"The Stone that made a Poor Choice "
Once upon a time, many years ago, there lived two huge stones named Phil and Stan. Phil and Stan were identical twins and were both made of solid marble shaped by stone cutters into two immense columns that held up the roof of a large stone temple.
Now , before I tell you more about these stone’s story, I have to first explain that stones can actually hear each other. For while sound travels poorly through air it travels very well though the earth. Remember the seeing on old westerns the Indian who would put his ear to the ground to hear the sound of approaching footsteps. Even though they were too far away to hear through the air, the ground carries the sounds of the footsteps much better and much farther. Well because of this all stones can keep in close communication and they just love to pass on what they witness. (explain what “witness” means) Yes, it seems that stones are the witnesses of the world or in other words the gossips of the ground.
Anyway, Stan and Phil were no different and both loved to tell other rocks about what happened in the temple where they stood. Since they lived in a temple, they had plenty to talk about but none of what they told others was very good. No, the stories told by Stan and Phil were despicable, horrible and even frightening because you see, the temple they held up was a heathen one. A temple in which people worshiped idols and did many things that God did not like. Phil and Stan passed the horrible stories on to other rocks all over the world since they were so big that their voices vibrated across great distances. Many stones all over the world listened to the terrible stories of that temple from Phil and Stan every day. And as you can imagine, God was not pleased.
Now one day, there was a large party going on in the temple with almost 3000 men and women in attendance. Stan and Phil were getting excited because they noticed than an alter was being prepared for a sacrifice. Stand and Phil wondered if it would be a human sacrifice because they liked telling about human sacrifices because they were so gory. So when a large man was brought into the temple bound in chains they figured they were going to get their wish. Now the man looked very strong but his captors easily pushed him into the temple. He also looked very dirty and Stan and Phil figured he must have been living in the prison for a while and you know, they were right. As the man was pushed through the crowd many people kicked and struck him. Soon the man was pushed out into the center of the temple floor and some soldiers began poking him with spears until he started to dance. Everybody laughed including Stan and Phil. The man continued to dance and people continued to laugh for over a hour. Finally despite the prodding of spears, then man collapsed from exhaustion and his captors dragged him right up to Stan and Phil. There they chained him between the two stone brothers. Now close enough to touch him, Phil and Stan saw that the man had no eyes but instead empty sockets.
Stan and Phil now became a little confused for the this man was apparently not getting scarified but rather seemed to be someone that the people of the temple liked to keep around for their amusement. Phil had never seen this kind of thing so when the blind man leaned his head against Phil, Phil decided to ask him what he had done to become these peoples laughing stock.
Now of course I don’t need to tell you that stones don’t normally talk to people, so Phil did not really expect the man to answer but strange things happen in these stone stories and much to Phil’s surprise the man whispered back .. “Well it all started when I married this Philistine girl.”. You see, he went on, it was because of her I started killing Philistines.
(This section is done as a dialogue)
Phil: You started your personal war with the Philistines over a girl?
Samson: Yep. Sure did. In fact it all started on my way to get married. While I was walking to her town, I found the carcass of this lion which I had killed a few months on the road. In it I found a bee hive full of honey. Later that day during my wedding celebration we were all horsing around and I made this bet with a bunch of my new wife’s philistine friends that they couldn’t figure out this riddle I made up.
Phil: What was the riddle?
Blind man: "Out of the eater, something to eat; out of the strong, something sweet."
Phil: Did they figure it out?
Blind man: Nope. it totally stumped them, and since I bet 30 sets of clothes that they couldn't get it I figured I was gonna be stylin.
Phil: So you won the bet?
Blind man: Well not exactly. You see I gave them a week to answer and since they couldn’t get it, they threatened my wife. They told her they would kill her and her dad if she didn’t get me to reveal the answer. So for the whole week my wife used all sorts of sneaky questions to get me to tell her the answer. She would say things like "If you really love me you'll tell me." and stuff like that. Since, it was my honeymoon and I wanted her in a good mood I gave in and told her the answer.
Phil: So what happened?
