Faith. Relationship. Career

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

PREDESTINATION VS FREE-WILL (Series #3 Samson and Delilah)

This is a case of knowing God's will yet allowing distractions to hinder you from his purpose. When I use the word "enemy" I mean those who are not in your life to support you with your destiny. They are not necessarily witches and wizards like some people believe.

Summary of Judges 13-16 Before the birth of Samson, an angel ministered to his parents saying "...and no razor shall come on his head...and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines." Samson grew up to be very strong, killing a lion and thousands of Philistines. However, He had a weakness for women. His decisions became a form of distraction from his destiny.

Samson was fortunate to know his destiny from birth. He was born for the sole purpose of delivering his people, the Israelite from the Philistines. There is nothing wrong in getting married and in Samson's case, there was no instruction from the angel of God that he shouldn't take a wife. However, Samson did not recognize the grace upon his life. He was not aware that he was a special child and exposing himself to distractions would interfere with God's purpose for his life.

If you are fortunate to know God's will for your life, then you are a very blessed person. Even in the bible, not every child was born to rule. I may be using this out of context but "many are called but few are chosen". Not every birth was prophesied. The bible only records certain births which were prophesied. If God has called you and revealed his plan for your life, it is important to guard that plan with your life.

The many mistakes and distractions Samson allowed into his life.

First, Samson was not attentive to the voice of God. When Samson decided to chose a wife, He chose one among the Philistines (remember that the Philistines were the people He was born to protect the Israelites, his own people from) without any confirmation from God or even his parents. When I read this verse, I said to myself "Ah! the beginning of his troubles" but I was wrong. It was actually the will of God for him to choose a Philistine woman. Ch 14 vs 4- "But his father and his mother knew not that it was of the lord, that he sought an occasion against the Philistines:..." It was an opportunity to get access into the enemy's camp.

Secondly, Samson boasted in his strength. The only purpose of Samson on earth was to deliver his people and the only reason for his strength was to fulfill this purpose. However, Samson got carried away with the gift instead of the purpose. After Samson killed a young lion with his bare hands, He told a riddle to the Philistines and made a bet with them. Ch14 vs 12 "...I will put forth a riddle unto you: If ye can certainly declare it me within the seven days of the feast, and find it out, then I will give you thirty sheets and thirty change of garments:" The Philistine woman who God brought into his life to fulfill a purpose became the stronger person. She used his love for her to get the answer to the riddle, told her own people and this was the beginning of his troubles.

Thirdly, Samson's weakness for women. Samson went to a city known as Gaza and fell in love with a harlot called Delilah (Ah! this Samson is not even The lord of the Philistines wanted revenge for the thousands Samson had killed so they approached Delilah and told her to seduce Samson into telling her the secret of his strength (and of course she would be paid for this service)

Delilah asked Samson for the secret about three times but he lied to her. At the fourth attempt, He gave in and told her "..if I be shaven, then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man." This is for everyone whether man or woman. When someone or something (some people may say the devil) keeps making attempts to bring you down, you need to walk away and ask God for strength to withstand the enemy. Instead Samson was so confident in his strength that he relaxed. In this case, Samson shouldn't have been with Delilah in the first place and after her second attempt, it should be obvious to him that she means harm.

Delilah finally shaved off his hair and handed him over to the Philistines. He was taken to prison, tortured, his eyes were plucked out, his hair was sacrificed to their god, Dagon and he was made into a circus animal for their pleasure. While Samson made sport for the people, He held on to the pillars of the building and prayed to God. In God's faithfulness, Samson's prayers were answered and  Samson died along with many Philistines. Ch16 vs 30 says "...So the dead which he slew at his death were more than they which he slew in his life."

It is interesting to know that God's purpose was still fulfilled through Samson although the plan was not for Samson to die along with his enemies. Samson's strength which was meant to bring good news became the reason for his death. Many of us do not know how to handle our God-given talents/gifts and this could lead to a bad ending like in the case of Samson. Like I discussed in my previous posts, your talent can only be effective if used in the context of God's will.

Note: As recorded in Ch16 vs 22, Samson's hair grew again but his strength was not in his hair. The reason for his strength in the beginning was not simply because of his hair but because God had commanded it. When he lost his hair, he didn't just lose his strength but also lost the presence of God upon his life as he disobeyed God's commandment as spoken at birth.

I will just add this: I have seen many strong men that belittle themselves because of a woman. Just like Delilah, these women will go ahead with their lives but your story may be unfortunate. A more common occurrence is celebrities who are blessed with talents yet end up in unfortunate situations because they have not handled it properly.

May your enemies not use your God-given gift against you and may you not die with your enemies in Jesus name. Amen :D

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