As with nearly ever great leader of faith in the bible, their lives are not without blemish. Here Gideon sinned in acquiescing in the people’s desire for a king, and leadership by nepotism, instead of the LORD’s calling of faithful judges, as the law prescribed. The ephod represented a seeking out of the LORD’s will by his sovereign revelation, something which in this case Gideon did not do. Instead, like David, he had many wives through whom he had many sons, it would seem to install them as his successors, instead of seeking the LORD’s will in prayer for his successor. Not only this, but worst of all he had a son by an unbelieving concubine. So again, when Gideon passed, Israel again did evil, not only forgetting his past deeds, but also what he had done for them through Gideon.