Bible: Judges 8:4-21

Gideon Tracks Down the Midianite Kings

8:4 Now Gideon and his three hundred men had crossed over the Jordan River, and even though they were exhausted, they were still chasing the Midianites. 1  8:5 He said to the men of Succoth, “Give 2  some loaves of bread to the men 3  who are following me, 4  because they are exhausted. I am chasing Zebah and Zalmunna, the kings of Midian.” 8:6 The officials of Succoth said, “You have not yet overpowered Zebah and Zalmunna. So why should we give 5  bread to your army? 6  8:7 Gideon said, “Since you will not help, 7  after the Lord hands Zebah and Zalmunna over to me, I will thresh 8  your skin 9  with 10  desert thorns and briers.” 8:8 He went up from there to Penuel and made the same request. 11  The men of Penuel responded the same way the men of Succoth had. 12  8:9 He also threatened 13  the men of Penuel, warning, 14 When I return victoriously, 15  I will tear down this tower.”

8:10 Now Zebah and Zalmunna were in Karkor with their armies. There were about fifteen thousand survivors from the army of the eastern peoples; a hundred and twenty thousand sword-wielding soldiers had been killed. 16  8:11 Gideon went up the road of the nomads 17  east of Nobah and Jogbehah and ambushed the surprised army. 18  8:12 When Zebah and Zalmunna ran away, Gideon 19  chased them and captured the two Midianite kings, Zebah and Zalmunna. He had surprised 20  their entire army.

8:13 Gideon son of Joash returned from the battle by the pass 21  of Heres. 8:14 He captured a young man from Succoth 22  and interrogated him. The young man wrote down for him the names of Succoth’s officials and city leaders – seventy-seven men in all. 23  8:15 He approached the men of Succoth and said, “Look what I have! 24  Zebah and Zalmunna! You insulted me, saying, ‘You have not yet overpowered Zebah and Zalmunna. So why should we give bread to your exhausted men?’ 25  8:16 He seized the leaders 26  of the city, along with some desert thorns and briers; he then “threshedthe men of Succoth with them. 27  8:17 He also tore down the tower of Penuel and executed the city’s men.

8:18 He said to Zebah and Zalmunna, “Describe for me 28  the men you killed at Tabor.” They said, “They were like you. Each one looked like a king’s son.” 29  8:19 He said, “They were my brothers, the sons of my mother. I swear, 30  as surely as the Lord is alive, if you had let them live, I would not kill you.” 8:20 He ordered Jether his firstborn son, “Come on! 31  Kill them!” But Jether was too afraid to draw his sword, 32  because he was still young. 8:21 Zebah and Zalmunna said to Gideon, 33 Come on, 34  you strike us, for a man is judged by his strength.” 35  So Gideon killed 36  Zebah and Zalmunna, and he took the crescent-shaped ornaments which were on the necks of their camels.

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