Are you asking the wrong person the right question?

Ask God to tell you why things are the way they are!

May 2

The men of Judah asked the Philistines, “Why have you attacked us?” The Philistines replied, “We’ve come to capture Sampson. We have come to pay him back for what he did to us.”

Judges 15:10

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Are you asking the wrong person the right question?

Sampson was a judge in the nation of Israel for twenty years. He was the most unusual of all of Israel’s judges. As you study through the period of the judges you find that they were called upon for many duties, but mainly they would come forward to lead Israel when they were being oppressed by a foreign nation. Their primary role for the nation was to do as their title implies, to judge between the people settled disputes.

Sampson doesn’t seem to fulfill any of the descriptions of what the other judges were doing. There is no sense that he assumed a role of leader at any point or that he acted as a judge for the people. In fact, Sampson could very well be the most selfish, self-centered person that God used in all of Scripture.

During the time of Sampson’s life the Philistines were ruling over the nation of Israel. This was because they had once again turned away from the LORD and He punished them by letting them be tormented by a foreign nation. Once Israel figured out that they were out of God’s will He would send someone to deliver them from their enemy. Sampson is the man that God has chosen to deliver Israel this time.

In today’s reading the Philistines are once again harassing the Israelites but this time they are there because of what Sampson has done to them. He has just burned up all their fields of grain, their grapevines, and olive trees. They have come to get revenge upon Sampson. This is all leading up to the most famous thing that Sampson did; the killing of one thousand Philistines with the jawbone of a donkey.

What strikes me about our verse for the day is that the men of Judah asked the Philistines why they were attacking them. They were asking the right question, they were just asking the wrong person. They should have been asking the LORD. The tabernacle was still set up and the priests were still serving before the LORD. God was using Sampson to goad the Philistines into attacking and harassing the Israelites because they had turned away from Him. Instead of asking God what they should do, the men of Judah get three thousand men and go after Sampson themselves. Their goal was to get rid of the irritation and they hoped that would cause the Philistines to leave them alone.

God will allow enemies to come into our lives. We might be tempted, as the men of Judah were to find the source of the irritation and try to eliminate it. That might not be what God is trying to do. God might be trying to redirect you; He might be trying to draw you closer to Him. The men of Judah asked their enemy why they were being attacked. Your enemy can’t and won’t help you. Go to the LORD and ask Him why things are the way they are and ask Him how He would like you to respond. And then be prepared to see Him do something miraculous to drive that enemy from your life. Jesus, remind us to seek You out when we need answers.

Daily Bible Reading Plan:
Read: Judges 15:1-16:31; John 2:1-25; Psalm 103:1-22; Proverbs 14:17-19