Saturday, October 28, 2006


"Eagle? I thought you said BEAGLE."

"We're all out of red, so I used pink."

"There are 2 O's in Bob, right?"

"Gosh, I hate it when I get the hiccups."

"The flag's all done and, you know, the folds of fat make a nice waving effect."

It Takes Years to Learn These Truths

1. Never, under any circumstances, take a sleeping pill
and a laxative on the same night.

2. If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race
has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word
would be "meetings."

3. There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."

4. People who want to share their religious views with you almost never
want you to share yours with them.

5. You should not confuse your career with your life.

6. No matter what happens, somebody will find a way to
take it too seriously.

7. When trouble arises and things look bad, there is
always one individual who perceives a solution and is
willing to take command. Very often, that individual is

8. Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and

9. Never lick a steak knife.

10. Take out the fortune before you eat the cookie.

11. The most powerful force in the universe is gossip.

12. You will never find anybody who can give you a clear
and compelling reason why we observe daylight savings

13. You should never say anything to a woman that even
remotely suggests that you think she's pregnant unless you
can see an actual baby emerging from her at that moment.

14. The one thing that unites all human beings, regardless
of age, gender, religion, economic status or ethnic
background, is that, deep down inside, we ALL believe that
we are above average drivers.

15. The main accomplishment of almost all organized
protests is to annoy people who are not in them.

16. A person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter is
not a nice person. (This is very important. Pay attention.
It never fails.)

17. Your friends love you anyway.

18. Never be afraid to try something new. Remember that a
lone amateur built the Ark. A large group of professionals built the

The Fort Worth Star Telegram reports that a Dallas Cowboys assistant coach, Todd Haley, the receiver’s coach, has filed a suit against a McDonald's restaurant. He claims there was a rat in the salad his wife and nanny got a McDonald’s and took home to eat. Not surprisingly, the women have had trouble keeping their food down since then.

The newspaper, of course, called the franchise owner for a statement. This brings me to the reason for this post. While I recognize it is hard to have something good to say in some situations, sometimes people say really dumb things. My momma used to say “if you don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything at all.” That is a good rule to use in bad situations, including litigation.

However, Mr. Lobato, the franchise owner, either didn’t have my mom’s wisdom to rely on, or forgot the rules. He started off with "We haven't seen the litigation, so we can't respond to the claims". That is perfect and a good place to stop. However, he didn’t stop.

Lobato continued with "Nothing is more important to us than the safety and well-being of our customers. We maintain the strictest quality standards."

Ok, let’s review. There is a roof rat in the salad. A roof rat is about a foot long with a tail that is also about a foot long. It is also scaly looking, which may account for the inability of the women to keep their food down even now. So, that is about two feet of rat in a salad bowl that is less than a foot in diameter. Whatever quality standards McDonald’s has, no one noticed the rat in the little salad bowl while they were putting in lettuce and carrots? What kind of quality standard is that? I smell a rat.

I’m going to send Mr. Lobato my mom’s phone number and tell him he should write down all her little sayings and abide by them. He’ll thank me, at least after he recovers from being cross examined by the plaintiff’s attorneys on his quality standards

Sunday, October 22, 2006

JUDGES 17 & 18

17:1-5 Micah Creates A Cult

1 Now a man named Micah from the hill country of Ephraim 2 said to his mother, "The eleven hundred shekels [a] of silver that were taken from you and about which I heard you utter a curse—I have that silver with me; I took it." Then his mother said, "The LORD bless you, my son!" 3 When he returned the eleven hundred shekels of silver to his mother, she said, "I solemnly consecrate my silver to the LORD for my son to make a carved image and a cast idol. I will give it back to you." 4 So he returned the silver to his mother, and she took two hundred shekels [b] of silver and gave them to a silversmith, who made them into the image and the idol. And they were put in Micah's house. 5 Now this man Micah had a shrine, and he made an ephod and some idols and installed one of his sons as his priest. 6 In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as he saw fit.

