The Israelites of the OT constantly turned their backs on God and refused to follow Him steadfastly in obedience. Yet they cried out to God time and time again to send a deliverer and in His mercy He would. This time the deliverer (or “Judge”) was Gideon.
Gideon was an unlikely hero from the least of his tribe who sees himself as unqualified and inadequate. God does not give up on Gideon due to his own perception. God does not see things/people like we do.
2 New Testament examples of God calling the unlikely are Matthew the tax collector and Paul who was persecuting the church. A great example of God’s grace-using a bounty hunter of Christians to turn his life around and lead others to Him, as well as using him to write about one-third of the New Testament.
God puts in an unexpected twist. The fearful or trembling are told to leave and go home. 22,000 leave. Only 10,000 remained. God adds another twist to bring the forces down to an unbelievable number so there would be no doubt that it was not their own strength that saved them. 1% of the original forces are left. 99% are given an “honorable discharge”. Otherwise they would have concluded that they were responsible for the victory.
There are parallels between Gideon and our own lives. We are often weaker than we want to admit.
Paul writes in the New Testament about some physical ailment that he refers to as “a thorn in his flesh” which he prayed three times to God to heal. God does not permit it as it trusted him that God’s grace is enough. When we are weak (physically), then we rely on God (physically and spiritually).
“And He said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)