Samson is one of the weirder stories in the Bible. I realize that my blog is called, “The Weirdo Christian”, so it’s ironic that I’d say something in the Bible is weird but let’s take a good look at Samson for a minute here. I’m sure you’ll agree he’s a weird guy.
Samson was one of the judges that led Israel for 20 years in the Promised Land long after Joshua and long before King Saul. Samson is famous for having superhuman strength. There’s a story of him ripping a city’s gate off its hinges with his bare hands, pushing the main supporting pillars to a large Philistine temple down with his bare hands and perhaps most iconically, killing 1000 Philistine soldiers with the jawbone of an ass. Just as an aside: that jawbone fight must have been the most epic fight scene of all time. Just sayin.
Scripture tells us that Samson was brought up to the Philistines by 3000 men from Juda and the Philistines all ran at him shouting. Then the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon Samson and the ropes he was bound with kind of melted or something and Samson picks up a donkey’s jaw bone and ferociously strikes down one thousand trained, well equipped soldiers who were trained to fight other soldiers armed with swords which are generally thought to be insanely superior to random pieces of dead animals that are just lying around.
What I’m wondering is, why did Samson stick to the jawbone? The first Philistine that was killed by Samson’s jawbone dropped his sword when he died (I assume). So that means Samson had 1000 opportunities to upgrade his weaponry. Why on earth did Samson stick to the jawbone?
Clearly it’s time for a Rabbit Trail:
Many Christians that I’ve spoken to (myself 3 years ago for example) tend to interpret what they believe God is saying via their circumstances. They might think that the sickness they currently have is because God is testing them or they might think that because the offer they put on a house got rejected that God doesn’t want them to buy a house. Maybe God doesn’t want us to have children because getting pregnant has been difficult. In my experience the only reason to settle for this method of non-interaction with God is the belief that God is both distant and disinterested. This is called, “Believing a lie,” which most people are exceptionally good at. I hope it’s not just me.
My favourite quote from Jonathan David Helser is, “Jesus didn’t come to protect us from an angry Father, He came to show us what the Father is really like.” The very narrative of, ‘God manifesting Himself in the flesh in order to open up a way to have right relationship with us,’ bleeds the concept that – God wants to be known so intimately by us that He was willing to pay any price to make it happen. I heard Bill Johnson use this quote, “God bankrupted heaven to restore relationship so we could walk with Him, as Adam did.” I’m not totally clear on whose quote it is. It doesn’t matter.
God is in His nature desirous to be near to us (mind blowing). From my own life, when we resort to divination to read the cards life has handed us, we’re actually trying to use a counterfeit spiritual practice to access what can only be accessed through the authentic.
Jesus came and gave His life in the most brutal display of love in history so that we could walk in what He walked in. Jesus knew the love of God experientially. In John 5 He said He only did what He saw the Father doing and He only said what He heard the Father say. Jesus came to make a way for us to have correct, proper, right relationship with God. I believe His mission was smashingly successful!
God is able to speak in a way we’ll hear. God is willing to speak directly to us. He can speak 100% truth into the depths of our beings with 0% misunderstanding. He even knows how well we’ve heard! He is by His nature a perfect Father who has done everything to make it possible for us to hear His voice. Psalm 139:17-18 says the thoughts He has towards us outnumber the grains of sand on the earth! He is speaking to you right now and it’s very possible for you to get really good at hearing His voice!
Now, let’s get back to Samson. Samson was super strong because his parents never cut his hair and never fed him grapes. What the actual heck… seriously, what a weird family.
I propose Samson was super strong because God said some wacky nonsense-sounding mumbo jumbo to Samson’s parents and THEY OBEYED. Then, years later, Samson struck down 1000 Philistine soldiers with the jaw bone of a donkey. Why didn’t he pick up a sword? Because he was raised in an environment where the rhema word – the ‘right now’ voice of God was valued higher than human logic and the voice didn’t tell him to pick up a sword. He was trained within his community to be able to correctly identify what God was doing and when the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon him, He wasn’t tempted to trust human logic over the voice of God.
I was recently offered an opportunity that sounded actually ideal and most people would look at my current situation and the opportunity and surmise that the Lord has provided. Only thing is, it doesn’t feel like the jawbone.
We were made to not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Father. He spits reality out of His mouth when He speaks. Every word that comes from the mouth of the Father is love. There’s an invitation to upgrades which are accessible by turning aside to look at the burning bushes – when we let God show up however He wants to – however wacky the nonsense mumbo jumbo sounds!
P.S. Community is key to this whole concept of learning to live by the voice of God. When I first heard God telling me not to work, I was hesitant to say the least but I brought it to spiritual leaders that I respected and they actually ended up convincing me that it was God and not me going out of my mind!
So, reader, I bless your journey with the Rhema word of God. In the name of Jesus I bless your ears to hear and your eyes to see and I release the courage you’ll need to obey! Bring what you hear to community and have fun!