Judges 16:15-22

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, April 10, 2017 0 comments

by Katie Erickson

“Then she said to him, 'How can you say, ‘I love you,’ when you won’t confide in me? This is the third time you have made a fool of me and haven’t told me the secret of your great strength.' With such nagging she prodded him day after day until he was sick to death of it. So he told her everything. 'No razor has ever been used on my head,' he said, 'because I have been a Nazirite dedicated to God from my mother’s womb. If my head were shaved, my strength would leave me, and I would become as weak as any other man.' When Delilah saw that he had told her everything, she sent word to the rulers of the Philistines, 'Come back once more; he has told me everything.' So the rulers of the Philistines returned with the silver in their hands. After putting him to sleep on her lap, she called for someone to shave off the seven braids of his hair, and so began to subdue him. And his strength left him. Then she called, 'Samson, the Philistines are upon you!' He awoke from his sleep and thought, 'I’ll go out as before and shake myself free.' But he did not know that the Lord had left him. Then the Philistines seized him, gouged out his eyes and took him down to Gaza. Binding him with bronze shackles, they set him to grinding grain in the prison. But the hair on his head began to grow again after it had been shaved.” (Judges 16:15-22) Check out last week’s post for the situation that’s going on here. Samson has fallen in love with Delilah, and she has been promised a fortune from the Philistine leaders if she can find out the secret to Samson’s strength. He’s already lied to her about it 3 times, and now she’s getting rather frustrated with him.

But Delilah still wants the fortune that was promised to her for revealing the secret, so she keeps it up and keeps nagging Samson about it. This is definitely not a healthy relationship between Samson and Delilah. It obviously is not based on mutual trust and respect, since she’s been bribed to betray him and he keeps lying to her. On top of that, she’s nagging him about finding out his secret rather than respecting his privacy on that matter.

Remember what happened back at Samson’s wedding to the woman from Timnah? Because of his wife’s nagging, he gave in and told the answer to his riddle, causing him to lose a bet. In this situation, the same thing happens. Rather than break off his relationship with Delilah, Samson gives in to her nagging and reveals the secret to his strength.

From previous chapters, we know that Samson had been careless about 2 of the 3 parts of his Nazirite vow (drinking wine and being around the dead), but it appears that he had been faithful on not cutting his hair. This may have been the most important part of the vow, since the angel who announced Samson’s upcoming birth to his parents spoke of it specifically.

So Delilah realizes that Samson is finally telling the truth, so she gets the Philistine leaders back and cuts Samson’s hair in his sleep. At first Samson thinks all is well when he wakes up, but then he discovers that his strength really has left him, and so has the Lord.

Samson was quickly captured by the Philistines, his eyes were gouged out, and he was imprisoned. Loss of eyesight was considered a terrible curse for Israelites, so this is a very big deal. They gave him the task of grinding grain while imprisoned; grinding grain was usually women’s work, so this added to Samson’s humiliation. As time went on his hair began to grow back, and the Philistines likely allowed that so they could use his strength for their benefit when it returned.

Samson reaped what he sowed. He was apparently so full of himself and so confident in his abilities that he didn’t think he’d lose his strength when his hair was cut, or else his fleshly desires for Delilah got the best of him. Either way, he turned against God so God turned against him.

Where are you giving in to temptation in your own life? Is there something that you’re trying to resist, and you’d be a lot better off if you just walked away from it? Samson would have been better off if he had just walked away from Delilah’s temptations, but instead he gave in and reaped what he sowed. What are you sowing in your life that you’ll end up reaping the consequences for? Ask God for the strength to turn away and get on His right path for your life.

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