Judges 6
Gideon is really irritating in this part. He keeps asking for more and more signs that the angel is really from God. What about the whole "don't test the Lord" thing? Also, he calls the angel Lord sometimes. Does he think that it is God, or is it just a term of respect or something?
Tauna, Thursday, 4-28-05 2:47 PM
re: Judges 6
Hmm... I agree that Gideon really seems to test God's patience in this period, and I really don't know how to reconcile that with other instructions Not to test God.

However, the "Lord" business I may be able to shed some light on.
I looked up the passage in NIV on BibleGateway (link below) and noticed the following:
In the passage, Gideon's visitor is alternately referred to as "the angel of the LORD" and "the LORD." (Caps intentional) Or rather, the being is always called "the angel of the LORD," but the quotes are often attributed to "The LORD." Either the angel was actually the pre-incarnate Christ (see Dan or someone smart like that for other instances of this), or the passage is simply making it clear that the angel was speaking *for* the LORD in all cases. (Note that the last quote from The LORD occurs after the angel dissapeared.)

Gideon, on the other hand, addresses the angel as "Lord." (no caps.) This capitalization is how the NIV distinguishes between the two (or possibly more?) Hebrew words translated as Lord in English. The all-caps version is a word belonging only to God. ("Jehovah" in this this case - see this translation of the passage.) The lower case version is the word used for addressing any human or angel of high status. So it's really a problem in our language: we don't have sufficient subtlety to distinguish the words in any other way.
Link: Judges 6
Annette, Thursday, 4-28-05 4:56 PM
re: Judges 6
Judges is about successive cycles of spiritual decline (I like the way that sounds). The book of Judges chronicals Israel's descent into moral heinousness after Moses & Joshua and before the golden age of the united monarchy (Saul, David, Solomon). Each judge is of a little worse moral character than the previous one. So Gideon's testing of the LORD should not be looked upon as an example to us. Gideon was really a bit of a wimp, I think. He was threshing grain in the winepress in order to hide it from the Midianites. Understandable, perhaps, in light of all the raiding. But not exactly a "mighty warrior!" So the Angel of the LORD's words may contain a hint of sarcasm.

Yet God did show great patience with G's tests. Perhaps this is due to the enormity of the mission He called him to (e.g. see Moses, Exodus 3). Testing God, or trying his patience due to stubborn doubt or unbelief, on the other hand, is not recommended.

Annette's right about the "angel of the LORD."

When it's "AN angel of the LORD" it could be any angel, but "THE angel of the LORD refers (most likely) to the preincarnate Christ)
Preincarnate is a cool word. Use it to impress your friends. Preincarnate.

It means "before (appearance) in flesh."

Wait 'til you read about Samson. What a selfish idiot he was!




Dan, Thursday, 4-28-05 5:29 PM
re: Judges 6
Thanks Annette and Dan - that helps a lot, although I'll have to read it a few more times...

Maybe I'll try to work the word "preincarnate" into a conversation at work this week... just for fun :)
Tauna, Sunday, 5-1-05 5:46 PM
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