Sampson was an incredibly strong man, his strength was a gift from God which came with a very specific instruction. From the day he was born until the day he died, God said that he was not to cut his hair. Samson’s mother did as God said and did not cut his hair. Samson enjoyed great strength all through his childhood and teens, having never cut his hair. However, Samson grew up and along with his mighty strength, he also developed a weakness. Like most men, he liked beautiful women! After all, who can resist a beautiful woman?
The love of Samson’s life was a beautiful woman, Delilah. Sadly, this beautiful woman, like many beautiful women today, was not good for him. Delilah was being paid by the Philistines to seduce Samson in order to find out what made him so very strong. The Philistines said to her, “Entice him, and find out where his great strength lies, and by what means we may overpower him, that we may bind him to afflict him; and every one of us will give you eleven hundred pieces of silver.”
So Delilah, using all of her charm and beauty, said to Samson, “Please tell me what makes you strong. I really, really want to know. Tell me too what would cause you to lose your strength.”
Delilah batted her eye lids, pouted her lips and used her voluptuous body to seduce Samson into telling her what she needed to know. As she sat giving him her sexiest smile he said to her, “If you tie me up with seven fresh bowstrings, not yet dried, then I will become weak, and have the usual strength like any other man.”
Delilah left Samson while he was having a nap and raced off to tell the leaders of the Philistines what she had discovered. Immediately they set to work and got seven fresh bowstrings, not yet dried, gave them to Delilah and she tied him up with them. Some of the Philistine men came into the room with her, ready to capture Samson when they were sure he was weakened. She said to him, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!”
But he broke the bowstrings as a strand of yarn breaks when it touches fire. So the secret of his strength was not known.
Samson seemed oblivious to what Delilah was up to and so this game continued as she asked him where he got his strength from and he responded with something that was not true. When Samson fell asleep Delilah would try what Samson had told her, the Philistines would come to get him and he would escape.
Delilah became upset and said to Samson, “How can you say, ‘I love you,’ when your heart is not with me? You have mocked me these three times, and have not told me where your great strength lies.”
She continued to use the ‘if you love me’ line on Samson day in and day out. Pestering him daily with her words, she wore him down until he could take it no more. She nagged and nagged and nagged. Samson’s soul became vexed to death and he gave in to her. He told her everything about himself and said to her, “No razor has ever come upon my head, for I have been a Nazirite to God from my mother’s womb. If I am shaven, then my strength will leave me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man.”
Once again, Delilah lulled him to sleep on her knees. As soon as he had drifted off she called over a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his head. Delilah immediately began to shout and call out to Samson so that he would wake up and as he woke his strength left him. She continued to taunt him saying, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!”
Samson, being accustomed to Delilah’s games, awoke from his sleep and thought that he could shake the Philistines off as before but he could not. Not this time! God had left. God was not with him anymore and when God left so did Samson’s great strength.
Shock, horror and utter disbelief filled Samson when he realised what had happened. Before he even had time to collect his thoughts excruciating pain writhed throughout his entire body as they gauged out his eyes. Blood mixed with sweat dripped down his face but no mercy was given as they forced him to walk down to Gaze. He was bound with bronze fetters by the Philistines and taken captive. Within a few short hours, Samson had gone from being the world’s strongest man to a mere prisoner slave. As he ground away each day in the prison mill, he recalled how he once had it all. He had the looks, the life and the girl. Most importantly, he had God with him.
Samson lived in utter humiliation as a slave and a prisoner. The shackles were holding his body but regret and guilt had taken control of his soul. This once mighty man was reduced to nothing – the joke of the Philistines. He gave up his strength for a beautiful woman but ended up losing both his strength and the woman he loved. His life was wasted and he had nothing to live for.
One evening, while Samson sat bound with his chains of regret as well as chains of steel, the Philistines called upon Samson to perform for them. Their hearts were particularly merry that evening and they must have thought it fun to watch this prisoner perform for them.
Samson was brought down from the prison and placed between two pillars. Of course, having no eyes made him feel insecure and so he said to the lad who held him by the hand, “Let me feel the pillars which support the temple, so that I can lean on them.”
Now the temple was full of men and women. All the lords of the Philistines were there—about three thousand men and women on the roof watching while Samson performed. Then Samson called to the LORD, saying, “O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray! Strengthen me, I pray, just this once, O God, that I may with one blow take vengeance on the Philistines for my two eyes!”
And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars which supported the temple, and he braced himself against them, one on his right and the other on his left. Then Samson said, “Let me die with the Philistines!”
And he pushed with all his might, and the temple fell on the lords and all the people who were in it. So the dead that he killed at his death were more than he had killed in his life.
This is a chapter snippet from Esther or Delilah?