Why We Fall

  • January 11, 2017
Wednesday 11

Judges 16

Unless weaknesses are addressed, they have potential to cause destruction. Vulnerabilities can either drive us closer to God or blind us to His love, as two Old Testament stories demonstrate. Joseph and Samson faced similar temptations but responded very differently. Day after day, Potiphar’s wife tried to entice Joseph, yet he rejected her advances (Gen. 39:7-9). Samson, on the other hand, willingly gave in to Delilah (Judg. 16:15-17).

Samson had been consecrated to God, and the Holy Spirit was moving in his life (Judg. 13:24-25). Nevertheless, he chose the path of self-indulgence. Too proud to admit weakness, he lived in denial, which led to a lack of discipline and left the door open for Satan. Because Samson rationalized his weakness, it soon began to dominate his life. Listening to the lies of the devil and wicked people, he exchanged God’s blessing and supernatural strength for irresponsible sexual involvement. And in the end, what did he have? Absolutely nothing.

Given the slightest chance, sin will infiltrate your life and affect every aspect, including your faith, job, and relationships. Nothing is off limits. If you’re thinking, I don’t have any weaknesses with the potential to destroy my life, then Satan has already blinded you to a spiritual reality in your midst.

You have the choice to face temptation as Joseph did—or as Samson did. In times of weakness, do you depend on God, obey Him, and seek strength to overcome? Or do you make excuses and turn from His leading? How different Samson’s life would have been if he’d chosen a better response.

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1 Now Samson went to Gaza and saw a harlot there, and went in to her.

2 When it was told to the Gazites, saying, Samson has come here," they surrounded the place and lay in wait for him all night at the gate of the city. And they kept silent all night, saying, Let us wait until the morning light, then we will kill him."

3 Now Samson lay until midnight, and at midnight he arose and took hold of the doors of the city gate and the two posts and pulled them up along with the bars; then he put them on his shoulders and carried them up to the top of the mountain which is opposite Hebron.

4 After this it came about that he loved a woman in the valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah.

5 The lords of the Philistines came up to her and said to her, Entice him, and see where his great strength lies and how we may overpower him that we may bind him to afflict him. Then we will each give you eleven hundred pieces of silver."

6 So Delilah said to Samson, Please tell me where your great strength is and how you may be bound to afflict you."

7 Samson said to her, If they bind me with seven fresh cords that have not been dried, then I will become weak and be like any other man."

8 Then the lords of the Philistines brought up to her seven fresh cords that had not been dried, and she bound him with them.

9 Now she had men lying in wait in an inner room. And she said to him, The Philistines are upon you, Samson!" But he snapped the cords as a string of tow snaps when it touches fire. So his strength was not discovered.

10 Then Delilah said to Samson, Behold, you have deceived me and told me lies; now please tell me how you may be bound."

11 He said to her, If they bind me tightly with new ropes which have not been used, then I will become weak and be like any other man."

12 So Delilah took new ropes and bound him with them and said to him, The Philistines are upon you, Samson!" For the men were lying in wait in the inner room. But he snapped the ropes from his arms like a thread.

13 Then Delilah said to Samson, Up to now you have deceived me and told me lies; tell me how you may be bound." And he said to her, If you weave the seven locks of my hair with the web [and fasten it with a pin, then I will become weak and be like any other man."

14 So while he slept, Delilah took the seven locks of his hair and wove them into the web]. And she fastened it with the pin and said to him, The Philistines are upon you, Samson!" But he awoke from his sleep and pulled out the pin of the loom and the web.

15 Then she said to him, How can you say, `I love you,' when your heart is not with me? You have deceived me these three times and have not told me where your great strength is."

16 It came about when she pressed him daily with her words and urged him, that his soul was annoyed to death.

17 So he told her all that was in his heart and said to her, A razor has never come on my head, for I have been a Nazirite to God from my mother's womb. If I am shaved, then my strength will leave me and I will become weak and be like any other man."

18 When Delilah saw that he had told her all that was in his heart, she sent and called the lords of the Philistines, saying, Come up once more, for he has told me all that is in his heart." Then the lords of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hands.

19 She made him sleep on her knees, and called for a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his hair. Then she began to afflict him, and his strength left him.

20 She said, The Philistines are upon you, Samson!" And he awoke from his sleep and said, I will go out as at other times and shake myself free." But he did not know that the LORD had departed from him.

21 Then the Philistines seized him and gouged out his eyes; and they brought him down to Gaza and bound him with bronze chains, and he was a grinder in the prison.

22 However, the hair of his head began to grow again after it was shaved off.

23 Now the lords of the Philistines assembled to offer a great sacrifice to Dagon their god, and to rejoice, for they said, Our god has given Samson our enemy into our hands."

