A. Tsu Tzi – “Know thyself, know thy enemy”.
B. Knowing ourselves is one of the mark of maturity, not willing to change for the better is a mark of foolishness.
C. Knowing our enemies, Satan, who tempts us and his trickery.
A. Time of the Judges:
Decline spiritually – every man did that which was right in his own eyes. Jdg 17:6.
Divine punishment - ruled by enemy, God’s way of chastising the Israelites. Jdg 13:1.
Deliver by judges - God raised judges to wake them up from the state of complacency and deliver the people; there was a lack of leadership. Jdg 13:5.
B. Background of Samson:
Israel was under the hand of the Philistines for 40 years. Jdg 13:1 And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD; and the LORD delivered them into the hand of the Philistines forty years. Comment: No one was willing to stand up against the Philistines, they were happy to live in sins and enjoy being ruled by them.
Samson, born to be a Nazarite, is to deliver the Israelites from the Philistines Jdg 13:5 For, lo, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and no razor shall come on his head: for the child shall be a Nazarite unto God from the womb: and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines. Comment: The need for a spiritual leader. It can only be taken from men who dedicated themselves to serve God and consecrated their lives to accomplished God’s mission.
Manoah (Samson’s father) desired to bring up Samson to fulfil God’s purpose for him. Jdg 13:8 Then Manoah intreated the LORD, and said, O my Lord, let the man of God which thou didst send come again unto us, and teach us what we shall do unto the child that shall be born. Comment: Both father and mother wanted to guide Samson to live a consecrated life, keeping the Nazarite vow, so that he will be up to the task as a deliverer of Israel. We need to train our children in the way of the Lord. Yet, it is up to them. Samson was wilful.
A. The Faithfulness of Samson
Heb 11:32 And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets:
Heb 11:33 Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions,
Heb 11:34 Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.
He remembered his mission. a. God has a mission for Samson, like all for us. b. Samson’s mission is to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines. Judges 13:5 - he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines. c. Jesus’ mission is to seek and save the lost. Mat 1:21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
d. What is your mission? 1Pe 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: 1Pe 2:10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
e. What is your purpose? Php 1:21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. Php 1:22 But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not.
He ruled as judge for 20 years. a. He fulfilled his mission, served for 20 years. Jdg 15:20 And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.
He repented of his sins and folly. a. He knew his mistake and asked God to help him. Jdg 16:28 And Samson called unto the LORD, and said, 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.
B. The Foolishness of Samson
What is foolishness like? Reckless driving.
His Wilfulness - He was to keep the vow of a Nazarite but he lacked the discipline – the purpose of the vow is to keep one consecrated unto the Lord, to be sanctified for His use. In his youth, he broke every vow except shaving his hairs. a. He married a daughter of a Philistine. Jdg 14:3 Then his father and his mother said unto him, Is there never a woman among the daughters of thy brethren, or among all my people, that thou goest to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? And Samson said unto his father, Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well. He consulted his parents but he still insisted of marrying the Philistine woman, who was not circumcised and a worshipper of the pagan idol, Dagon. b. He touched a dead body. Jdg 14:8 And after a time he returned to take her, and he turned aside to see the carcase of the lion: and, behold, there was a swarm of bees and honey in the carcase of the lion. Jdg 14:9 And he took thereof in his hands, and went on eating, and came to his father and mother, and he gave them, and they did eat: but he told not them that he had taken the honey out of the carcase of the lion. He made himself uncleaned. A Nazarite would not touch a dead body.
c. He joined the feasting of the youth. Jdg 14:10 So his father went down unto the woman: and Samson made there a feast; for so used the young men to do. He wanted to celebrate and as all young men do, he made a feast for his friends. In the way of the Philistines, they probably served and drink wine and strong drink. Again he broke the vow. What do we learn? a. Choosing a Mate - Young people need to be wise in choosing their spouses. Is he or she compatible? Is he or she going to help you to be godly? Choose to marry in the Lord. 2Co 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? b. Abstain from Evil - Young people need to abstain from all appearance of evil. Do not make friends with the world, but to separate yourself. Jas 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. c. Sanctify for the Lord’s use. 2 Ti 2:20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. 2Ti 2:21 If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work.
His wrath - In his anger, he took revenge and killed many Philistines. a. Killed 30 Philistines and robbed them in anger. Jdg 14:19 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. b. Set the burning foxes in the field. Jdg 15:5-6. c. Wounded the Philistines on their hip and thigh. Jdg 15:8. Jdg 15:7 And Samson said unto them, Though ye have done this, yet will I be avenged of you, and after that I will cease. Jdg 15:8 And he smote them hip and thigh with a great slaughter: and he went down and dwelt in the top of the rock Etam. d. Killed 1,000 Philistines with a jaw bone. Jdg 15:15. Jdg 15:14 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. Jdg 15:15 And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith. e. Killed about 3,000 by bringing the roof down on them. Jdg 16:29 And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars upon which the house stood, and on which it was borne up, of the one with his right hand, and of the other with his left. Jdg 16:30 And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines. And he bowed himself with all his might; and the house fell upon the lords, and upon all the people that were therein. So the dead which he slew at his death were more than they which he slew in his life. What do we learn? a. Control our anger – Pro_16:32 He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city, b. Slow to speak – Jas 1:19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: Jas 1:20 For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. c. Do not sin. Eph 4:26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Eph 4:27 Neither give place to the devil. c. Not to take revenge Rom 12:17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. Rom 12:18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Rom 12:19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Rom 12:20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Rom 12:21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
His Weakness – women. a. Asked for a Philistines woman from Timnath – “Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well.” She enticed him to reveal the answer to the riddle and caused him to loss the bet. Jdg 14:17 And she wept before him the seven days, while their feast lasted: and it came to pass on the seventh day, that he told her, because she lay sore upon him: and she told the riddle to the children of her people. b. Went to a harlot - Jdg 16:1 Then went Samson to Gaza, and saw there an harlot, and went in unto her. The Philistines ambushed him and he almost got killed. c. Marry Delilah - Jdg 16:4 And it came to pass afterward, that he loved a woman in the valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah. She revealed the secret of his strength. Caused him to loss his strength and to be captured, have his eyes dug out and was humiliated. Jdg 16:16 And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words, and urged him, so that his soul was vexed unto death; Jdg 16:17 That he told her all his heart, and said unto her, There hath not come a razor upon mine head; for I have been a Nazarite unto God from my mother's womb: if I be shaven, then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man. Repentance – remembering his purpose and mission What do we learn? a. Do not lust after a woman – Mat 5:27 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: Mat 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. b. Flee from sexual immorality – 1Th 4:3 For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: 1Th 4:4 That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; 1Th 4:5 Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God: c. Be faithful to your wife – Pro 5:3 For the lips of a strange woman drop as an honeycomb, and her mouth is smoother than oil: Pro 5:4 But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a twoedged sword. Pro 5:15 Drink waters out of thine own cistern, and running waters out of thine own well. Heb 13:4 Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.
Let us remember our mission
1Pe 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
1Pe 2:10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
Our mission are:
Priest – give ourselves as sacrifices. Rom 12:1-2.
Holy – sanctified as holy people of God.
Special – separated from the world in the way we live.
Praise – Worship and glorify God with our good works.