Week 23: Samson

Samson’s story says that, in his youth, “the spirit of the Lord began to stir him . . .”

Astute Living in The Story readers likely will notice numerous biblical themes coming together in the story of Samson.

  • An angel visits a barren couple and promises a son (like Abraham and Sarah, Elizabeth and Zechariah).
  • The father asks the angel’s name (like Jacob wrestling, like Zechariah’s encounter).
  • The father “sees” God in the angel and fears he will die (like Jacob, like Moses).
  • The son is consecrated from birth and marked by acts of ritual purity (like John the Baptist).
  • The son is destined to deliver God’s people but in the end he is betrayed by someone he trusted. With his last breath and his arms outstretched, he defeats the enemy with a surprising reversal (like Jesus).

Again and again the Samson story testifies to God’s unexpected and undeserved mercy and faithfulness.

The portrayal of Samson’s dubious moral character, foolish hot-headedness, and stubborn independence underscore God’s mysterious way of choosing and using unlikely people for ministry . . . (like me!)

Read more at Charlotte Vaughan Coyle. Living in The Story: A Year to Read the Bible and Ponder God’s Story of Love and Grace (pp. 272-282). Resource Publications. Kindle Edition.

Living in The Story readings for Week 23

Judges 14-21

Psalm 6

Psalm 31

Psalm 85

Psalm 143

Acts 8-9

Luke 22-23

Author: Charlotte Vaughan Coyle

Charlotte lives and blogs in Paris TX. She is ordained within the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and developed Living in The Story while doing doctoral work at Brite Divinity School in Ft. Worth. Charlotte also blogs about intersections of faith, politics, and culture at CharlotteVaughanCoyle.com.

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