24 When the people saw him, they praised their god, for they said, Our god has given our enemy into our hands, Even the destroyer of our country, Who has slain many of us."

25 It so happened when they were in high spirits, that they said, Call for Samson, that he may amuse us." So they called for Samson from the prison, and he entertained them. And they made him stand between the pillars.

26 Then Samson said to the boy who was holding his hand, Let me feel the pillars on which the house rests, that I may lean against them."

27 Now the house was full of men and women, and all the lords of the Philistines were there. And about 3,000 men and women were on the roof looking on while Samson was amusing them.

28 Then Samson called to the LORD and said, O Lord GOD, please remember me and please strengthen me just this time, O God, that I may at once be avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes."

29 Samson grasped the two middle pillars on which the house rested, and braced himself against them, the one with his right hand and the other with his left.

30 And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines!" And he bent with all his might so that the house fell on the lords and all the people who were in it. So the dead whom he killed at his death were more than those whom he killed in his life.

31 Then his brothers and all his father's household came down, took him, brought him up and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol in the tomb of Manoah his father. Thus he had judged Israel twenty years.

7 It came about after these events that his master's wife looked with desire at Joseph, and she said, Lie with me."

8 But he refused and said to his master's wife, Behold, with me here, my master does not concern himself with anything in the house, and he has put all that he owns in my charge.

9 There is no one greater in this house than I, and he has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do this great evil and sin against God?"

15 Then she said to him, How can you say, `I love you,' when your heart is not with me? You have deceived me these three times and have not told me where your great strength is."

16 It came about when she pressed him daily with her words and urged him, that his soul was annoyed to death.

17 So he told her all that was in his heart and said to her, A razor has never come on my head, for I have been a Nazirite to God from my mother's womb. If I am shaved, then my strength will leave me and I will become weak and be like any other man."

24 Then the woman gave birth to a son and named him Samson; and the child grew up and the LORD blessed him.

25 And the Spirit of the LORD began to stir him in Mahaneh-dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol.

1 Now these are the records of the generations of Esau (that is, Edom).

2 Esau took his wives from the daughters of Canaan: Adah the daughter of Elon the Hittite, and Oholibamah the daughter of Anah and the granddaughter of Zibeon the Hivite;

3 also Basemath, Ishmael's daughter, the sister of Nebaioth.

4 Adah bore Eliphaz to Esau, and Basemath bore Reuel,

5 and Oholibamah bore Jeush and Jalam and Korah. These are the sons of Esau who were born to him in the land of Canaan.

6 Then Esau took his wives and his sons and his daughters and all his household, and his livestock and all his cattle and all his goods which he had acquired in the land of Canaan, and went to another land away from his brother Jacob.

7 For their property had become too great for them to live together, and the land where they sojourned could not sustain them because of their livestock.

8 So Esau lived in the hill country of Seir; Esau is Edom.

9 These then are the records of the generations of Esau the father of the Edomites in the hill country of Seir.

10 These are the names of Esau's sons: Eliphaz the son of Esau's wife Adah, Reuel the son of Esau's wife Basemath.

11 The sons of Eliphaz were Teman, Omar, Zepho and Gatam and Kenaz.

12 Timna was a concubine of Esau's son Eliphaz and she bore Amalek to Eliphaz. These are the sons of Esau's wife Adah.

13 These are the sons of Reuel: Nahath and Zerah, Shammah and Mizzah. These were the sons of Esau's wife Basemath.

14 These were the sons of Esau's wife Oholibamah, the daughter of Anah and the granddaughter of Zibeon: she bore to Esau, Jeush and Jalam and Korah.

15 These are the chiefs of the sons of Esau. The sons of Eliphaz, the firstborn of Esau, are chief Teman, chief Omar, chief Zepho, chief Kenaz,

16 chief Korah, chief Gatam, chief Amalek. These are the chiefs descended from Eliphaz in the land of Edom; these are the sons of Adah.

17 These are the sons of Reuel, Esau's son: chief Nahath, chief Zerah, chief Shammah, chief Mizzah. These are the chiefs descended from Reuel in the land of Edom; these are the sons of Esau's wife Basemath.

18 These are the sons of Esau's wife Oholibamah: chief Jeush, chief Jalam, chief Korah. These are the chiefs descended from Esau's wife Oholibamah, the daughter of Anah.

19 These are the sons of Esau (that is, Edom), and these are their chiefs.

20 These are the sons of Seir the Horite, the inhabitants of the land: Lotan and Shobal and Zibeon and Anah,

21 and Dishon and Ezer and Dishan. These are the chiefs descended from the Horites, the sons of Seir in the land of Edom.

22 The sons of Lotan were Hori and Hemam; and Lotan's sister was Timna.

23 These are the sons of Shobal: Alvan and Manahath and Ebal, Shepho and Onam.

24 These are the sons of Zibeon: Aiah and Anah--he is the Anah who found the hot springs in the wilderness when he was pasturing the donkeys of his father Zibeon.

