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Judges 7; Judges 8; Luke 5:1-16

1 Jerubbaal (that is, Gideon) and everyone who was with him, got up early and camped beside the spring of Harod. The camp of Midian was north of them, below the hill of Moreh, in the valley. 2 The Lord said to Gideon, "You have too many people for Me to hand the Midianites over to you, or else Israel might brag: 'I did it myself.' 3 Now announce in the presence of the people: 'Whoever is fearful and trembling may turn back and leave Mount Gilead.' " So 22,000 of the people turned back, but 10,000 remained. 4 Then the Lord said to Gideon, "There are still too many people. Take them down to the water, and I will test them for you there. If I say to you, 'This one can go with you,' he can go. But if I say about anyone, 'This one cannot go with you,' he cannot go." 5 So he brought the people down to the water, and the Lord said to Gideon, "Separate everyone who laps water with his tongue like a dog. Do the same with everyone who kneels to drink." 6 The number of those who lapped with their hands to their mouths was 300 men, and all the rest of the people knelt to drink water. 7 The Lord said to Gideon, "I will deliver you with the 300 men who lapped and hand the Midianites over to you. But everyone else is to go home." 8 So Gideon sent all the Israelites to their tents, but kept the 300 who took the people's provisions and their trumpets. The camp of Midian was below him in the valley. 9 That night the Lord said to him, "Get up and go into the camp, for I have given it into your hand. 10 But if you are afraid to go to the camp, go with Purah your servant. 11 Listen to what they say, and then you will be strengthened to go to the camp." So he went with Purah his servant to the outpost of the troops who were in the camp. 12 Now the Midianites, Amalekites, and all the Qedemites had settled down in the valley like a swarm of locusts, and their camels were as innumerable as the sand on the seashore. 13 When Gideon arrived, there was a man telling his friend [about] a dream. He said, "Listen, I had a dream: a loaf of barley bread came tumbling into the Midianite camp, struck a tent, and it fell. The loaf turned the tent upside down so that it collapsed." 14 His friend answered: "This is nothing less than the sword of Gideon son of Joash, the Israelite. God has handed the entire Midianite camp over to him." 15 When Gideon heard the account of the dream and its interpretation, he bowed in worship. He returned to Israel's camp and said, "Get up, for the Lord has handed the Midianite camp over to you." 16 Then he divided the 300 men into three companies and gave each of the men a trumpet in one hand and an empty pitcher with a torch inside it [in the other]. 17 "Watch me," he said, "and do the same. When I come to the outpost of the camp, do as I do. 18 When I and everyone with me blow our trumpets, you are also to blow your trumpets all around the camp. Then you will say, 'The sword of the Lord and of Gideon!' " 19 Gideon and the 100 men who were with him went to the outpost of the camp at the beginning of the middle watch after the sentries had been stationed. They blew their trumpets and broke the pitchers that were in their hands. 20 The three companies blew their trumpets and shattered their pitchers. They held their torches in their left hands, their trumpets in their right hands, and shouted, "The sword of the Lord and of Gideon!" 21 Each Israelite took his position around the camp, and the entire [Midianite] army fled, and cried out as they ran. 22 When Gideon's men blew their 300 trumpets, the Lord set the swords of each man in the army against each other. They fled to Beth-shittah in the direction of Zererah as far as the border of Abel-meholah near Tabbath. 23 Then the men of Israel were called from Naphtali, Asher, and Manasseh, and they pursued the Midianites. 24 Gideon sent messengers throughout the hill country of Ephraim with this message: "Come down to intercept the Midianites and take control of the watercourses ahead of them as far as Beth-barah and the Jordan." So all the men of Ephraim were called out, and they took control of the watercourses as far as Beth-barah and the Jordan. 25 They captured Oreb and Zeeb, the two princes of Midian; they killed Oreb at the rock of Oreb and Zeeb at the winepress of Zeeb, while they were pursuing the Midianites. They brought the heads of Oreb and Zeeb to Gideon across the Jordan.
