Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Samson's Consequences

So I was going to call this post “Samson’s Second Mistake,” but then I realized I am kind of out of order with the story.  The real order of these posts should be like this:

Sorry for my silly confusion!  Anyhow, continuing from yesterday’s post, we know that Samson ignored the warning signs that Delilah was trying to kill him and decided to stay with her because he was “in love.”  This was his first mistake.
His second mistake was talked about in "Should I tell my boyfriend everything??"  I discussed how serious of a mistake it was for Samson to tell Delilah “all that was within his heart.”  I didn’t however discuss the consequences he faced because of that action.

Going back a step
In Judges 16, Samson finally breaks down and tells Delilah his strength is in his hair.  This was both a mistake of pride and a mistake of sharing too much of his heart.  Pride because he had the idea in his head that he was indestructible and telling a woman his weakness wouldn’t hurt him any.  How wrong he was. 
This was also a mistake of sharing too much of his heart, and we know that because Proverbs 4:23 and Micah 7:5-7 tells us that there are parts of our hearts reserved for God alone. (Read "Should I tell my boyfriend everything??" for more information.)

What happened?
So Samson makes the mistake of telling Delilah his weakness.  Of course, she calls her Philistine buddies in to test the theory—lo and behold it worked!  She woke him up saying, “Samson, the Philistines are upon you!”  He awoke and tried to rise and fight, but verse 20 says “But he did not know that the Lord had left him.”

Ouch.  Do you know what it feels like to have God leave you?  Did you blame God?  Get mad at him?  Scream to his face?
Did you stop and think, "where did I push him away?"  When did my pride step in and start taking control?  What did I do to disobey my heavenly father?

Taking the second approach can lead you back to God, repentance, and life.  This is a humble man’s attitude towards God, realizing that He his sovereign over all and we are mere humans who screw everything up when not in God’s perfect and pleasing will.

The first choice, however, can lead you to depression, destruction, and ultimately death.

Samson’s Choice
If you go back and look at the first part of "Should I tell my boyfriend everything??" I briefly discussed Samson’s arrogant personality.  Because he was very cocky and powerful, do you think he chose the first choice of hating God, or do you think he chose the humble man’s approach?

Sadly enough, Samson through a pity party instead of humbling himself.  After his head had been shaved and his strength (God) had left him, the Philistines wanted him to come entertain them; so he did.  He entered the arena with rage and hatred, screaming to God, “Please strengthen me just once more, and let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines for my two eyes.”

Then Samson reached up and grabbed two pillars holding up the temple and pushed them up so that everything came falling down, crushing him and many others.

More Consequences…
Then the bible says, “Thus he killed many more when he died than while he lived.”  Basically he committed suicide and killed more people by doing that than he had while he was alive (which was a lot considering he won many battles.) 

I think suicidal thoughts creep in when we focus too much on ourselves.  Like Samson, we struggle with pride and often try to make all things about us, rather than God.  Suffering: for example. So a loved one dies, our natural tendency is to throw a poor me party and cry, blame God, become depressed, and eventually talk ourselves into possible suicide.  This is not at all God’s plan.

Even death and suffering is not about us.  If we make it about us the outcome will most definitely be miserable like Samson’s story proved.  And we will also negatively affect more people than almost anything else.

On the Contrary
On the flip side, if we chose to live our lives for something far greater than ourselves or any human establishment, we will see the hope, love, and mercy that God has shown us all.  Therefore rejoicing in his grace and passing it on to others, sharing the joy of true life with them.  Do you see now why God wants the best for you?  Do you see how he wants to include you in his wonderful plan?

What are you mad about?  What have you blamed God for that has been hurting you?  Perhaps you need to spend some time sharing that hurt and pain with God and letting him know how you feel.  Then lay down “you.”  Turn upward and focus on God.  Ask him to show you HIS great plan over yours. Tell him to show you how life focused on Him is far better than life focused on you.