The Life and Times of Samson: His Birth Part TwoRev. Michael Calvert, Ph.D., January 28, 2018
Part of the Great Events in the History of Redemption series.
This coming Lord’s Day we will open the inspired Word of the Lord once again to the Book of Judges chapter 13, and to verses 2-7, and also verses 24-25. We will be considering the very beginning of the intriguing story of one of the more famous men of the Old Testament, the man named “Samson.”
Of course, Samson was the twelfth and final deliverer for the Covenant people during that lengthy and tragic time in Israelite history called the ‘period of the judges.’ That season, as summarized by the final verse of the Book, was an awful period of sin and depravity when “there was no king in Israel,” and when “Everyone did what was right in his own eyes” (21:25).
We will discover that by the time of Samson’s arrival on the scene, Israel has declined to its lowest point ever. There is little hope for her recovery. The nation appears to be all but dead, a reality dramatically underscored by the sad note that the unnamed wife of Manoah—like several other most significant women in the Old Testament history of redemption—“was barren and had no children” (v. 2). Yet, as bleak as the situation appears to be, there are grace-filled rays of hope flashing all around!
On Sunday we will consider the unique circumstances surrounding Samson’s miraculous birth, his naming, and the fact that he was immediately endowed with the power and presence of the Holy Spirit. I hope that between now and Sunday morning you will have some time to read all of chapter 13. And as you read, please pray for the preaching of the Word of the Lord, and that we will have our hearts attuned to the message of grace and salvation that we find here.
1And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD; and the LORD delivered them into the hand of the Philistines forty years. 2And there was a certain man of Zorah, of the family of the Danites, whose name was Manoah; and his wife was barren, and bare not. 3And the angel of the LORD appeared unto the woman, and said unto her, Behold now, thou art barren, and bearest not: but thou shalt conceive, and bear a son. 4Now therefore beware, I pray thee, and drink not wine nor strong drink, and eat not any unclean thing: 5For, lo, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and no rasor shall come on his head: for the child shall be a Nazarite unto God from the womb: and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines. 6Then the woman came and told her husband, saying, A man of God came unto me, and his countenance was like the countenance of an angel of God, very terrible: but I asked him not whence he was, neither told he me his name: 7But he said unto me, Behold, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and now drink no wine nor strong drink, neither eat any unclean thing: for the child shall be a Nazarite to God from the womb to the day of his death. 8Then Manoah intreated the LORD, and said, O my Lord, let the man of God which thou didst send come again unto us, and teach us what we shall do unto the child that shall be born. 9And God hearkened to the voice of Manoah; and the angel of God came again unto the woman as she sat in the field: but Manoah her husband was not with her. 10And the woman made haste, and ran, and shewed her husband, and said unto him, Behold, the man hath appeared unto me, that came unto me the other day. 11And Manoah arose, and went after his wife, and came to the man, and said unto him, Art thou the man that spakest unto the woman? And he said, I am. 12And Manoah said, Now let thy words come to pass. How shall we order the child, and how shall we do unto him? 13And the angel of the LORD said unto Manoah, Of all that I said unto the woman let her beware. 14She may not eat of any thing that cometh of the vine, neither let her drink wine or strong drink, nor eat any unclean thing: all that I commanded her let her observe. 15And Manoah said unto the angel of the LORD, I pray thee, let us detain thee, until we shall have made ready a kid for thee. 16And the angel of the LORD said unto Manoah, Though thou detain me, I will not eat of thy bread: and if thou wilt offer a burnt offering, thou must offer it unto the LORD. For Manoah knew not that he was an angel of the LORD. 17And Manoah said unto the angel of the LORD, What is thy name, that when thy sayings come to pass we may do thee honour? 18And the angel of the LORD said unto him, Why askest thou thus after my name, seeing it is secret? 19So Manoah took a kid with a meat offering, and offered it upon a rock unto the LORD: and the angel did wondrously; and Manoah and his wife looked on. 20For it came to pass, when the flame went up toward heaven from off the altar, that the angel of the LORD ascended in the flame of the altar. And Manoah and his wife looked on it, and fell on their faces to the ground. 21But the angel of the LORD did no more appear to Manoah and to his wife. Then Manoah knew that he was an angel of the LORD. 22And Manoah said unto his wife, We shall surely die, because we have seen God. 23But his wife said unto him, If the LORD were pleased to kill us, he would not have received a burnt offering and a meat offering at our hands, neither would he have shewed us all these things, nor would as at this time have told us such things as these. 24And the woman bare a son, and called his name Samson: and the child grew, and the LORD blessed him. 25And the Spirit of the LORD began to move him at times in the camp of Dan between Zorah and Eshtaol. (KJV)