The end of the story of Samson appears to be the end of the story of the judges. However, the book contains two more stories that serve as sort of appendices to describe what life was like during the period and how some bad things happened. The first story shows idol worship coming into Israel. Although these stories come after the stories about the judges, that does not mean they are about events that came after the time of the judges. In fact, it appears they may have occurred soon after the time of Joshua. This first story may be included to explain how idol worship came to exist in Israel or, particularly in the tribe of Dan.

Micah was a thief and, possibly, a pagan. He stole silver from his own mother, but returned it for some reason, maybe because he was afraid of her curse. In gratitude, she consecrated the silver to the Lord, but by having an idol made to give to her son. I don’t know if the idol was to represent the Lord or a pagan god. Some think that it was a golden calf, representing the Lord, as the Israelites had made under Aaron. Jeroboam later built golden calves for the people to worship and set them in this general area, according to 1 Kings 12:28. I

It shows that we can do things in the name of the Lord that do not honor him. The Lord gave strict instructions about making idols, but she makes one anyway under the guise of consecrating the silver to the Lord. Read Exodus 20:4-6. It is repeated in Deuteronomy 5:8-10.

Michah was already a cult leader. He already had idols and a shrine. He made an ephod, as Gideon would do, and began to have worship at his house. The priests ordained by God wore an ephod, made by God’s own specifications. You can read about the Ephod in Exodus 28-29 and 39. Most cults take things from the worship of God and incorporate them or pervert them for their own use. Micah then decided he needed a priest of his own, so he installed his son.

Micah violated God’s law by making idols, by conducted worship at his house rather than the tabernacle, and by setting up a priesthood other than that of Aaron’s descendants.

Verse 6 tells us there was not much law or order, because there was no king. Everyone did as he saw fit. They seemed to be ignorant of the law, or were in rebellion against it. This adds to our assumption that part of the reason for writing the book of Judges was to tout the superiority of the Davidic kingdom over the reign of the Judges.

17:7-13 Micah Steals a Levite

7 A young Levite from Bethlehem in Judah, who had been living within the clan of Judah, 8 left that town in search of some other place to stay. On his way [c] he came to Micah's house in the hill country of Ephraim. 9 Micah asked him, "Where are you from?"
"I'm a Levite from Bethlehem in Judah," he said, "and I'm looking for a place to stay."
10 Then Micah said to him, "Live with me and be my father and priest, and I'll give you ten shekels [d] of silver a year, your clothes and your food." 11 So the Levite agreed to live with him, and the young man was to him like one of his sons. 12 Then Micah installed the Levite, and the young man became his priest and lived in his house. 13 And Micah said, "Now I know that the LORD will be good to me, since this Levite has become my priest."

Micah then found himself a Levite at large. For some reason, the young man had left his town and was looking for somewhere to live. Micah hired him to be his priest. Then, he invoked the name of the LORD for his good fortune, even though he was worshipping idols. He knew the Levites were consecrated to the Lord, so he figured it a blessing to have one of his own.

18:1-2 The Danites Invade Ephraim

1 In those days Israel had no king. And in those days the tribe of the Danites was seeking a place of their own where they might settle, because they had not yet come into an inheritance among the tribes of Israel. 2 So the Danites sent five warriors from Zorah and Eshtaol to spy out the land and explore it. These men represented all their clans. They told them, "Go, explore the land." The men entered the hill country of Ephraim and came to the house of Micah, where they spent the night.

The writer reminds us again that Israel had no king. The Danites got off the reservation, so to speak, and left the territory allotted to the tribe of Dan, seeking land in Ephraim. Judges 1:34 tells us the Amorites had run them out of their valley and into the hills and kept them from moving back down. Presumably, a king would have kept this from happing. The tribe of Dan had been awarded land going all the way to the sea, but had been unable to dislodge the Philistines, so they went looking elsewhere for land.

