GIDEON’S 300: WHY A SMALL GROUP OF REAL CHRISTIANS IS ALWAYS BETTER THAN 32,000 PRETENDERS [Part 2: The Attack of the Midianites]
So Israel was brought very low because of Midian, and the sons of Israel cried to the LORD. [Judges 6:6]
For those of you who read Part 1 of this series, which is a prerequisite for Part 2 and future segments, you know we concluded on kind of a down note with an ending left hanging in the air. Therefore, the preceding quote from Judges 6:6, in standing on its own, will not convey the true meaning of this chapter or how it came to be that the Midianites took power and control over the Israelites. How did a heathen tribe of people opposing God take authority over the people of God?
For this, which I listed at the end of Part 1, we return to the opening verse of the Book of Judges Chapter 6:
Then the sons of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the LORD; and the LORD gave them into the hands of Midian seven years. [Judges 6:1]
And there you have it. The reason Midian rushed in and caused untold havoc over the Israelites is because God gave them authority over His own people to do that very thing. I could spend the next several paragraphs explaining this in much detail but in this instance it is better to simply get to the heart of the problem: The Israelites turned their back on God. They violated their covenant with God. They removed themselves from the yoke of God. They no longer wanted to be yoked together with a gentle God humble in heart in an easy yoke with a light burden that blessed them with peace, safety, and plenty. They rebelled against God and for planting the seed of rebellion against Him Israel got rebellion right back in its face.
So even though in one sense God gave them over to the Midianites, in another sense He allowed it because He could not do much about their obstinate choice anyway. In short, His covenant demands His people do their part and when Israel no longer did its part the nation opened up a door toward destruction. However, it wasn’t simple laziness and non-adherence to an agreement by both parties, but a wholesale turning away from holiness and the upright lifestyle they pledged to lead. They went from doing right to doing evil. That is quite the precipitous drop and a total breach of faithfulness, fidelity, and proper conduct.
In Part 1 I related this to what has been happening in America over the last many decades. American Christianity has gone from having much influence to having much less and rather than setting the standard of righteousness has largely adopted the mores of the culture. Of course, Christianity in America has always had its blind spots and a decided tendency to live according to extra-Biblical mandates rather than solely by the fullness of the pure teachings of the Lord Jesus but even then had a relatively high level of righteous conduct especially compared to other belief systems in this world. American Christianity has historically existed as salt and light and a preservative of the overall culture. Some will undoubtedly take offense at that yet the teachings of the Lord Jesus have no equal. No other belief system comes close regarding one’s responsibility toward God and one another. What other “religion” or belief system in the world adheres to the following enriching teachings of peace and love?
“You have heard that it was said, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” [Matthew 5:43-45]
“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth. For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?” [Matthew 6:24-25]
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And He said to him, “‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ [Matthew 22:36-39]
“Treat others the same way you want them to treat you. If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. If you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners in order to receive back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Do not judge, and you will not be judged; and do not condemn, and you will not be condemned; pardon, and you will be pardoned.” [Luke 6:31-37]
In Part I of this series I mentioned Wokism as the antithesis to the Great Awakening. In the above latter verse of Scripture from Luke’s Gospel we see that a central tenet of the Woke is the very opposite of what the Lord taught. Cancel culture is all about destroying people, judging people, and condemning people. There is no actual love or mercy there. Not only are the Lord’s preceding teachings poles apart regarding generally accepted standards of human behavior, they are also obviously difficult to carry out. Real enemies are those who hate another and find another despicable and assign blame to others even though such others are often innocent parties. Group think is such that those who prescribe to it lower their otherwise normal relations with their fellow man and latch onto hateful behavior thinking it is justified. But the Lord’s teachings never allow for any of this. And even if one’s enemy is guilty it doesn’t change the Lord’s overall intent. His standard is the same in all circumstances and reduced down to the simple but very direct it becomes the following:
“Love your enemies.”
“Serve God, not wealth.”
“Love God. Love your neighbor.”
“Treat people the way you want to be treated.”
“Do not judge or condemn, but pardon.”
