The LORD said to Gideon, “You have too many men. I cannot deliver Midian into their hands, or Israel would boast against me, ‘My own strength has saved me.’”
Give God the Glory
Giannis Antetokounmpo recently won the NBA Most Valuable Player award. For Milwaukee Bucks’ fans, this was especially great to see. The “Greek Freak” amazed basketball fans all year with his ball-handling skills, powerful slam dunks, and all-out effort. At just under 7 feet tall and 242 pounds, Giannis is just about unstoppable. And so, when he took the stage to give his acceptance speech, you may be surprised to hear the first thing he said: “I want to thank God for blessing me with this amazing talent.” He went on to thank God three times before saying anything else.
It is refreshing to hear someone give God credit rather than boasting about his own abilities. Boasting about ourselves is a strong temptation. But, think of what happens when we do. We take credit away from God. We forget who is ultimately responsible for anything we accomplish.
God knew this would be a temptation for Gideon and his men. So, he said to Gideon, “You have too many men. I cannot deliver Midian into their hands, or Israel would boast against me, ‘My own strength has saved me.’” Boasting is a strong temptation.
And never is boasting a more serious sin than when we are tempted to think that our own strength saves us from hell and earns us heaven. This is why the devil is constantly trying to convince us that we can get to God on our own. He knows that if we trust in ourselves, rather than in Jesus, we will never get to God. Only Jesus’ perfect life and innocent death could do that. It is his gift to us, not something we earn. Remember this the next time you are tempted to think you are good enough for God. Remember the story of Gideon and give God the glory for your salvation.
Dear Jesus, help me always to realize that I cannot be saved by my own strength. Help me always to look to you for salvation. Amen.