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Lesson #23


The Demise of Samson (4)

Judges 16:1-31

Victor M. Eskew


I.             THE DOORS CARRIED OFF (Judg. 16:1-3)


II.           DELILAH CONQUERS SAMSON (Judg. 16:4-22)


A.     The Relationship (Judg. 16:4)

B.     The Reward (Judg. 16:5)

C.     The Requests (Judg. 16:6-14)

1.       Bind with Green Withes (Judg. 16:6-9)

2.       Bind with new ropes (Judg. 16:10-12)

3.       Bind my hair in a loom (Judg. 16:13-14)

a.       The entreaty (Judg. 16:13a).

1)       The accusation (Judg. 16:13a)


And Delilah said unto Samson, Hitherto thou hast mocked me, and told me lies.


a)       Again, we laugh because Delilah accuses Samson of telling lies and she is in the midst of deception.

b)      Lesson:  Delilah is persistent.  Evil always is (Luke 4:13).

2)       The asking (Judg. 16:13a).


…tell me wherewith thou mightiest be bound.


b.      The explanation (Judg. 16:13b)


And he said unto her, If thou weavest the seven locks of my head with a web.


1)       Samson was foolish for every beginning to play this game with Delilah.

2)       Now, he really begins to push things to the edge because he points Delilah to his hair.

a)       “Samson’s action here reflects those who want to play as close to the edge of the cliff as possible.  They want to go just as far as they can without crossing the line into the forbidden” (Butler, 147).

b)      The Scriptures tell us to get as far from evil as possible (Prov. 4:14-15).


Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men.  Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away.


3)       The web

a)       Strong (4545):  the warp in the loom (as stretched out to receive the woof)

b)      The web was for making rugs, blankets, and clothing.

c)       Often it was attached to the wall.


https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/d8/Handloom_creation.jpg                          http://www.workersforjesus.com/1.7-1_DELILAH_Delilah_tries_to_learn_the_secret_of_Samsons_strength.jpg

d)      Samson’s hair did not just fly freely in the air.  He had braided it into seven long locks.

c.       The endeavor (Judg. 16:14a)


And she fastened it with a pin, and said unto him, The Philistines are upon thee Samson.


1)       Delilah perhaps thought that this was the truth.

2)       This is a different binding than the previous two methods.

d.      The escape (Judg. 16:14b)


And he awaked out of his sleep, and went away with the pin of the beam, and with the web.’


1)       Samson’s hair was firmly anchored in the loom.

2)       He probably grabbed the locks and pulled the web until it released from the wall.

3)       He would have to spend time getting his hair free from the loom.

4)       This ends a series of three requests by Delilah.  It appears that some time passes between these requests and the one to come.

a)       Daily with her words (Judg. 16:16)

b)      Called for the lords of the Philistines (Judg. 16:18)


D.    The Resignation (Judg. 16:15-17)          

1.       The Charge (Judg. 16:15a)


And she said unto him, How canst thou say, I love thee, when thine heart is not with me?


a.       The text does tell us that Samson loved Delilah (Judg. 16:4).  If this is true, then this charge would strike at Samson’s heart.

b.      NOTE:  This was the same tactic used by the woman of Timnath (See Judg. 14:16).


And Samson’s wife wept before him, and said, Thou dost but hate me, and lovest me not…


c.       This was a “false criteria” for proving his love for her.

1)       “They establish some selfish goal, and then if a person does not help them fulfill that goal, they accuse that person of a lack of love” (Butler, 148-149).

2)       Examples:

a)       A boy tells a girl that she does not love him unless she sleeps with him.

b)      A person accuses God of not loving him/her unless God gets them out of a dilemma or recovers him from an illness.

c)       A person says that a preacher does not love others when he preaches against sin or insists on church discipline.

d)      If we do not want illegal immigrants in our country until they have been vetted well and have filled out the necessary paperwork, we are accused of being bigots and not loving those who are in peril.

2.       The Complaint (Judg. 16:15b)


…thou hast mocked me these three times, and hast not told me where thy great strength lieth.


3.       The Coercion (Judg. 16:16)


And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words, and urged him, so that his soul was vexed unto death.


a.       Sin is aggressive and relentless and insistent.

1)       She pressed

a)       Strong (6693):  to compress…distress

b)      BDB:  to constrain, press, bring into straits, oppress

2)       Daily:  over and over and over and over

3)       Urged

a)       Strong (509):  to press

b)      BDB:  to urge

b.      Samson’s soul was vexed unto death.

1)       Vexed

a)       Strong (7114):  to harvest

b)      BDB:  to be shortened, be impatient, be vexed or grieved, to reap or harvest

2)       “Samson ‘was vexed unto death’ not because he was abiding faithful in duty, but because he insisted on keeping company with a defiled woman who was trying to destroy him” (Butler, 151).

3)       Lesson:  When temptation is persistently calling us, we can do one of two things.

a)       Remain in its company, as Samson did with Delilah.

b)      Flee from it as Joseph did with Potipher’s wife.  Note:  “Stay away from people, places, and practices that are unholy; and temptation will lose much of its strength” (Butler, 151).

4.       The Confession (Judg. 16:17)


Then he told her all his heart, and said unto her, There hath not come a razor upon mine head:  for I have been a Nazarite unto God from my mother’s womb:  if I be shaven then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak, and like any other man.


a.       Samson told her all his heart.

1)       Samson’s body was strong, but his heart was weak.

2)       “The weakness of Samson’s heart in the whole of this history is yet more astonishing than the strength of his body” (e-sword, Clarke).

b.      This was the third aspect of the Nazarite vow that Samson tested.

1)       The two previous elements tested

a)       Grapes

b)      Dead bodies

2)       Since nothing had transpired for violating the two previous restrictions, perhaps Samson thought nothing would happen this time (See Judg. 16:20).

c.       “As Edersheim said, ‘Samson had ceased to be a Nazarite in heart before he ceased to be one outwardly’” (Butler, 152).

d.    Lessons: 

1)       Samson spoke forbidden words to the wrong person.  We must be careful to whom we speak.

2)       Confessing our weaknesses to others only allows them to exploit those weaknesses.