OceanSide church of Christ

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Lesson #3


The Birth of Samson (cont.)

Judges 13:2-25

Victor M. Eskew


I.             AN EMPTY HOUSE (Judg. 13:2)


II.           AN ENCOURAGING MESSAGE (Judg. 13:3-5)


A.   The Promise (Judg. 13:3)


B.   The Preparations (Judg. 13:4)


Now therefore beware, I pray thee, and drink not wine nor strong drink, and eat not any unclean thing.


1.    God placed stipulations on the diet of Samson’s mother. 

2.    God wanted this child dedicated to His service not just from birth, but from conception.

3.    What Samson’s mother did while pregnant had an influence on the child she carried within.

4.    The words of a mocker:  After noting the divine intervention of God in the lives of Samson’s mother and Hannah, David Grossman writes:  “Both these tales of extraordinary pregnancies carry with them the uncomfortable implication that God has somehow exploited the despair of these mothers, who thirsted so avidly to conceive and give birth, that they were willing to accede to any ‘suggestion’ regarding the destiny of their child, even – in the language of our own day – to serve as ‘surrogate mothers’ for God’s great plans” (Lion’s Honey, The Myth of Samson, Grossman, 16).


C.   The Purpose (Judg. 13:5)


For lo, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and no razor 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.


1.    His Separation (Judg. 13:5a)

a.    “A Nazarite lived differently, ate differently, and had a number of restrictions regarding his lifestyle and conduct” (Butler, 24).

b.    His long hair was an outward sign of the vow he had taken (See Num. 6:5).


All the days of the vow of his separation there shall no razor come upon his head:  until the days be fulfilled, in the which he separateth himself unto the Lord, and he shall be holy, and shall let the locks of the hair of his head grow.


1)    No razor was to come upon his head.

2)    This will be a very important matter in the case of Samson.

2.    His service (Judg. 13:5b)

a.    Notice the wording:  “…he shall BEGIN to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines” (emp. mine, vme).

1)    Samson did not break the yoke of the Philistines.

2)    There was no complete deliverance in Samson’s day.

b.    There were two reasons why Israel was not completely delivered.

1)    Samson:  We will see more about this in our study.

2)    Israel:  She was slow in seeking God’s help in the days of Samson.


III.         THE EAGER REPORT (Judg. 13:6-7)


A.   The Messenger (Judg. 13:6)


Then 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 me his name.


1.    The Characterization

a.    Position:  a man of God

1)    The term “man of God” is often used in the OT to refer to a prophet (I Sam. 2:27; 9:6-8; I Kings 12:22; 13:1; See also I Tim. 6:11; II Tim. 3:17).

2)    A prophet was one who “spoke forth the word of God,” past, present, and future.

3)    It was an office involving the miraculous.

a)    They would predict the future with minute accuracy.

b)    They could often perform miracles.

2.    The Presentation

a.    This being was a manifestation of a God, a theophany.

b.    Manoah’s wife says that his countenance was like the countenance of an angel of God.  She does not say exactly what she saw.  Most likely he was white, bright, and glistening.

c.    Very terrible

1)    Definition

a)    Strong (3372):  to fear, to revere; causatively to frighten

b)    BDB:  to fear, revere, be afraid…to cause astonishment and awe

2)    See Genesis 26:16-17


And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely God is in this place, and I knew it not.  And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place:  this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.


d.    Lessons

1)    The presence of God, even in a manifestation of God, causes one to tremble either out of respect, out of fright, or both (Exo. 3:6; Dan. 8:17; Matt. 28:4; Rev. 1:17).

2)    Manoah’s wife had a very good relationship with her husband.  When this was revealed to her, she immediately communicated to him all things that she had seen and heard.  One has said that the lifeline of all relationships is communication.