Wednesday, November 28, 2007

By Faith... the Judges, Part 34 of 62

TEXT: "What more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets" (Hebrews 11:32).

IDEA: The temptation of Samson by Delilah embodies elements of most temptations.

PURPOSE: To help listeners be aware of how temptations work.

Do you think it’s a nice idea to give children biblical names?

Do you know many who named a daughter “Delilah”?

When you hear the name “Delilah,” what do you think of?

She is the embodiment of temptation. Gary Inrig in his book on the judges, Heart of Iron, Feet of Clay, spends two chapters on Samson’s fall because of Delilah. He argues that there are three very important principles about all temptation that are embodied in the actions of Delilah. These principles lie at the heart of why we succumb to temptation when it enters our lives.

I. Moral compromise always makes us vulnerable to further compromise.

Samson had entered into sexual compromises before he met Delilah, so his downfall didn’t happen suddenly.

Do you think that it is true that small compromises always lead to larger compromises?

II. Temptation comes to us in attractive packages.

Delilah wasn’t Tugboat Annie. She was obviously an attractive and experienced woman.

Sin always comes with promises that our lives will be richer and our experience fuller if we embrace it. It will give us what we could get in no other way.

Temptation always appeals to the short run and ignores the long run.

III. Temptation comes when we choose wrong company.

Samson continually sought out the wrong kind of women—a Philistine woman from Timnah, the prostitute in Gaza, and then Delilah. He chose them as companions.

The Proverbs warn about the power of friendships to ennoble us or destroy us.

"He who walks with wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will be destroyed" (Proverbs 13:20).

"The righteous should choose his friends carefully, for the way of the wicked leads them astray" (Proverbs 12:26).

"Make no friendship with an angry man, and with a furious man do not go, lest you learn his ways and set a snare for your soul" (Proverbs 22:24, 25).


Is it wrong to have friends who are not Christians?