FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Sun, 1/13/2013
Sunday, January 13, 2013
JUDGES, FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, PLUS, Sun, 1/13/2013
A BLESSED MORNING TO EVERYONE!
ALL THE SIGNS POINT TO DANGER, Lesson 17c
v. 5-9 SAMSON’S DISOBEDIENCE
Samson’s parents relent and give in to his demands. They sacrificed their convictions to make him happy. By the way, that is never right! You should stand for what is right even if the whole world walks out on you! There are too many parents who live for nothing but to make their children happy. What about the Lord?
As they go to Timnath to see this woman, Samson apparently wanders off to himself. He is passing through a vineyard when he is attacked by a lion. He kills the lion with his bare hands, in the power of the Holy Spirit.
This seems like the first of many great feats of strength, and it is. But, this event is also a window into Samson’s soul. A glimpse through that window reveals a heart that is filled with disobedience. This is another warning sign that Samson should have heeded.
v. 5 The Place Of His Disobedience – Samson is attacked in a vineyard. What is a Nazarite doing in a vineyard? According to Num. 6:3-4, he could not eat anything that came from a vine. He could not drink wine. He had no business being around a vineyard. This simply reveals the disobedient nature of Samson’s heart.
Perhaps he thought he was immune to temptation. Perhaps he thought that the prohibition against the fruit of the vine was for everyone but him. Who knows what he thought, but his disobedience is revealed by his placing himself in a place where he could be tempted to break his vows to the Lord.
The same is true with us. When we continually place ourselves in situations where we can be tempted, we are revealing the fact that we have a disobedient spirit. It is almost like we are daring temptation to come. It is almost like we are courting sin. I would remind you that God commands us to separate from sin, not court it, (2 Cor. 6:17).
v. 7 The Proof Of His Disobedience – Samson’s disobedience manifested itself in his ignoring all the warning signs and in his following his own way.
The disobedient heart always shows itself through disobedient actions. It does as it pleases without regard for God or for the consequences. When you do as you please, even though you know God is against it, it is a huge, red, flashing warning sign that you are headed for trouble, (James 4:17).
v. 8-9 The Power Of His Disobedience – Samson placed his Nazarite vow in jeopardy just by being near a dead body, (Num. 6:6). Samson was so full of his own will and so filled with his own ways that the things of God held no power over him. Again, Samson did not care what God wanted, he only cared about what he wanted! Samson was completely under the spell of his sinful lusts.
Such is the power of our own sinful condition, we can reach the place where we no longer care what God wants from us. We can reach the place where all that matters is what we want and how we feel. That is a dangerous place to be!
v. 8-9 The Price Of His Disobedience – When Samson touched that dead lion, he violated his vow to the Lord, (Num. 6:9-12). He was supposed to go to the priest and offer sacrifices. He was supposed to shave his head. He was supposed to begin again as a Nazarite, because his sin destroyed everything in his life up to that point, (Num. 6:12). The price should have been forfeiture of all he had worked for.
For His Own purposes, God does not judge Samson here. We are told in verse 4 that these events were “of the Lord”. This does not mean that God planned the sin of Samson. It does mean that God allowed that sin to happen. It also means that God intended to use Samson’s sin to accomplish God’s will.
That is an amazing thing, isn’t it? God works exactly the same way in your life and mine. He does not make us sin, and He does not condone our sins, but he uses our sins to accomplish His own purposes in people, in the world, and in us!
God used Judah’s sin with Tamar to further the line of Christ. God used David’s sin with Bathsheba to bring Solomon into the world. He used the betrayal of Judas to get Christ to Calvary. I can’t explain these things, but I can rest in the sovereignty of God and know that even our sins will not thwart His plans.
For Samson, the price of his disobedience was that he was emboldened in his sin. When he broke his vow to God and nothing happened to him, he must have thought he got away with it. This misunderstanding of his sins caused him to travel even farther down the road to ruin.
We don’t get away with sin, my friend. It may appear that you have, but you don’t. There is a reckoning day! You may face the consequences of your sins in this life, (Gal. 6:7). You will surely face God with them someday, (Rom. 14:12; 2 Cor. 5:10). Disobedience always carries a high price. When we identify a disobedient heart within, we should deal with it immediately. It is a warning sign from God that trouble is ahead.
Proverbs 25:11 (New International Version (NIV)
11 Like apples of gold in settings of silver
is a ruling rightly given.
“I Stand Amazed” By Charles H. Gabriel (1905)
1. I stand amazed in the presence
of Jesus the Nazarene,
and wonder how he could love me,
a sinner, condemned, unclean.
How marvelous! How wonderful!
And my song shall ever be:
How marvelous! How wonderful
is my Savior's love for me!
2. For me it was in the garden
he prayed: "Not my will, but thine."
He had no tears for his own griefs,
but sweat-drops of blood for mine.
3. In pity angels beheld him,
and came from the world of light
to comfort him in the sorrows
he bore for my soul that night.
4. He took my sins and my sorrows,
he made them his very own;
he bore the burden to Calvary,
and suffered and died alone.
5. When with the ransomed in glory
his face I at last shall see,
'twill be my joy through the ages
to sing of his love for me.
Father of Light, God of Glory! We ask that Your Holy Spirit, who inspired the writing of the scriptures, will bring Your Word alive into our hearts every time we read or hear it. Enable us to retain it so we may learn about Your will and do what it says in obedience to Your will. Prepare us with Your Word so we may be complete and thoroughly equipped for every good works. Make Your Word a fabric of our daily being; weave it into our hearts and souls so that it forms who and what we are, and to whom we belong, to Your praise, glory and honor. Do not let us neglect Your word and cause our prayers to become an abomination to You. Help us to live in the peace You have for those who love and obey Your way. These things we pray in the name of Jesus, our Blessed Lord. Amen!
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