idol beside it. 25 That same night the LORD said to him, "Take the second bull from your father's herd, the one seven years old. Tear down your father's altar to Baal and cut down the Asherah pole beside it.
26 Then build an altar to the Lord your God with its stones in the right order on this high ground. Kill and burn a second bull on this altar, using the wood from the Asherah idol." 26 Then build a proper kind of altar to the LORD your God on the top of this height. Using the wood of the Asherah pole that you cut down, offer the second bull as a burnt offering."
27 So Gideon got ten of his servants and did what the Lord had told him to do. But Gideon was afraid that his family and the men of the city might see him, so he did it at night, not in the daytime. 27 So Gideon took ten of his servants and did as the LORD told him. But because he was afraid of his family and the men of the town, he did it at night rather than in the daytime.
28 When the men of the city got up the next morning, they saw that the altar for Baal had been destroyed and that the Asherah idol beside it had been cut down! They also saw the altar Gideon had built and the second bull that had been sacrificed on it. 28 In the morning when the men of the town got up, there was Baal's altar, demolished, with the Asherah pole beside it cut down and the second bull sacrificed on the newly built altar!
29 The men of the city asked each other, "Who did this?" After they asked many questions, someone told them, "Gideon son of Joash did this." 29 They asked each other, "Who did this?" When they carefully investigated, they were told, "Gideon son of Joash did it."
30 So they said to Joash, "Bring your son out. He has pulled down the altar of Baal and cut down the Asherah idol beside it. He must die!" 30 The men of the town demanded of Joash, "Bring out your son. He must die, because he has broken down Baal's altar and cut down the Asherah pole beside it."
31 But Joash said to the angry crowd around him, "Are you going to take Baal's side? Are you going to defend him? Anyone who takes Baal's side will be killed by morning! If Baal is a god, let him fight for himself. It's his altar that has been pulled down." 31 But Joash replied to the hostile crowd around him, "Are you going to plead Baal's cause? Are you trying to save him? Whoever fights for him shall be put to death by morning! If Baal really is a god, he can defend himself when someone breaks down his altar."
32 So on that day Gideon got the name Jerub-Baal, which means "let Baal fight against him," because Gideon pulled down Baal's altar. 32 So that day they called Gideon "Jerub-Baal," saying, "Let Baal contend with him," because he broke down Baal's altar.
33 All the Midianites, the Amalekites, and other peoples from the east joined together and came across the Jordan River and camped in the Valley of Jezreel. 33 Now all the Midianites, Amalekites and other eastern peoples joined forces and crossed over the Jordan and camped in the Valley of Jezreel.
34 But the Spirit of the Lord entered Gideon, and he blew a trumpet to call the Abiezrites to follow him. 34 Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon Gideon, and he blew a trumpet, summoning the Abiezrites to follow him.
35 He sent messengers to all of Manasseh, calling them to follow him. He also sent messengers to the people of Asher, Zebulun, and Naphtali. So they also went up to meet Gideon and his men. 35 He sent messengers throughout Manasseh, calling them to arms, and also into Asher, Zebulun and Naphtali, so that they too went up to meet them.
36 Then Gideon said to God, "You said you would help me save Israel. 36 Gideon said to God, "If you will save Israel by my hand as you have promised--
37 I will put some wool on the threshing floor. If there is dew only on the wool but all of the ground is dry, then I will know that you will use me to save Israel, as you said." 37 look, I will place a wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there is dew only on the fleece and all the ground is dry, then I will know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you said."
38 And that is just what happened. When Gideon got up early the next morning and squeezed the wool, he got a full bowl of water from it. 38 And that is what happened. Gideon rose early the next day; he squeezed the fleece and wrung out the dew--a bowlful of water.
39 Then Gideon said to God, "Don't be angry with me if I ask just one more thing. Please let me make one more test. Let only the wool be dry while the ground around it gets wet with dew." 39 Then Gideon said to God, "Do not be angry with me. Let me make just one more request. Allow me one more test with the fleece. This time make the fleece dry and the ground covered with dew."
40 That night God did that very thing. Just the wool was dry, but the ground around it was wet with dew. 40 That night God did so. Only the fleece was dry; all the ground was covered with dew.