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1 Bible 2Romans 13:14, “Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof”

 

Our text – Judges 15

Our theme – “Self-indulgence and self-confidence causes a believer to fall”

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INTRODUCTION

The Titanic Incident (April 1912)

The British transatlantic liner Titanic was the largest ship afloat when it began its maiden voyage in 1912. It was a magnificent vessel, with accommodations acclaimed for comfort, luxury, and safety. The ship contained a series of watertight compartments within the hull that guaranteed if one should be damaged; the others would keep the vessel afloat indefinitely. Some people reportedly boasted that even God couldn’t sink the ship.

Nevertheless, the Titanic did sink on its maiden voyage, in one of history’s greatest maritime disasters. The ship plowed full speed into an iceberg that ripped into several of the compartments, and the ship sank in two and one-half hours. Of the 2,208 passengers and crew aboard, 1,503 lost their lives. The unsinkable ship sank. Tragic though this outcome was, the real tragedy was that the disaster could have been avoided.

(1) At the time of the accident, the ship had been alerted to hidden icebergs. Yet this warning was ignored, as the ship continued full speed through the fog.

(2) Because of calm seas, it should have been possible to save all aboard. However, there were enough lifeboats for only one-third of the people aboard.

(3) Another steamer was nearby, but had shut down its wireless for the night, so it did not come to the rescue. This tragedy produced some good for the maritime nation, in that, new provisions for safety at sea, was established.

The account of Samson is similar to the tragedy of the Titanic. Samson was physically the strongest man alive, yet he fell into disgrace of immorality. He was vulnerable to temptation because he wasn’t vigilant, and ignored the lessons he should have heeded, from past mistakes. Aren’t we like that also?

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SAMSON’S RIDDLE – (Judges 14:12-14)

In Judges 14, Samson is at his rehearsal dinner and the boasting contest between Samson and the Philistines. You could say they weren’t very happy about seeing one of their women was to marry an Israelite. Samson challenged the Philistines to solve his riddle. He was so confident that they couldn’t, he made a bet with the groomsmen. If you can solve the riddle, I’ll give you thirty changes of clothes, one for each of you. But if you can’t solve the riddle you’ve got to give me thirty changes of clothes. Not a bad deal. Maybe Samson wanted a new wardrobe for the start of his marriage.

Samson was sure they would never solve his riddle. He was laughing all the way to the bank. The celebration went on for seven days, so that gave the thirty groomsmen plenty of time to put pressure on the bride to get the answer from Samson and then tell them. On the fourth day of the celebration they threatened to burn her and her household if she didn’t get the answer to the riddle.

In desperation she started begging Samson, who eventually broke down, and told the answer to the riddle. She in turn told the 30 Philistine groomsmen and they came back to Samson on the evening of the seventh day and said, “Samson, we know your riddle.” Suddenly, Samson the gambler had lost his bet and now has to pay up with thirty changes of clothing.

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THIRTY PHILISTINES KILLED

Judges 14:19-20, “And the Spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he went down to Ashkelon, and slew thirty men of them, and took their spoil, and gave change of garments unto them which expounded the riddle. And his anger was kindled, and he went up to his father’s house. But Samson’s wife was given to his companion, who he had used as his friend”

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Samson is angry at being humiliated, first by his bride, and then by the thirty groomsmen in front of the Philistines, who he really didn’t care for anyway. Sampson is angry and he is now going to get even. First off, he kills thirty Philistines as stated in verse 19 and stripped them of their belongings and then gave their clothes to those who had explained the riddle”, and secondly, burning with anger he leaves his bride standing at the altar. He is very angry and wants nothing to do with the marriage. Thus, she was given to the friend (we would call him the best man) who had attended him at his wedding.

Does that sound heartless? Put yourself in the place of the father of the bride. He’s probably saying to himself, “I don’t think Samson is coming back.” He figures that he’s just walked out, so he looks at the best man and says “You want her?” Samson’s not the only one with good eyesight, so the best man says, “Sure, I’ll take her.” They get married and you would think they’re going to live happily ever after! No way, which brings us to the third thing Samson does.

