Daily Encouragement

April 28 – Gideon, Abimelech, and Shechem

Judges 8:18-9:21
Luke 23:44-24:12
Psalm 99:1-9
Proverbs 14:9-10

Judges 8:27 — John MacArthur says Gideon’s intentions were good with this ephod:

This was certainly a sad end to Gideon’s influence as he, perhaps in an expression of pride, sought to lift himself up in the eyes of the people. Gideon intended nothing more than to make a breastplate as David did (1 Chr. 15:27 to indicate civil, not priestly, rule. It was never intended to set up idolatrous worship, but to be a symbol of civil power. That no evil was intended can be noted from the subduing of Midian (v. 28), quietness from wars (v. 28), and the fact that idolatry came after Gideon’s death (v. 33), as well as the commendation of Gideon (v. 35).

Judges 8:30 — Even though Gideon did not want to be king (Judges 8:23), he should have hearkened to the command of Deuteronomy 17:17.

Judges 9:1 — We have secular records referencing Lab’ayu, the King of Shechem, that indicate collaboration between the Israelites and the Shechemites. From the Associates for Biblical Archaeology:

A number of the Amarna Letters indicate that the Shechemites were working with the habiru/Israelites to expand their territory. Since Lab’ayu was a third generation ruler (EA 253), there was continuity in leadership from the time of the conquest. This could account for a continuing relationship between the Shechemites and the Israelites/habiru. We have three letters from the king of Shechem (EA 252-254). In one letter, Lab’ayu has a somewhat defiant tone, much different than the letters from the other city states (EA 252; Campbell 1965: 195-196; Hess 1993: 99). This, coupled with the fact that Shechem was fortified during this period, suggests that Shechem was somewhat independent of Egyptian control and was pursuing its own best interests.

Luke 24:6 — Christ the Lord is risen today!

Psalm 99:1 — The LORD is not just a friend; He is our reigning monarch! What does it mean when it says to let the people “tremble”? The original Hebrew word is “ragaz” which means “to be agitated, quiver, quake, be excited, perturbed.” Throughout this Psalm we are commanded to tremble, be moved, praise Him, exalt Him, and worship Him.

Proverbs 14:9 — What do Americans think about sin? From a 2021 Gallup survey:


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