Submitted by Visitor (not verified) on Tue, 08/12/2009 – 14:40
Bible Book: Judges / Rigters
Chapter: 1
Verse: 1 – 31
Text: Judges 16

The story of Samson and Delilah is well known and even “popular” in children’s Bibles and as “Sunday school lessons”. But it certainly is not a text to be proclaimed naively in the world of today (2005 AD). Somebody quite rightly pointed out the similarities between what Samson did in verse 30 (pulling down the temple on himself and killing the Philistines at the same time) and the repugnant suicide missions that have been taking place regularly since 11 September 2001!

If I remember correctly, I have been told as a child that Samson is one of the heroes of the Old Testament. I also remember that the blame for his tragic downfall in chapter 16 was put squarely on the shoulders of the “seductive Delilah”.

When I read the story of Samson now from an adult point of view, it is hard not to be disappointed in Samson. This mighty giant apparently showed little respect for the lives of people. His numerous sexual relationships with girls of Israel’s hostile neighbours, give the impression that he had as little respect for a woman as a fellow human being.

It is quite just to say that his physical blindness in the end was the result of the fact that he had already been spiritually blind to the true implications of his calling to lead Israel.

Though I am disappointed in (my childhood hero) Samson, I am not disappointed in the story recorded here in the Bible. It helps me to discover something of the “inconceivable riches of God’s grace” (Ephesians 2:7).

In Ephesians 2:1-10 we read that God saves people from death in order to prove his grace and that He creates them (his works of art) “to do his good works” (verse 10). God’s plan for a world in need is that his children, his church, will be the salt and the light. But that doesn’t mean that God only uses saved people who have been made new. In those days when “everyone did as he saw fit” (Judges 17:6, 21:25), God used someone like Samson to help his people.

It would be a huge mistake if we as Christians think that the Lord will use only us (Christians) to stop the flood of the AIDS pandemic (and then think that we have lots of time and that everybody is waiting for us). People who are good observers, will notice that where there is a need and where the church and believers don’t intervene, there are others making a difference. And who gives us the right to say that God is not using them too? Read Matthew 21:28-31 once more.

Author: N du Toit (Ds)
Language: English