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I BROUGHT YOU A GOAT SWEETHEART

Judges 15:1-2, “But it came to pass within a while after, in the time of wheat harvest, that Samson visited his wife with a kid; and he said, I will go in to my wife into the chamber: But her father would not suffer him to go in. And her father said, I verily thought that thou hadst utterly hated her; therefore I gave her to thy companion: is not, her younger, sister fairer than she? Take her; I pray thee, instead of her”

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The family into which Samson had married had suffered a shocking disgrace in the eyes of their whole city, when Samson rushed away, without consummating the marriage. Evidently some time had elapsed without Samson’s making any appearance in his wife’s home. Thus, one can quickly understand the father-in-law’s behavior in giving Samson’s wife to the person we might call his “best man.” It is now the time of the wheat harvest, probably May or June, and Samson takes a young goat as a gift for his bride because he still thinks he is married.

Today we may bring flowers, chocolates, perfume or all three. It depends upon how far in the dog house we think we are. In that same spirit, Samson brings a young goat. That’s sure to win her heart over. When he arrives at her house her father wouldn’t let Samson see his wife, explaining that he had given her to one of the thirty companions who had been at the wedding. Her father tries to make a deal, “I was so sure you thoroughly hated her that I gave her to your friend. Isn’t her younger sister more attractive? Take her instead.” (15:2)

Now Samson is really upset because his wife is gone and the father has insulted him. Samson said to them, “This time I have a right to get even with the Philistines. I will really harm them” (15:3). The first two things he did: he killed thirty men and then he left his wife. However, now he’s going to get serious.

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FOXES ON FIRE

Judges 15:3-5, “And Samson said concerning them, now shall I be more blameless than the Philistines, though I do them a displeasure. And Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took firebrands, and turned tail to tail, and put a firebrand in the midst between two tails. And when he had set the brands on fire, he let them go into the standing corn of the Philistines, and burnt up both the shocks, and also the standing corn, with the vineyards and olives”

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He caught three hundred foxes and tied them tail to tail in pairs. This isn’t very easy. Just get two dogs, or cats, and try to tie their tails together. That isn’t a pleasurable way to spend an evening. Once he had the tails tied together, he fastened a torch to every pair of tails and lit them. I don’t know how he did it, but that’s what he did. The animal-rights people would probably condemn the whole Bible if they read this story.

Samson lit the torches and let the foxes loose in the standing grain of the Philistines. It must have been a bizarre sight. Catch the foxes, tie them together, put the torches on the tails, light the torches, and let the foxes go. The foxes are scared to death. They go north, south, east and west and I can see Samson’s laughing hysterically.

Verse 5 tells us he burned up the standing corn (that is the wheat that had already been cut), the standing grain (that which hadn’t been harvested yet), together with the vineyards and the olive groves. Now the only thing you need to know about this is that the Philistines only had three cash crops. One was wheat, one was olives, and the other was grapes—vineyards. Samson single-handedly destroys the economic base of the whole nation.

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PLAYING WITH FIRE

Judges 15:6, “Then the Philistines said who hath done this? And they answered, Samson, the son in law of the Timnite, because he had taken his wife, and given her to his companion. And the Philistines came up, and burnt her and her father with fire”

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Not surprisingly, the Philistines aren’t happy. When they asked, “Who did this?” they were told that Samson had done it because his wife was given to his friend. So the Philistines went up and burned her and her father to death. These aren’t very nice people at all. That’s why they are called the Philistines. Now, it’s interesting and ironic, isn’t it, that we are told in chapter 14 that they came to her and said, “Tell us the secret of the riddle or we’ll burn you and your house down.” So she gets the secret out of Samson and ends up getting burned anyway.

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THE CYCLE OF REVENGE

Judges 15:7-8, “And Samson said unto them, though ye have done this, yet will I be avenged of you, and after that I will cease. And he smote them hip and thigh, with a great slaughter: and he went down and dwelt in the top of the rock Etam”

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Samson isn’t finished yet and does one more thing to get his revenge. He slaughtered many of the Philistines. He said to them, “Since you acted like this, I won’t stop until I get my revenge on you.” All bets are off now. Samson is an extremely angry man at this point.

Do you see the cycle of revenge? The Philistines do something and then Samson does something. And then they do something and Samson does something back to them. And they do something again and Samson does something again. Only each time it’s getting more and more serious, and more and more brutal, and more and more bloodthirsty.

