THE GIDEON TEST
By Albert Timem
In our last instructors course training in Italy, the students were told by Albert Timen, while in the middle of knife fighting training, to stop and do push ups. Then they told them about “Gideon’s Test”. One of our instructors named Massimo smiled and asked, “So we failed?”
Judges, Ch. 7
In the morning, Gideon by God's command called his ten thousand men out, and made them march down the hill, just as though they were going to attack the enemy. And when they were beside the water, he noticed how they drank; and set them apart in two companies, according to the way they were drinking.
As they came to the water, most of the men threw aside their shields and spears, and knelt down, scooped up a drink of the water with both hands together like a cup. These men Gideon commanded, to stand in one company.
There were a few men who did not stop to take a large drink of water. Holding a spear and a shield in the right hand, they were ready for the enemy, if one should suddenly appear. They merely cupped up a handful of the water in passing and marched on, lapping up the water from one hand.
God said to Gideon:” Set by them these men who lapped up each a handful of water. These are the men whom I have chosen to set Israel free."
Gideon counted these men, and found that there were only three hundred of them; while all the rest bowed down their faces to drink. The difference between them was that these three hundred were earnest men, of one purpose; not turning aside from their aim, even to drink, as the others did.
Then, too, they were watchful men, always ready to meet their enemies. Suppose that the Midianites had rushed out on the army, while nearly all of them had their faces towards the water drinking, their arms thrown to one side - how helpless they would have been! But no enemy could have surprised the three hundred, who held their spears and shields ready, even while they were taking a drink.
Some have thought that this test also showed who the worshippers of idols were and who truly worshipped God. Perhaps this act showed that most of the army were used to kneeling down to worship before idols, and that only a few were accustomed to stand up before the Lord in their worship; but of this we are not certain. It did show that here were three hundred brave, watchful men, obedient to orders, and ready for the battle.
You might be wondering what a man who lived a few thousand years ago has to do with today.
As we wrote in the past about finding the right teacher/Instructor, we think that it is also about finding the right student.