“A round loaf of barley bread came tumbling into the Midianite camp” Judges 7:13(NIV)
Gideon arrived secretly in the outskirts of Midianites’ camp with his servant Purah. Israel had settled in their promised land but God allowed several adversities. The Midianites conducted raids on Israel’s crops, swarmed the land like locusts, and stole their livestock. Israel’s backsliding resulted in poverty and slavery, and this led to their cyclical cry of repentance. God faithfully answered their cries and lifted Gideon to deliver Israel from the Midianites. Now, Gideon arrived at the enemy’s encampment just as a soldier was telling his comrade his dream. “I had a dream,” he was saying. “A round loaf of barley bread came tumbling into the Midianite camp. It struck the tent with such force that the tent overturned and collapsed.” His friend responded, “This can be nothing other than the sword of Gideon, son of Joash, the Israelite. God has given the Midianites and the whole camp into his hands.”
Gideon was rightly represented by a loaf of bread as he and his outnumbered army of 300 men were unlikely to conquer a massive Midianite army. The Book of Judges describes this army as thick as locusts and their camels could no more be counted than the sand on the seashore! But Gideon and his 300 men defeated the whole army, killing their leaders Oreb and Zeeb. Thus, Midian was subdued before the Israelites and did not raise its head again. A loaf of bread knocking out a tent, though a comical image and improbable as it was, it was still fitting for Gideon and his army. God was behind the tumbling bread and with God’s amazing power, the Israelites were able to knock the Midianites off their feet and be freed from their oppression.
Bread has been an indispensable symbol for Israelites. Even before the period of Judges, God gave the Israelite ancestors manna, bread from heaven to eat in the wilderness. When the Israelites wandered in the desert, the Lord provided for them through this manna, a miraculous food substance that came with the morning dew and looked like frost on the ground. Manna from heaven fed 3 million people for forty years as they wandered in the desert. This provision of bread was to be remembered for many generations so God commanded Moses to store a gold jar of manna to be kept in the Ark of the Covenant. Is there a better bread than the tumbling loaf of barley or the heavenly manna that can satisfy your stomach?
Now we have a second chance, and our only chance of attaining life from the horrible pit and the miry clay that we are in. We can eat the Bread of Life that comes down from heaven, that is Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ answers and says, “Most Assuredly, there is!” When Christ came to the Israelites, he offered to them this, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” Jesus declared, “I am the Bread of Life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty” (John 6:32-35). God similarly gave a vital command to Adam in the beginning, “you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” Adam rejected God’s command and here we are, by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners.
But now we have a second chance, and our only chance of attaining life from the horrible pit and the miry clay that we are in. We can eat the Bread of Life that comes down from heaven, that is Jesus Christ. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. Even when we die physically, our body would be raised at the last day by the Lord Himself. Christ is superior to the manna that fed a nation. That bread met only the physical needs. Our physical bodies could better live without food than our souls without Christ. Christ gives life to our soul, the immortal part of our being. Christ supreme is the bread of God that satisfies the longing of our soul and sets us in the right path with God. Are you willing to receive this Bread of Life?
George John resides in Hawthorne, New Jersey with his wife Eirene and four children. He is in active fellowship with the believers in Elmwood Park Bible Chapel, New Jersey and serves as the Sunday School Principal. George is also a pharmacist by trade.
You can read other articles by George here.