That’s what happens when you try to seek revenge in your life for wrongs that have been done to you; you set into motion an unending cycle of violence. The only way to get off the cycle of violence is to not seek revenge in the first place. As long as you want to get even, you’re going to go down, down, down and down. Samson was so angry that “He smote them hip and thigh.” Samson’ anger had consumed him so much, that when he kills them, he rips them apart hip and thigh. Arms over here, legs over there, head over there, and chests over there. This is the Old Testament version of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

So Samson slaughtered them. “Then he went down and stayed in a cave in the rock of Etam.” (15:8) All we have seen so far is revenge, revenge, and more revenge. Now Samson goes and stays in a cave in the rock of Etam. This seems quite odd. Why would he hide in a cave? Because he is scared of the Philistines. And you might say, “My gracious, I thought it would be the other way around.” That’s the strange thing about Samson. Even though he is a violent killer in his heart, he is scared to death of the Philistines. Scared of what they are going to do to him because of what he has done to them.

While Samson was in this cave hiding from the Philistines, I believe it was the beginning of a spiritual turn around in his life. I believe he, like David who would come after him, began to think about his life and his background and the kind of family he had and his godly heritage. I believe Samson began to re-evaluate the course of his life. After Samson left the cave of Etam his life begins to change. He has gone from the top of the mountain, down to the depths of the valley. He’s made an unending series of stupid decisions. Now he has become nothing more than a violent, bloodthirsty terrorist kind of killer. When he comes out of the cave, he begins to act like a different man.

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SAMSON BOUND BY JUDAH – (Judges 15:9-13)

We pick up the story in verse 9. The Philistines went up and camped in Judah. You could say the bad guys came over to the good guys. The philistines are looking for Samson. The men of Judah asked, “Why have you come to fight us?” “We have come to take Samson prisoner,” they answered, “to do to him as he did to us.” Then three thousand men from Judah went down to the cave in the rock of Etam. (15:10-11a). Isn’t it interesting? It took three thousand men to make them feel safe going down to see one of their own men. Three thousand men of Judah, the good guys, go down to see Samson. Listen to their cowardly words, “Don’t you realize that the Philistines are rulers over us? What have you done to us?“ (15:11b).

What is happening to the men of Judah? They were called to be the people of God. They were called to drive the pagan nations out. They were called to stand for righteousness and now they’re saying, “O Samson, don’t you know the Philistines are over us? They have iron and we’ve got bronze. They’ll kill us, Samson. Are you crazy? What are you doing?” Instead of coming to Samson and saying, “let’s go get them” They’re saying to Samson, “Don’t you know, it’s supposed to be this way.”

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WHEN GOD’S PEOPLE SELL OUT

Three simple words tell us the story. In verse 10, “we have intimidation”. The Israelites were scared to death of the Philistines. They were so frightened that they approached Samson asking him to surrender. In verse 11 we have the accommodation. They were too accustomed to the status quo. They said, “We like having the pagans rule over us. We’re scared of what they will do if you upset the apple cart.” And in verse 12 you have the inevitable result of intimidation and accommodation, cooperation. This is one of the saddest verses in the whole story. “They said to him, “We’ve come to tie you up and to hand you over to the Philistines.” We who are supposed to be your friends have come to hand you over to the Philistines.

Israel, whose side are you on? Are you on the side of God or are you on the side of the devil? The people of God are now doing the pagan’s dirty work for them. This is a tragic picture of the spiritual decline of the whole nation. They didn’t want to be set free because they were too scared to fight. They were scared of the unbelievers, intimidated by what the unbelievers might do to them. So they just said, “It’s supposed to be this way, Samson. It isn’t good but it’s supposed to be this way. In other word, “Don’t rock the boat.”

Samson said, “Swear to me that you won’t kill me yourselves.” “Agreed,” they answered. “We will only tie you up and hand you over to them. We will not kill you.” These are sniveling cowards, lousy bums. “We won’t kill you, we’ll just hand you over to those guys.” What do you think those guys are going to do with him? They’re going to kill him. That stinks; however, I want you to notice how Samson responds. He says, “If you want to hand me over to the Philistines, That’s all right.” Notice how graciously he treats his countrymen. So here comes Samson, his hands bound with two new ropes, walking toward the Philistines. Verse 14 says that as he approached them, the Philistines came toward him shouting. Well, I guess so. They think they’ve got him now. They think they’ve got the man who’s been terrorizing their crops and killing their people. They think they’ve finally got Samson.

