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October 8, 2019 1:00 am
You ever look back in your life and wondered something like this. How did I ever come to this point. If you could have shown Sampson a photograph at this point in his life, of himself hear from that point he would not have believed it that he is this where he man bent over from hard labor, empty eye sockets shamed to a millstone. There is no way that had the ability to see especially true when it comes to the consequences of arson.
Sometimes we face consequences that earlier in life we would've thought could never happen to us, but sin has that effect and that's why we need to learn strategies to help us deal with sin effectively today on wisdom for the heart. Stephen Davey concludes a series he's been working through entitled breaking up stony ground we've been looking at different sin issues that can take root in our heart and Stephen brings the series to a close today with the lesson that he's calling playing with fire.
Now we divided up Sampson's biography in the three chapters in this case study of Tatian, we call the first chapter, the words sliding to simply that sliding Sampson is governed by his he is sliding on the toboggan of lost time now to watch them get introduced to a featherweight named Delilah. We call this next chapter in Sampson's life by this one word crashing from sliding. Finally, crashing rejoin the narrative here. Chapter 16 and notice verse 10 then Delilah said to Sam's, hold your mocking me telling me lies please tell me how you might be bound never to tell you the secret to who you are and he said well if they buy me with new ropes that is not in use and I shall become we can be like any other manner between this verse and the next is at least a day or two.
Maybe more. Delilah is either purchasing or she has delivered to her new ropes and she says to him you know one evening to play that game again.
Remember the secret he told me… Promise if you really tell me the truth wraps up with rope. Notice the text reads, but he snapped the ropes off his arms like a thread from the way the narrative unfolds.
Delilah immediately says the Sampson verse 13 until now you have mocked me and told me lies tell me how you might be down again. 11. I think here's what's happening. Look, I love you and you say you love me and I want to know what makes you tick and you keep making fun of me. You keep laughing at me by withholding the secret you're just toying with me, strange things. It is funny. Sampson shouldn't keep secrets for me any longer before ever got a make it any further. Tell me how you might be bound. Would you notice for the first time Sampson comes dangerously close to the truth for the first time he mentions his hair. Verse 13 middle part of the said Herbie we the seven lots of my hair. You you you weed my braids with the web and fasten it type with the pin that I'll become. We will be like any other man just got a paraphrase what happens in our vernacular. So while he slept.
This time he sleeping Delilah effectively wound his braided hair into a small portable Weavers shot whole. She had thereby.
She said Sampson, the Philistines are coming, but he awoke and disentangled his hair from the loom and in the process ruined her sewing machine and she said what's this verse 15. How can you say you love when your heart is not with me.
That's why the danger signs are flying around. He has no idea Philistines are hiding in the attic. She saying how can you say you love me when the very secretive. Your heart governs your life is kept from me. I'm just trying to figure out who you are. Sampson, verse 16 and when she pressed him hard with her words.
Day after day, sometimes going by mail, and urged him his soul was vexed to death with learn here. The temptation resisted does not mean temptation grows weaker sometimes a grows stronger and more stubborn and more persistent. Finally, were 17. He told her all his heart.
Secular razors never come to my head for a been a Nazirite to God for my mother's womb, my head shaved my strength will leave me and I'll become weak be like any other man. By the way the Philistines have grown so tired of this game and all the false alarms. Delilah has to go and send a message to them to get them to come back and go back into the attic, but she knew this time she'd been told the secret so more than likely she smuggles a note out the next day.
She tells the Philistine king's by the way I want to see the money. I know you told me the truth and in I'm gonna want to deposit that immediately in the my account. This time she gets him to fall asleep with his head in her lap.
Verse 19 while he sleeps, Philistine Barber been shows up cuts off his hair. Hey, let's play the game again.
I Sampson wake up the Philistines are coming thereupon you and you want from his sleep and he said I will go out as it other times, and shake myself free, but he did not know that the Lord had left him now for the first time he's confronted with Philistine warriors. I imagine he swings his once powerful fist against the Philistine shield and this time. To his surprise, his hand crumples in pain is grabbed from behind. He strains to free himself is bellowing his mind is racing. His heart is beating this cannot be happening to listen for decades. Sampson had kept this one part of his Val he broke in the others by now. But not this one.
