By REV. TIMOTHY L. MELTON, PASTOR
CHEROKEE PENTECOSTAL HOLINESS CHURCH
Read Judges Chapters, 6 and 7 concerning Gideon…
“If one person in Scripture had to move from hell, to his overcoming with God and into victory—it was the 17-year-old Gideon,” began Pastor Melton.
“God sent the Israelites a prophet who told the Israelites, ‘I delivered you from Egypt, I freed you from a life of slavery; I rescued you from Egypt’s brutality and then from every oppressor; I pushed them out of your way and gave you their land. And I said to you, ‘I am your God’ Don’t for a minute be afraid of the gods of the Amorites in whose land are living’ … but you didn’t listen…’”
“Israel had been delivered into the hands of Midian by God because the people of Israel had gone back to doing evil, in God’s sight—like worshipping other gods. The people of Israel were forced to make for themselves hideouts in the mountains for seven years—caves and forts, because the Midianites invaded them every time they planted and raised their crops. Midianites would come and camp out on the Israeli lands after they had already planted and raised their crops and would eat all the crops, take Israeli livestock to eat, leaving nothing for the Israelites to eat, or raise for those next years, all the way to Gaza. With innumerable cattle, camels and people the Midianites were like an invasion of locusts that devastated their country. The Israelites, reduced to a grinding poverty by their actions, finally cried out to God for help.
“So afraid they were, like Job was—who let go of his joy in the Lord, which caused his mind to go crazy,” Pastor Melton continued. “Wherever we may be weak, remember God can bring us out. “Sinning always costs us more. While His Grace may cover sin, the consequences still may come. It will have a cost. Israel had had enough. ‘It’s too hard on us’, they cried out to the Lord. ‘We’ve got to do something else.’ As soon as they acknowledged this, God began to work on their way out. Even if a higher power cannot do it, God can.
“God can use you. God is looking for someone to bless. Gideon, although only a teenager, God called him ‘a mighty man of valor, a mighty warrior’ in whom God was willing to change a nation. God is about to do a new thing in our midst. People who are bound, like to ‘hang out’ with others who are also bound. Cripples come along, ‘I want to go with you where you are going.’ ‘We are poor. I’m a poor boy—but, little is much with God.’
“First step: to deliverance in our health, our marriage, to having no peace is to say in agreement with God, ‘Let the weak say, ‘I am strong.’
“Second step: is to know the enemy wants to tie you up, by your believing the enemy’s lies. (Israel had worshipped the god they created—Baal.) They were to tear down Baal’s altar and make an altar to God. (The altar is where you spend your time and have a designated place to praise and worship, read your Bible, prayer—talking with the Lord.) Gideon’s father, Joash, even though his own son had destroyed the god they had created, must have realized it and told the people to ‘let Baal plead for himself’. (The devil is a mouse with a microphone—he has no power—and he is not God’s equal. Jesus told us how long the rebellion lasted in heaven, as He said, He saw satan fall like lightning to the earth. We are more than conquerors…)
“Your fight belongs to the Lord, so fight the good fight of faith in the Lord. Finances? We can say, ‘When I am weak, He is strong. To overcome, we are to claim what the Word says. Even with sicknesses we can say, ‘By Jesus’ stripes, we were healed. Sickness cannot handle that.
“Step three: Get up, arise! Worship, praise Him and God will show up and He will lift you up! Change your atmosphere, get up, take a walk, and go get some fresh air. Gideon told people—he was willing to be a leader—‘God has given me something.’ We all will follow someone who will start leading—even a 17 year-old. We don’t need a ‘fleece’ when we can ask Him and hear Him. Call upon Him. Let Him talk to us. Thank Him. God will do it.”