Samson’s Mother

In Study the Women of the Bible by revealadmin1 Comment

When we least expect it, God opens doors. When we least expect it, a new season begins. When we least expect it, the winds of change begin to blow. When we least expect it, God prepares, molds, and shapes a heart to love His people. When she least expected it, a woman’s womb was opened; delivering a child whose name and life-story would forever be told in history.

She is barren. No children to call her own, no one to call her mother. An obscure woman, whose name we do not know, is about to give birth to one of God’s chosen judges. His strength will be world renown, his name famous. Samson’s mother is about to be met by the Angel of the Lord.

Judges 13:1-25, “Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord, so the Lord delivered them into the hands of the Philistines for forty years. A certain man of Zorah, named Manoah, from the clan of the Danites, had a wife who was childless, unable to give birth.  The angel of the Lord appeared to her and said, “You are barren and childless, but you are going to become pregnant and give birth to a son.  Now see to it that you drink no wine or other fermented drink and that you do not eat anything unclean.  You will become pregnant and have a son whose head is never to be touched by a razor because the boy is to be a Nazirite, dedicated to God from the womb. He will take the lead in delivering Israel from the hands of the Philistines.”

Then the woman went to her husband and told him, ‘A man of God came to me. He looked like an angel of God, very awesome.  I didn’t ask him where he came from, and he didn’t tell me his name.  But he said to me, “You will become pregnant and have a son. Now then, drink no wine or other fermented drink and do not eat anything unclean, because the boy will be a Nazirite of God from the womb until the day of his death.’”

Then Manoah  prayed to the Lord: ‘Pardon your servant, Lord. I beg you to let the man of God you sent to us come again to teach us how to bring up the boy who is to be born.’

God heard Manoah, and the angel of God came again to the woman while she was out in the field; but her husband Manoah was not with her.  The woman hurried to tell her husband, ‘He’s here! The man who appeared to me the other day!’

Manoah got up and followed his wife. When he came to the man, he said, ‘Are you the man who talked to my wife?’

‘I am,’ he said.

So Manoah asked him, ‘When your words are fulfilled, what is to be the rule that governs the boy’s life and work?’

The angel of the Lord answered, ‘Your wife must do all that I have told her. She must not eat anything that comes from the grapevine, nor drink any wine or other fermented drink nor eat anything unclean. She must do everything I have commanded her.’

Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, ‘We would like you to stay until we prepare a young goat for you.’

The angel of the Lord replied, ‘Even though you detain me, I will not eat any of your food. But if you prepare a burnt offering, offer it to the Lord.’ (Manoah did not realize that it was the angel of the Lord.)

Then Manoah inquired of the angel of the Lord, ‘What is your name,  so that we may honor you when your word comes true?’

He replied, ‘Why do you ask my name? It is beyond understanding.’

Then Manoah took a young goat, together with the grain offering, and sacrificed it on a rock to the Lord. And the Lord did an amazing thing while Manoah and his wife watched:  As the flame blazed up from the altar toward heaven, the angel of the Lord ascended in the flame. Seeing this, Manoah and his wife fell with their faces to the ground.  When the angel of the Lord did not show himself again to Manoah and his wife, Manoah realized that it was the angel of the Lord.

We are doomed to die’ he said to his wife. ‘We have seen God!’

But his wife answered, ‘If the Lord had meant to kill us, he would not have accepted a burnt offering and grain offering from our hands, nor shown us all these things or nor told us this.’

The woman gave birth to a boy and named him Samson. He grew and the Lord blessed him,  and the Spirit of the Lord  began to stir him while he was in Mahaneh Dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol.”

Israel is in need of a judge. God’s people have yet again fallen into evil, enslaved to the Philistines for forty years. “This was the longest oppression the nation had yet undergone.” [1] The chosen ones need a leader and God is going to use an obscure couple to fulfill His desire.

 “The Lord is in His holy temple; the Lord’s throne is in heaven. His eyes behold; His eyelids test and prove the children of men.” (Psalm 11:4) The eyes of the Lord are toward the (uncompromisingly) righteous and His ears are open to their cry.” (Psalm 34:15) “For the ways of man are directly before the eyes of the Lord, and He carefully weighs all man’s goings.” (Proverbs 5:21) The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch upon the evil and the good.” (Proverbs 15:3) God is always searching. Searching for a man/woman who will love His laws, whose eyes and heart are focused on Him, and will give Him the glory. His eyes were searching and found a couple whom was barren. “The barren womb is often a starting place in the purposes of God. He calls life out of death and uses the things ‘that are not’ to confound the things that are.” [1]

We can look at Samson’s mother through different lenses. Her obedience and faith to tell her husband reminds me of Mary Magdalene who ran to the disciples upon Christ’s resurrection. Or the Woman and Well who, although an outcast, ran back to her village and boast of the Lord, in which all believed on account of her testimony. Or, Samson’s mother’s gentleness to calm and comfort her husband who exclaimed death, instead of rejoicing at what God was about to do through them. Or, her obedience to not drink wine or strong alcohol, remaining faithful to abstain from anything unclean. We can look at each of these attributes, but I want to focus on God choosing her.

 “For God selected (deliberately chose) what is foolish to put the wise to shame, and what the world calls weak to put the strong to shame.” (1 Corinthians 1:27) God does not look at outward appearances, He looks at the heart. “For the Lord searches all hearts and minds and understands all the wanderings of the thoughts.” (1 Chronicles 28:9) Our Lord looks and searches deliberately and diligently, methodically, and intently for a person who will submit and humbly seek His will. I believe Samson’s mother had been humbled. There was nothing she could do in regards to her situation. A pregnancy, she could never grasp on her own. Only God could open her womb.

Who would follow His commands? Who would have a heart as His, to love His nation, His people, and give their all to Him? Who would obediently respond, sacrifice to the Lord at His beckoning? Would you? Will you?

He chose Samson’s mother. He chose a woman who probably cried out to Him numerous times. He chose a woman who probably sacrificed countless offerings, praying for a child, a blessing. He chose a woman, who although could not have the one thing she desired, loved the Lord with all her heart. He chose a woman who did not conform to the world around her and their evil ways. He chose a woman who was committed, who was obedient in the face of sinfulness, and He chose a woman whom He could count on.

I pray the eyes of the Lord see you and your heart to do His will. I pray His eyes are upon you, watching and waiting for you to submit to His will and not your own. I pray He will use you to do might things for His Kingdom in such a time and season as this!

Comments

  1. Catherine

    Thank you. I pray to remain faithful and obedient to God no matter what goes on in the spiritual or physical realm. May whatever directions He gives me or tells me what’s going to happen I pray for ears to hear, a heart that follows willingly and a spirit that is committed to Him wholeheartedly.

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