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JAWBONE OF AN ASS

Judges 15:14-20, “And when he came unto Lehi, the Philistines shouted against him: and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and the cords that were upon his arms became as flax that was burnt with fire, and his bands loosed from off his hands. 15 And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith. 16 And Samson said, with the jawbone of an ass, heaps upon heaps, with the jaw of an ass have I slain a thousand men. 17 And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking, that he cast away the jawbone out of his hand, and called that place Rahathlehi.

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“The Spirit of the Lord came upon him in power. The ropes on his arms became like charred flax (that is, the ropes that bound him just fell off) and the bindings dropped from his hands.” (15:14). Keep reading because it gets even better: “Finding a fresh (which means moist) jawbone of a donkey. A donkey that hasn’t been dead very long. Samson found it, stripped off the skin, picked it up and waded into the Philistines. Donkeys have narrow chins so picking up a jawbone is like squeezing a boomerang. Verse 15 says that he took the fresh jawbone and with it he struck down one thousand men. You might ask; how did he do it? I don’t know, but one suggestion is that he took a rope and tied it to the end of the jawbone and tied the other end around his wrist and swung it over his head. You could do some serious damage that way. The Bible says he killed one thousand men with the jawbone of a donkey. Eventually it’s all over. The Philistines have fled, leaving the battlefield littered with corpses. Then Samson, as he surveys the carnage, composes a little poem recorded for us in verse 16. And Samson said, “with the jawbone of an ass, heaps upon heaps, with the jaw of an ass have I slain a thousand men”

When he had finished speaking he threw away the jawbone and the place was called Ramath Lehi. Ramath means hill and Lehi means jawbone. Ramath Lehi means Jawbone Hill, as a reminder of the great victory he had won.

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THE GREATEST PRAYER SAMSON EVER PRAYED

Judges 15:18-20, “And he was sore athirst, and called on the LORD, and said, Thou hast given this great deliverance into the hand of thy servant; and now shall I die for thirst, and fall into the hand of the uncircumcised? 19 But God clave an hollow place that was in the jaw, and there came water there out; and when he had drunk his spirit came again, and he revived; wherefore he called the name thereof Enhakkore, which is in Lehi unto this day. 20 And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.

Now our story is almost over but there is one more part: Samson’s humble prayer to the Lord. Because he was very thirsty (Killing one thousand men really works up a thirst) he cried out to the Lord, “You have given your servant this great victory. Must I now die of thirst and fall into the hands of the uncircumcised?” (15:18) This is the greatest prayer Samson ever prayed. He’s saying, “Lord I know that this victory did not come by my power.” It’s the one place where he really acknowledged God’s presence in his life.

And God opened up a hollow place in Lehi, and water came out of it. When Samson drank, his strength returned and he revived. So the spring was called En Hakkore (which means the spring of one who cries out to God). And it is still there in Lehi. (15:19). That last little phrase is interesting. The writer of Judges is telling us that, even though many years have passed, there was still water coming out of that spring. The flow of water was a present reminder of God’s past provision for his people.

Samson’s great prayer comes after his greatest victory. His prayer is immediately answered and it reveals to us something which we might not have known otherwise. Beneath the carnality and beneath the worldliness and beneath all that compromise that there was a bedrock of faith in Samson’s life. Samson was a man of faith. That’s unbelievable. After all that carnage and all that killing and all that lust and all that anger, God is saying Samson is a man of faith. And he let this spring keep on flowing as a monument to Samson’s faith and as a rebuke to the compromising, cowardly men of Judah. It was a perpetual reminder that when things were at their worst, there was one man who was willing to stand up and fight.

This is one of the wonderful stories of the Old Testament. What a sinner Samson is. Samson sins and sins. And he doesn’t do it by halves either. When he sins, he really sins. He went down, down, down, down and then he begins to come up and his faith at the end is clear. In the end, Samson wins a great victory for God.

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THE PRINCIPLES

This portion of Scripture in the life of Samson should be a constant reminder for us today that when things were at their worst, there was one man who was willing to stand up and fight, even though he had sinned greatly, God still used him. Thus, Samson wins a great victory for God. So, what does this story have for us today?

Whenever we come to one of those places of great spiritual victory, when we have prayed and worked and we have fought through, we must not to be surprised that other people don’t understand us. If anything is clear from Judges 15, it’s that they were ready to give Samson up. They handed him over to the enemy because they didn’t understand that Samson, at this point, is God’s freedom fighter. It’s the one point where Samson’s faith is really shining. The men of Judah just look like a bunch of cowards, and that’s what they really are.

