by James Tester
According to the Bible, Samson was the strongest man to ever live. The secret to the great strength of Samson lay in the power of God. When the power of God was present, Samson could do what no one else could do. I know of many churches that were this way. They had great strength and were able to do what no other church could seem to do. They had great strength in the area of winning souls and led thousands to Christ yearly. They had great strength in the area of bringing converts down the church aisle. These churches had thriving bus ministries, and their members were zealous in bringing people to church. They had great strength in the area of seeing people baptized. They influenced other Christians to get on fire for God, insomuch that many people moved from around the country to attend these churches and be a part of their ministries.
Sadly, just like Samson, these churches’ strength became their weakness.
They no longer win thousands to Christ; they no longer bring very many people to church; and they no longer see great numbers baptized. No longer are they influencing Christians to do great things for God. The power of God seems to have left them. They, like Samson, seem blinded to truth. They are even preaching “shady” things with new terminology unknown to fundamental Baptists. Like Samson, these churches seem to be spinning in circles, wasting time by grinding over new methods that fail to work. Let us not fall into this trap of allowing our strength to become our weakness. Let us understand how strength changing to weakness began in the life of Samson.
- Samson began hanging around the wrong crowd. He became infatuated with what he saw outside of his “circles.” He became impressed with the things that he did not have or had not experienced.
- Samson allowed the wrong crowd to influence him. He started to fall in love with the crowd that he had been fighting.
- Samson failed to guard the source of his strength. His strength was in his separation to the power of God. He was a Nazarite.
- Samson made light of his strength. He had taken for granted the privilege of his inheritance that had been given to him.
- Samson allowed someone to cut off the source of his strength.
We must not allow someone’s influence to cut off the emphasis of soulwinning and reaching people for Christ in our ministries. If we do, death will be the end result.
We must not allow someone to talk us into replacing our strength with weakness, meaning the new methods that will not work.
Samson realized his error a little too late. His ministry was almost over when he realized his mistake. Yes, his strength came back, but only temporarily as he committed suicide. Samson died a premature death because he gave his strength to an enemy of God. I often wonder how much more God could have used Samson to change the lives of others? How many more could have had their lives influenced, and how many others could have been saved?
We must not fall into the same trap into which Samson fell. We must guard our strength and the power of God in our lives. We must not give our strength to the religious “Delilahs” and the ungodly “Philistines” of this world who just want to rob us and “cut off” the power of God from our lives. The devil knows what he is doing to our independent fundamental Baptist churches. He is trying to cut off our strength of winning people to Christ, reaching converts, filling up our church buses, standing for old-fashioned convictions and standards, and promoting godly, conservative Christian music. Let us strengthen our strengths, work on our weaknesses, and get back to the biblical methods of true Christianity.