Thursday, 19th January 2023
Rev Daniel Xi An Poon
Section One V1-8 Wilfulness
V1-2 ‘After a while, in the time of wheat harvest, it happened that Samson visited his wife with a young goat. And he said, “Let me go in to my wife, into her room.” But her father would not permit him to go in. Her father said, “I really thought that you thoroughly hated her; therefore I gave her to your companion. Is not her younger sister better than she? Please, take her instead.”’ There was nothing wrong with the decision of the father, because Samson ran away so he had to marry his daughter to someone. But Samson did not think like that, he was self-centred and he felt everything should be about him.
V3 ‘And Samson said to them, “This time I shall be blameless regarding the Philistines if I harm them!”’ Samson was using God as an excuse to express his anger and act out his own flesh desires. A lot of time we also have a lot of excuses for our own actions. We told people it’s from God, but in fact it’s from our selfish desires and wilfulness. At the very beginning God was displeased with Samson falling in love with the Philistine woman.
V6 ‘Then the Philistines said, “Who has done this?” And they answered, “Samson, the son-in-law of the Timnite, because he has taken his wife and given her to his companion.” So the Philistines came up and burned her and her father with fire.’ When Samson burnt the field of the Philistines, his wife-to-be and her father paid the price and were killed because of Samson’s actions. We can see that Samson’s wilful actions caused the death and harm of others. When we don’t have God but use God to be our excuses for our actions and behaviour, not only it will lead to the path of death for us but also for others around us.
V7-8 ‘Samson said to them, “Since you would do a thing like this, I will surely take revenge on you, and after that I will cease.” So he attacked them hip and thigh with a great slaughter; then he went down and dwelt in the cleft of the rock of Etam.’ Samson was fighting against the father of his wife-to-be, but when he heard that they were killed by the Philistines, he turned against the Philistines, and again used God as the excuse for his action. Samson completely lost himself and did everything according to his own wilfulness.
Section Two V9-13 Negative Teaching
V9-10 ‘Now the Philistines went up, encamped in Judah, and deployed themselves against Lehi. And the men of Judah said, “Why have you come up against us?” So they answered, “We have come up to arrest Samson, to do to him as he has done to us.”’ Unlike the other judges, who brought peace to the Israelites, Samson brother the enemy to them. His actions caused the death of his wife-to-be and her father, then again caused the troubles for the Israelites.
It’s like how we were hurt in the past by our parents or authorities, then when we come to church, we use the same lenses to look at our spiritual authorities and our church. When we live in this generation without God, we don’t have God in our lives, then we make judgement out of desires, emotions, and selfishness. Samson did not lead the people to God, instead he brought back the teaching from the Philistine. How the Philistines took revenge against him, he took revenge against back to the Philistines.
Section Three V14-20 God is Always Here
V14 ‘When he came to Lehi, the Philistines came shouting against him. Then the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon him; and the ropes that were on his arms became like flax that is burned with fire, and his bonds broke loose from his hands.’ In the generation without God, God is always there. It’s the people who do not respond to God and do not see God. When the time came, God gave Samson the authority and position, He did not let Samson lose his authority in front of the Philistines. The strength God gave to Samson was still there.
V16 ‘Then Samson said: “With the jawbone of a donkey, heaps upon heaps, with the jawbone of a donkey I have slain a thousand men!”’ Everything Samson had was from God, but he was living in his wilfulness and anger, he only revealed himself and did not uphold the Name of God. Do we reveal God’s strength in our lives? Or do we only let people see us? Samson was well aware that his strength was from God, but people saw him more than they saw God.
V18-19 ‘Then he became very thirsty; so he cried out to the Lord and said, “You have given this great deliverance by the hand of Your servant; and now shall I die of thirst and fall into the hand of the uncircumcised?” So God split the hollow place that is in Lehi, and water came out, and he drank; and his spirit returned, and he revived. Therefore he called its name En Hakkore, which is in Lehi to this day.’ Finally Samson cried out to God, and God answered him straight away. In the time of wilfulness and wrong teachings, God is still there. God is always here for us, but do we really carry out God’s Will for us? Samson was the judge for the Israelites for 20 years, but he didn’t lead the Israelites out of the oppression of the Philistines. Samson did not walk in the calling of God, even though God had been answering him all this time.
Let us examine into our lives, live in the calling of God, get rid of our wilfulness and shine for God in this generation without God.
士师记 15 – 无神的世代
V1-2 参孙曾经为了自己的怒气而不管当下的环境，径直离开自己的婚礼。一个看似有神的人心里却没有神，因为参孙看重的只是自己的情绪。当参孙心情好转后，就转头回来找自己的妻子 – 他并非是来道歉，而是想与她行夫妻之道。参孙仍然活在情欲中。
V17 “拉未利希”就是腮骨山。 当初亚伯拉罕给献以撒的山起名耶和华以勒，他高举神，让人看到神的供应；然而参孙留下的只是不洁净的尸骨。让我们所存留的是神能力的彰显，而不是让人只看到我们自己。
V19 “隐哈歌利”就是 “求告之泉” – 记念耶和华听祷告。在黑暗的时候，在我们任意妄为的时候，神一直都在，他在等我们回转。