18:3-13 The Scouting Party

3 When they were near Micah's house, they recognized the voice of the young Levite; so they turned in there and asked him, "Who brought you here? What are you doing in this place? Why are you here?" 4 He told them what Micah had done for him, and said, "He has hired me and I am his priest." 5 Then they said to him, "Please inquire of God to learn whether our journey will be successful." 6 The priest answered them, "Go in peace. Your journey has the LORD's approval." 7 So the five men left and came to Laish, where they saw that the people were living in safety, like the Sidonians, unsuspecting and secure. And since their land lacked nothing, they were prosperous. Also, they lived a long way from the Sidonians and had no relationship with anyone else. 8 When they returned to Zorah and Eshtaol, their brothers asked them, "How did you find things?" 9 They answered, "Come on, let's attack them! We have seen that the land is very good. Aren't you going to do something? Don't hesitate to go there and take it over. 10 When you get there, you will find an unsuspecting people and a spacious land that God has put into your hands, a land that lacks nothing whatever." 11 Then six hundred men from the clan of the Danites, armed for battle, set out from Zorah and Eshtaol. 12 On their way they set up camp near Kiriath Jearim in Judah. This is why the place west of Kiriath Jearim is called Mahaneh Dan [c] to this day. 13 From there they went on to the hill country of Ephraim and came to Micah's house.

The scouting party knew the Levite, and, since he was acting as a priest, asked him to inquire of the Lord for them. He conveyed the Lord’s approval, although we aren’t told if he really consulted the Lord or if the Lord really approved. So the scouting part continued on and found Sidonians living in Laish. Laish was a city in the far north. They decided the Sidonians were vulnerable to attack, so they went and reported this to the whole clan. They then returned to attack, stopping again where the Levite lived.

Note also that the Danites violated God’s prescription on how to conquer the land. They were to destroy the seven Canaanite nations mentioned in Deuteronomy 7:1. To the others, they were first supposed to offer peace, according to Deuteronomy 20:10-18. They did not do this.

17:14-31 Dan Begins To Worship Idols

14 Then the five men who had spied out the land of Laish said to their brothers, "Do you know that one of these houses has an ephod, other household gods, a carved image and a cast idol? Now you know what to do." 15 So they turned in there and went to the house of the young Levite at Micah's place and greeted him. 16 The six hundred Danites, armed for battle, stood at the entrance to the gate. 17 The five men who had spied out the land went inside and took the carved image, the ephod, the other household gods and the cast idol while the priest and the six hundred armed men stood at the entrance to the gate.

18 When these men went into Micah's house and took the carved image, the ephod, the other household gods and the cast idol, the priest said to them, "What are you doing?"

19 They answered him, "Be quiet! Don't say a word. Come with us, and be our father and priest. Isn't it better that you serve a tribe and clan in Israel as priest rather than just one man's household?" 20 Then the priest was glad. He took the ephod, the other household gods and the carved image and went along with the people. 21 Putting their little children, their livestock and their possessions in front of them, they turned away and left.

22 When they had gone some distance from Micah's house, the men who lived near Micah were called together and overtook the Danites. 23 As they shouted after them, the Danites turned and said to Micah, "What's the matter with you that you called out your men to fight?"

24 He replied, "You took the gods I made, and my priest, and went away. What else do I have? How can you ask, 'What's the matter with you?' "

25 The Danites answered, "Don't argue with us, or some hot-tempered men will attack you, and you and your family will lose your lives." 26 So the Danites went their way, and Micah, seeing that they were too strong for him, turned around and went back home.

27 Then they took what Micah had made, and his priest, and went on to Laish, against a peaceful and unsuspecting people. They attacked them with the sword and burned down their city. 28 There was no one to rescue them because they lived a long way from Sidon and had no relationship with anyone else. The city was in a valley near Beth Rehob.
The Danites rebuilt the city and settled there. 29 They named it Dan after their forefather Dan, who was born to Israel—though the city used to be called Laish. 30 There the Danites set up for themselves the idols, and Jonathan son of Gershom, the son of Moses, [d] and his sons were priests for the tribe of Dan until the time of the captivity of the land. 31 They continued to use the idols Micah had made, all the time the house of God was in Shiloh.

The Danites returned to Micah’s house and stole his cult from him, the priest, the idols, the ephod and the other household gods. They would not only steal a town, but a religion for themselves. They were too strong for Micah and his friends to fight, so Micah had to give it up. It makes you wonder if he went back and stole the rest of his mother’s silver to make new idols.

The Danites renamed the city and set up the idol worship. The Levites names must have been Jonathan, for the set him up as the priest. He is called a son of Moses and Gershom, meaning he is a Levite from that branch of the tribe.

