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Gideon soothed the hurt feelings of Ephraim by telling them that, though they were called late to the battle, their grape gathering had been more fruitful than all the vintage of Abiezer. Gideon and his exhausted troops crossed over Jordan still in pursuit of the enemy. They asked for bread from Succoth and Penuel, neither of which would provide it for fear of Zebah and Zalmunna, kings of Midian. Gideon made a surprise attack on the kings with their 15,000 remaining troops and took both of them captive. He then went back and whipped the leaders of Succoth with thorns from the wilderness, destroyed the tower of Penuel and killed the men of the city. He killed the kings because they had killed his brothers at Tabor ( Jdg_8:1-21 ).
Israel tried to set up Gideon and his descendants after him as king over them. Gideon's answer is significant. "I will not rule over you, nor shall my son rule over you; the Lord shall rule over you." Had they have listened to their leader more closely and heeded his words, many problems would have been avoided. Unfortunately, he did ask for and receive the earrings they had taken as spoil from the Midianites. With them he made an idol to worship and caused Israel to sin in worshiping false gods. For forty years the land had rest and Gideon died at a good old age. He had seventy sons of his wives and concubines, including Abimelech. Following Gideon's death, Israel again worshipped Baal. "Thus the children of Israel did not remember the Lord their God, who had delivered them from the hands of all their enemies on every side" ( Jdg_8:22-33 ).
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Hampton, Gary. "Commentary on Judges 8". "Hampton's Commentary on Selected Books". https://www.studylight.org/
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