Up, and slay them. —Judges 8:20
Read Judges 8:10-21
The two Midianite kings, with their remaining fifteen thousand soldiers (one hundred and twenty thousand had been slain) were in a careless mood. Having reached their own territory, they thought they were safe. But how often does not death overtake those who do not fear it?
Gideon took these two kings captive as trophies of his victory. But before he dealt with them, he settled accounts with Succoth and Penuel, showing the inhabitants of these regions the two captured kings as proof of his victory. In Succoth, the seventy-seven oldest men were flogged with briars as punishment. In Penuel, the tower was broken down, and those who resisted Gideon were killed. The retributive action of Israel’s judge foreshadows Christ’s judgment on His enemies at the end of time. Are we ready for that day?
When Gideon turned his attention to the Midianite kings, they too had to die. Sadly, Gideon put the interests of his family before those of God’s people, declaring that he would have spared the lives of the enemy kings except for the fact that they had killed his brothers. This was a human calculation, not a godly one.
Can you explain Gideon’s response to the Midianite kings?