So, the Danites took over land that was not in their territory, thus disobeying the ordered allotments of the Lord, as accomplished by Joshua. They were already in disobedience by not conquering their territory, and must have fallen quickly from obeying and worshipping the Lord, as he had not given them the power to conquer the Amorites in their land.

They continued their disobedience in worship, setting up their own place of worship in competition to the tabernacle in Shiloh. Then, they added idol worship and a false priesthood. Eventually, the Philistines would over run Shiloh, steal the ark, and hold Israel in a type of captivity, as they oppressed them.

We have churches in the world today that call themselves Christian, yet deny the deity of Christ, or other fundamentals of the faith, such as the resurrection. We have churches that call themselves Christian, yet focus on wealth rather than worship, success rather than sacrifice and service. So, we are not immune to the same sins as Israel in the time of the judges. We must know God’s word and follow it faithfully, so that we can worship him in truth.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Joan Rivers evidently does not believe in free speech, but does believe in the death penalty. Responding to Mel Gibson's drunken, anti-Semitic tirade during his arrest, she said Mel Gibson deserves death for his remarks. It is ironic that most of us want the freedom to say whatever we want, but want to impose harsh penalties on those who actually do it.

Monday, October 16, 2006


15:1-8 Samson Defeats the Philistines

15:1 After some days, at the time of wheat harvest, Samson went to visit his wife with a young goat. And he said, “I will go in to my wife in the chamber.” But her father would not allow him to go in. 2 And her father said, “I really thought that you utterly hated her, so I gave her to your companion. Is not her younger sister more beautiful than she? Please take her instead.” 3 And Samson said to them, “This time I shall be innocent in regard to the Philistines, when I do them harm.” 4 So Samson went and caught 300 foxes and took torches. And he turned them tail to tail and put a torch between each pair of tails. 5 And when he had set fire to the torches, he let the foxes go into the standing grain of the Philistines and set fire to the stacked grain and the standing grain, as well as the olive orchards. 6 Then the Philistines said, “Who has done this?” And they said, “Samson, the son-in-law of the Timnite, because he has taken his wife and given her to his companion.” And the Philistines came up and burned her and her father with fire. 7 And Samson said to them, “If this is what you do, I swear I will be avenged on you, and after that I will quit.” 8 And he struck them hip and thigh with a great blow, and he went down and stayed in the cleft of the rock of Etam.

Samson did not give up on his wife. Although he left her when the wedding feast went sour, after she told the Philistines the answer to his riddle and he killed 30 people. So, he went to visit her, evidently hoping for a conjugal visit. He took a goat as a present. Ironically, that is what Judah gave Tamar as payment for sex, when he met her on the road to Timnah, where Samson’s wife lived.

However, his father in law had given her to his best man, figuring that Samson would not be back after the last incident. He offered the next sister in line as a wife instead, but Samson was angry and set about to get revenge.

Since it was harvest time, the fields were very dry, and Samson managed to burn them, the grain that had already been harvested and the olive trees. It was a devastating loss for the Philistines. They would have been better to have lost the 30 sets of clothes.

The revenge continued as the Philistines burned Samson’s wife and father in law to death. This is ironic, as they had threatened to do this to her to get he to betray Samson with the riddle. She did betray him, but she ends up burned to death anyway. Then, Samson retaliated by striking them down. Then he left to hide in Etam. This cleft in the rock might have been a natural fortress. That would indicate he expected a counter attack by the Philistines.

15:9-13 The Arrest of Samson

9 Then the Philistines came up and encamped in Judah and made a raid on Lehi. 10 And the men of Judah said, “Why have you come up against us?” They said, “We have come up to bind Samson, to do to him as he did to us.” 11 Then 3,000 men of Judah went down to the cleft of the rock of Etam, and said to Samson, “Do you not know that the Philistines are rulers over us? What then is this that you have done to us?” And he said to them, “As they did to me, so have I done to them.” 12 And they said to him, “We have come down to bind you, that we may give you into the hands of the Philistines.” And Samson said to them, “Swear to me that you will not attack me yourselves.” 13 They said to him, “No; we will only bind you and give you into their hands. We will surely not kill you.” So they bound him with two new ropes and brought him up from the rock.

