March 8, 2009

Samson: The Strongest Judge yet Worst Failure (2) His Failure (1)

by: Rev. Jeremiah Cheung

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There were four important women in Samson’s life: his mother, a Philistine girl, the prostitute in Gaza, and Delilah. Apart from his mother who was a good influence on him, the other three women brought Samson harm.

Samson’s failures in life all had something to do with these women. Samson’s weakness was his failure in the aspect of his sexual relations with the opposite sex. Not only is this Samson’s weakness, but this is a struggle for all men, so we must take special precaution in this area!

I. Failure in the Sexual Aspect 14:1-3/16:1/1:4

Samson was a Nazirite. Numbers 6 details the requirements towards a Nazirite: they are to be holy, holier than priests. The standards of holiness for a Nazirite is similar to that of the high priest. But Samson was careless in the sexual aspect. Why?

1. Failure because of the Lust of the Eyes

14:1 Samson saw a young Philistine woman; 16:1 Samson saw a prostitute; 16:4 Samson fell in love with a woman.

We can say that whenever he saw a girl, he fell for one. What do we call this? This is lust of the eyes.

Many sins have been committed as a result of the lust of the eyes; one very famous example is David’s adultery.

2 Samuel 11:2 “One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful.”

David fell because he allowed his eyes to continue to look. With this one look he committed adultery, deception and lying; with this one look, he committed murder. With this one look, four of his sons were killed; with this one look the sin of incest occurred in his household; with this one look, his son rebelled against him.

If David had known that with that one look, so much tragedy and misery would happen to him, I believe he have been willing to gouge out his eyes and not look.

Job 31:1 “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl.”

I think we should all make a covenant with our eyes, because the lust of the eyes is a terrible thing; it caused the fall of Samson.

2. Failure to keep a safe distance

“Greet each other with a holy kiss.” Paul often used this remark in closing his letters to the churches such as in Romans 16:16, 1Cor 16:20, 2Cor13:12, 1Thess5:26, and 1Pet 5:14.

People of different countries have different customs for greeting one another. There may be differences in culture, but in principle “holiness must be observed” in the sexual aspect. So how do we observe holiness in our relationships? We must keep a safe distance.

A professor asked a group of experts in car racing: What is the safest distance you must observe to keep your car from falling off a steep edge? One man proudly replied, “I can do in within 2 feet!” Another guy arrogantly boasted, “I can do it within half a foot.” The professor exclaimed, “The safest distance is …the farther the better!” The male-female relationship is a very complicated matter. Married or single, we must all maintain a safe distance in our relationship with the opposite sex.