This is a simplified version of the Bible story found in Judges 6, written for children to understand. For the original version, please refer to the Bible passage.
Once upon a time, the people of Israel kept doing bad things and turning away from God, which made God sad. As a consequence, God allowed the Midianites to oppress the Israelites for seven years. The Midianites were fierce and powerful, and they destroyed everything the Israelites had planted, including their crops and animals. They left nothing for the people to eat, which caused a great famine.
The Israelites were very scared and didn’t know what to do. So they cried out to God for help, and God sent a prophet to remind them of how God had helped them before when they were slaves in Egypt. But the Israelites didn’t listen and kept doing bad things.
Then one day, God chose a man named Gideon to help save Israel from the Midianites. Gideon was a farmer who was busy threshing wheat in a winepress when an angel of the Lord appeared to him. The angel told Gideon that God was with him and that he was a mighty man of valor. But Gideon was very confused and asked the angel why all this had happened to them if God was with them.
The angel told Gideon that God was sending him to save Israel from the Midianites. Gideon was very scared and didn’t think he was strong enough to do it. But the angel told Gideon that he would be with him, and Gideon would strike the Midianites as one man.
Gideon was still not sure, so he asked for a sign from the Lord. He prepared a young goat and unleavened cakes and brought them to the angel of the Lord. The angel of the Lord told Gideon to put the meat and the unleavened cakes on a rock and pour the broth over them. Then the angel touched the meat and the unleavened cakes with his staff, and fire sprang up from the rock and consumed them. Then Gideon knew that the angel was from the Lord.
After that, the Lord told Gideon to destroy the altar of Baal that his father had, and cut down the Asherah tree next to it. The Lord instructed Gideon to build an altar to the Lord his God on top of the stronghold with stones laid in due order. Gideon was afraid, so he did it at night when no one could see him. Gideon took ten of his servants and destroyed the altar and the tree.
The next morning, the people of the town saw that the altar was broken and the Asherah tree was cut down. They were very angry and wanted to punish whoever had done it. The men of the town found out that Gideon had done it and wanted to kill him. But Gideon’s father told them that if Baal was really a god, he could protect himself, and whoever fought for him would be put to death. From then on, Gideon was called Jerubbaal, which means “Let Baal contend against him.”
Gideon still wasn’t sure if he was the one God had chosen to save Israel, so he asked God for another sign. He laid a fleece of wool on the threshing floor and asked God to make the fleece wet with dew, but the ground around it dry. The next morning, the fleece was wet, but the ground was dry. Then he asked God to make the fleece dry, but the ground around it wet, and God did that too!
With God’s help, Gideon led the Israelites to fight against the Midianites and won a great victory. The people of Israel were happy again and thanked God for sending Gideon to save them.
- God helps His people when they cry out to Him, even if they have turned away from Him.
- It’s important to obey God and not worship false gods.
- Even if we feel scared or weak, God can use us to do great things.