April 14
Judges 16:23-30

One last time

The Philistines had finally found out where Samson’s strength lay. They realized that he had been dedicated to God from the day he was born and that his hair was a sign of the Nazirite vow. Now Samson was their prisoner; blind and in chains, grinding grain in the prison. But his hair, which had been cut, started to grow again.

The Philistine kings got together to celebrate their victory over Samson, and said, “Let’s get Samson here to entertain us.” When they brought Samson out he asked the servant to put him between the pillars that support the Temple.

Samson prayed to God and said, “Remember me, O God. Please make me strong just one more time.” Then Samson put one hand on each pillar and pushed with all his might… and the whole Temple came crashing down. Samson died with the people and killed more Philistines that day than he had during his whole life.

Can God still use me if I have really messed up?

If God stopped using everyone who sinned, made a mistake, or went the wrong way, there would be no one left to use. All of us have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23). Even the apostle Paul said, “Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me” Philippians 3:12.

Even though Samson had messed up, God was still able to use him. In the end, Samson turned to God because he knew where his strength came from. Maybe he had not prayed for a long time, but God saw his faith and answered his prayer. In the New Testament, Samson is even mentioned for his faith, together with others like Gideon! (Hebrews 11:32-33).

Verse for today

Therefore this is what the LORD says: "If you repent, I will restore you that you may serve me.” Jeremiah 15:19a