Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Fairly Feeble Forces (2)

The restrictions on military forces provided by the law mean that the ability of the people of God to engage in warfare will be very limited. This has the following benefits.

  • Military adventures to gain wealth by seizing control of another community are not practical.

  • Empire building is impossible.

  • Using miliatry power to advance democracy and capitalism would be impossible.

  • When a community faces an external military attack, they will usually have to sue for peace.

  • If they choose to resist the invader, they will have to rely on God’s assistance. If God does not come to their aid, they will fail.

God prefers to work with weakness, because when his people are weak, he is strong. A weak defence gives him an opportunity to demonstrate his power.

The Midianite army faced by Gideon filled the Valley of Jezreel like a swarm of locusts. Their number was too many to count (Jud 6:33). Gideon stood up against this massive army with a revelation from God and 300 men, armed with trumpets and torches (Jud 7:7,16). They do not seem to have had swords. When they turned on their lights and sounded their trumpets, God threw the Midianites soldiers into confusion and they attacked each other (Jud 7:22). The formidable army fled the country in fear. This is how God prefers to defend his people.

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