January 31, 2016
This week is the third and final study in January on the book of Judges. The focus of this study is
His calling by God. Read Judges 13:1-24.
What do you learn about God’s calling and purpose for Samson’s life?
What does it mean to be a Nazirite? See Numbers 6:1-21.
How many clues/insights do we see regarding his parent’s commitment to do God’s will? Judges 13:8-23, 14:3.
Discuss the likely home environment Samson grew up in.
How would you summarize the question ‘What did Samson do with his life?’
He dishonoured his parents, deserted his promise(Nazarite), distorted his purpose, delude the use of his power.
What does the words ‘….But he didn’t realize the Lord had left him.’ Judges 16:20 tell us about how close his walk with God was?
How did Samson get drawn into sin? Consider following:
“Samson is described in the NIV study bible as “a loner, whose heroic exploits involved single handed triumphs over powerful enemies…He typifies the nation of Israel-born by special divine provision, consecrated to the Lord from birth and endowed with unique power among his fellowmen. The likeness is even more remarkable in light of his foolish chasing of foreign women, some of ill repute, until he was cleverly subdued by one of them. In this he exemplified Israel, who during the period of judges constantly prostituted herself to Canaanite gods to her own destruction.”
“Samson’s fall into blindness and captivity came about through a process of allowing himself to be slowly drawn into disobedience to God by turning his back on all that gave him strength.”
How does the phrase ‘Sin binds/ sin blinds/ sin grinds’ apply to Samson?
Despite Samson’s straying from the life God had planned for him consider and discuss in your group the following….
“ Yes, Samson wasted his life. He could have strengthened his nation. He could have returned his people to the worship of God. He could have wiped out the Philistines. But even though he did none of these things, Samson still accomplished the purpose announced by the angel who visited his parents before his birth. In his final act, Samson began to rescue Israel from the Philistines.
Interestingly the New Testament does not mention Samson’s failures or his heroic feats of strength. In Hebrews 11:33, he is simply listed with others who “overthrew kingdoms, ruled with justice, and received what God had promised them,” and in other ways were given superhuman aid. In the end, Samson recognized his dependence on God. When he died, God turned his failures into victory. Samson’s story teaches us that it is never too late to start over. However badly we may have failed in the past, today is not too late for us to put our complete trust in God”. *
Samson had to lose his strength, his eyes and spend his last days grinding grain in his enemy’s prison before he got ‘right’ with God. Read again his final words. Judges 16:26-30. Discuss how God still heard and answered his genuine heartfelt prayer.
What do you learn from Samson’s story?
If your life’s story was written out up to now what would it say? The rest of your life is yet unwritten. What will it say when your life comes to an end?
How important do you think it is for us to learn to rely on God’s strength and not our own to live in a God pleasing way in order to make our life count?
Finish by reading and considering the following….
Romans 8:13, Philippians 4:13, Ephesians 6:10, 2 Corinthians 12:8-10.
*Taken from Tyndale, “Life Application Study Bible”