In the Promise Land-Egypt Mentality

In Judges Chapter 6 and 7 the problem is not Gods failure to provide for his people. The children of Israel would plant their crops and the Lord would provide abundantly. But before they could reap the harvest the Midianites and the Amalekites would bring devastation. The text indicates that they left no sustenance for Israel whom they overwhelmed and humiliated. It was not that the Midianites and the Amalekites were stronger but that the Israelites became greedy, selfish and lustful. Though they were in the Promised Land they still had Egypt mentality. They were not following the decrees of God.

Much of Africa faces similar problems as Israel faced in Judges. The International Monetary Fund tells us the continent of Africa will have the world’s fastest-growing economy over the next five years. Forecasts show that seven of the world’s 10 fastest-growing economies will be African. Ethiopia, Mozambique, Tanzania, Congo, Ghana, Zambia and Nigeria are all expecting 6 per cent annual growth through 2015. But, the same IMF tells us that Zambia, one of the continent’s most promising economies, is among the poorest countries in the world.  Why are Zambia and the other countries mentioned, facing the same situation as the Israelites? People are working hard, the land is producing, yet they have no sustenance.

For the Israelites, the problem was despite the fact that God delivered them from slavery in Egypt and gave them a land of promise, they had not obeyed His commands and had even feared the gods of the Amorites. The Israelites became greedy, selfish and lustful. Without spiritual vision they fell prey to the appetites and desires of the flesh and became like the pagan culture in which they lived.

Nevertheless, God in his infinite mercy was prepared to deliver them once again. How did God deliver them? He surely could have gone directly to the Midianites or the Amalekites and commanded them to stop their oppression. Instead He went to a local person who loved God and was burdened for his people. God inspired Gideon through an angel to go in his strength and save Israel out of the Midian’s hands. “Am I not sending you?” God asked Gideon.

Where is Gideon in our African church today? Who is God calling to provide leadership to his people? Who will not take a bribe and will not be corrupted? Where is the Gideon who will mobilize ‘300 men and women’ to stand up to the mighty hand of the Midianites and the Amalekites who are devastating our land and leaving us with nothing? Is the church identifying Gideons’ and telling them, “The Lord is with you mighty warrior”?  The African church has so many prophets. How many are being sent to the Christian community to tell us the word of the Lord, “I am the Lord your God, do not worship the gods of the Amorites (greed, money, lust) in the land you live”?