An angel of the Lord had just appeared to Gideon while Gideon was working and said some big things. He called Gideon a “mighty man of valor.” He gave Gideon a task to deliver Israel from the hand of Midian. Naturally, Gideon has a lot of questions about this, and in vs. 17, asks the angel for a sign.
God uses signs in two ways throughout scripture: to convince and to confirm. In Matthew 12:39-42, Jesus chastises the Pharisees for asking for a sign that He is the Messiah. Jesus had been performing miracles all around them, yet they wanted more: a bigger sign on their terms. A sign that would relieve them of having to have any faith that Jesus was who He said He was.
Gideon is not the same. He has a small faith that is honored by the angel, as evidenced by the way the angel greets Gideon (“Mighty man of valor!”). The sign Gideon needs is not to convince him that God is who He says He is; the sign is to confirm the faith that already resides within Gideon in order for God’s will to be accomplished through Gideon. God has already chosen Gideon and uses a sign to increase Gideon’s faith and lead Gideon into the task that He has for him.
If you are a Believer, you have the Holy Spirit living inside of you. Like Gideon, God has called us to a monumental task to make disciples as we go about our lives. Sometimes, we do this with gusto; in other seasons, we need more confirmation from the Lord that He’s really called us and has a plan for us. God is happy to remind us of our identity in Him. He’s happy to remind us that our past is forgiven and He alone has qualified us for the task at hand. He’s given us His word to affirm our calling and the Holy Spirit’s leading to build our faith. It’s okay to ask God for a sign to confirm the call He’s placed on our lives and move forward in faith that He is faithful to complete the work!
What sign do you need from the Lord today?