(His parents did not know that this was from the Lord, who was seeking an occasion to confront the Philistines; for at that time they were ruling over Israel.) -Judges 14:4
Sometimes we think we have God figured out. We know how he works, when he works, and where he works. Yet Scripture reveals we truly understand only a fragment of how God really operates. As we are told, his ways are higher than our ways.
Judges offers at least one interesting example in the life of Samson. First, he demands that his parents allow him to marry a non-Israelite, which was a no-no according to Jewish law. Second, we are told God was looking for an occasion to confront the Philistines. Third, we are told God’s Spirit came upon Samson and empowered him to kill thirty people. Is this how God works?
To be clear, we should not come away with radical interpretations that suggest we use violence to accomplish God’s will. That’s not the point I’m making. The concern is that God used some strange events to do his will, including actions we would consider inhumane.
Why? Sometimes we simply don’t know what God is up to. In this account, the overall goal was to cause a conflict between Israel and the Philistines to restore God’s people to freedom. So the story wasn’t all bad. God had a plan.
He still has plans, for you personally, your community, and the world. We don’t always understand the things taking place around us, but they are never random or without meaning. Our goal must be to walk closely with God regardless of what takes place around us, trusting in the One who knows all to help when we don’t know what to do.
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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.