When Samson fell for Delilah, a woman from the Valley of Sorek, it marked the beginning of his downfall and eventual demise. It didn’t take long for the rich and powerful Philistine rulers to learn of the affair and pay a visit to Delilah. Samson was judge over Israel at the time and had been taking out great vengeance on the Philistines. Hoping to capture him, the Philistine leaders offered Delilah a sum of money to collaborate with them in a scheme to uncover the secret of Samson’s great strength.
Sitting in her grand chaise, depicted here in Rubens painting of Samson and Delilah, with Samson at her feet, Delilah held his head in her hands. She stroked his dark hair, soft like a feathered dove, curls down to his shoulders.
“Samson, you ripped the lion apart with your bare hands.”
“Delilah, my love, is it better the lion rip me apart?”
“My sire, it is good. From where do you get your strength?” She asked in a soft whisper.
Thrice she asked Samson where his strength came from, and thrice he answered falsely.
Once more she asked, “From where do you get your strength?”
His vow to God was never to reveal the source of his strength. He gazed in her eyes and asked, “Why must you know this?”
“You have told me your strength is from your God. This God of yours, how has He done this for you?”
“Delilah, only for you will I divulge what God has given me.”
“Samson, I will love you with my life.”
“My hair must never be cut. My strength will leave me if a razor were to be used on my head.”
When Samson slept on her lap, Delilah summoned her servant to cut Samson’s hair.
With his locks shorn, Samson’s vow to God was broken.
Rather than killing him, the Philistines humiliated him. They bound him and gouged out his eyes. In the ultimate humiliation,
Samson was put to work in prison pounding grain, the task of a woman. In time, his hair began to grow, but the careless Philistines paid no attention.
During a pagan sacrificial ritual, the philistines had gathered in Gaza to celebrate. As was their custom, they paraded their prized enemy prisoner into the temple to entertain the jeering crowds. Samson braced himself between the two central support pillars of the temple and pushed with all his might.
Down came the temple, killing Samson, Delilah and 3,000 Philistines. Samson destroyed more of his enemies in this one sacrificial act, than he had previously killed in all the battles of his life.
Today’s blog began with the idea of sharing the Egyptian culture in art and architecture. I was going to describe the furnishings and architecture between the time of Samson and Delilah and King Tutankhamen. Rather, I got caught up in storytelling.
What do you think? Do you have a deep secret? How trusting are you? How deep is your love?