We should not be surprised that when we reach the moment of real spiritual insight, some of the people who are closest to us will not understand. A husband won’t understand, or a wife won’t understand, or your brothers and sisters won’t appreciate the fact that you have discovered Jesus Christ. Your relatives won’t understand or your kids won’t understand or your grandparents or your neighbors or your friends at school or the people where you work won’t understand. We shouldn’t be surprised that when we decide to go all out for Jesus Christ, some people who ought to understand won’t understand at all and some of them will actively oppose what we are doing. It happened to Samson. It will happen to you and me, too.

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Whenever the Spirit of God starts to work, incredible victories can be accomplished by means of the most unlikely instruments. If you were going to fight one thousand Philistines, what would you take? I don’t know about you, but I think I would take Rambo, a lot of fire power and a bag full of grenades. I certainly wouldn’t go out with the jawbone of a donkey. I’m not that stupid. Or maybe, I’m just not that smart. When Samson defeated one thousand Philistines, he only had two things: he had the jawbone of a donkey, and he had the Spirit of God. And with the jawbone and with the Spirit he had enough to defeat one thousand men and set the army of the Philistines to flight.

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WASTED POTENTIAL

Samson is the story of wasted potential. He man was incredibly blessed and gifted, yet incredibly undisciplined. Samson was a man with tremendous privilege and potential – miraculous birth, Godly parents, special calling and supernatural gifting. However, he squandered the resources that God had given him and ignored his calling. Life became a story of waste, a story of what could have been, of what should have been, but unfortunately wasn’t.

The last glimpse we had of Samson was of a man who seemed to have gotten his act together. As the previous chapter closed, we saw Samson calling on the Lord in humility. He prayed to the Lord and God delivered him from death through a great miracle. That story ends with Samson judging Israel for 20 years.

After a period of peace and steadfast service, Samson falls once again into his old ways. His old passions rise to the surface and Samson once again finds himself entangled in a web of sin. Samson may have been a powerful man physically, but he was a moral weakling. He may have demonstrated his power time and again over the enemies of the Lord, but he was helpless against the power of his flesh.

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SAMSON & DELILAH – MORAL WEAKNESS – (Judges 16:1-4)

Samson’s moral weaknesses contrast sharply with the displays of physical strength that the Scriptures credit to the Spirit’s endowment. The first few verses of Judges 16 are a sad episode of Samson’s life. He went to Gaza, one of the five major Philistine cities, located more than thirty miles from his home. He may not have gone there specifically for the purpose of visiting a harlot, but while there, he saw a harlot and indulged in lust and immorality.

Knowing Samson was in town, the Philistines waited by the city gates, intending to capture him in the morning (v. 2). If it were not for the intervention of the Lord, he would have been killed that night. Notice how the Lord delivered him from his enemies.) However, Samson “arose at midnight” (v. 3). The Philistines expected him to spend the whole night with the harlot. Could it be that he had a guilty conscience and decided to leave? When he came to the entrance of the city, he tore out the gate with its two posts and carried it toward Hebron.

If the Philistines had seen him rip out the gate and carry it away, they would have been too terrified to try to stop him. When morning came and it became known to all, no one wanted to go after him. What an impression this must have made on the Philistines! That is an astounding feat of strength. Other men have turned in some amazing feats of strength over the years, such as:

In 1798 William Carr carried a 1,120 lb anchor one half mile; In 1895 Joseph Blatt lifted 3,564 lbs; In 1902 Lionel Strongfort became a human bridge supporting a 3,200 lb carload of people on a platform; In 1920 Frank Richards had a 104 lb cannon ball fired into his chest from a 12’ cannon at close range; In 1957 Paul Anderson lifted a table of lead loaded with auto parts that weighted 6,270 lbs.

Those feats of strength pale in comparison to what Samson did here. Samson ripped up the gates, the posts and the whole gate assembly out of the ground and carried them 38 miles to Hebron, a journey that was mostly uphill! The weight of all this would have been in the thousands of pounds. Yet, Samson carried it away as if it weighed nothing at all! While his amazing display of strength is impressive, it does not make up for the weakness of his morals.