God had remained by virtue of the Nazirite about empowering him for his purposes but not now. Verse 21 reads and the Philistines seized him notice the rapid nature of this crash. They sees them gouged out. His eyes brought him down the Gaza bound it with bronze shackles and he ground at the mill in the prison's hair began to grow again. This is one of the most difficult tasks performed by only the lowest of the slaves. The Romans and the Greeks. In fact, used to punish their slaves by making them turn the stone grinder and middle. The crashes occurred sliding sliding sliding crashing. I remember several years ago, reading a journal for pastors and church leaders about a Christian young man who was increasingly becoming enslaved to pornography was beginning to leave him ever closer to acting out through fornication. He was at the time of this article. In his early 30s and coming to terms with the fact that he was definitely in need of help. He wanted to break free and decided to tell his story to a pastor. He knew pastor one of the largest evangelical churches in the country. The article Both men's names not finally arranged to have lunch with this pastor, and a respected while they were both traveling in another state. Over lunch. The article said with a lot of trepidation at first, this younger man began pouring out his story is middle-age.
Well respected leader finally finished the story and sat back, waiting for shock or lecture or some kind of rebuke, or perhaps some wisdom, guidance on what steps to take. Instead this older gentleman's eyes filled with tears and began to weep. Finally, he looked up and said to his young friend, you have just described Ernie. I only for me it developed into one adulterous liaison. One sinful act after another and he pulled from his coat pocket, a piece of paper and he slid it across the restaurant table and said this is the list of medical prescriptions. I picked up when I'm out of town to battle the number of sexually transmitted diseases are now suffering, neither of those men would have ever imagined 20 years earlier. A farther slide would take them for they realize that their toys temptation morphed into a tragic trap. It isn't long before Sampson begins to hear the chanting mob gathering for celebration. If you look over verse 23 were informed that the cities of Felicity, a plan, a great feast of sacrifice and honor of their God day. John same God of the corrupt Ninevites, the Ninevites, to whom John will eventually preach there celebrating Sampson's capture to be held in the Stadium of Gaza from all we can put together this was a massive building with a covered portion supported by pillars on stone basin looked out over a huge arena. The dignitary sat underneath the portico where columns supported the upper portion which was a sloped roof and it provided effectively Stadium seating for 3000 people or more, and they make Sampson verse 25 tells us, entertain them, let me clear up what's happening. It's the same verb used over in second Samuel chapter 6 work. David is is dancing before the ark. Same same verb they they compel a Sampson to dance but this is no random jumping and leaping.
It was we learn this from second Samuel's account.
This is the war dance of Israel. This is the national anthem of the nation that came with all of the movements of this choreography.
This is the national dance of victory nations had adopted them in ancient days. In other words, the Philistines and the 3000 people seated in the stadium are forcing line Sampson to go out into the courtyard and dance war dance of Israel, and more than likely chance there national anthem and they share and they share God.
God is going to bring the house down not just to answer Sampson's prayer request to be used once more in battle with the judge.
The blasphemy of the Philistine chapter 1 in Sampson's biography could be called sliding chapter 2 called crashing chapter 3 can be entitled renewing sliding collapsing, but the narrative now trembles it it it shimmers with hope and grace. There are two signs Sampson's heart and mind change first. Sampson verbalizes genuine repentance look at this prayer in verse 28 and Sampson called of the Lord and said, oh Lord God please remember to stop there for the Hebrew word for remember is important understand we want to understand this prayer it's it's a word linked in the Bible to the idea of forgiving and getting a and in its use. Interestingly, by Isaiah, as he quotes God speaking, behold, I create a new heaven and a new earth and former things shall not remember or come to mind towards God is effectively saying I am choosing to forget is a 6570 so Sampson is effectively saying, Lord, would you choose to forget. Remember me, that is, in so doing, please don't remember my soon this is a heartfelt broken prayer of repentance.
Wonderful lesson at this moment. By the way, is to discover that no matter how far we fall in our experience, we never fall beyond the possibility of God's forgiveness and even some form of usefulness.
Secondly, sentimentally verbalizes genuine repentance.
He verbalizes genuine dependence further in verse 28. He says it. Please strengthen me, only this one so God that I may be avenged on the Philistines for my two days. It strikes me here is Sampson now recognizes that his strength does not come from his hair, but from God.
The hair was the symbol of the Nazirite vow and God chose to acknowledge the keeping of that. And through that empowering him but it was the power of God and Sampson realizes that now so let me put it to you this way.
Blind Sampson can finally see finally see spiritual vision is renewed and in fact the very first time he can see what matters most to God answers prayers. You know, verse 30. The house fell upon the Lords and upon all the people who were in it, it just all went splat. By the way, this would be tantamount to America losing in one catastrophe.
