A little more than a year ago, the Thursday night Bible Study that I participate(d) in, did a study in the book of Judges. I added the (d) in there because we are currently on hiatus due to life events for the leaders of the group. I can’t wait to get back into it. Back to Judges. One of the comments that was made by our group was that every time the book talked about a new judge that was chosen by God, the chapter started with “… the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord.” Or something similar.
Tonight, my daily reading took me to the birth of Samson. Samson was an interesting judge. Here was a man that God chose before his mother became pregnant with him to be a judge and the parents knew this. How? Read about the birth:
The Birth of Samson
1 Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord, so the Lord delivered them into the hands of the Philistines for forty years.
2 A certain man of Zorah, named Manoah, from the clan of the Danites, had a wife who was childless, unable to give birth.
3 The angel of the Lord appeared to her and said, “You are barren and childless, but you are going to become pregnant and give birth to a son.
4 Now see to it that you drink no wine or other fermented drink and that you do not eat anything unclean.
5 You will become pregnant and have a son whose head is never to be touched by a razor because the boy is to be a Nazirite, dedicated to God from the womb. He will take the lead in delivering Israel from the hands of the Philistines.”
Pretty clear there that the Messenger of God knew and gave them a heads up. So, Samson’s parents did as the messenger said. Samson, however, was a self-centered, whiny pain in the rear about it all. As a Nazarite, there were certain things that he was not to do. For example, Nazarite’s were not to touch a freshly dead animal. However, he kills a lion with his bare hands and guts it. Yeah, not a good thing. He had an affinity towards prostitutes, which I think goes without saying that a man right with God should not have. He was to never tell anyone what gave him his strength, he confessed it to Delilah. So, why did God make this man a judge to save Israel? There is a poem that has been going around the internet that starts with things like “Moses was a murderer, Samson was an adulterer…” and ends with “God doesn’t call the able, he makes able those he calls.” Or something of that sort. Samson, who was caught by the Philistines and his hair shaved off his head (the source of his strength) and blinded, was in no position to destroy the Philistines. So what did he do? He prayed. He repented for his past actions, and he asked God to give him enough strength to destroy the Philistines so that the Israelites would be able to continue on and not be persecuted. And God, hearing his prayer, restored enough of his strength to bring down the building that was housing the Philistines that were throwing a party to celebrate Samson being caught.
God made worthy the one he called. The one he called was not worthy before that. While none of us are worthy, he will use us the way he needs us. He will give us the knowledge, strength, belief, power, whatever is needed, to bring him the glory. That’s what it is all about folks. So when you are called, don’t fight it, accept it, for he will bring you through it.