Samson. What a guy. Every time I read the account of Samson’s life, it stirs in me the same feelings of contempt and frustration. I am always befuddled at his flippant attitude toward his consecration, his ridiculous bent toward revenge, and his overwhelming arrogance. I always find myself muttering under my breath as I study his life…things like, “I’d have liked to knock him down a notch.” “Does he not realize the source of his power AND the responsibility it brings?” “I can’t believe God didn’t just write him off.” But that’s the point–isn’t it? As a judge he did succeed at conquering the Philistines. However, all through his journey he was selfish and willy-nilly with his calling. However, despite his detestable flaws and tendency to indulge in his own pleasures and revenge, God continued to use Him for His glory. Ultimately, God was glorified through Samson’s last act. Even though he had selfish motivations, he also displayed faith that the one true God could restore his strength. And He did.
So even though Samson frustrates me to no end, his is both a cautionary tale and a gospel connection. Don’t I allow my pride to hinder my walk with Christ? Don’t I sometimes let my anger get the best of me? Don’t I act out on occasion when things aren’t going my way or things get complicated? The answer is a resounding yes…because I’m nowhere near perfect. I’m not called to spend my time judging Samson or anyone else for that matter. I’m called to be set apart, glorifying God with in word and deed, spreading the gospel to the nations. God doesn’t use perfect people, but He does change hearts and strengthen faith. We can be reminded through this account that Jesus is the only perfect person that God has used. If He could use Samson–with all his flaws–He can use us as well. But let’s not simply live in our sin knowing God can still use us, let’s be proactive and seek to imitate His Son, striving to grow in righteousness and faith.