Sampson’s mother prepares for his birth

Published 11:17 am Friday, January 23, 2009

Scripture: Judges 13:1-13, 24

Aim: To teach the pupil that true service of the Lord often is preceded by making preparations to do the will of the Lord.

Golden Text: “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” (Judges 13:7).

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After Israel entered the land of Palestine under Joshua in B.C. 1407, and after Joshua died, the people and leaders of the Israelites had a history of sinning against Jehovah, being brought under the subjection to other nations. After a time of subjugation and servitude the Lord raised up a leader to deliver them and bring them back to God in repentance. This lesson focuses upon the wife of and Israelite, Manoah, who lived in Zorah, which was in the northern tribe of Dan. She prepares to give birth to Samson, the strongman of the Bible.

I. The Philistines had brought the Israelites under subjection (Judges 13:1). These harsh people ruled over Israel for a period of 40 years. The Israelites were under very severe conditions.

II. The Angel of the Lord appeared to Mrs. Manoah with a message from Jehovah (Judges 13:2-5, 7). First, she was barren and could not have a child (vs. 2). Second, The angel of the Lord came to visit this woman with a divine message, which would produce a deliverer for Israel.

The Angel of the Lord (Jehovah) indicates that this was not just an angel, but it was the Lord Jesus Christ in pre-incarnate form visiting a human person. Proof that this was a divine person is that He received worship from Manoah (vs. 19-20). He accepted the sacrifice that was offered. No angel of Jehovah God ever accepted either worship or sacrifice.

Third, the woman is instructed concerning her eating and drinking. She was to eat neither unclean food, nor drink wine (vs. 4, 7). Fourth, she was instructed that she would conceive and bear a son (vs. 5, 7). This son was to be a Nazarite. This meant he could not ever cut his hair, eat unclean food or drink any wine. He was to be a holy man unto the Lord. He was to be a special servant of the Lord.

We today should take a serious lesson from this. God expects His children and servants to be holy as He is holy. He expects that each member of His family will be separated from sin and from the practices of sinful men. Not to be and do as God expects constitutes sin on the part of the believer. Samson will become an example of a sinful, disobedient servant of Jehovah regardless of the faithfulness of his parents to rear him according to God’s instructions.

Fifth, The child will “begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines” (vs. 5). He will open the way for full deliverance to come afterwards.

III. The wife told her husband, Manoah, about the visit. In response he prayed for God to send the messenger back again and teach them how they should raise their son (Judges 13:6-14). While Manoah was working in the field, the Angel of the Lord returned to the woman (9-11).

Manoah came to visit with the Angel, who instructed him (vs. 11-14).

IV. Manoah worshipped the Angel in submission to the will of Jehovah (Judges 13:15-21). Manoah offered a kid for a peace offering, and meal as a “meat” offering. The peace offering was for fellowship with God, and the meal offering was for surrender to service to the Lord. The Angel of the Lord accepted them as a burnt offering by burning them up (vs. 19-20). The angel left.

The Christian ought to live a holy life in fellowship with the Lord. He should gladly surrender to His will and serve Him in whatever way He asks. May we follow this example as this husband and wife did.