Sunday, October 7, 2012

Love Lessons from Samson: Only Fools Rush In

Love Lessons from Samson: Only Fools Rush In

 

Afterward it happened that he loved a woman in the Valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah.” – Judges 16:4

The story of Samson and Delilah reminds me of an old Elvis song that begins “Wise men say only fools rush in, but I can’t help falling in love with you.”  Samson had already been married, but through his own sins and destruction had caused the death of his ex-wife and her family at the hands of the Philistines.  But did he wait before seeking another woman? No.
Samson seemed desperate to find love.  He ran from one woman to another.  After the murder of his ex-wife, Judges 16 opens by telling us that Samson went to Gaza, found a prostitute, and went in to her.  Rather than stopping and learning from his mistakes, Samson went seeking a woman and letting lust be his guide again.  But this time, he fell for the woman who would bring about his final destruction.

Samson was in the Valley of Sorek, a Philistine town.  The Philistines have been his enemy since birth, having ruled over his people, the Israelites, with a heavy hand for years.  But they were also personal enemies.  Because of Samson’s great strength, they had sought to destroy him many times.  They had threatened his first wife and caused her to break their marriage trust.  They had then returned and murdered his then ex-wife and her family.  In many ways, this was Samson’s “valley of desperation”.  He was seeking love in all the wrong places.  But in Judges 16:4 we read that “he LOVED a woman” named Delilah.
If you look in the wrong place for love long enough, you’re going to find it.  My dad always told me “You will marry the kind of man you date, so be careful who you date.”  Its good advice and I wish I’d taken it more often than I did.  But it did cause me to set rules for who I would date, and at the top was that they were a believer.  God says in 2 Corinthians 6:14 that we are not to be “unequally yoked together with unbelievers”, which means that we are not to date or marry them.  At our very core, having the Holy Spirit within us as believers, we are different.  Our values are different, our desires are different, and it is simply not a match made in Heaven.  You may think so, but the Word of God says differently!  

Searching on your own for that perfect mate, desiring to love and be loved is a path of destruction.  After a while you will find that you forgive shortcomings, overlook the things you don’t like, and tend to change the mold of what that perfect mate looks like into what you have found.  The search gets old and tiring.  You start to settle for what you think is the only one left for you.  And that, my friends, is why we should wait for God to bring that mate to us!  We’re just lousy at match making in comparison to God!  Believe that He does have someone set aside for you, and learn to rest in the love that God gives rather than chasing after it from a mate. 
What surprises me most about Samson is that he never considered asking God to find him a woman to love.  He ran head first into every relationship, and it crashed and burned around him.  Yet he could believe God for the strength to kill 1,000 men at one time with nothing more than a bone!  He could believe God for strength – but it appears nothing else.  Having been set aside by God from birth to be a Nazirite, we can only imagine what might have come of his life had he been as devoted to God as God was to him.  But his desire to love and be loved wrote his life story.

Rushing into a relationship is just what satan wants of God’s children.  Don’t consider what God wants for you, don’t believe that God has designed one person for you, don’t wait for God but move headstrong into every relationship that rolls around -  and you’ll find exactly what satan has planned.
In these last we are in, it is even more dangerous to go seeking a mate on our own.  Evil abounds in both men and women, and false believers are around every corner.  No longer is it okay to check off church attendance as a means of knowing they are of God.  2 Timothy 3:2-7 warns us what men and women are like in these days, and how gullible lust-filled women (or men) can be led into satans trap.

“For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,  unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!  For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
They will enter into your lives, and lead you away from God.  When you are lead away from what God says, and what God wants in your life, you will surely be on a path of brokenness and destruction.  Samson was soon to find out just what a mess he had gotten himself into with Delilah.

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