Tonight we're going to be completing our series on the life of Samson by studying the topic, "Samson, Our savior, and Ourselves." This may be a bit of a departure from our normal study because we will not be looking only at Samson's life, but we want to compare his life with the life of Christ and then consider whose life ours will most be like. Samson's or the Savior's.
Certainly we find that the Bible is filled with examples of comparative studies. Often the Bible describes two different people, or two different kinds of people for the purpose of encouraging us to think which one we're most like.
In the book of Proverbs we find the wise man, and the foolish man. And the Lord wants us to ask ourselves, "Who are we most like?" The Proverbs also talks about the virtuous woman, and the evil woman, again encouraging us to ask, "Who are we most like?" A New Testament example is the consideration of Mary and Martha.
Can you think of other examples where the Bible describes two different people, or two different kinds of people for the purpose of encouraging us to think which one we're most like? As we make this kind of a comparison between Samson, and our Savior, we will not look at everything, but we will consider a number of areas.
I. Relationship To Authority:
A. Human parents
1. Let's begin with our Savior
a. What does the Bible tell us about Jesus' relationship to His human parents?
Lu 2:51-52 "And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man."
Joh 19:27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.
b. So when we think about the Lord's relationship His earthly parents, words like submission and honor come to mind.
2. Now let's consider Samson.
a. How would you describe his relationship to his parents?
b. He hated his parents' instruction
c. He didn't want to hear what they had to say
d. He refused to even consider that they might have some wisdom in this matter.
Jg 14:3 Then his father and his mother said unto him, Is there never a woman among the daughters of thy brethren, or among all my people, that thou goest to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? And Samson said unto his father, Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well.
Pr 15:5 A fool despiseth his father's instruction: but he that regardeth reproof is prudent.
3. What about us?
a. Perhaps many of you are like I am, an orphan!
b. Both my parents are with the Lord.
c. But as I consider these examples…I am sad to say that as a son, I was more like Samson than the Savior!
d. Oh I wish I could go back and relive my teen years…but I cannot.
e. As an adult, God allowed me to rebuild my relationship with them, but there were still scars of rebellion.
B. The Authority of God
1. Again we want to consider Jesus' attitude first.
a. We have a number of examples that we can consider.
b. It is clear that Jesus was in submission to His Father's will for Him.
Joh 4:34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.
Joh 6:38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.
Lu 22:42 Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.
2. What about Samson's relationship with the Heavenly Father?
a. We know he was disobedient to God's will for his life.
b. We find no evidence of a personal relationship with the Lord.
c. We only have recorded that he prayed twice, and each time it was when he wanted something physically.
d. So there's obvious difference between their relationship to authority
e. When it came to their human parents, and their relationship to the heavenly Father.
3. What about us?
a. Are we more like Samson or our Savior?
b. What about our willingness to do the will of God?
c. What about our walk with God and our prayer life?
d. Are we submitted to God's authority in our lives?
C. The third area of comparison is in authority to God's law.
1. What was Christ's relationship to the law of God?
Mt 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
a. Jesus came to show that the Law of God was still important in the life of a believer.
b. Not to bring salvation…but to teach us our need for a Savior.
c. He was not in opposition to the Law of God; rather He came to fulfill it.
2. However, Samson's attitude toward God's Law was completely different.
a. Remember the Nazarite vow?
b. Samson repeatedly violated it by touching the body of a dead animal, drinking wine, and eventually allowing his hair to be cut.
c. It is clear that Samson didn't take seriously the commitment to God's Law.
3. Again, what about us?
a. I know, we are not under law…we are under grace.
b. For us the Law that we must pay attention is the Word of God…His commandments to us as His children.
c. Do we take seriously what God has commanded us?
d. Note: John 14:15
If ye love me, keep my commandments.
e. Again the focus is on our attitude toward God's authority in our lives.
II. Understanding of Eternal Purpose:
A. The example of our Savior.
1. There is no question that Jesus understood, even at a very young age, what His eternal purpose was.
Lu 2:49 And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?
2. Jesus wasn't talking about Joseph here.
3. He understood that He had an eternal purpose in this world.
Joh 9:4 I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.
Joh 17:1 These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:
B. What about Samson?
1. He lived for the moment.
2. There is no evidence in this account that he ever thought about the future.
3. He never sought to connect his present circumstances with God's eternal plan and program.
4. He never spoke about Israel's current spiritual condition, and how he might be able to have an impact on that spiritual condition.
5. He never referred to himself as a judge.
6. He was very much UNLIKE the Men of Isachar.
1Ch 12:32a, "And of the children of Issachar, which were men that had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do…"
C. What about us?
1. Who are we more like?
2. Do we understand that we have an eternal purpose?
3. Or do we, like Samson, live for the moment?
III. The Way They Handled Temptation:
A. How did our Savior handle temptation? Mt. 4:1-11
1. He was quick to recognize the devil's schemes.
2. We never find the Lord being caught off guard, fooled, or unable to discern the "wiles of the devil."
3. He was alert and able to recognize what was happening.
4. He defeated temptation with Scripture.
5. For every temptation the devil presented our Lord, He was able to defeat it with clear passages from the Scripture.
Heb 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
B. How did Samson handle temptation?
1. This won't take long.
2. He repeatedly and willingly gave in to the temptations that came his way.
3. He set himself up to fall by making unwise decisions
4. He didn't learn lessons from his previous failures.
Pr 26:11 As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.
5. He never gave any evidence that he knew any Scripture.
C. Now it is time to consider ourselves.
1. How do we handle temptation that comes in our lives?
2. We have the examples of God's Word to teach us how…
3. We cannot claim that we didn't know what to do!
4. It really becomes a question of doing what we know is right! It is our choice!
IV. The Way They Died:
A. We will look at Samson first on this one.
1. Samson died with vengeance on his lips.
"…O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes." Jdg. 16:28b
2. Samson died with unfinished business.
a. He did nothing in his 20 years as judge of Israel to lead God's people.
b. Everything that God would have wanted him to accomplish as a judge could not be accomplished.
c. His death was premature.
B. Our Savior's death.
1. Instead of dying with revenge on his lips, what did our Lord say from the cross?
2. Instead of dying with unfinished business, our Lord could say: I have finished the work you have given me to do.
C. What about us?
1. Most of us don't like to think about death…especially our own!
2. The greatest testimony of a Christian is not how they live, but how they die.
3. The apostle Paul challenges us with his example.
2Ti 4:7 I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
4. How will we die?
5. Just like how we live, the choice is ours…will we be more like our Savior, or will our death be pitiful like Samson's?