1 The men of Ephraim said to him, "Why have you done this to us, not calling us when you went to fight against the Midianites?" And they argued with him violently. 2 So he said to them, "What have I done now compared to you? Is not the gleaning of Ephraim better than the vintage of Abiezer? 3 God handed over to you Oreb and Zeeb, the two princes of Midian. What was I able to do compared to you?" When he said this, their anger against him subsided. 4 Gideon and the 300 men came to the Jordan and crossed it. They were exhausted, but still in pursuit. 5 He said to the men of Succoth, "Please give some loaves of bread to the people who are following me, because they are exhausted, for I am pursuing Zebah and Zalmunna, the kings of Midian." 6 But the princes of Succoth asked, "Are Zebah and Zalmunna now in your hands that we should give bread to your army?" 7 Gideon replied, "Very well, when the Lord has handed Zebah and Zalmunna over to me, I will trample your flesh on thorns and briers from the wilderness!" 8 He went from there to Penuel and asked the same thing from them. The men of Penuel answered just as the men of Succoth had answered. 9 He also told the men of Penuel, "When I return in peace, I will tear down this tower!" 10 Now Zebah and Zalmunna were in Karkor, and with them was their army of about 15,000 men, who were all those left of the entire army of the Qedemites. Those who had been killed were 120,000 warriors. 11 Gideon traveled on the caravan route, east of Nobah and Jogbehah, and attacked their army while the army was unsuspecting. 12 Zebah and Zalmunna fled, and he pursued them. He captured these two kings of Midian and routed the entire army. 13 Gideon son of Joash returned from the battle by the ascent of Heres. 14 He captured a youth from the men of Succoth and interrogated him. The youth wrote down for him the [names of the] 77 princes and elders of Succoth. 15 Then he went to the men of Succoth and said, "Here are Zebah and Zalmunna. You taunted me about them, saying, 'Are Zebah and Zalmunna now in your power that we should give bread to your exhausted men?' " 16 So he took the elders of the city, as well as some thorns and briers from the wilderness, and he disciplined the men of Succoth with them. 17 He also tore down the tower of Penuel and killed the men of the city. 18 He asked Zebah and Zalmunna, "What kind of men did you kill at Tabor?" "They were like you," they said. "Each resembled the son of a king." 19 So he said, "They were my brothers, the sons of my mother! As the Lord lives, if you had let them live, I would not kill you." 20 Then he said to Jether, his firstborn, "Get up and kill them." The youth did not draw his sword, because he was afraid, for he was still a youth. 21 Zebah and Zalmunna said, "Get up and kill us yourself, for a man is judged by his strength." So Gideon got up, killed Zebah and Zalmunna, and took the crescent ornaments that were on the necks of their camels. 22 Then the Israelites said to Gideon, "Rule over us, you as well as your sons and your grandsons, for you delivered us from the power of Midian." 23 But Gideon said to them, "I will not rule over you, and my son will not rule over you; the Lord will rule over you." 24 Then he said to them, "Let me make a request of you: Everyone give me an earring from his plunder." Now the enemy had gold earrings because they were Ishmaelites. 25 They said, "We agree to give them." So they spread out a mantle, and everyone threw an earring from his plunder on it. 26 The weight of the gold earrings he requested was about 43 pounds of gold, in addition to the crescent ornaments and ear pendants, the purple garments on the kings of Midian, and the chains on the necks of their camels. 27 Gideon made an ephod from all this and put it in Ophrah, his hometown. Then all Israel prostituted themselves with it there, and it became a snare to Gideon and his household. 28 So Midian was subdued before the Israelites, and they were no longer a threat. The land was peaceful 40 years during the days of Gideon. 29 Jerubbaal [(that is, Gideon)] son of Joash went back to live at his house. 30 Gideon had 70 sons, his own offspring, since he had many wives. 31 His concubine who was in Shechem also bore him a son, and he named him Abimelech. 32 Then Gideon son of Joash died at a ripe old age and was buried in the tomb of his father Joash in Ophrah of the Abiezrites. 33 When Gideon died, the Israelites turned and prostituted themselves with the Baals and made Baal-berith their god. 34 The Israelites did not remember the Lord their God who had delivered them from the power of the enemies around them. 35 They did not show kindness to the house of Jerubbaal ([that is,] Gideon) for all the good he had done for Israel.
1 As the crowd was pressing in on Jesus to hear God's word, He was standing by Lake Gennesaret. 2 He saw two boats at the edge of the lake; the fishermen had left them and were washing their nets. 3 He got into one of the boats, which belonged to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from the land. Then He sat down and was teaching the crowds from the boat. 4 When He had finished speaking, He said to Simon, "Put out into deep water and let down your nets for a catch." 5 "Master," Simon replied, "we've worked hard all night long and caught nothing! But at Your word, I'll let down the nets." 6 When they did this, they caught a great number of fish, and their nets began to tear. 7 So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them; they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink. 8 When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus' knees and said, "Go away from me, because I'm a sinful man, Lord!" 9 For he and all those with him were amazed at the catch of fish they took, 10 and so were James and John, Zebedee's sons, who were Simon's partners. "Don't be afraid," Jesus told Simon. "From now on you will be catching people!" 11 Then they brought the boats to land, left everything, and followed Him. 12 While He was in one of the towns, a man was there who had a serious skin disease all over him. He saw Jesus, fell facedown, and begged Him: "Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean." 13 Reaching out His hand, He touched him, saying, "I am willing; be made clean," and immediately the disease left him. 14 Then He ordered him to tell no one: "But go and show yourself to the priest, and offer what Moses prescribed for your cleansing as a testimony to them." 15 But the news about Him spread even more, and large crowds would come together to hear Him and to be healed of their sicknesses. 16 Yet He often withdrew to deserted places and prayed.
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