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Saturday, April 21, 2012

S is for Samson

My A to Z blogging theme is characters in (people from) the scriptures. Since my blog is a book blog, this theme would fit right in and help me strengthen a weakness at the same. How fantastic is that?!  This challenge is a blessing. Thank you A to Z Challenge team!  *Book: LDS quad combo scriptures: KJV Holy Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine & Covenants, Pearl of Great Price. (p)1989, (c)1979.

Forgive me but I am super pressed for time so I'm just going to provide directs quotes found in my study manual:

  • Intro: Samson could have been one of the greatest leaders in Israel since Joshua if he had been true to his Nazarite vows and to his Lord. If Samson, foreordained and chosen by the Lord, had been able to master himself, he could have set an example of spiritual and physical courage that would rank with the finest in history. But we can learn from Samson’s failure to avoid self-justification and uncontrolled passion so that we might join modern Israel in becoming a mighty and pure people before the second coming of the Lord.
  • Example of his moral failure: At Samson’s seven-day wedding celebration he proposed a riddle. When his wife revealed the answer to the thirty Philistine guests to save her own life  and Samson lost the wager, he was furious and wreaked havoc on the Philistines at Ashkelon to get the spoils necessary to pay his debt. Probably for spite, his father-in-law gave Samson’s wife to the man “used as his friend” that is, his best man at the wedding. Here is an excellent glimpse of the moral state of the Philistines and of Samson’s own moral failure. The angel had told his mother that her son “shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines”. Instead, Samson married a Philistine, interacted with them, and smote them only when it suited his personal desire.
  • Delilah delivers him to Philistines: To offer Delilah a treasure of eleven hundred pieces of silver was a striking indication of the desperate state in which the five lords of the Philistines found themselves after the depredations wrought by Samson. These lords were the rulers of the five major cities of the Philistines. These cities—Gaza, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Ekron, and Gath—were significant in Old Testament history. Gaza was where Samson had visited a harlot and was also the scene of his death. Gath was the hometown of the later Philistine champion Goliath
  • About his hair: Samson’s superhuman strength did not reside in his hair but in his confidence in God and in the Nazarite oath, of which the hair was the outward symbol. Delilah’s treachery and the shaving of Samson’s hair signified the final betrayal of his vows. Thus, he became a miserable, broken man with no power left.   
  • God strengthens him again: The claim of the Philistines that “our god hath delivered into our hands our enemy” referred to their belief that their success in capturing Samson proved the Philistine deity Dagon was greater than Jehovah. Thus, the people did not fear to make sport of Samson, the champion of Jehovah, in the temple of their god. In this setting, Samson once again exercised that kind of courage through which God could have used him as a tool. But again the self-centeredness of Samson is evident. Even in his final opportunity, when Samson used his restored strength to destroy the temple of Dagon and the Philistines who were there, he thought only of getting revenge for what had been done to him. In the destruction of his very temple, what better proof could there be that the power of Dagon was nothing? And yet how much more powerfully could Samson have borne witness to the power of Jehovah if he had fulfilled his calling to overthrow the power of the Philistines.  
  • He pulled down entire temple: “The character of [this] building is illustrated by discoveries at Gezer and Gaza. The roof was supported by wooden pillars set on stone bases. It was flat, consisting of logs of wood stretching from one wall to beams supported by the pillars and from these beams to other beams or to the opposite wall. The temple at Gezer had a forecourt leading into a paved inner chamber, separated from it by four circular stones, on which the wooden pillars stood. Samson probably stood between the two central pillars, if there were more than two. The Philistine lords and ladies were in the inner chamber; the crowd watched from the roof. Samson made sport, in the forecourt, and then asked the boy to lead him to the central pillars to rest against them. Then, putting an arm round each, and bending forward so as to force them out of the perpendicular, he brought the roof down. The weight of people on the roof may have made the feat all the easier.” (Guthrie, New Bible Commentary, p. 272.)  
  • This destructions killed 3,000 people and himself.  (Judges 16:30)  :(


  1. One of the great stories of the OT! I'm trying to visit all the A-Z Challenge Blogs this month. My alphabet is at

  2. Thank you for visiting my stop Sharkbytes! Happy hopping to all the blogs!


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