Sex, Drugs, and Rock N’ Roll: The Real Story of Sampson

February 16, 2021   /   Ryan Brown   /   Palms Baptist Church Bible Study

Story of Sampson is about a slow fade to

Faith VS. Faithfulness

    1. Faith: A passive intellectual action that pairs the mind with the heart into faith
      1. Jesus changes the heart because that’s what the mind calibrates to
      2. You can’t change someone’s heart by changing their mind
      3. Faith is an argument for the heart not the mind (If by the mind, than a better argument will replace faith)
    2. Faithfulness: An active action that derives from one’s faith (John 15:16)
      1. Doing or not doing what God tells us to do or not to do
      2. We serve a practical God (He is not spiritual aspirin to make you feel better)

Two Purposes in the Story of Sampson

God uses Sampson as a to correct Israel unfaithfulness

  • God often chooses people who embody the “spirit of the age” for larger Israel
  1. Story of Samson is about God correcting Israel’s deviance who was weak, compromised, wasted opportunity, and lost their faithfulness
    1. Israel was weak
          1. Economically
          2. Politically
          3. Militarily
          4. Culturally
  • Israel compromised
    • Made peace when God said make war (Deuteronomy 20:17)
      • Hebrews were supposed to clear the land of everyone, but now Israel has compromised and living at peace with the Philistines
        • Israel says, “Its okay, we are good with our Philistine neighbors” but God says, “I’m not okay with it”
    • Married foreigners when God said not to (Deuteronomy 7:4) (Judges 14:10-20)
    • Assimilated and adopted Philistine practices instead of influencing the world (Exodus 19:6) (Judges 14:10-11)
  • Israel wasted opportunity and talent
    • Judges 15:10-12, Israel sends 3000 after Samson instead of Philistines

Judges 14:4- God uses Sampson to pick a fight

*So, here in Judges we have God picking a fight with someone who is not looking for one, and uses Samson as the surrogate to create seemingly insensible havoc

God uses Sampson as a for how Israel became unfaithful

Samson’s Faithfulness represented in his Nazarite vow

  1. Don’t cut hair
  2. Delilah cuts his hair (Judges 16:4-19)
  3. Don’t touch grapes (including wine)
  4. Inferred he drank at bachelor party (Judges 14:10-13)
  5. Can’t touch dead bodies
  6. Lion was dead (Judges 14:8)
  7. Can’t eat anything unclean
  8. Honey came from the unclean animal (Judges 14:8-9)

MYTH: Sampson’s strength was in his hair.

TRUTH: Sampson’s strength was in his faithfulness (His hair was the last remaining element of faithfulness in his life)

*Sampson teaches us that once we lose our faithfulness, the world will overcome us

Story of Sampson is about how God uses

MYTH: Sampson was strong

TRUTH: Sampson was weak and was sustained by God’s strength to accomplish God’s will

Sampson possessed every weakness to its extreme

Sampson’s Weakness’


  • He “sees” a philistine woman (means she is unmodest, face uncovered) (Judges 14:2)
  • Philistine prostitute (Judges 16:1)
  • Delilah (always tied up?)

Improper Perspective

  • “She is right in MY sight”- (Judges 14:3)
    • What he says after parents disapprove
    • Compared to when God says of judges as “Israel was evil in my sight”
    • He is saying his judgment is beyond reproach
  • Thought he was the “traveling husband” when his bride’s father did not think so
    • Sampson left at the end of the marriage feast and never consummated the marriage. He just left leaving the father confused, which led to handing his daughter over to another man
  • Bested by his betrothed and philistine men on his riddle
    • He tried to trick his wedding guests to gain profit from them, then was upset when they tricked him back


  • Betrayal of his betrothed to give answer to riddle to Philistine friends (Judges 14:16-18)
    • Samson murders 30, unconnected Philistines to provide the owed bet (Judges 14:19)
  • Since Samson did not return immediately, the bride’s father gave her to his best man in marriage (Judges 14:20)
    • Burning of the grain field (Judges 15:4-5)

