But as for you who forsake the Lord and forget my holy mountain, who spread a table for Fortune and fill bowls of mixed wine for Destiny (Isa 65:11-NIV) (1)
We have been studying the life of Samson. A lot can be gained from observing his life and the choices he made. His birth was miraculous. His mom was barren, and it was during a dark period of time when Israel was under Philistine rule. Their parents named him Samson, which means Sunshine.
He had a calling to deliver his people from the Philistine rule, But God saw that he would only begin to deliver his people. (Judges 13:5) God knows all things and knew that Samson was going to have a hard time dealing with the temptation of the world and the flesh. For more detailed studies of his life, click on the link below. (2) Now, fast-forward to Judges 14.
Judges 14 presents us with Samson and his flirtation with the world. First, he fell in love with a Philistine woman. This woman was not Jewish and had no covenant with God. This made him unequally yoked. Along the way to visit her, Samson encountered a Lion. He gave way to the enemy because of his disobedience, but God had mercy on him.
Samson killed a Lion with his bare hands, which meant that he touched a dead body, violating his Nazarite vow. A few days later, he returned to the scene and found honey around the dead body of the Lion. Again, he violated his Nazarite vow and touched Lion’s dead body in order to get the honey. He hid his sinful acts from his parents.
Samson failed to see the mercy and grace of God. He took it for granted. At a party with his Philistine buddies, He wanted to make a bet with them. He tells them a riddle and gives them 7 days to solve it.
This reminds me of the movie–The Hustler with one of my favorite actors by the name of Paul Newman. (3) It deals with a fictional story of a pool shark by the name of Eddie Felsen. In the movie, he enters a pool hall and declares that he is going to win ten grand in one night.
He is confident in his skills concerning the game of pool. He meets up with a seasoned Pool player by the name of Minnesota Fats (Jackie Gleason). Eddie bets Minnesota for the grand prize, and it’s game on. Along the way, Eddie starts to win and surpasses his goal of $10,000. His partner begs him to quit, but Eddie gets greedy.
He starts to drink and can’t hold his liquor. This affects his game, and he winds up losing everything except for $300. A sad state of affairs. Concerning Samson, he made a bet with his Philistine buddies. He thought that he would get ahead by using God’s anointing to win some nice suits from the Philistines. Meanwhile, the Philistines went behind Samson’s back and intimidated his wife. They wanted her to pressure Samson into revealing the answer to the riddle.
Deadly chains of events
The Philistines came with the answer, and Samson knew that they used his wife. Outraged, he killed 30 men in cold blood to get his garments for his buddies. The next thing that happened in Samson’s life was that his wife abandoned him. She ran off with his best friend. What lessons can we learn from this?
Don’t take God’s grace and mercy for granted. Stay away from betting your money on the Lottery and Casinos. Betting may not land you in hell, but it can set a chain of events that will bring destruction and chaos to your life and family. Lady luck and Destiny are not your source. Beloved, hear me out. I know some Christians get desperate and play the lottery.
Some have won some great amounts of money, but be careful. God is your source. Forsake the game of chance and learn God’s way of how to be blessed. Above all, respect God’s grace and his anointing.
Recommended reading–Judges 14
(1) Bible verses courtesy of http://www.biblegateway.com
(2) Bible studies podcasts—https://spoti.fi/42rxOtZ
(3) The Hustler–https://bit.ly/3IaC6he