Weekend, January 27, 2024

A Ray of Light

But you are a God of forgiveness, gracious and merciful, slow to become angry, and rich in unfailing love. (Nehemiah 9:17 NLT)

Even in the mess Samson had made of his life, even though the Philistines had captured him and blinded him, there was a little ray of light.

The Bible says, “But before long, his hair began to grow back” (Judges 16:22 NLT). What is this verse saying? It’s telling us there is hope, even if we have failed.

As Samson’s hair began to grow, his strength returned. However, Samson’s strength was not in his long hair. Rather, it was in his commitment to God. His hair symbolized a vow he had taken as a Nazirite. And his hair was returning.

One night when the Philistines were having a drunken feast to their false god, someone came up with the idea of dragging out the sightless Samson to make fun of him. So, they brought Samson from the prison into a big party where Philistines were engaging in debauchery and the worship of a false god.

Meanwhile, Samson said to the young servant who was leading him, “Place my hands against the pillars that hold up the temple. I want to rest against them” (verse 26 NLT). So, the servant did as Samson had asked.

Then the Bible tells us, “Samson prayed to the Lord, ‘Sovereign Lord, remember me again. O God, please strengthen me just one more time. With one blow let me pay back the Philistines for the loss of my two eyes.’ Then Samson put his hands on the two center pillars that held up the temple. Pushing against them with both hands, he prayed, ‘Let me die with the Philistines’ ” (verse 28–30 NLT).

Samson pushed with all his might, and the temple where they were came crashing down. As it turned out, Samson killed more Philistines that day than he had during his entire life of fighting them on the battlefield.

In contrast to the life of Samson, the Bible tells the story of another young man who experienced sexual temptation. His name was Joseph. The Bible says he was good-looking and well-built, and his employer’s wife constantly tried to seduce him. She also was about as subtle as Delilah.

In fact, she said, “Come and sleep with me” (Genesis 39:7 NLT).

But Joseph resisted her, saying, “My master trusts me with everything in his entire household. No one here has more authority than I do. He has held back nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How could I do such a wicked thing? It would be a great sin against God” (verses 8–9 NLT).

But one day, she decided to do whatever she could to make this happen. She sent her servants outside, grabbed Jospeh, and pulled him down on the bed. So, Joseph did what any smart person should do in a similar circumstance. He ran. And he ran fast.

That is what we need to do when we’re faced with temptation.

But even when we mess up, even when we have failed, God gives second chances. Do you need a second chance? Do you want to get up and try again? God can give you a second chance today.

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new believers growth book greg laurie devo offerIn thanks for your gift, you can receive a copy of Ben Born Again's New Believer's Growth Book by Greg Laurie

Cartoon companions Ben Born Again and YellowDog teach kids how to read the Bible, how to pray, how to know the will of God, how to resist temptation, and much more in this engaging resource written for children. A copy will be sent to you for a gift of any amount to Harvest Ministries this month.

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