Summary: Comic book character? Superhuman? Incredibly strong. Incredibly flawed. The Strongman teaches us strong lessons.
Living Scary Or Living Hairy?
We have been talking about and examining the 4 chapter account of the The Strongman! An Old Testament Superman like individual who had great moments of strength and greater moments of weakness. Otherworldly strong and ironically real world weak.
In Week 1 we learned that:
• God used The Strongman but didn't change The Strongman. Samson settled for outward demonstration but resisted and failed to submit to inward transformation.
• The Strongman loved himself more than anyone else. He would constantly use his gift for his own good, benefit and pleasure although he was called to use his gift for the greater good.
In Week 2 we discussed "The Demands of Deliverance." We said:
• Too many of us are back at things that we should be walking away from.
• We may be overlooked by man but the least likely are the likely least because God chooses people that can't take the credit.
• Deliverance always comes with demands. It is our character that produces our clout. Our separation that generates our strength and our purity produces our power. We must live a delivered lifestyle if we want to produce deliverance.
Last week we talked about The Details of Destruction. We said:
• We are destroyed by the dittos of our life. The cycles that we refuse/fail to recognize are those that destroy us. Too many of us just keep reliving the same moments simply separated by years. Preferring the prohibited and allowing those things to constantly resurface until they produce destruction.
• We must understand that delayed destruction is still destruction. Just because it doesn't seem painful now. Just because we don't pay the price at this moment the end result is still the same!
Judges 16:16-21, 28-30
She kept at it day after day, nagging and tormenting him. Finally, he was fed up—he couldn’t take another minute of it. He spilled it. He told her, “A razor has never touched my head. I’ve been God’s Nazirite from conception. If I were shaved, my strength would leave me; I would be as helpless as any other mortal.” When Delilah realized that he had told her his secret, she sent for the Philistine tyrants, telling them, “Come quickly—this time he’s told me the truth.” They came, bringing the bribe money. When she got him to sleep, his head on her lap, she motioned to a man to cut off the seven braids of his hair. Immediately he began to grow weak. His strength drained from him. Then she said, “The Philistines are on you, Samson!” He woke up, thinking, “I’ll go out, like always, and shake free.” He didn’t realize that God had abandoned him. The Philistines grabbed him, gouged out his eyes, and took him down to Gaza. They shackled him in irons and put him to the work of grinding in the prison. But his hair, though cut off, began to grow again.
Then Samson prayed to the Lord, “Sovereign Lord, remember me again. O God, please strengthen me just one more time. With one blow let me pay back the Philistines for the loss of my two eyes.” Then Samson put his hands on the two center pillars that held up the temple. Pushing against them with both hands, he prayed, “Let me die with the Philistines.” And the temple crashed down on the Philistine rulers and all the people. So he killed more people when he died than he had during his entire lifetime.
The account of The Strongman reveals that there are two ways to live life . . . scary or hairy! Let me see if I can explain.
a. The Strongman teaches us about Hell!
The Strongman teaches us that you can live life scary. This account contains one of the scariest statements contained in the entirety of Scripture. Scarier than floods, plagues, or even end time prophecies. That statement is . . . He woke up, thinking, “I’ll go out, like always, and shake free.” He didn’t realize that God had abandoned him.
What a terrifying thought. That you can be in tune, anointed by, accompanied by God one moment and then God can abandon you because of your own choices and you can continue to live and go through the motions of life as if nothing has changed!
See the ego in that statement. The full fruit of pride. I can live any way I want to, I can cross any line, I can adopt any lifestyle and when I need God He will be there. We overestimate our own ability and underestimate the depth of our own sin! So overestimating of your own abilities, power, and strength that you confuse God with you. The Strongman was playing God rather than relying on God. His rebellion was rampant . . . Delilah means "The Weakening or Debilitating One! He even ignored the warning of her name! He refused to respond to the Spirit's leading and then he failed to recognize the Spirit's leaving!