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Latest Sermon

Latest online sermon by Peter J Gordon

A lesson from Samson

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Judges 16:20 And she said, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he awoke out of his sleep, and said, I will go out as at other times before, and shake myself. And he wist not that the LORD was departed from him.

As a child I loved the story of Samson and more recently I was drawn back to it and have been studying it. The mains parts can be found in Judges 13-16. At the beginning of chapter 13 we read how the Israelites had been disobedient again before God and how He allowed them to come under the rule of the Philistines as a punishment for their wickedness.

We go on to learn about Samson's family. His father, Monoah, was from the clan of the Danites. His mother was childless and sterile until an angel of the Lord came to her and said "be told now, thou are barren and bearest not; but thou shalt conceive and bear a son."

The angel went on "Now therefore beware, I pray thee, and drink not wine or strong drink, and eat not any unclean thing,: For lo, thou shalt conceive and bear a son; and no razor shall come on his head; for the child shall be a nazrite unto God from the womb; and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines. A Nazarite was a man consecrated to God, part of their vow being to drink no wine nor shave their hair. They were men used by God in a divine capacity.

The woman gave birth to a boy and names him Samson (meaning 'sunshine'). He grew the Lord blessed him and the Spirit of the Lord began to stir in him. We read of his super abilities when he was able to kill a lion with his bare hands (Judges 14:6) and when he slew 1000 Philistines with the jaw bone of an ass (Judges 15:14-16).

The part we want to focus on in this article is when he ended up in the clutches of Delilah and how she betrayed him. Here we're looking at avoiding the Samson trap and is in Judges 16. In verse 20 it reads 'And she said (Delilah), the Philistines be upon thee Samson. And he awoke our of his sleep and said, I go out as at other times before and shake myself. And he wished not that the Lord was departed from him. Samson's downfall had begun when he met Delilah and began to lust after her. The Philistines saw an opportunity to learn the secrets of Samson's strength by encouraging Delilah to entice him in exchange for silver pieces.

Men and women today are sucked into the ways of a world lost in sins of lust and greed. By 'enjoying' this liberal lifestyle we are giving up our closeness to the Lord Jesus and more importantly giving up our eternal heritage. Even when we think we are walking right with the Lord we are confronted with temptation, with lusts, desires and envy. Whether we are married, single or in a relationship we are falling into these traps. Even in Christian circles we have moved away from the God's word and are accepting sexual relationships outside of marriage. Often it's seen as alright as long as their is commitment between them, but this is still wrong in God's eyes.

Society accepts many things that God abhors. There is immense pressure on people today, through the media especially, to 'enjoy' sexual relationships whether they be one-night stands, homosexual relationships or sex outside of marriage. All of these are wrong in the eyes of our Holy God. The consequences of these relationships are often painful, with emotional heartache, disease, unwanted and aborted pregnancies just a few of the heartbreaking effects.

Our children are encouraged and enticed into ungodly ways with bullying, foul language, aggressiveness and sexual activity being rife amongst children as young as 10 yrs of age. The devil is finding a foothold in the lives of young people today by using the media to sway public thought and opinion so that things that were once unacceptable suddenly have become acceptable, and even encouraged. Teenage suicide is on the increase and depression amongst children is growing rapidly. Pressure from the children and the media often makes parents give in to their child's demands for the latest trendy clothing or electronic gadgetry etc. This giving in belittles the parents authority and sets a poor trend for later years.

Delilah repeatedly tried to entice Samson to give up his secret and yet he continued to lust after her even when he realised she was trying to trap him. He was blinded by his lustful desires and unable to separate himself from her. We can all fall into temptation and sin, but when we repeatedly commit the same sin, especially when convicted by the Lord to step away from that sin, we are going to suffer the consequences of God's judgement.

For Samson the result of his weakness to Delilah was the loss of his strength. The Philistines were then able to come upon him, gouge out his eyes and arrest him. While they were merry celebrating the people called for Samson to be brought out so that they could rejoice at his capture. He was placed between two pillars where he beseeched the Lord to give him one last burst of strength so that he might bring down the house, killing himself in the process.

Samson failed to overcome his weakness to Delilah. It's can be extremely hard to overcome the traps we fall into but the Lord promises to uphold us and to cleanse us from all sin and iniquity. During my life I've fallen into these traps but the Lord has always stayed with me and has cleansed me when I've repented of my sin. Through Him I am made clean before the throne of grace.

Anyone who hasn't yet surrendered their hearts to the Lord and doesn't have Him in their life is living with the devil. You choose who you serve and if you aren't serving the Lord your serving satan. The Lord wants you to have a personal relationship with Him. He wants to cleanse you from all your sin and bring you into a loving relationship with Him. You must want to honestly be forgiven for your past sins, and you must intend with all your heart to follow the Lord's ways. The Lord promises you something better then sex, drugs or alcohol, He promises you the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will tug at your heart and guide you in your life, helping you to make choices and desicions that will benefit you and bring you peace. If you have backslidden and feel it's too late to come back to the Lord I want you to know that you can and are forgiven when you come again before the throne of grace and repent earnestly. The Lord still loves you and wants to strengthen you and make you right again.

Our whole life has to be a living sacrifice to God. We must allow Him full control and we must trust Him to lead us down the right path. Otherwise the devil will get in and tempt us in our weaknesses. Keep strong in prayer every day and ask the Lord to be with you throughout every moment and in all that you do. Read the Word of the Lord daily and memorise verses that will help you to overcome temptation. In all things remember our God is stronger then the temptations of the world so trust Him to help you make the right decisions.

Listen to my sermon on Living like Menoah and his wife.



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