Blind man: Well, darned if she went and told them the answer. I got so mad that I lost the bet, I went and killed 30 Philistines and stole their cloths just to pay the bet. That was a really bad day for me, but I did learn an important lesson.
Phil: What was that?
Blind man: I learned not let women talk me into things I don't want to do even if they are pretty.
Phil: Hmmm, I see .. well so what happened to your wife ?
Blind man: Well, she got killed. See a few months later she was visiting her family and I went down to see her. She often stayed with them for weeks at a time since we lived kind of far away. Anyway when I got there I found out she had decided to leave me and had actually married someone else.
Phil: Ouch ! How did that make to feel?
Blind man: It made me furious. I got so angry that I went out and caught 300 foxes. Then I lit their tails on fire and sent them running into the Philistines wheat fields. As you can image their fields burned to the ground. They retaliated by killing my wife and her dad. From that day on I declared war against the philistines. Over the next few months I killed thousands of them, many with just my bare hands. One day I killed a thousand of them with just a donkeys jawbone.
Phil: Wow .. That’s why these people hate you so much. Phil said that tongue in cheek for he was starting to like talking to this man. But I’m curious,. he said If you were so strong and killed so many how did they catch you ?
Blind man: Well that’s another story ..
Phil.. Well I’ve Got time .. Phil was secretly thrilled that he was getting this whole story himself and would soon be broadcasting it across the country and Stan would not even know where he got it. Ha !
Blind man: Well, see there was this other Philistine girl.
Phil: That figures .
Blind man.. Yeah .. I know but she was so cute ... You see after my wife died, I started hanging around this other girl and I fell in love with her. We used to talk a lot and we really got to be good friends. One day she asked me to tell her what the secret of my strength was. Now I had never told anyone before and beside it was a secret between me and God. So I refused to tell her but she made such a fuss that I told her a lie just to get her off my back
What did you tell her. Well one time I told her that strong ropes could hold me and another I told here that fresh leather thongs would hold me and another time I told her that if she braided my hair into a weaving loom then I would become weaker than a normal man.
Phil . you lied to her 3 times.
Blind man .. Yep and each time she blabbed to some of her Philistine friends and they actually tied me up and braided my hair into a loom while I slept. Of course when I woke up I clobbered them it was really fun.
Phil: Well if you lied, how did you end up missing your eyes?
Blind man: Well , that’s the sad part, you see I really liked her and she kept nagging me day in and day out. Finally I just gave up and told her the truth .
Phil: So what was the truth:
Blind man: Well you see I’m a Nazorite, someone set aside for special use by God and as a Nazorite no razor has ever been used on my head. If my head were shaved, my strength would leave me, and I would become as weak as any other man. The night I told her she shaved my head and called her Philistine friends. That night they bound me and poked out my eyes and I have been living blind and bald and in prison ever since.
Phil: Hmmm … but your not bald, your hair is actually quite long . Why do you think your still bald ?
The Blind man never answered, for at hearing this he suddenly lifted his head off Phil and pulled himself to his feet. To steady himself he placed on hand on Phil and the other on Stan and then he said this ..
Read Judges : 16:28-30
As Phil and Stan tipped over that day the whole ceiling of the temple came crashing down. It too was made of stone and it not only killed all 3000 Philistines in that terrible temple but it killed Phil and Stan and the blind man too. No longer would there be horrible stories passed around the world from this temple. No longer would these men mock God his chosen people for in his last act the blind man killed more of Gods enemies that he did when he lived. As ceiling came crashing down that day, Phil sent one more message to all his stone relatives around the world. As he died his last words rang out saying, “Beware who you choose for friends.”
Does anyone know the blind mans name ?
Samson was unbelievably strong but he was also very weak. He was strong as an ox physically, but weak as a worm when it came to his judgment. He let his desires for a relationship cloud his judgment. We often do the same thing. Have you ever caught yourself willing to do something a friend wants you too even though you know its wrong or could hurt you. With friends around you might say things you normally wouldn’t normally say or act different than you really are. Today, the desire to have a relationship can interfere with a persons judgment and get in the way of our relationship with God just like it did for Samson. Samson's story is a warning for us. Don’t let any relationship come between you and Jesus.