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God is Setting All Things Right. So I am Blogging Through the Bible in a Year.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

April 4 - Judges 13-15: Samson is Born to Punish the Philistines

Today’s Reading: Judges 13-15

The Message

English Standard Version

Thought to Guide Your Reading

Samson is to punish the Philistines for dominating Israel.

Summary in 100 Words or Less

Israel returned to evil. Punishment? Philistine domination.
Manoah and his wife were childless. The angel of God informed her that her newly-conceived son would be under the Nazarite vow. When the messenger returned the parents were filled with joy. Samson was born.
God gave Samson a Philistine wife to provoke him to punish the Philistines. He gave a riddle which they could not answer until they forced his wife to cheat. He killed thirty men. His wife was given to another man. Samson burned Philistia's crops. The Philistines murdered his wife and her family. He killed 1000 of their men.

How Today’s Reading Contributes to the Gospel: God is Setting All Things Right

God has called Samson from before birth to deliver Israel from Philistine oppression.

Israel has returned to evil. God gave them over to Philistia to rule for 20 years. Now they will be delivered. So God calls Samson to save Israel even before he was born.

God wanted Samson to have a Philistine wife to punish them.

God has warned Israel against marrying outsiders. However, Samson's case is unique because God has a plan for him. God allows His Chosen People to break His Commands—when He has a plan for them. And no, I don't think "someday something good might come from this" is not God's plan.

Samson's strength comes from the Spirit of God.

Samson's strength did not come from his ritual observance of the Nazarite vow. Samson's strength came from the Spirit of God coming with power. The observance of the Nazarite vow allowed God to have a place to fill. Ritual observances do not save us. Ritual observances allow God's Spirit to come upon us in power. That is why we pray, sing, fellowship with others, etc.

Are you a proper place for God's Spirit?

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