Friday, July 29, 2011

Walk in God's Path, Judges 13:1-8, 24-25; The Adult Sunday School Lesson for 8-7-11

ATTENTION:  Please note that this is The Adult Sunday School Lesson, Walk in God’s Path, on Judges 13:1-8, 24-25 for the 8-7-11 International Sunday School Lesson.  You will find the 7-31-11 lesson, Return to Obedience aka Return to God’s Ways directly beneath this message and on the right side.
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Walk in God’s Path
Judges 13:1-8, 24-25
International Sunday School Lesson
August 7, 2011

Jed Greenough

How have you considered Samson over the years?  Was he a success, a failure or a mixture of both?  Did he have a good or bad start, middle and end?

In today’s scripture we see a barren couple receive the news that they will be blessed with child.  As is customary in our Bible, these two were for all appearances good people who feared God.

The wife doesn’t hide the news of the rather unique visitor but immediately shares it with her husband.  The man doesn’t doubt his wife and they take it as a matter of faith that what they were told would occur but they do have a concern.  They want to do the job right.

If everyone you study with could be encouraged to read through the 16th chapter it would be interesting to see how they thought Samson turned out.

He marries a Philistine, he takes honey from a decaying carcass, gave his wife away because she caved in to murderous threats, sought vengeance because the wife he gave away was no longer available which led to more and more violence.

At some point Samson became the leader of Israel.

Back to Samson’s escapades; he visits a prostitute, fell in love with another Philistine woman and to say he was gullible with her is an understatement.  Having been taken captive and put on display he concludes his life by praying to God for revenge and God grants it to him.

My ways are certainly not God’s ways.  I know too that Samson is also among the greats of the faith mentioned in Hebrews 11.

So where do you come down on Samson?  Good, bad, both, literal, figurative or exactly the way Israel herself was?

For Discussion:
1.      How many times in the Bible were children born to barren women?
2.      See Numbers 6:1-21 concerning Nazirites.
3.      If you read through Judges 16, discuss how Samson is like Israel.
4.      If as we read in 13:5 that Samson began the deliverance from the Philistines, who concluded it?
5.      Discuss 14:4
6.      Did Samson leave his wife?

8-14-11:   Making a Choice (Choosing a Community) Ruth 1:8-18
8-21-11:   Empowering the Needy Ruth 2:8-18
8-28-11:   Respecting Community Standards (Caring for One Another) Ruth 4:1-10

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 Biblica. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved

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