Last Sunday, I discussed one of the three attitudes displayed by Samson in the Bible that make strong men weak. When a man sees something that he desires, his emotions kick in and he pursues it regardless of cost. He may lust after a woman, a career advancement, a house or a challenge to conquer.
Samson tears a young lion apart with his bare hands. Later, he passes the dead carcass and it contains a swarm of bees and honey. He violates his vow by eating the honey (Judges 14:5-9). Entitlement says “I deserve it.” I killed the lion, the honey looks delicious…I deserve some. I’ve been working hard, long hours…I deserve that boat. She’s been moody and distant…I deserve to explore a romantic relationship outside of my marriage.
Samson, despite his vow, throws a bachelor keg party (Judges 14:10). Pride says “I can handle it. Other men have struggled with this but not me.” This jacked guy, built like a brick wall, says “I’m strong” and his party becomes a huge mistake.
This happens to strong, well-intentioned men, over and over again. God gives us great gifts, amazing opportunities, unlimited potential and we think: “Just one drink, one smoke, one pill; I deserve it. I can handle it. I want it.” And before long that substance owns us. “I deserve that motorcycle. It won’t distract me.” And before long we are drowning in debt, absent from our family and that toy owns us. “I like to flirt. I can handle it. It’s not a big deal if she stays overnight. I deserve some sexual pleasure.”
At the end of Samson’s life, his eyes are gouged out, his hair cut, bound with chains on public display in front of 3,000 enemies. He is the entertainment as they laugh at him. Lust, entitlement and pride can take you somewhere you don’t ever want to go; far deeper into sin and destruction than you could imagine.
As a young pastor, my supervisor told me I will be remembered for one thing. Choose wisely. Then, he said, if you chose to have sex with someone other than your wife, she better be really cute and you better have really good sex because that is what you will be remembered for. If you choose to embezzle money, you better have lots of fun with that money because that is what you will be remembered for.
Your marriage doesn’t have to end in divorce. You don’t have to end up on Christmas Day and your kids don’t want to see you. You don’t have to end up in the newspaper for reasons no one wants to be known for. It does not have to go down that way. You can turn around today.
With God’s power, no matter where you are, you can be changed. A real man says “God, I want you. Thank you for offering me a new start. I don’t deserve anything. All I have is a gift from you. You died for my salvation. I’m weak. I need your strength and guidance.” What do you need to ask God for today? Our enemy, satan, loves to make strong men weak; satan sucks. God loves to make weak men strong; God rocks!
I believe in you! See you next Sunday.