My beloved, regardless of how we appear on the outside, it is the content of our heart that matters. Samson did not sin because he was physically strong. He sinned because he was morally weak. He sinned because sin was in his heart. He cherished it and allowed it to dominate his life. The same thing can happen to us. Remember, even the best among us are still sinners and still capable of the vilest sins imaginable. The best-know episode of Samson’s life is his encounter with Delilah. Samson fell in love with Delilah (v. 4) and was involved with her over a period of time, although he never married her. This illicit “love story” places his moral weakness in stark contrast to his Spirit-endowed physical strength.

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MISTREATED BY DELILAH – (Judges 16:5-21)

The Philistine lords (the leaders of the five Philistine cities) asked Delilah to learn the secret of Samson’s strength, each promising to pay her eleven hundred pieces of silver (16:5). We should note that their curiosity about his strength indicates that Samson was probably not a towering figure with gigantic muscles (as he is usually depicted), for then the source of his strength would have been no secret. He must have appeared ordinary, and his enemies wanted to know what made him extraordinary.

Many people have become involved in illicit love affairs and have been sold out by the ones they loved. We can see many similarities between this story and the way the thirty companions learned the answer to Samson’s riddle. Sin short circuits common sense. Samson should have been alert, but he relaxed his guard. Four times Delilah pleaded with Samson to reveal the source of his strength. The first three times he lied, and when she bound him accordingly, he broke the bands (vv. 9, 12, 14). Yet foolishly, he returned again. Samson toyed with sin; he thought he could get away with it because of his strength. He forgot that his strength came from God. His immorality dulled his perspective. He should have been through Delilah’s designs. Still, he came back for more until he finally gave in to her pleading (vv. 15-17). He soon paid a high price for divulging his secret.

But when Samson finally gave in and told Delilah about the command that his head remain unshaven, he practically invited her to cut it, forsaking his commitment to God. His love for Delilah was as spiritually lopsided as his first marriage, except this time, he abandoned the influence of the Spirit and deservedly lost his strength. Delilah had Samson’s head shaved while he slept (vv. 18, 19), and when he awoke, the Philistines pounced on him. Samson’s self-confidence soared high, but his strength had plummeted to an all-time low. Samson the mighty powerhouse became Samson the Philistines’ helpless prisoner (vv. 20, 21). The Philistines gouged out his eyes, bound him with chains, and threw him into an abominable prison, where they forced him to grind grain.

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RIDICULED BY THE PHILISTINES – (Judges 16:22-25)

Sometime later, the Philistines gathered to honor their god (Dagon), to whom they attributed Samson’s defeat. Three thousand people attended the celebration and praised their god when the slave Samson was paraded before them (vv. 23, 24). They forced him to entertain them in some manner so they could make fun of him (v. 25). Little did they know their laughter would soon turn to cries of anguish?

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VALLIANT IN DEATH – (Judges 16:26-31)

The Philistines had allowed Samson’s hair to grow while he was grinding grain. Later, exhibited before the boisterous crowd of pagans, Samson appeared with his grown hair. But he also had renewed his fellowship with the Lord. He knew how to pray. With the aid of a young boy, he placed his hands on the temple’s two supporting pillars, and prayed, “O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray thee, and strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes” (v. 28). God answered Samson’s prayer and gave him the strength to push against the supporting pillars, causing their destruction and his own death (vv. 29, 30).

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CLOSING THOUGHTS:

In death Samson killed more Philistines than he had during his life. He shows the danger of underestimating our own sinfulness. He probably figured he had things under control with his own fleshly lusts, but his desire for love, romance, and sex led directly to his destruction. My brethren, the same thing happens today, but on a much larger scale of both saved and unsaved people. You could say that Samson was the great conqueror; however, he never allowed God to properly conquer him. It seemed that just about every time he went to the land of the Philistines, he fell into moral compromise.

Instead of putting himself in tempting situations, he should have fled from youthful lusts (2 Timothy 2:22) like Joseph did (Genesis 39:12). “Rather than break his relationship with Delilah, he allowed it to break him.” Samson also shows the danger of being a loner as a leader. Everything Samson did he did alone (something else the believers should never do). He judged for 20 years and never sought or used help from others. Most of all, Samson is a powerful picture of wasted potential. He could have been and should have been one of the greatest men of God in the Old Testament; but he wasted his potential. So, my beloved:

(1) If you have been saved by the blood of Christ what are you doing for the Lord today?

(2) Are you wasting or using the potential God has given you?

 

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