The Philistines did in fact attack in Judah. When the Judahites asked the reason for the attack, they were told the Philistines came to capture Samson. Since the Philistines were the superior power, the Judahites did not want a battle. So, instead, they went to capture Samson. They had great respect for his strength, evidenced by their taking 3,000 men to capture him.

Samson agreed to extradition, getting a commitment that the Judahites would only bind him and deliver him, not kill him.

So, the Judahites arrested their judge and leader and turned him over to a foreign people who were oppressing them, so they would not suffer any for being indentified with him. Later, the Judahites would arrest and turn over their savior and judge to the Romans, who were oppressing them, because they deemed it better for one man to die for the nation, than for all to suffer.

15:14-17 The Spirit of the Lord Comes

14 When he came to Lehi, the Philistines came shouting to meet him. Then the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon him, and the ropes that were on his arms became as flax that has caught fire, and his bonds melted off his hands. 15 And he found a fresh jawbone of a donkey, and put out his hand and took it, and with it he struck 1,000 men. 16 And Samson said,

“With the jawbone of a donkey,
heaps upon heaps,
with the jawbone of a donkey
have I struck down a thousand men.”

17 As soon as he had finished speaking, he threw away the jawbone out of his hand. And that place was called Ramath-lehi (“the hill of the jawbone”).

Again the Spirit of the Lord came on Samson, giving him supernatural strength. Again, that strength was used to battle the Philistines, and Samson killed 1,000 men with the jawbone of a donkey. The Israelites were so impressed they named the hill after the jawbone. It was a fulfillment of the word of the Lord in Joshua 23:10 that one man of Israel would put to flight a thousand men of the enemy when they fought in the power of the Lord.

15:18-20 Water From the Lord

18 And he was very thirsty, and he called upon the Lord and said, “You have granted this great salvation by the hand of your servant, and shall I now die of thirst and fall into the hands of the uncircumcised?” 19 And God split open the hollow place that is at Lehi, and water came out from it. And when he drank, his spirit returned, and he revived. Therefore the name of it was called En-hakkore; [2] it is at Lehi to this day. 20 And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.

After this great battle, Samson actually called on the Lord. He gave God credit for the victory, calling it his salvation, but complained of thirst. The Lord brought forth water from the earth or the rock there. In Exodus 17:1-7, God brought water from a rock for the complaining Israelites. Sometimes God has mercy on us even when we are complaining.

Samson went on to judge Israel for 20 years. He did not get in the generation, or 40 years, of many of the judges. Interestingly, in most of the stories, the telling of the length of their tenure is the last word of the judge, but not here. Here there is an epilogue, telling of his downfall.

"Americans give people a second chance. And if you learn something and prove you've learned something, maybe even more so. Now, I don't know what I'm going to do yet. We'll make that decision down the road." John Kerry

I think he'd make a good candidate. He is already referring to himself in the first person plural, the "royal we". Most politicians seem to suffer from multiple personality disorder. They not only refer to themselves as multiple, they have a different personality for every occasion. Bill Clinton was the zen master of multiple personality manipulation. Kerry is a poor substitute, but earned his nick name of "flip flop" for a reason. He is not as deft as Clinton and got caught more. I don't he can learn better in that arena. It is just a gift he does not have.

Or should I say we?

Sunday, October 15, 2006

What scientists think the world would be like if humans disappeared. Warning to my evangelical friends: this is not a Biblical Worldview.

Monday, October 09, 2006

"While I am not a five-point Calvinist, I salute the great impact that Calvin made on the world. With Calvin’s high view of the sovereignty of God, his great commitment to word-for-word inerrancy of Scripture, his understanding of the total depravity of man, and his unashamed support for the blood atonement of Jesus Christ; Calvin’s anointed scholarship produced men who went around the world teaching the Reformed view of theology that has become the foundation of Presbyterianism and traditional evangelical Christianity. Jerry Falwell, 2001.

Hat Tip: Calvinist Gadfly.
See Kim Jong Il ride the bomb like Slim Pickens here.

