Monday, October 19, 2009

How Quickly Would You Drink?

A Lesson from the Scriptures
From the books “Living For Triumph” Book 7, 1949 edition.

“Let me tell you a story about a certain man in the Old Testament. In the book of Judges, we read that ‘the Spirit of the Lord came upon Gedeon.’ He was one of those whom the Lord raised up to lead His people to happiness. The Spirit of the Lord was with him. God often worked wonders and miracles as a sign that He was blessing Gedeon; but one day God gave him and the people a test. He planned to teach them that victory would come through the power of the Almighty, and not through the power of men.

“On this day thirty-two thousand, three hundred warriors were gathered together to fight for Israel, and Gedeon was leading them. Gedeon was told by the Lord to warn the people, who were beginning to forget God, that they would not win; and further, to offer them the choice of returning to their homes or of remaining to do battle. Twenty two thousand went home, but ten thousand, three hundred remained; those latter were brave enough to pass the first test.

“A second test was given. Gedeon was told to lead them through a valley in which flowed a stream of cool water and to allow them to drink of the stream. Gedeon watched them as they drank. ‘They who lap the water with their tongues, as dogs are wont to lap, thou shalt set apart; but they that shall drink bowing down on their knees, shall be on the other side’ (Judges 7:5). This test would show those who were selfish and those who were not. The selfish ones would take their time to drink, the others would drink quickly, thinking more of the battle than of themselves. ‘Now those who drank quickly were only three hundred. Then, the Lord said to Gedeon, ‘By the three hundred men who lapped the water, I will save you. Let all the rest return to their place.’

“That is a good story,” Father concluded. “Out of thirty-two thousand, three hundred, only three hundred were used by God. Three hundred won a victory that thirty-two thousand could not. Three hundred with the Spirit, alert to discern and quick to follow God’s will, win a victory, where others relying on themselves, fail.

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