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Judges 6:29

ESV And they said to one another, “Who has done this thing?” And after they had searched and inquired, they said, “Gideon the son of Joash has done this thing.”
NIV They asked each other, 'Who did this?' When they carefully investigated, they were told, 'Gideon son of Joash did it.'
NASB So they said to one another, 'Who did this thing?' And when they searched and inquired, they said, 'Gideon the son of Joash did this thing.'
CSB They said to each other, "Who did this? " After they made a thorough investigation, they said, "Gideon son of Joash did it."
NLT The people said to each other, 'Who did this?' And after asking around and making a careful search, they learned that it was Gideon, the son of Joash.
KJV And they said one to another, Who hath done this thing? And when they inquired and asked, they said, Gideon the son of Joash hath done this thing.

What does Judges 6:29 mean?

Though Gideon followed God's instructions to tear down pagan monuments (Judges 6:25–26), he did so as secretly as he could (Judges 6:27). Even so, he would have known his act could never be kept secret. He had obeyed Yahweh's command to tear down an altar to the god Baal and the Asherah pole next to it. He built the new altar to Yahweh and sacrificed a bull on it, just as the Lord had told him to do. He had accomplished it all before sunrise (Judges 6:28).

Secrets don't keep in small towns, and Ophrah could not have been large. Even if Gideon and his servants had attempted to lie about what happened—and Scripture gives no reason to think they did—the town of Baal worshipers would need little investigation to determine who was guilty. Their questions led them straight to Gideon, son of Joash. The altar had stood on Joash's land. Joash's family served Baal along with everyone else. Why would Joash let this happen? In the minds of these people, Gideon had insulted the gods they were counting on for protection. He needed to pay if they hoped to regain those gods' favor (Judges 6:30).
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