The president and the vice president and their entire cabinet the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Supreme Court, all of Congress and all of the Fortune 500 CEOs in one fell swoop with what happened to this nation. All five kings are killed all the dignitaries all the luminaries all had stadium seats. The movers and shakers of the Philistine world are crushed. The Bible reads in verse 33 of this epitaph that Sampson killed more at the time of his death and he never killed in any and every battle combined during now we understand this correctly. This is not your fairytale and is God forgave Sampson, but Sampson lost a full reward and ultimately because of the consequences of the sin he lost his life. Sampson's hair grew back, but his eyes didn't Sampson was restored by God to a demonstration of power, but not to the office of power, that of being a Nazirite judge Sampson had toyed with sin for 20 years. His chief weakness was his eyes. Sexual lost in the fornication that followed the very sin that the apostle Paul tells us to run from, don't debate it don't defend it. Don't come up with some reasonable needed to justify it.
Don't flirt with it.
Don't have your business card to it.
Don't answer the phone when it calls run from it run you're playing with fire, so run for cover run for the sake of your family run for the sake of your testimony run for the sake of your integrity run for the sake of your spiritual vitality run for the sake of your church, your brothers and sisters run for the sake of your own future cannot. You cannot hang a blazing fire run, run for your life. Pray that this wave. Lord, I marvel that – it's become incarnate to be crucified, dead and buried. And yet your grade calls forth my adoring wonderful.
It is empty and our risen before full gospel attests, it the living witnesses, prevent my heart's experience knows it. Give me to die with the that I'm a rate rise to new life.
I wish to be dead and buried the sin to selfishness, to the world that I might not hear the voice of the charmer that I might not be delivered to its lusts. Lord, there is much bill about crucified as much flesh within me mortified daily purge me from selfishness.
The fear of man the love praise the shame of being thought old-fashioned the desire to be cultivated or modern. Let me reckon my old life dead because of crucifixion and never feed it is old life as if it were a living thing. Grant me to stand with my dying Savior to be content to be rejected. To be willing to take up unpopular truths to hold fast despised teachings until death. Help me to be resolute and Christ contained never let me wander from the path of obedience that I will strengthen me for the battles ahead, give me courage for all the trials and grace for all my joys held me to be a holy person free from pursuing every wrong desire from everything, contrary to my mind, grant me more and more of the resurrection life. May it ruled the May I walk in your power and be strengthened through its influence every day.
Father, thank you that you have chosen to give us a few verses on men from these ancient days who did things right and chapters on the lives of men who did it wrong, we can never blame you for not giving us enough information for not giving us enough of warning as we have together. Lord is an assembly studied truths from your word related to those temptations. Those sins that create so quickly hard calloused caption. I pray we vended in a balanced correct place that the dangers ever near and this is a battle upon which we should choose daily to depend upon you partially totally so. You've shown us, even in this study of man lost so thank you that we can be renewed.
Even tonight, we don't need to lose or miss tomorrow but will require of us. Honesty and accountability, and perhaps even help.
I'm grateful father for ministries.
Here they can help men struggling with pornography. There are godly men will come alongside other men struggling with temptation.
I pray every man here's sliding the toboggan. This will calls them. This will alert encourage to come to you first inform us in repentance. Trust for every woman as well. Whatever battle whatever allure whatever fantasy ever myth for temptation may be capturing her mind that this would arrest her to that we as brothers and sisters, I'd encourage and even enabled by your Spirit's power.
The ability of mentoring and accountability and praying and studying together even hearing one another, saying, worship to stand. So we leave here father more aware. I pray of our depend upon of our gratitude for your grace because we sin and we sin, we don't want to have sin abounding so that your grace would simply abound to us as your servant Paul Forget that was to take advantage fully your grace. Even now the Lord cleanses newest strengthen us set our feet on the rock of truth and enable us to enter our world tomorrow that will flash before us a thousand times. The commercial help us to see it for what it truly a mirage.
Best trap works for our names for churches, though, we will all be blessed for your names. She's a man with that we bring this lesson in this series to a close. Stephen Davey has been working through a series entitled breaking up stony ground here on wisdom for the hearts if you missed any of the lessons along the way and would like to get caught up. We've posted the entire series to our website which you'll firstname.lastname@example.org. You'll also find these resources on our smart phone app which is available in the iTunes and the Google play stores give us a call today at 86 648 Bible and will give you information on how you can get the series breaking up stony ground when you call, be sure and inquire about our new featured resource this month. Stephen has a brand-new book entitled Philippians.
It's part of the wisdom commentary series and it's just been released this month.
We can give you information about that as well.
Once again, that number is 86 648 Bible or 866-482-4253, beginning with tomorrow's broadcast working to bring you a series from the book of Philippians. It's called to the citizens of heaven, and we begin in Philippians 11 tomorrow. I hope you will be with us for that at this same time right here on wisdom for the heart