The nation Israel had turned their heart against God and was suffering the consequences. The Midianites had been ruling over Israel’s land for seven years. They would camp out, wait, and destroy crops and livestock that Israel worked so hard to produce. The Israelites so feared the Midianites that they would try and find shelter in mountain clefts, caves, and strong structures. The Midianites made living conditions so unbearable that Israel cried out to the Lord for help.