Sunday, October 08, 2006


14:1-3 Slave To Desire

14:1 Samson went down to Timnah, and at Timnah he saw one of the daughters of the Philistines. 2 Then he came up and told his father and mother, “I saw one of the daughters of the Philistines at Timnah. Now get her for me as my wife.” 3 But his father and mother said to him, “Is there not a woman among the daughters of your relatives, or among all our people, that you must go to take a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?” But Samson said to his father, “Get her for me, for she is right in my eyes.”

Timnah was a town allotted to the tribe of Dan, according to Joshua 19:43. Samson was of the tribe of Dan. The border of the land of Judah ran through through it, and it was close to Philistine land. It appears that Philistines were inhabiting Timnah at the time, for Samson saw a Philistine woman there that he liked. It was on the road to Timnah that Judah met his former daughter in law, with whom he had sex, thinking she was a prostitute, according to Genesis 38.

Samson was a man of many flaws. God used him, but he was not a Godly man. Here we see that he wanted to marry a Philistine woman. Israelites were not supposed to intermarry. In Deuteronomy 7:1-4, Moses warned the Israelites not to intermarry with the pagans around them. This is a principle for God’s people that is carried into the New Testament. In 2 Corinthians 6:14, Paul said “Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?” But Samson was attracted to her. 1 John 2:15 says “For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world.”

Samson’s father and mother urged him to marry an Israelite woman, but Samson was arrogant and stubborn and insisted on this own way. He did not honor his father and mother, as the Bible commands.

14:4 God Is Working

4 His father and mother did not know that it was from the Lord, for he was seeking an opportunity against the Philistines. At that time the Philistines ruled over Israel.

The writer interjects the historical narrative here with an explanation. Any Jewish person reading this story would know that Samson was violating God’s commands, yet is supposed to be used by God. So, the writer explained that God used Samson’s sin and willfulness to accomplish His will. God is not limited by our motives or goodness or even our obedience. He works to accomplish his will, even when he uses a non-believer, or a believer living a sinful life. Daniel 4:35 says: "[God] does according to his will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, 'What are you doing?'"

14:5-7 If I’m Lion, I’m Dyin’

5 Then Samson went down with his father and mother to Timnah, and they came to the vineyards of Timnah. And behold, a young lion came toward him roaring. 6 Then the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon him, and although he had nothing in his hand, he tore the lion in pieces as one tears a young goat. But he did not tell his father or his mother what he had done. 7 Then he went down and talked with the woman, and she was right in Samson's eyes.

This is the first story of Samson’s mighty strength. He killed and dismembered a lion with his bare hands. He evidently had this strength because the Spirit of the Lord came upon him.

I found 23 places in the Old Testament where the Spirit of the Lord acted, most often coming on a judge, a king or a prophet, to accomplish God’s work. The Spirit brought supernatural strength, or wisdom, or a word from the Lord or the ability to lead.

What does the Holy Spirit do today? In John 16, Jesus said this about the work of the Spirit: “7 Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. 8 And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; 11 concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. 14 He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.”

So, we have a helper in the Holy Spirit. He has his own work to do, bringing conviction to the world. But, he also guides us into truth. He does this in the context of bringing glory to Christ. In the Old Testament, the Spirit came to accomplish the will of God, to the glory of God. In our time, the Spirit comes to accomplish the work of God, Father and Son, and to bring glory to them, as he works in us. He does not perform tricks, just as Jesus refused to do, and brings his power to accomplish his purpose, not just for our entertainment.

14:8-9 Breaking The Vow

8 After some days he returned to take her. And he turned aside to see the carcass of the lion, and behold, there was a swarm of bees in the body of the lion, and honey. 9 He scraped it out into his hands and went on, eating as he went. And he came to his father and mother and gave some to them, and they ate. But he did not tell them that he had scraped the honey from the carcass of the lion.

Samson not only broke the Jewish law, it appears that he also violated his Nazirite vow. Numbers 6 told us a Nazirite was not to touch any dead body, but he touched the carcass of the lion. Leviticus 5 indicates that any Jewish person might become unclean by touching a dead animal carcass. That is probably why Samson did not tell his parents where the honey came from. They would likely have refused to eat it.

