The Story Of Samson And Delilah And The Lessons

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The Story Of Samson And Delilah And The Lessons

The Story Of Samson And Delilah And The Lessons

BIBLE TEXT: JUDGES 13-16

INTRODUCTION

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The story of Samson and Delilah is a story full of lessons for us to learn as children of God. It is one of the tragic stories in the Bible of how disobedience and carelessness can take a person from grace to grass, which ultimately can lead to the downfall of such an individual. This story teaches us about an anointed vessel who abused the grace of God upon his life because he could not deal with his weakness. 

There are two principal characters in this story. They are Samson and Delilah. We will look critically at each of them; first individually, and then collectively. What role did each play in this story and what are the impact of their roles?

SAMSON

Samson, son of Manoah, was an Israelite, specifically from the tribe of Dan. His mother was barren for a long time before the angel of the Lord visited her and gave her a message that she would have a son. The angel gave her some rules to follow during the pregnancy and after delivering the child. Among those rules are:

  1. She should drink no wine nor any fermented drink.
  2. She should not eat anything unclean.
  3. The child’s hair should not be shaved nor barbed.
  4. The child will be a Nazarite to God from his birth.
  5. This child would deliver the Israelites from the Philistines. 

After this, Manoah entreated God to send the angel again to them, so that they might ask him how to raise the child after he has been born. God listened to his plea and sent the angel again to them. After seeing the angel the second time, Manoah and his wife offered to God a burnt offering. Soon the word of God came to pass and Manoah’s wife delivered a boy child. They named him Samson, and the spirit of God immediately came upon the child. He became very strong and the Lord blessed him. He wrought much deliverance for the Israelites and judged them for twenty years.

DELILAH

The other important character in the story under review is Delilah. She was a Philistine. As soon as the lords of the Philistines knew about her relationship with Samson, they decided to use her as bait to get the source of Samson’s great strength, which would ultimately lead to his capture. She was to entice him in order to discover where his great strength lies. The lords each pledged to give her eleven hundred pieces of silver.

Delilah immediately set to work. She started pestering Samson to get the source of his strength. But each time she enquired, Samson would lie to her. The first time she asked Samson for the source of his strength, he told her that if they bound him with seven fresh bowstrings, he would become weak and be like any other man. She went and divulged the information to the lords of the Philistines; they brought her the seven fresh bowstrings and she tied Samson with it. She already had some men lying in wait to attack Samson. She raised a false alarm and Samson broke the strings easily as a thread when it touched fire. When Delilah saw that the secret of Samson’s strength was not known, she accused him of deceiving her.

On another occasion, she asked for the source of his strength, and Samson told her that if he is bound with new ropes that havent been used, he would become weak and as ordinary man. So she got new ropes and bound him. She raised her alarm of the Philistine men coming to attack him as usual; but he broke the ropes off his arms like a mere thread. Delilah cried to Samson that he has deceived her again and asked for the secret of his strength for the third time. He told her that if she weaves the locks on his head, he would become weak as any other man. She did that but Samson was still as powerful as at other times. 

SAMSON’S STRENGTH REVEALED TO DELILAH

 When Delilah discovered that Samson had been lying to her, she accused him of not loving her enough to disclose the source of his strength to her. She further pressed him daily with her words until he could no longer bear her pestering. Then, Samson revealed the much guarded secret to Delilah the Philistine, the enemy of God’s people. Samson told her, “A razor has never come upon my head; for I have been a Nazarite to God from my mother’s womb. If I am shaved, then my strength will leave me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man.” (Judges 16:17)

As soon as Delilah saw that Samson had told her all his mind, she called on the lords of the Philistines and told them that Samson had told her all his mind. They came to her with the promised money in their hands. She made him sleep on her laps and shaved his seven locks. Then she began to torture him and raised the alarm like she used to do before.  Samson, not knowing that the Lord had left him, said, “I will go out as before and shake myself free.” 

 

THE CAPTURE AND DEATH OF SAMSON 

The Philistines captured Samson and plucked out his eyes, bound him with fetters of brass and took him down to Gaza. He was made to grind at the prison mill. 

However, the hairs of his head (which symbolizes his strength and God’s glory) began to grow again. The lords of the Philistines gathered to rejoice before Dagon their god. They rejoiced because they said their god had delivered their enemy into their hands. Samson was brought to dance before the people as they were gathered in their hall. Samson asked to be placed between the two pillars that held the building. The building was full of men, women and children in their thousands, who had come to enjoy the show!

Samson prayed his last prayer to God and asked God to strengthen him in order to be avenged of the Philistines. He made a desperate request from God, he said, “Let me die with the Philistines.” Then with all the strength that was left in him, he bowed himself. The house came crumbling upon all that were inside and on the roof. Therefore, the people that Samson slew in his death were more than those he slew in his lifetime.

LESSONS TO LEARN FROM THE STORY OF SAMSON AND DELILAH

There are numerous lessons to learn from this tragic story of a mighty man, ordained right from his mother’s womb; who ended up becoming a sport for the uncircumcised worshippers of Dagon. 

Some of these lessons are:

  1. Samson was a child born out of prayer. Even before he was born, his parents enquired from God how he should be trained. We can say that his parents tried their best in raising him in a godly way.
  2. Samson was arrogant, probably because he believed his strength could get him out of trouble. He did many things out of arrogance, which eventually cost him his two eyes, and ultimately his life. Regardless of our skills, positions or strength, we should remember to stay humble.
  3. Be careful of who you share your secrets with. Samson shared the secret of his strength with an unfriendly friend. Even though Delilah pretended to be in love with Samson, she never really loved him. She was just bait to capture Samson.
  4. As Christians, be sensitive about information you will divulge to people. Samson was not sensitive enough to know what information to give out and what to withhold. 
  5. Samson was blatantly disobedient to God and His laws. As an Israelite, he was not supposed to be married to the Philistines. But on three different occasions, he chose to join himself with Philistine women in marriage. This disobedience cost him his life.
  6. Though Samson was physically strong, he was morally weak. Time after time, we read of the spirit of God coming upon him, and enabling him to do great feats. But he lacked moral strength. He disobeyed his parents at will, and did lots of silly things.
  7. God’s sovereignty came to play in the story of Samson. The Bible tells us that when his parents tried to reason with him about his proposed marriage to a Philistine woman, he refused to listen to them. Further, the Bible says this great determination to marry a Philistine woman was from God Himself, to seek an avenue of confrontation with the Philistines. Despite his sinful life, God still used Samson to accomplish His deliverance of Israel from the Philistines.

God walks in ways that pleases Him, therefore, we should keep praying that God will use us for His glory in a good way. 

 

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