“Out of the Eater, Something to Eat, Out of the Strong, Something Sweet”
This is Samson’s riddle put forth to a group of godless Philistines at his wedding festival.
His puzzling phrase had a wager attached and seems meant to humiliate this foreign crowd.
Samson was a Hebrew and had acquired this inspired wisdom from something only he and the Lord knew about.
His secret was based on receiving conquering strength to kill an approaching lion on the road.
Later, he was surprised to find bees and honey in the dead carcass and took it to share with his family.
Although Samson’s notorious downfall seemed to begin with Delilah, his victorious life was flawed at the start by the choices he made.
Amazingly, the riddle he created at a young age actually summarizes the short record of his life while showing a pattern in God’s people, and shedding light for our Faith today.
The quick notes on his beginning; an angel appeared to his parents before he was born and delivered instructions for following the strict rules of the "Nazirite Vow".
This is described in Moses' law as being fully devoted unto God while leading a priestly clean and sacrificial lifestyle.
This means Samson was ordained as a Nazirite from birth and never voluntarily made this vow for himself.
The angel declared it in advance for his divine mission and made it necessary for Israel's deliverance.
Although this messenger came in Christ-like form to bring this Christ-like anointing, Samson loved to embrace the wrong bride, and he did it twice.
Now the lion wanted to eat Samson, but by the strength from God almighty given at that moment, he not only subdued the beast but later ate the goods found inside.
His power wasn't from muscles, but was the special gift which seemed to come and go as the Spirit of God pleased.
When this unexpected danger came at him, an empowering confidence filled his body to defeat the hungry predator using his bare hands.
Now see the Word of Peter which says; “your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour”.
This means every spiritual killer whether it comes as a dominating death force or a smooth deceptive falsehood, is the same as this "eater" every time.
Note the first sermon here; in our walk of Faith we will fall under the same attack, but the victory is the Lord's and we will share something better from facing anything having the power to destroy us.
The stronger the confrontation, the sweeter the benefit gained later down the road.
Now the deeper sermon shows the vast picture of a spiritually illuminated view.
Be it known, the Israelite nation since their departure from Egypt always had plenty of these; rise & fall, victory & defeat, sinful backsliding, then a renewed empowerment of the Spirit - just like this man Samson.
The record of the Lord’s intervention for those He loves usually begins with near helplessness, then develops into an explosion of His Power and Word over time.
It could be said this man's life matches a thousand years of history in a nutshell by being his own enemy time after time.
Samson’s life begins with yet another sequence of God’s people gone full cycle and once again being enslaved after a blessed spread of years.
The chapters during this period begin with; “Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord, so the Lord delivered them into the hands of the Philistines”.
It’s the reoccurring love for what God forbids which becomes the repeated return to bondage.
In symbolic terms, the “eater” revisits and eats their chosen position in God’s Family, AND, they fail their divine “vows” in a similar way.
In general, the “eater” is conquered in the flesh but unfortunately not in the Spirit.
Even though the enemy may appear as being the Philistines, the real enemy repeatedly makes his kill on God’s people by the subtle leaning toward embracing the wrong things, and tendency to embrace the loves of this world.
From cover to cover our Bible is loaded with these same reflections which awaken us to the Lord’s will for every one of us before we were born.
Samson is us - empowered by the Spirit while failing our “birthright vow”.
Going even deeper we see his first wife as representing the entire Old Testament where in general the Israelites continued to love what was unlawful but well acceptable by the world around them.
Samson knew he shouldn’t embrace a Philistine girl but his spiritual strength and chosen anointing gave him the confidence to do it.
Although that episode went nowhere and was dissolved in burning flames, Samson became the victor by the forgiving Grace and power of God.
This symbolically reflects the period of Israel in embracing the wrong love before Christ.
Consider now his second love - Delilah as representing God’s chosen in the age of the New Testament right up to us today.
See the same repeated cycle in departing from the divine instructions given at the very beginning.
We now live in the long term breakdown of our soul due to her series of deceptions to steal the secret of our divine power.
The Spirit of God was eliminated while Samson fell asleep to his original purpose from birth.
In light of this, is it possible God’s people today are getting overly comfortable in the arms of the world around us?
Doesn’t it seem likely we could let our guard down while strong and overconfident in our Godly gift?
Yes, we are the Israelites of today and walking in the same repeated scenario while the scriptures make this relevant to us.
In giving this allegory the maximum message, we have Samson in the last days falling into blindness, enslaved and laboring for nothing while submitting to the “vow” which he never made.
By the Grace of our God and for the sake of His Mighty Name the power returned to confront the original mission of deliverance meant for God’s people.
Samson is us having the final victory over the “eater / the works of the devil”, and the eternal sweetness is shared with all and the blessing of dying in Christ. And so shall we ever be with Him.
Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His Name, He gave the right to become Children of God – children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, But Born of God. John 1: 12, 13;