14:10-14 The Riddle Game

10 His father went down to the woman, and Samson prepared a feast there, for so the young men used to do. 11 As soon as the people saw him, they brought thirty companions to be with him. 12 And Samson said to them, “Let me now put a riddle to you. If you can tell me what it is, within the seven days of the feast, and find it out, then I will give you thirty linen garments and thirty changes of clothes, 13 but if you cannot tell me what it is, then you shall give me thirty linen garments and thirty changes of clothes.” And they said to him, “Put your riddle, that we may hear it.” 14 And he said to them,

“Out of the eater came something to eat.
Out of the strong came something sweet.”

And in three days they could not solve the riddle.

Samson showed his arrogance by taunting the guests at this feast. There is no reasonable way they could solve the riddle, as only Samson knew about the honey in the carcass of the lion. It is like Bilbo Baggins’ riddle to Gollum in The Hobbit. (What’s in my pocket?) But, it gave him a chance to show off and to gamble. They, of course, could not solve the riddle. So, they turned to deceit.

It is also possible that Samson broke his Nazirite vow for the second time, as a feast normally included the drinking of wine.

14:15-18 From Wine to Whine

15 On the fourth [1] day they said to Samson's wife, “Entice your husband to tell us what the riddle is, lest we burn you and your father's house with fire. Have you invited us here to impoverish us?” 16 And Samson's wife wept over him and said, “You only hate me; you do not love me. You have put a riddle to my people, and you have not told me what it is.” And he said to her, “Behold, I have not told my father nor my mother, and shall I tell you?” 17 She wept before him the seven days that their feast lasted, and on the seventh day he told her, because she pressed him hard. Then she told the riddle to her people. 18 And the men of the city said to him on the seventh day before the sun went down,

“What is sweeter than honey?
What is stronger than a lion?”

And he said to them,

“If you had not plowed with my heifer,
you would not have found out my riddle.”

The Philistines co-opted Samson’s wife, who was also a Philistine, to find out the answer. She whined until she got the answer, then told the Philistines. Samson would have agreed with Proverbs 27:15, which says “A continual dripping on a rainy day and a quarrelsome wife are alike.” They solved the riddle, but Samson was smart enough to know where they got the answer, and he was not happy about it. This caused his first big confrontation with the Philistines.

14:19-20 The Spirit’s Power

19 And the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon him, and he went down to Ashkelon and struck down thirty men of the town and took their spoil and gave the garments to those who had told the riddle. In hot anger he went back to his father's house. 20 And Samson's wife was given to his companion, who had been his best man.

For the second time, the Spirit of the Lord came on Samson. Again, he gave Samson great strength. Samson killed 30 Philistine men in Ashkelon for his revenge. Verse 19 says he had “hot anger”. He paid the Philistines the price of the wager, but in the blood of their countrymen. Then he went back home.

The Spirit worked even though Samson was not acting in a Godly fashion. Yet, God had something to accomplish, and he empowered Samson to accomplish it. We will see later that Samson pays for hi

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Instapundit writes of a church without God. Here is the money quote:

We're already part-way there. My daughter took one of her karate belt-tests at a megachurch whose denomination was indiscernible -- even its Christian nature appeared only thinly, as the cross in the sanctuary was inconspicuous and the only one present. But it had a cafe with free wi-fi, and extended child care.

It's hard not to fear for the soul of Protestantism.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Well, it is done. The wedding is over. The Newlyweds are on their honeymoon. We've taken down and put away the decorations, returned the tuxedos and brought home lots of gifts. There were about 50 gifts brought to the wedding or the reception. Probably 10 more have come to the house Monday and Tuesday. People are so generous.

Thanks to all who made this wedding a beautiful and God-honoring event. To the many church friends who helped us with a myriad of tasks, thank you and God bless. I do not think I have every felt more embraced by the church family than during this event.

Most of all, thanks to God for answering the 10 million prayers I prayed for a Christian husband for my little girl. Only a year ago, she cried in despair that she would meet someone who would love her. I told her she would, for a loving Heavenly Father would surely answer the prayers of a loving earthly father.

He has.