Word at Work November 12, 2016

Scripture: Judges 14

In Judges 14, Samson decided he wanted to get married. But instead of marrying a covenant Israelite, he chose a daughter of the Philistines. Later, Samson met a lion, killed him and took honey from the lion. As a result of taking honey from the lion, he posed a riddle to his wife’s people, “Out of the eater came something to eat, And out of the strong came something sweet.” For three days they could not explain the riddle and really pressed on his wife to reveal the answer. Samson was pushed and manipulated for seven days by his wife until he finally told her. So the men of the city gave him the answer on the seventh day. And Samson responded in verse 18, “If you had not plowed with my heifer, You would not have solved my riddle!” Verse 19 says, “Then the Spirit of the Lord came upon him mightily, and he went down to Ashkelon and killed thirty of their men, took their apparel, and gave the changes of clothing to those who had explained the riddle. So his anger was aroused, and he went back up to his father’s house. And Samson’s wife was given to his companion, who had been his best man.” Judges 15:4-6 says, “Then Samson went and caught three hundred foxes; and he took torches, turned the foxes tail to tail, and put a torch between each pair of tails. When he had set the torches on fire, he let the foxes go into the standing grain of the Philistines, and burned up both the shocks and the standing grain, as well as the vineyards and olive groves. Then the Philistines said, ‘Who has done this?’ And they answered, ‘Samson, the son-in-law of the Timnite, because he has taken his wife and given her to his companion.’” And when they came against Samson, he grabbed the jawbone of a donkey and killed 1,000. Samson had an amazing anointing and over and over again, he brought deliverance. But he had a weakness and that weakness was a woman. He would not take God’s choice for a covenant wife, but kept going to the Philistines. When we think about the additional exploits Samson could have had, it is grievous to see his subjugation by his own rebellion. Most of the kings and judges that had a full leadership term, reigned for 40 years. Samson led Israel for exactly half because he would not use his faith on his flesh to obey God. What term cuts a ministry in half? Personal sin and refusing the word of the Lord! Samson is a perfect example of a mighty man of valor that could have had a much greater impact.

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