Scripture text for Thursday, February 11th, 2010: Judges 13:1-16:31
As I read this passage I was convicted by Samson’s chosen life. While he was given clear instructions as to how to live his life as a Nazirite (do not eat/drink wine/grapes or touch a dead body, and never cut his hair), Samson from the start broke many of these vows. He had extraordinary strength from the Lord but suffered morally through his eyes in deception and sin. He had a weakness for women. Although the Lord commanded that Samson seek a Philistine wife in order for an occasion against the Philistines (14:4), God did not tell Samson to follow the Philistine’s ways. Samson seems headstrong and independent in his thinking much of the time and very arrogant in terms of creating situations where he depends on this awesome power and strength that God has given him. Is that what we do??? Many times we are faced with situations we should pray about and consult our one true God but somehow our independence takes over and we think we can do it without Him!! In 15:8 Samson cries out to God because he is thirsty and the Lord provides for him and also allowed him to judge for 20 years in the days of the Philistines. We should be thirsty for his words and be convicted to depend on him.
Samson’s weakness for women culminates when he meets Delilah in chapter 16. He is so infatuated with her that he is blind to her deceptions and ultimately betrays his calling by permitting a Philistine woman to rob him of his treasured gift. He has failed his people and his calling. Have you ever failed? Have you ever sinned?
At the end of his life when he is humbled by blindness and at the mercy of his captors he cries out to the Lord one more time. (16:28) The Lord fills him with strength and he crushes thousands of Philistines and fulfills God’s purpose for his life. Samson was finally dependent on his amazing God and given that “Amazing Grace” that we have also been given.
Devotion prepared by Stephanie Stout