9/29 Reading (Judges 7-9; 1 Corinthians 6)

Judges 7: The battle with the Midianites. Initially Gideon approaches the battle with an extremely large army. God says that Gideon needs to reduce the size of the army because God wants the people to realize that they are successful in battle because he intervened, not because they had the numbers. So the army is shrunk down to 300 people. With this number God explains how Gideon will lead them into battle and destroy the Midianites. And they were successful at the end.

Judges 8: The Ephraimites expressed anger and frustration with Gideon because he did not originally seek their help when he confronted the Midianites. Gideon helps put out this fire diplomatically. He chases some other Kings, catches, and kills them. Along the way he asks for food for his army from two Israelite cities and they both refuse. He punishes them after he captures the two Kings. The people offer Gideon a Kingship, but he refuses saying “the Lord rules over you” (CEB Study Bible; Judges 8.23). Finally Gideon dies at the end of this chapter. We learn that he had 70 sons from his many wives. Another example of marrying many different women (we saw this in Genesis). His son, Abimelech, born of a woman from Shechem, is introduced right before Gideon dies. Also, the Israelites go back to their wicked ways once Gideon dies, worshipping the Baals again! I mean c’mon people!!!

Judges 9: Abimelech wants to be King, so he goes to his mother’s people (Shechem) and convinces them to follow him and kill his brothers. He kills all but one of them (Jotham). The rest of this chapter focuses on his short three year reign. It was bloody and full of conflict. He is finally killed when a woman drops a millstone on his head and he orders his servant to kill him so people wouldn’t say a woman killed him.

1 Corinthians 6: Paul calls them out for allowing two brothers, who are also believers, to settle a legal dispute in front of nonbelievers. He makes it clear to them that the believers will ultimately judge the world, so why can’t they judge trivial matters like this. He then reminds them of all of the things they shouldn’t do if they want to be able to enter God’s kingdom.

Second part returns to the topic of sexual immorality, aka, don’t have sex with prostitutes. He reminds them that their bodies are “a temple of the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor. 6.19).

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