“And he said to him, ‘Please, if I have found grace in your eyes, will you give me a sign as you are speaking to me? Please do not depart from this place until I come back to you. I will bring forth my offering and I set it down before you.’ And he said, ‘I will remain until you return.’”
Most of us who know Gideon are used to giving him a bit of grief because of the whole fleece incident that will follow later in the account of his Judgeship. Yet, in this first action, we find Gideon doing exactly what he should have done — he asks for a sign, but the sign is to give him the opportunity to make a sacrifice as a part of worship before the Lord. Some of the modern translations render the word, hDj◊nIm (minchah), as “present,” but the term is most ordinarily used to speak of the offerings that would be offered to the Lord in worship. Even as far back as Genesis 4:3, the term is used to refer to the sacrificial offerings of Cain and Abel. Thus, what we see Gideon doing here must be understood in the context of a sacrificial offering, which, in turn, helps us to understand the Lord’s response to the offering made.
I wonder, when charged by God to engage in a task — like a call to the ministry or perhaps to the mission field — whether worship is normally our first response. How often our response is to draw attention to ourselves. “Look at what God is doing in my life!” As if we deserve any of the credit. Friends, may we learn a wise lesson from the action of Gideon here. If God is calling us to serve, let our response be worship that is pleasing to God. Let Him receive all of the credit and glory and us simply bow before Him in gratitude for his remarkable grace to us.