Lent Reflections on Bible Prayers 2 – Samson

Lent Reflections on Bible Prayers 2 – Samson

Judges 16:28

In Romans 12:19 we are told as Christians “never avenge yourselves” because the Lord has told his people “vengeance is mine, I will repay” (Deut 32:35).  Yet here is Samson praying that God will enable him to get revenge on those who gouged his eyes out – and God appears to give him what he asks for!

Throughout the time of the Judges, the people that God had chosen to bless the world through (Genesis 12:3) continually “forsook the Lord and did not serve him” (eg Judges 10:6) – which meant not just that they missed out on God’s blessings but so did the rest of the world.

Each time, God left them to their own devices, they were overrun by stronger nations who “crushed and oppressed” them” (eg 10:8) until they came to their senses and pleaded with God to set them free (eg 10:15).  God then anointed someone to liberate them.  Samson was such a person: dedicated to God and given super-human strength to “begin to save Israel from the hands of the Philistines.” (13:5)

Through these bloody cycles of history, the constant question was where should human beings go to find liberation, justice and fruitfulness.  Samson’s failure to live as the person he was made to be resulted in him losing his strength, his freedom and his eyesight.  As a consequence, the rulers of the Philistines (v.27) were celebrating getting an answer to that fundamental question: their god Dagon (v.23).

God allowed Samson’s super-human strength to return so he could push out two pillars and bring down an entire building, taking 3000 Philistines with it.  By giving up his life, Samson finally brought liberation for Israel and a corrected answer for all to that age-old human question.

Suggestions for prayer and praise

  • Praise God as the source of liberation, justice and fruitfulness.
  • Thank God that he has a special role for you that no-one else can fulfil.
  • Ask God for faith, courage and strength to be the person he has made you to be – not just for your sake, but for the sake of the rest of his world around you.