Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Judges 13:1-21 - Samson's Birth

Judges 13:5 - For, behold, you shall conceive, and bear a son; and no razor shall come on his head; for the child shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb: and he shall begin to save Israel out of the hand of the Philistines.
(1) Judges 13:1 lets us know that Jehovah's people had again turned to badness before Jehovah, so that Jehovah allowed the Philistines to rule over them for a period of forty years. In Nehemiah, we read these words of the Levites to Jehovah concerning the Israelites : "They were disobedient, and rebelled against you, and cast your law behind their back, and killed your prophets that testified against them to turn them again to you, and they committed awful blasphemies. Therefore you delivered them into the hand of their adversaries, who distressed them: and in the time of their trouble, when they cried to you, you heard from heaven; and according to your manifold mercies you gave them saviors who saved them out of the hand of their adversaries." -- Nehemiah 9:26,27.
(2) Some, in their desire to make it appear that Jesus is Yahweh, have claimed that Jehovah cannot send a savior that is not Himself. Such have to explain away the scriptures in the Old Testament where Jehovah did send saviors who acted on His behalf. However, in this situation, the people of Israel have again turned to badness, and Jehovah is about to send them another savior who will deliver them from the hands of their enemies, and it is concerning the events leading to the birth of this savior of Israel that we are discussing.
(3) In Judges 13:2, we are introduced to Manoah, and we are told that his wife has not had any children. We are not told the circumstances surrounding her barrenness, so we do well not to speculate on this. The record revealed simply lets us know that Manoah's wife had not had any children.
(4) The angel of Jehovah appears to her (Judges 13:3), and tells us her that although she has been without child (for some untold number of years), she was going to conceive and give birth to a son. Perhaps Manoah's wife thought of the miracle of Isaac's birth (Genesis 17:15-22), and, thus, unlike Abraham and Sarah, she did not laugh at the thought of receiving a baby by a special miracle of Jehovah.
(5) The angel of Jehovah tells her not drink any wine or other strong drinks, and make sure that she not eat any unclean thing. (Judges 13:4) The reason for this is that the son she was to conceive was serve as a Nararite, and that from his birth no razor was to touch his head, and the angel foretold that her son would begin to save Israel out of the hand of Philistines. (Judges 13:5; see also: Numbers 6:1-21) While her son was serve as a Nazarite, his servitude, however, was to be somewhat different from a general servitude of Nazarite. A Nazarite usually served as such for specific period of time, but in the case of Samson, he was serve as such for his whole life, from birth until he died.
(6) At this point we need to state that many confuse the word Nazarite with the word Nazareth, as in "Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus is called the Nazarene because he was from Nazareth, but Jesus was never referred to as a Nazarite, as was the case with Samson.
(7) In Judges 13:6,7 we learn that Manoah's wife evidently did not realize that she had spoken to an angel of Jehovah, for she tells Manoah that "a man of God" had spoken to her. Evidently, she thought she had been speaking a human prophet of God, not to an angel. Manoah's wife relates to Manoah what the angel had said to her, and also relates that she did not find out the man's name or where he was from.
(8) Manoah prays to Jehovah to send the man again, so he and his wife may learn what do regarding the child that was to be born. (Judges 13:8) Jehovah hears his prayer, and again sends the angel to Manoah's wife, who then goes to get her husband so that he may meet this "man". (Judges 13:9,10) So Manoah goes to see this man of God, and is told essentially the same thing that was told earlier to his wife. (Judges 13:11-14) Manoah entreats this man of God to come eat with him and his wife, but the man refused and suggested instead that Manoah present a burnt-offering to Jehovah. (Judges 13:15,16.) Since Manoah did not know that he was actually talking to an angel of Jehovah, Manoah asks that "man" what his name is, and the angel replies by asking him why he wishes to know what his name is, since it is a wonderful one, that is, the angel was saying that his name was too wonderful for him to comprehend. (Judges 13:17,18) Manoah offers a kid with a grain offering to Jehovah. -- Judges 13:19.
(9) Most translations add "the angel" to verse 19, whereas the Hebrew does not mention the angel in that verse. More than likely the verb form of wonder used in the Hebrew in that verse is referring to Jehovah, to whom the offering was made, not the angel, in that Jehovah performed a miracle -- a wonder -- while Manoah and his wife looked on. Judges 13:20 relates that, while the flame from the offering was ascending toward the sky, the angel also ascended with the flame while Manoah and his wife looked upon. Likely, both Manoah and his wife were still thinking that his angel was a man; they had not yet realized that this man was really an angel of Jehovah. Possibly, they feared that they also would ascend in the flame.
(10) Judges 13:21 relates that eventually Manoah realized that this man was angel of Jehovah, when the angel no more appeared to them. The following verse (Judges 3:22) appears to revert back to before he realized this, for Manoah was afraid that he had seen God Himself perform this miracle, and feared for his life and that of his wife. * We know, however, that Manoah did not see Jehovah, for we are told that "no" one [in the world of mankind that was made through the Logos -- John 1:10] has seen God at any time" (John 1:18), with the exception of only one man, he who came from the father, for he had seen his God and Father before he became flesh. -- John 6:46; John 17:1,3,5.
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It is often stated and there is the possibility that Manoah was referring to that angel as "a god" as a mighty being, but the context seems to suggest that the thought that he had actually seen Jehovah perform the miracle that he watched. Many have thought that Manoah believed that the angel of Jehovah was God Himself, but this thought actually has to be added to what is stated. The angel of Jehovah was certainly present, but the Hebrew of Judges 3:19 suggests that Jehovah was present and performed the miracle upon the angel, and which led Manoah to think that he actually seen Jehovah.
(11) As a birth of a savior, the miracle of Samson's birth typifies that of Jesus, who was sent into the world of mankind, not just to deliver Israel from her enemies, but who came into the world deliver all mankind from that great enemy -- death. -- Luke 2:11; John 3:16,17; 12:47; 1 Corinthians 15:26; 1 Timothy 1:15; 4:10; 1 John 4:14.
(12) The faith of Manoah and his wife as related to receiving a special son from Jehovah is certainly such that a Christian would wish to emulate. Although not mentioned by name, Manoah and his wife are certainly included in the "cloud of witnesses" that are described in Hebrews 11:7-12:1. They did "entertain" an angel without knowing that this person was an angel. (Hebrews 13:2) They also held faith in the promise made to Abraham, demonstrating that faith by their actions, and due to this, we are sure that they were, like Abraham, justified by that faith and the works demonstrating that faith . -- Romans 4:1-3; James 2:17,18,21.

