Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Judges 16:20 [Sampson] awoke from his sleep and thought, “I’ll go out as before and shake myself free.” But he did not know that the LORD had left him.

The story of Sampson and Delilah is a familiar one. Sampson had been plaguing the Philistines for a long time and they were trying to find a way to overpower him and take him prisoner. When Sampson fell in love with Delilah the Philistines thought they had a certain way to entrap him. They told Delilah to find out the secret of his strength so they could take him. Of course Sampson lied to Delilah the first three times. He told her that seven fresh thongs could hold him, that a new rope could hold him, and that if his hair was woven into a loom it could hold him. Delilah whined to Sampson that he was making a fool of her so Sampson told her the truth. If his hair was shaved off he would become just like a normal man. Delilah shaved his head while he slept and when she called out that the Philistines were upon him Sampson awoke and thought he could throw them off as before. But to his chagrin he discovered that the LORD had left him while he slept.

I think of the words of Jesus as he spoke to Peter, James and John in the Garden of Gethsemane. Watch and pray that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak (Mark 14:38). Sampson was willing to defeat the Philistines but his flesh was weak. Temptation came to him over and over again. He had so much confidence in his own strength that he lazily fell asleep and Delilah was able to rob him of his strength. His unwillingness to say “no” to the flesh and his arrogance led to his downfall.

We can be grateful for this truth: God will never leave us or forsake us. His Spirit will never leave us. We live under the new covenant and do not have to worry about having the Lord depart from us. However, we need to be alert and keep watch! Temptation does not just come once and then leave us. It comes over and over again. If we do not keep watch we will fall into temptation and our ensuing sin will hinder our walk with God. We need to be people of prayer. Prayer is an act of humility and faith. The arrogant do not pray. The faithless do not pray. The arrogant think they can overcome in their own strength and they don’t need to pray. Those who have no faith in God do not waste time saying words that will never be heard. Churches and Christians who fail to pray will be caught off guard by the Enemy. Their self-confidence will lead them to fail. The danger is that one day we will wake up and find that the power of the Lord has left us and that we have become weak.


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