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Now Our Enemy


Recently I took a youth service over in Dartford (see previous entries and the tentative website) and preached on the subject of Gideon, a hero from the Biblical book of Judges.

The scourge of Israel in Gideon’s day were a people called the Midianites. Jane had asked how this fitted in, because her Bible reading plan was just taking her through the bits of Exodus where Moses was hiding out in the desert with the Midianites, marrying Zipporah and later getting good advice from his Midianite father-in-law, Jethro. How did these helpful people end up becoming enemies?

My Bible reading plan (using the One Year Bible Blog) runs a little bit slower than Jane’s, as it takes in passages from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs every day. However, yesterday I was struck by Numbers 25:16-18. That’s how the people of Moses fell out with his in-laws – they were intermingling with Israel and leading them badly astray. It’s not as neat and tidy as I’d like if I were writing a sacred book that was going to have a massive influence on the future of the world but, looking round at the world today, I certainly can’t say that it doesn’t sound like stories of real people!


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