Scripture Reading

From Green's Literal translation
Judges 1:1 And it happened after the death of Joshua, the sons of Israel inquired of Jehovah, saying, Who shall first go up for us against the Canaanites, to fight against them?
Judges 1:2 And Jehovah said, Judah shall go up. Behold, I have given the land into his hand.
Judges 1:3 And Judah said to his brother Simeon, Go up with me into my lot, and we shall fight against the Canaanites. And I also will go with you into your lot. And Simeon went with him.
Judges 1:4 And Judah went up, and Jehovah delivered the Canaanites and the Perizzites into their hand. And they struck them in Bezek, ten thousand men.
Judges 1:5 And they found Adoni-bezek in Bezek, and fought against him, and struck the Canaanites and the Perizzites.
Judges 1:6 And Adoni-bezek fled, and they pursued him and caught him, and cut off his thumbs and his big toes.
Judges 1:7 And Adoni-bezek said, Seventy kings with their thumbs and their big toes cut off used to be gathering scraps under my table. As I have done, so God has repaid me. And they brought him to Jerusalem, and he died there.
Judges 1:8 And the sons of Judah fought against Jerusalem, and captured it, and struck it with the mouth of the sword, and set the city on fire.
Judges 1:9 And afterward the sons of Judah went down to fight against the Canaanites who lived in the mountains, and the Negeb, and the lowlands.
Judges 1:10 And Judah went against the Canaanites who lived in Hebron (and the name of Hebron was formerly City of Arba) and they struck Sheshai, and Ahiman, and Talmai.
Judges 1:11 And from there he went against the ones living in Debir, and the name of Debir formerly was City of Sepher.
Judges 1:12 And Caleb said, He who strikes the City of Sepher and captures it, I shall give my daughter Achsah to him for a wife.
Judges 1:13 And Othniel the son of Kenaz, the brother of Caleb, the younger one, captured it. And he gave his daughter Achsah to him for a wife.
Judges 1:14 And it happened as she came, she persuaded him to ask a field from her father. And she dismounted from the ass. And Caleb said to her, What do you desire ?
Judges 1:15 And she said to him, Give a blessing to me. Since you have given me the land of the Negeb, also you shall give springs of water to me. And Caleb gave the upper springs and the lower springs to her.
Judges 1:16 And the sons of the Kenite, the father-in-law of Moses, had gone up out of the city of palms with the sons of Judah to the wilderness of Judah, which is in the south of Arad. And they went and lived with the people.
Judges 1:17 And Judah went with his brother Simeon, and they struck the Canaanites living in Zephath and destroyed it. And the name of the city was called Hormah.
Judges 1:18 And Judah captured Gaza and its border, and Ashkelon and its border, and Ekron and its border.
Judges 1:19 And Jehovah was with Judah, and he dispossessed the hills, but did not dispossess the ones living in the valley, for they had chariots of iron.
Judges 1:20 And they gave Hebron to Caleb, as Moses had said. And He dispossessed the three sons of Anak from there.
Judges 1:21 And the sons of Benjamin did not dispossess the Jebusites living in Jerusalem. And the Jebusites live with the sons of Benjamin in Jerusalem until this day.
Judges 1:22 And the house of Joseph went up, they also against Bethel. And Jehovah was with them.
Judges 1:23 And the house of Joseph sent to spy around Bethel, and the name of the city formerly was Luz.
Judges 1:24 And those keeping watch saw a man coming out from the city and said to him, Let us see the entrance of the city, and we will deal with you with mercy.
Judges 1:25 And he showed them the entrance of the city. And they struck the city with the mouth of the sword; and they sent away the man and all his family.
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