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Old 01-17-2001, 09:08 AM   #11
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Perhaps there is a fine line here in the definition of faith...

I believe Samson had no idea whether God would come through for him or not considering his behavior. There was nothing (no evidence) that God would come through for him in this situation. Therefore, he had faith and hope that God would help him.

Ish
 
Old 01-17-2001, 08:50 PM   #12
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Samson is severely misunderstood by most preachers, and readers of the text. This is due in part to the English translation and also our cultural values.

The common accusations are (but not limited to): 1) he was immoral despite his Nazirite vow to God, 2) he was vengeful and violent in motivation, and 3) he never completed the task of delivering Israel from the Philistines. Each of these are erroneous for the following reasons.


1) There are three women involved: a) his Philistine wife, b) Delilah, and then c) the prostitute.

a) While Israelites were forbidden to intermarry with the Canaanites, the Philistines are not listed among the 7 nations forbidden (Ex 34:11-16, Deut 7:1-4) and they are not indigenous to the area. They are Greek colonists. Still further, Samson declares that she is a righteous woman ("looks good" is a bad translation) and the text also states that it was in the will of God. This is a testimony that God accepts even gentiles who are righteous and have faith.

b) Delilah is not the prostitute of the story, and it never mentions elicit relations with Delilah. His first wife is murdered by the time he meets Delilah.

c) As far as the prostitute goes, what is hidden in the English is that this account is written in the language of the story of the 12 spies that used the prostitute Rahab's house not for sex, but for a hiding place from officials when attacking Jerico. "Prostitutes' houses" were similar to the brothels/saloons of the mid-west. In other words they were hotels that had women available if so desired. Also, the context of Judges is that Samson is enacting a holy war against the Philistines. During the day, Samson is avoiding the customary practice of being received at the gate of the city (where all important business was conducted, and visitors were received). This gives the idea that he is going under cover. In the middle of the night he makes a declaration of war by carrying off the city's gates. The prostitute's house is not an excursion, but a part of a bigger plan.


2) He is a man commissioned by God to go on holy war. During his battles God shows His approval by giving Samson His enabling Spirit. Moreover, he is a part of the tribe of Dan. The tribe of Dan has retreated from claiming its allotted inheritance in Canaan (a sign of disbelief in the promise of God to them in light of the war like Philistines) and slid into idolatry as they settled to the north. Samson does not reside with his apostate tribe. His stomping ground is the area the Danites were supposed to take. Samson is a one-man army that believes the promises of God in an extreme way.

3) The prophecy before his birth only says that he will begin to deliver the Israelites from the Philistines. The prophet Samuel is growing up in the temple at the same time, sees the mission of Samson, and anoints the king that would finish the task, though not even Samuel sees the day. Moreover, Delilah betrays him and he still kills more in his death than in his battles. This is an example of victory through death which early Jewish Christians drew upon for support of Jesus' victory (not failure) through death. This serves to show how the Jews viewed their own Scripture. I'm curious myself if Jesus is alluding to Samson when He says that He will be betrayed and then die at the hands of gentiles, and thus making a statement about the nature of His death.

The only dark-side of Samson is when he falls asleep in the lap of Delilah, which is a picture of the Israelites who have fallen asleep in the lap of the Philistines. Hence, his stupidity in giving away his secret.

Alfred Edersheim wrote an excellent piece called The Temple in which he shows that a Nazirite is an intensified priest. He demonstrates this by showing that the restrictions of a Nazirite are the same as those on a priest only more severe.

Samson is a successful man of faith and is worthy of having his name listed among those in Hebrews 11. There is a lot more going on in this text, but unless someone is interested I will stop here.
 
Old 01-18-2001, 05:22 PM   #13
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Ish:
Offa, what the heck!?

Angels are pharisees? Sampson = Samuel?

I'm afraid I do not follow...

Ish
</font>
In the Samson story the angel had sex with the woman. He was
Samson's natural father.

Judges 13:09 And God hearkened to the voice of Manoah; and the
angel of God came again unto the woman as she sat in
the field: but Manoah her husband was not with her.

How is this woman similar to Samuel's mother?'

Judges 13:07 But he said unto me, Behold, thou shalt conceive,
and bear a son; and now drink no wine nor strong drink,
neither eat any unclean thing: for the child shall be a
Nazarite to God from the womb to the day of his death.

Remember, Hannah did not drink wine.

Why did I ask who the angel was? Because it is a puzzle

Judges 13:18 And the angel of the LORD said unto him, Why askest
thou thus after my name, seeing it is secret?

In Scripture you can find many angels and many Pharisees giving them
something in common. The Sadducees, for instance, did not believe in an
after-life and, thus, did not believe in angels. BTW, each angel is
an adult male priest with the ability to procreate.

Samuel's papa was Eli and Eli could have been an angel.

thanks, offa
 
Old 01-18-2001, 10:20 PM   #14
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Offa,
what is your source and/or hermeneutic?
 
Old 01-18-2001, 10:23 PM   #15
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Josephus:
Offa,
what is your source and/or hermeneutic?
</font>
Offa can certainly tell you about himself, but I suggest you visit his site (in his profile) before deciding how to weigh his arguments...
 
Old 01-19-2001, 01:02 AM   #16
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In light of the site, Offa should research the historical accuracy of intertestamental literature that lies outside the cannon. Offa should also research typical ways that these authors tipped off their readers that what they were reading was fiction. (The purposeful botching of a well known historical event was one way).

Respectfully submitted.



[This message has been edited by Josephus (edited January 19, 2001).]
 
Old 01-21-2001, 09:48 AM   #17
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Josephus,

Thanks for your research, you have answered my question very well. Thanks again.



[This message has been edited by Cornerstone (edited January 21, 2001).]
 
Old 01-21-2001, 07:07 PM   #18
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Josephus, I also have Edersheim's works. They are very good, especially The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah.

I was curious why so few people seem to utilize his works today. I can barely find any references to them on the internet. Come to think of it, I don't think I've read many modern authors that even quote him. I realize his works are quite old (19th century), perhaps this is why. However, his research is *very* indepth, scholarly, and mostly relevant even today.

My favorite thing is that Edersheim was born Jewish, so he had quite a unique perspective to lend to Christianity. I have not found many modern works that deal so extensively with the Mishnah, Talmuds, and other Jewish literature. I think this is a shame.

Anyway, thanks for the enlightening post above.

Ish
 
 

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