Wednesday, September 11, 2019

2019.09.11 Hopewell @Home ▫ Judges 14

Read Judges 14
Questions from the Scripture text: Where does Samson go in Judges 14:1? What does he see? Where does he go in Judges 14:2? To whom does he speak? What does he ask of them? What do his parents suggest instead (Judges 14:3)? What reason does Samson give? From Whom, ultimately, did this grief come (Judges 14:4)? What was Yahweh doing against the Philistines? Why? Where did Samson go in Judges 14:5? With whom? What comes against him? Who comes upon him in Judges 14:6? What does he do to the lion? Whom does he not tell?  To whom does he speak in Judges 14:7? What note is repeated from verse 3? Where does he go for what purpose, after some time (Judges 14:8)? What does he turn aside to see? What does he find in the lion’s carcass? What does he do with the honey in Judges 14:9? What does he not tell his parents? Who goes down to the woman in Judges 14:10? What does Samson do? Whom do the Philistines bring (Judges 14:11)? What challenge does Samson make in Judges 14:12-13? How do the Philistines do at first (Judges 14:14)? What strategy do they follow in Judges 14:15? What does the wife do—and keep doing—for how long in Judges 14:16-17? How does Samson respond to their guess (Judges 14:18)? Who comes upon Samson in Judges 14:19? What does he do? What happens with the wife (Judges 14:20)?
I wonder if you ever thought, perhaps with Samson himself, that the secret of his strength came from his hair. That’s certainly not the impression that we get from paying attention to his feats of strength.

It is not the hairy scalp but the Holy Spirit who is the key to Samson’s strength. Judges 13:25 had told us that the Spirit of Yahweh began to move upon Samson. Now, Judges 14:6 and Judges 14:19 give us two instances of the Spirit of Yahweh rushing upon him. In one case, he tears a roaring lion apart like he might could do to a baby goat, and in the other he takes on and kills thirty Philistines.

And we seem to be the only ones to know what is going on. The text implies what was surely a source of despair for Mr. and Mrs. Manoah. Their son is hung up on the Philistine girl from Timnah, but they don’t know that it is from Yahweh. No one knows about the lion or the honey (by both of which this “Nazirite” was defiled). Samson doesn’t know about his wife’s secret plot. The wife (whose name we don’t know) weeps for days over what she doesn’t know, because she wants to tell the Timnah-supplied groomsmen (whom Samson doesn’t really know) what they don’t know.

It’s like trying to sort out the significance (or even the reality) of what we heard or read in the news. Our heads begin spinning—who knows anything at all? Answer: Yahweh knows, because Yahweh is working a salvation that His people didn’t even ask for this time around; He just wasn’t willing to tolerate their oppression any longer (Judges 14:4).
What does the Lord know about your life? What is He doing about it for Jesus’s sake?
Suggested Songs: ARP23B “The Lord’s My Shepherd” or TPH256 “God Moves in a Mysterious Way”

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