Judges 8:22-35 (JDV)
Judges 8:22 Then the Israelites said to Gideon, “Govern over us, you as well as your sons and your grandsons, for you delivered us from the power of Midian.”
Judges 8:23 But Gideon said to them, “I will not govern over you, and my son will not govern over you; Yahveh will govern over you.”
Judges 8:24 Then he said to them, “Let me make a request of you: Everyone give me an earring from his plunder.” Now the enemy had gold earrings because they were Ishmaelites.
Judges 8:25 They said, “We agree to give them.” So they spread out a cloak, and everyone threw an earring from his plunder on it.
Judges 8:26 The weight of the gold earrings he requested was 1700 units of gold, in addition to the crescent ornaments and ear pendants, the purple garments on the kings of Midian, and the chains on the necks of their camels.
Judges 8:27 Gideon made an ephod from all this and put it in Ophrah, his hometown. Then all Israel prostituted themselves by worshiping it there, and it became a snare to Gideon and his household.
Judges 8:28 So Midian was subdued before the Israelites, and they were no longer a threat. The land had peace for forty years during the days of Gideon.
Judges 8:29 Jerubbaal (that is, Gideon) son of Joash went back to live at his house.
Judges 8:30 Gideon had seventy sons, his own offspring, since he had many wives.
Judges 8:31 His concubine who was in Shechem also bore him a son, and he named him Abimelech.
Judges 8:32 Then Gideon son of Joash died at a good old age and was buried in the tomb of his father Joash in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
Judges 8:33 When Gideon died, the Israelites turned and prostituted themselves by worshiping the Baals and made Baal-berith their god.
Judges 8:34 The Israelites did not remember Yahveh their God who had rescued them from the hand of the enemies around them.
Judges 8:35 They did not show covenant loyalty to the house of Jerubbaal (that is, Gideon) for all the good he had done for Israel.
Gideon made some very good choices — like the choice to refuse being named king. He also made some very bad choices — like the making of the ephod which encouraged a plunge back into idolatry.
The problem with a checkered legacy is that no one can be sure of your true motivations. It is much better for us to choose this day whom we will serve and serve wholeheartedly. Our choices should always be results of following the Lord.
LORD, we want to be 100% committed to you.