It is apparent that, prior to Judges 6:1, the ancient nation of Israel was doing these things at least in part but enough to satisfy God in that they were putting forth effort and actually succeeding. In fact, prior to the Midianite invasion in verse 6:1, Israel had a long time of peace, protection, and prosperity. Here is the verse immediately before:
And the land was undisturbed for forty years. [Judges 5:31]
Israel had been doing very good. The land was at rest. There was no fear. One can relate Israel’s behavior on either a large or small scale. It is indicative of countries, nations, and large groups on the one hand but also of small groups, immediate families, and even individuals on the other. God’s standard is always the same. By being in covenant with Him it gives us the greatest chance to live right, be righteous, and engage in righteousness. Without that connection one will undoubtedly fall under the sway of human authority rather than God’s authority. Since human authority has historically been seasoned with fear to varying degrees in that a fearful populace is much easier to control and manipulate, the replacement of God’s authority with human authority is often driven by fear. Humans fear that which they cannot control whether it’s an invasion or a disease. And unless they manifest trust in God they must place their trust elsewhere. The following passage illustrates this:
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. We love, because He first loved us. If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also. [1John 4:18-21]
Humanity without the Lord Jesus is a lost cause. Human beings are sinful fallen creatures always coming up short of what they could be otherwise. We only have multiple reams of documentation and libraries full of sinful and disgusting human activity on this planet for multiple millennia to prove it true. As another indication that things have gotten progressively worse, approximately 200 million people were killed in the prior century, not counting abortions, and most of these by human governments. These governments were obviously acting outside the will of God and in direct rebellion against Him.
Though previously successful in living for God with the spiritual fruit to show the world, Israel had simply quit trying. God blessed them for forty years, and it could have been effectively forever. The nation apparently grew bored with righteousness and reached a point of weakness when it could no longer resist temptation. The people then went full bore into disobedience and wholesale into sin. That which was healthy started becoming rotten. And that which grew rotten, though not yet completely rotted away and therefore still possibly turned around and saved, needed a stimulus in a positive direction. Since their pride was such that they would no longer bend their knees in prayer and get on their faces before God they would have to be driven there for their own good and the good of the nation into the future. Perhaps the wholesale slaughter of their newly-embraced evil lifestyle would get their attention. In this case, the nation of the Midianites would serve as a corrective and the means to get Israel back on the right track before it committed national suicide.
So Israel was brought very low because of Midian, and the sons of Israel cried to the LORD. Now it came about when the sons of Israel cried to the LORD on account of Midian, that the LORD sent a prophet to the sons of Israel, and he said to them, “Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel, ‘It was I who brought you up from Egypt and brought you out from the house of slavery. I delivered you from the hands of the Egyptians and from the hands of all your oppressors, and dispossessed them before you and gave you their land, and I said to you, “I am the LORD your God; you shall not fear the gods of the Amorites in whose land you live. But you have not obeyed Me.”’” [Judges 6:6-10] 
© 2021 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved. [To Be Continued]
 Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
Any one of us is worth more than the entire Universe. A single person, any person, is worth more than all the resources of every planet and every galaxy and every sun and star that exists.
Each one of us is worth so much to God and loved so much by God that He became one of us and gave His perfect life for each of us.
We hear this and read this all the time but it seems to barely register. It seems Christians in general may acknowledge this as a fleeting cold fact but never actually apply it or have it applied since so many still consider themselves next to worthless or completely expendable.
This is understandable in the context of a cold and cruel world. But if the same dynamic plays out in Christian circles among Christian adherents then it is obvious that something is seriously wrong with that particular brand or expression of Christianity.
In fact, such brands and expressions are not Christianity at all—not real Christianity. Unless the expression of love matches the expression of God’s love then such brands are fake.
There is no other way to say it.
Human beings do not have to be inherantly capable of matching God’s love, but only receiving it, possessing it, and expressing it. The simple fact that God’s real, wonderful, overwhelming, joyous, and powerful love does not exist in such places and among such people only proves that the Lord is not there because He is not wanted.
And if He is not there and not wanted, the entire place and process is nothing more than one more worldly expression of being without God and His love and is of no more spiritual worth than a meeting of atheists.
Christians have this sense that there are times of coldness and dreariness that inevitably descend upon their undertakings thus revealing the need for occasional “revivals.” But a revival in any other sense means a resuscitation, which portends an advent of death or something close to it.
How does a Christian community die?
With reference to the early Christians, these ideas of Christian existence without God’s love, and existing at the point of death are not only completely wrong, they are a reflection of both surrender to the enemy and failed surrender to God. It is an indication of uncrucified fleshly humanity being in charge showcasing spiritually dead fleshly humanity and not the born again variety pulsing with the bountiful life of God. It is an indication that a spiritually dead human being and/or human beings are in charge. (Death begets death.)