25 These are the children of Anah: Dishon, and Oholibamah, the daughter of Anah.

26 These are the sons of Dishon: Hemdan and Eshban and Ithran and Cheran.

27 These are the sons of Ezer: Bilhan and Zaavan and Akan.

28 These are the sons of Dishan: Uz and Aran.

29 These are the chiefs descended from the Horites: chief Lotan, chief Shobal, chief Zibeon, chief Anah,

30 chief Dishon, chief Ezer, chief Dishan. These are the chiefs descended from the Horites, according to their various chiefs in the land of Seir.

31 Now these are the kings who reigned in the land of Edom before any king reigned over the sons of Israel.

32 Bela the son of Beor reigned in Edom, and the name of his city was Dinhabah.

33 Then Bela died, and Jobab the son of Zerah of Bozrah became king in his place.

34 Then Jobab died, and Husham of the land of the Temanites became king in his place.

35 Then Husham died, and Hadad the son of Bedad, who defeated Midian in the field of Moab, became king in his place; and the name of his city was Avith.

36 Then Hadad died, and Samlah of Masrekah became king in his place.

37 Then Samlah died, and Shaul of Rehoboth on the Euphrates River became king in his place.

38 Then Shaul died, and Baal-hanan the son of Achbor became king in his place.

39 Then Baal-hanan the son of Achbor died, and Hadar became king in his place; and the name of his city was Pau; and his wife's name was Mehetabel, the daughter of Matred, daughter of Mezahab.

40 Now these are the names of the chiefs descended from Esau, according to their families and their localities, by their names: chief Timna, chief Alvah, chief Jetheth,

41 chief Oholibamah, chief Elah, chief Pinon,

42 chief Kenaz, chief Teman, chief Mibzar,

43 chief Magdiel, chief Iram. These are the chiefs of Edom (that is, Esau, the father of the Edomites), according to their habitations in the land of their possession.

1 Now Jacob lived in the land where his father had sojourned, in the land of Canaan.

2 These are the records of the generations of Jacob. Joseph, when seventeen years of age, was pasturing the flock with his brothers while he was still a youth, along with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father's wives. And Joseph brought back a bad report about them to their father.

3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his sons, because he was the son of his old age; and he made him a varicolored tunic.

4 His brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers; and so they hated him and could not speak to him on friendly terms.

5 Then Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him even more.

6 He said to them, Please listen to this dream which I have had;

7 for behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and lo, my sheaf rose up and also stood erect; and behold, your sheaves gathered around and bowed down to my sheaf."

8 Then his brothers said to him, Are you actually going to reign over us? Or are you really going to rule over us?" So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words.

9 Now he had still another dream, and related it to his brothers, and said, Lo, I have had still another dream; and behold, the sun and the moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me."

10 He related it to his father and to his brothers; and his father rebuked him and said to him, What is this dream that you have had? Shall I and your mother and your brothers actually come to bow ourselves down before you to the ground?"

11 His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the saying in mind.

12 Then his brothers went to pasture their father's flock in Shechem.

13 Israel said to Joseph, Are not your brothers pasturing the flock in Shechem? Come, and I will send you to them." And he said to him, I will go."

14 Then he said to him, Go now and see about the welfare of your brothers and the welfare of the flock, and bring word back to me." So he sent him from the valley of Hebron, and he came to Shechem.

15 A man found him, and behold, he was wandering in the field; and the man asked him, What are you looking for?"

16 He said, I am looking for my brothers; please tell me where they are pasturing the flock. "

17 Then the man said, They have moved from here; for I heard them say, `Let us go to Dothan.'" So Joseph went after his brothers and found them at Dothan.

18 When they saw him from a distance and before he came close to them, they plotted against him to put him to death.

19 They said to one another, Here comes this dreamer!

20 Now then, come and let us kill him and throw him into one of the pits; and we will say, `A wild beast devoured him.' Then let us see what will become of his dreams!"

21 But Reuben heard this and rescued him out of their hands and said, Let us not take his life."

22 Reuben further said to them, Shed no blood. Throw him into this pit that is in the wilderness, but do not lay hands on him"--that he might rescue him out of their hands, to restore him to his father.

23 So it came about, when Joseph reached his brothers, that they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the varicolored tunic that was on him;

24 and they took him and threw him into the pit. Now the pit was empty, without any water in it.

25 Then they sat down to eat a meal. And as they raised their eyes and looked, behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing aromatic gum and balm and myrrh, on their way to bring them down to Egypt.

26 Judah said to his brothers, What profit is it for us to kill our brother and cover up his blood?

27 Come and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites and not lay our hands on him, for he is our brother, our own flesh." And his brothers listened to him.