Weakness teaches us

2 Corinthians 12:1-10

  • We were created to be agents of worship, faith, service and dependency
    • If not God, you will worship something
    • If not God, you with have faith in something
    • If not God, you will serve something
    • If not God, you will depend on something
      • Drugs, alcohol, other people (mother, husband, etc.), money
      • In seeking freedom from God, we become enslaved to sin and dependent on something

*Stupid things Christians say: “God will never give you more than you can handle”….: FALSE! The gospel is that we were in a situation we couldn’t handle. Life is structured so that in our weakness, we maintain the humble in the knowledge that we depend on God

  • If we boast, we boast in God because its His strength that sustains us
    • If God removed our weakness, then we would no longer think we need God. Instead, God gives us strength to overcome our weakness so we become MORE dependent on God
  • When you replace God’s power and strength with your own, you become full of fear, uncertainty, and anxious because your now dependent on your own strength and not God’s. Eventually your strength breaks down and you succumb to your weakness, then you compromise down to your level of weakness, instead of God lifting you up to His level of strength

Weakness leads to dependency, and dependency leads us to worship, faith, service, and submission to God

  • God does not remove our weakness, He provides us the strength
    • The further away from Jesus we get, the less strength we have
      • Why you never hear me emphasize Satan
      • Emphasizing you must change your oil or your car will break down is good to know, but if I don’t know how to change the oil it doesn’t matter.
        • Jesus has always been the answer. If I’m focused and locked on Jesus and what God is doing, it doesn’t matter what Satan is doing
          • Example: Peter walking on water
    • Satan’s lies:
      • Blind you to your weakness
      • Make you think your strength is strong enough

Our weakness us effective witness

1 Corinthains 1:18-2:5

  • In the contrast of our weakness, our witness and God’s power is demonstrated
    • Our temptations (Especially men):
      • Do not be weak!
      • If you are, do not show your weakness
        • This in turn leads us to:
          • Not have effective witness
          • Believe ourselves stronger than we are (and in less need of God)
          • Hide our weakness and we miss the benefit of God’s design

*Hebrews were not chosen because they were strong, but because they were weak (so God’s power could manifest). Sampson was not chosen because he was strong but because he was weak (God’s strength worked through him). We are not chosen because we are, or are supposed to be strong but because we are weak so God’s power can work through us (It was not about showing the world how great Israel is, but about how great Israel’s GOD is! Its not about showing the world how great we are, but how great OUR GOD is!)

*Thought: Maybe God is trying to work through us in our weakness, but we keep trying to operate through our strengths

*Strength is not equivocal to spiritual gifts and weakness is not the same thing as sin

Weakness is

  • Like Delilah, we weaponized weakness when we should reinforce it
    • In church as One body
    • At work
    • In marriage
    • With children

*Through our weakness we compromise, and in our compromise we slowly surrender our faithfulness

How to regain your faithfulness

  • As Sampson regained his faithfulness (His hair began to grow back Judges 16:22), he regained God’s strength
    • To expose Sampson’s unfaithfulness and get him back to faithfulness, God had to remove the mechanism of his weakness (His eyes) so Sampson’s strength could return (In comparison with Judges 13:1 with what God sees with his eyes)
      • Sampson’s weakness was dependent on his eyes, God removed the dependencies
    • The road to unfaithfulness was gradual, the road back to faithfulness is also gradual
      • Start with the little things. Start being faithful in the little things
      • Is your weakness leading you deeper into faithfulness or into unfaithfulness? If the answer is into unfaithfulness, then your standing with Jesus may not be as close as you thought!

*Commitment to FAITHFULNESS is far more difficult than a commitment to FAITH because commitment to Jesus means being a disciple and not just a “believer”

Guided Questions for Discussion

1. Have you made a deliberate decision to faithfulness as you have to faith?

2. Does your faith lead to a faithful life?

3. In what ways have you or the American church lost faithfulness? Where have you compromised?

4. What are some of your weaknesses? Are you currently reliant on your strength or God’s strength to overcome your weakness?

5. In what ways has God’s strength, power, and grace sustained you? How has your dependency on God led to a more free life?

6. Has your weakness led you to deeper faith, worship, service, faithfulness, and submission?

7. Has

8. Has your weakness improved your witness?

9. Where do you believe yourself to be stronger than you are?

10. Where, or how do you weaponized weakness in others or self?


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