Hence, the reason a person feels somewhat worthless within a Christian congregation is not because he or she is worthless to God, but that he or she is worthless to those in charge.
This is indicated by having such a person and the majority of persons there made to enter into a static location, sit down among a crowd, and above all things keep silent and keep his or her opinions to himself or herself. Only a few will have any allowance to actually participate. One will get to participate the most. That one and those other few will no doubt have few feelings of worthlessness. They know they must be special because they feel special. They have been granted the right to be something more than just an observer—an observing non-participant—a member of the audience—a mere face in the crowd.
“Oh no,” the few may say. “That is not true. God loves you!” they say.
But such words just don’t get it done. EVERYONE MUST PARTICIPATE, and if the unreal man-made structure does not allow for that then one must dump the structure and appropriate the organic method facilitated by the Lord.
We read about the great sacrifice the Lord Jesus made on our behalf. We know intellectually that He gave everything. It’s just that most Christians do not feel it. They may know it academically, but they do not feel it in their hearts. And after so many years they know it is their problem and no one else’s because no one else has an answer except to give them the same old unfeeling words that simply do not satisfy.
As a result an indifference takes hold spawned by the indifference of those in charge, who would rather that everyone sit down orderly and remain silent as a point toward proper control rather than address the issues that matter most to those with hurting hearts in need of the very love of God originally promised that never arrives.
They then began picturing God Himself as the one who is distant and unfeeling. Thus, the great sacrifice of a greatly loving Man proving His heartfelt love and concern for each of us is relegated to mere pictures on a wall (or in some cases much statuary), or a blurry image in one’s head.
Is it any wonder then that Christian lifers are those who have simply accepted that they will never see the great power of God they read about or His great love they wish they had, but instead force themselves to go through dead religious practices ad infinitum while possibly looking forward to heaven when perhaps they will at last experience all that the early church practiced?
If such a scenario plays out, the Lord will tell them they could have had it all before they ever got there. And that in fact it is the way He designed it! The kingdom of heaven brought to planet Earth by the Lord two thousand years ago is designed by Him to be heaven on earth!
But because of the Lord not being in control due to being shut out by the human controllers of most Christian brands and expressions, the heaven He desires to give us and the great love that goes with it in the here and now is denied.
Better we look good to the world and be in control rather than have some silly revival break out, they say. We certainly don’t want any Great Awakenings. How could we ever control that? It would be a nightmare, they say.
Well, I say all you Lord Jesus being in control deniers can go stick it in your left ear and the rest in your right ear and wherever else. You idiots have denied God’s people long enough.
And if my loyal readers allow me just one little phrase to get the point across, I also say to all the deniers of God’s greatest love, power, answers, and solutions—those who block God from filling hearts with His love that they may KNOW they are loved by God and FEEL His love—“Get the hell out of the way! Let God have His way!”
The great news is that we are in the early stages of a national Great Awakening that’s going to blow the doors off. The powers that be and the devil himself are mucho afraid because they know there’s nothing they can do about it. THE LORD JESUS IS GOD AND HAS ALL POWER IN HEAVEN AND EARTH! HIS ENEMIES KNOW IT AND ARE CONSEQUENTLY SCARED TO NO END.
The only chance they have, therefore, or have ever had, is to convince Christians that real Christianity is a lie, and most Christian controllers have bought the lie, and spend their time doing the devil’s bidding whether they know it or not, instead of obeying God.
There will be a special place in hell for all those Christian controllers who refuse to allow the Lord Jesus to be in control of His own movement.
But great thanks to the millions who have seen through all the religious shenanigans and false fronts and refused to partake unless the Lord is the Captain. These people want God in charge and they prove it by allowing Him to be in full charge of their own lives. They have submitted the only thing they control to His control, just exactly as He commanded.
As a result, there are people on this planet who shine with the love and power of God because He has been allowed residence within them. When you get many of these people together in one place the roof goes off, just like it did in the Upper Room.
Again, for any unbelievers or doubters, check out what’s going on in other places in the world—great spiritual awakenings and happenings—and use it for reference toward what must take place in America, and is beginning to.
The only ones who have ever had the ability to stop the powerful movements of God are the faux Christians—the fakers—the ones who agree with the devil that great LIFE and LIGHT and a powerful spiritual expression of LIBERTY and LOVE are the last thing we need.
But He said to him, “Allow the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim everywhere the kingdom of God.” [Luke 9:60] 
© 2014 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.
 Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.