28 Then some Midianite traders passed by, so they pulled him up and lifted Joseph out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. Thus they brought Joseph into Egypt.

29 Now Reuben returned to the pit, and behold, Joseph was not in the pit; so he tore his garments.

30 He returned to his brothers and said, The boy is not there; as for me, where am I to go?"

31 So they took Joseph's tunic, and slaughtered a male goat and dipped the tunic in the blood;

32 and they sent the varicolored tunic and brought it to their father and said, We found this; please examine it to see whether it is your son's tunic or not."

33 Then he examined it and said, It is my son's tunic. A wild beast has devoured him; Joseph has surely been torn to pieces!"

34 So Jacob tore his clothes, and put sackcloth on his loins and mourned for his son many days.

35 Then all his sons and all his daughters arose to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted. And he said, Surely I will go down to Sheol in mourning for my son." So his father wept for him.

36 Meanwhile, the Midianites sold him in Egypt to Potiphar, Pharaoh's officer, the captain of the bodyguard.

1 And it came about at that time, that Judah departed from his brothers and visited a certain Adullamite, whose name was Hirah.

2 Judah saw there a daughter of a certain Canaanite whose name was Shua; and he took her and went in to her.

3 So she conceived and bore a son and he named him Er.

4 Then she conceived again and bore a son and named him Onan.

5 She bore still another son and named him Shelah; and it was at Chezib that she bore him.

6 Now Judah took a wife for Er his firstborn, and her name was Tamar.

7 But Er, Judah's firstborn, was evil in the sight of the LORD, so the LORD took his life.

8 Then Judah said to Onan, Go in to your brother's wife, and perform your duty as a brother-in-law to her, and raise up offspring for your brother."

9 Onan knew that the offspring would not be his; so when he went in to his brother's wife, he wasted his seed on the ground in order not to give offspring to his brother.

10 But what he did was displeasing in the sight of the LORD; so He took his life also.

11 Then Judah said to his daughter-in-law Tamar, Remain a widow in your father's house until my son Shelah grows up"; for he thought, I am afraid that he too may die like his brothers." So Tamar went and lived in her father's house.

12 Now after a considerable time Shua's daughter, the wife of Judah, died; and when the time of mourning was ended, Judah went up to his sheepshearers at Timnah, he and his friend Hirah the Adullamite.

13 It was told to Tamar, Behold, your father-in-law is going up to Timnah to shear his sheep."

14 So she removed her widow's garments and covered herself with a veil, and wrapped herself, and sat in the gateway of Enaim, which is on the road to Timnah; for she saw that Shelah had grown up, and she had not been given to him as a wife.

15 When Judah saw her, he thought she was a harlot, for she had covered her face.

16 So he turned aside to her by the road, and said, Here now, let me come in to you"; for he did not know that she was his daughter-in-law. And she said, What will you give me, that you may come in to me?"

17 He said, therefore, I will send you a young goat from the flock." She said, moreover, Will you give a pledge until you send it? "

18 He said, What pledge shall I give you?" And she said, Your seal and your cord, and your staff that is in your hand." So he gave them to her and went in to her, and she conceived by him.

19 Then she arose and departed, and removed her veil and put on her widow's garments.

20 When Judah sent the young goat by his friend the Adullamite, to receive the pledge from the woman's hand, he did not find her.

21 He asked the men of her place, saying, Where is the temple prostitute who was by the road at Enaim?" But they said, There has been no temple prostitute here."

22 So he returned to Judah, and said, I did not find her; and furthermore, the men of the place said, `There has been no temple prostitute here.'"

23 Then Judah said, Let her keep them, otherwise we will become a laughingstock. After all, I sent this young goat, but you did not find her."

24 Now it was about three months later that Judah was informed, Your daughter-in-law Tamar has played the harlot, and behold, she is also with child by harlotry." Then Judah said, Bring her out and let her be burned!"

25 It was while she was being brought out that she sent to her father-in-law, saying, I am with child by the man to whom these things belong." And she said, Please examine and see, whose signet ring and cords and staff are these?"

26 Judah recognized them, and said, She is more righteous than I, inasmuch as I did not give her to my son Shelah." And he did not have relations with her again.

27 It came about at the time she was giving birth, that behold, there were twins in her womb.

28 Moreover, it took place while she was giving birth, one put out a hand, and the midwife took and tied a scarlet thread on his hand, saying, This one came out first."

29 But it came about as he drew back his hand, that behold, his brother came out. Then she said, What a breach you have made for yourself!" So he was named Perez.

30 Afterward his brother came out who had the scarlet thread on his hand; and he was named Zerah.

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Publish Date February 27, 2017
The Foundation of Wisdom

Acknowledging God as the rightful ruler over our life and obeying Him will lead to acquiring real wisdom.

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