Summary: The story of Samson. He appeared to have such potential, and God DID use him, but he is primarily remembered for his sin.
Samson: Avoiding a legacy of shame
Intro – potential – 12 Judges 1375 – 1050; Nazarite – Hair, alcohol, dead bodies; miracle birth;
Judg 21:25 In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as he saw fit.
13:1 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 sterile and remained childless. 3 The angel of the LORD appeared to her and said, "You are sterile and childless, but you are going to conceive and have 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 because you will conceive and give birth to a son. No razor may be used on his head, because the boy is to be a Nazirite, set apart to God from birth, and he will begin the deliverance of Israel from the hands of the Philistines." NIV
Potential of a life
How do I avoid a legacy of shame?
1. Seek godly counsel.
Judg 14:1-4 Samson went down to Timnah and saw there a young Philistine woman. 2 When he returned, he said to his father and mother, "I have seen a Philistine woman in Timnah; now get her for me as my wife." 3 His father and mother replied, "Isn’t there an acceptable woman among your relatives or among all our people? Must you go to the uncircumcised Philistines to get a wife?" But Samson said to his father, "Get her for me. She’s the right one for me." NIV
a. To whom am I truly accountable?
b. Am I building a godly spiritual community?
c. Quit fighting alone! – Samson fights alone!
d. I am absolutely responsible for my decisions.
e. What I decide affects everyone else.
2. Choose principle over pleasure. – Self indulgent
Judg 16:1-2 One day Samson went to Gaza, where he saw a prostitute. He went in to spend the night with her.
Judg 14:8-9 Some time later, when he went back to marry her, he turned aside to look at the lion’s carcass. In it was a swarm of bees and some honey, 9 which he scooped out with his hands and ate as he went along. When he rejoined his parents, he gave them some, and they too ate it. But he did not tell them that he had taken the honey from the lion’s carcass. (Nazarite vow issue)
a. Compromise will cost me everything. – porn
b. Who am I when no one is looking?
c. What is my calling?
1 Peter 2:9-10 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood , a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
1 Peter 2:11 Don’t indulge your ego at the expense of your soul.
Eph 1:11-12 It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, 12 part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone.
d. What is a part of your calling that you’re not living? List these in your notes.
3. Surrender your gifts to God. – Samson uses his giftings for personal pleasure…
Judg 14:4-7 Samson went down to Timnah together with his father and mother. As they approached the vineyards of Timnah, suddenly a young lion came roaring toward him. 6 The Spirit of the LORD came upon him in power so that he tore the lion apart with his bare hands as he might have torn a young goat. But he told neither his father nor his mother what he had done. NIV
5-6 Samson and his reluctant parents were traveling to Timnah to discuss marriage arrangements when his great strength was first displayed (v. 5). He had evidently left his parents briefly and rejoined them later on the main road (cf. v. 6 and vv. 8-9). Attacked by a lion, Samson was enabled by the Spirit of God to kill the lion easily. This is the first time in the OT that salah is linked with the Spirit’s work. The verb means "to rush upon" and is used of a fire in Amos 5:6. In 1 Samuel the Spirit came powerfully on Saul, enabling him to prophesy (10:6, 10) or to prepare for battle (11:6). David experienced the "rush" of the Spirit when he was anointed as king (1 Sam 16:13). For Samson the presence of God’s Spirit meant tremendous physical strength (cf. 14:19; 15:14).