Woman Trouble…Again

The character quality of Samson, to this point, hasn’t been awesome. The writer has been directed to this part of Samson’s story, setting Samson up along the way, helping explain why he seems to be so easily duped by Delilah. Notice the detail.

After this he loved a woman in the Valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah.  And the lords of the Philistines came up to her and said to her, “Seduce him, and see where his great strength lies, and by what means we may overpower him, that we may bind him to humble him. And we will each give you 1,100 pieces of silver.”  So Delilah said to Samson, “Please tell me where your great strength lies, and how you might be bound, that one could subdue you.” (Judges 16:4 — 6 ESV)

Notice that Delilah is the first woman given a name so far. Not even Samson’s mother was named. Think about how deeply ingrained in our culture she’s become, nearly as famous as Samson himself. We may, but probably won’t, remember the lion, sometimes the jawbone, doubtful the Gaza gates, but always Delilah. We don’t forget her.

This also the first time Samson is said to love a woman. Before you simply dismiss that as just another common romance, remember that such a reference is actually rare in Scripture. Isaac loves Rebecah, Jacob loves Rachel, Shechem loves Dinah (after raping her), Elkanah loves Hannah, Michal loves David, and Amnon,loves Tamar (until he rapes her).  That’s about it. All of 66 books, those are the only ones we have, and obviously not all were “healthy”.

The author is making a point that Samson loves Delilah. He was invested enough that he loves her, but doesn’t marry her. There’s no explanation given, it’s simply left out completely. That could be a cultural assumption, that they were married, no need to mention it. But, the author mentions it before, seems an odd assumption to make, not that this saga has made sense so far.

Notice how easily she’s enticed to betray Samson. That’s a lot of silver, but even so, that’s all it took. Samson’s love does not seem to be returned. She doesn’t even hesitate, but begins to wear him down seeking his secret. What we seem to find here is that love, the emotional bond anyway, isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. We’ll see later, it seems to blind him, much like the cliche.

Think how different Samson’s life would have been had he loved Yahweh as strongly as Delilah. Yahweh can be a difficult Master, driving Samson to do terrifying things, but He’s faithful to His people. Among the other options of worship, He is the only option of the Sons of Israel. And, while Samson doesn’t choose other deities, he does seem to worship Delilah.

For what have you or I sold, or traded, our devotion to our Master, Jesus? Its not difficult to do, we have plenty of excuses why it makes sense, or why it isn’t necessarily a trade. But, we still find things more important than our Savior. We still discover we love something that consumes us more than our Creator, our Savior, our Master. We still find ourselves standing on unholy ground. 

Don’t panic, just step back, look around for Jesus’ light, and make for it. He’ll find you, He’ll bring us back to Himself. What He wants is our repentance, our continued desire for His attention, giving Him our attention in the process. Never doubt, just go home. He’ll meet us on the way, and we’ll walk with Him, and talk with Him in the garden, in the cool of the day; just like it was supposed to be.

That’s my view through the knothole this morning. What do you see of our Master through yours?



  1. Ahhh, Samson. I’ve actually got a framed picture of him on my bookshelf that an artist friend drew (capturing the dramatic moment of his death). His is a strange but very captivating story. Thanks for a great post, Matt!


    1. Matt Brumage says:

      Thanks Steven! He’s a great lesson, and both a good and bad example. A lot like us, it seems. That picture sounds like a nice reminder that, no matter what mistakes we’ve made, we can always repent, and come back to our Master. He’ll use us any way He can, once we relent. Thanks for the comment!

      Liked by 1 person

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