10 But if you are afraid to attack, go down to the camp with your servant Purah.
11 Listen to what the Midianites are saying, and you will be greatly encouraged. Then you will be eager to attack.” So Gideon took Purah and went down to the edge of the enemy camp.
“But if you are afraid…”
Gee, the guy is going after a major army with 300 guys. I can’t imagine why he would be afraid.
But I love that this confidence booster was given.
Not just a “be not afraid…”, “fear not”, or a “be strong and courageous” command like joshua always got… but instead a gentle boost to help him see the situation differently.
Even after Gideon’s first response was to test God with fleeces to see if he was really hearing what he thought that he was.
Nice to remember that not all calls to resolve fear are of the “man up and be brave” sort… and that changing from afraid to eager is not always something we have to make happen of our own power.