Chapter 6

  1. And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the Lord, and the Lord delivered them into the hand of the Philistines forty years. And there was a certain man of Zorah, of the family of the Danites, whose name was Manoah. And his wife was barren and bore not. And the angel of the Lord appeared unto the woman and said unto her, Behold, now you are barren and bear not, but you shall conceive and bear a son. Now therefore beware, I pray you, and drink not wine nor strong drink, and eat not any unclean thing, for behold, you shall conceive and bear a son. And no razor shall come on his head, for the child shall be a Nazarite unto God from the womb, and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines. Then the woman came and told her husband, saying, A man of God came unto me, and his countenance was like the countenance of an angel of God, very terrible. But I asked him not from where he was, neither did he tell me his name. But he said unto me, Behold, you shall conceive and bear a son, and now drink no wine nor strong drink, neither eat any unclean thing, for the child shall be a Nazarite to God from the womb to the day of his death.
  2. Then Manoah entreated the Lord, and said, O my Lord, let the man of God whom you did send come again unto us and teach us what we shall do unto the child that shall be born. And God listened to the voice of Manoah, and the angel of God came again unto the woman as she sat in the field, but Manoah her husband was not with her. And the woman made haste, and ran and showed her husband, and said unto him, Behold, the man has appeared unto me that came unto me the other day. And Manoah arose and went after his wife, and came to the man and said unto him, Are you the man that spoke unto the woman? And he said, I am. And Manoah said, Now let your words come to pass. How shall we order the child and how shall we do unto him? And the angel of the Lord said unto Manoah, Of all that I said unto the woman, let her beware. She may not eat of anything that comes of the vine, neither let her drink wine or strong drink, nor eat any unclean thing. All that I commanded her, let her observe. And Manoah said unto the angel of the Lord, I pray you, let us detain you until we shall have made ready a kid for you. And the angel of the Lord said unto Manoah, Though you detain me, I will not eat of your bread, and if you will offer a burnt offering, you must offer it unto the Lord (for Manoah knew not that he was an angel of the Lord). And Manoah said unto the angel of the Lord, What is your name, that when your sayings come to pass, we may do you honor? And the angel of the Lord said unto him, Why do you ask thus after my name, seeing it is secret? So Manoah took a kid with a grain offering and offered it upon a rock unto the Lord, and the angel did wondrously, and Manoah and his wife looked on. For it came to pass, when the flame went up toward heaven from off the altar, that the angel of the Lord ascended in the flame of the altar. And Manoah and his wife looked on it, and fell on their faces to the ground. But the angel of the Lord did no more appear to Manoah and to his wife. Then Manoah knew that he was an angel of the Lord. And Manoah said unto his wife, We shall surely die because we have seen God. But his wife said unto him, If the Lord were pleased to kill us, he would not have received a burnt offering and a grain offering at our hands, neither would he have shown us all these things, nor would as at this time have told us such things as these.
  3. And the woman bore a son, and called his name Samson. And the child grew, and the Lord blessed him. And the spirit of the Lord began to move him at times in the camp of Dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol. And Samson went down to Timnah, and saw a woman in Timnah of the daughters of the Philistines. And he came up and told his father and his mother, and said, I have seen a woman in Timnah of the daughters of the Philistines. Now therefore get her for me to wife. Then his father and his mother said unto him, Is there not a woman among the daughters of your brethren, or among all my people, that you go to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? And Samson said unto his father, Get her for me, for she pleases me well. But his father and his mother knew not that it was of the Lord, that he sought an opportunity against the Philistines; for at that time, the Philistines had dominion over Israel.
  4. Then went Samson down, and his father and his mother, to Timnah, and came to the vineyards of Timnah; and behold, a young lion roared against him. And the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon him, and he rent him as he would have rent a kid, and he had nothing in his hand. But he told not his father or his mother what he had done. And he went down and talked with the woman, and she pleased Samson well. And after a time, he returned to take her, and he turned aside to see the carcass of the lion. And behold, there was a swarm of bees and honey in the carcass of the lion. And he took thereof in his hands, and went on eating, and came to his father and mother; and he gave them, and they did eat. But he told not them that he had taken the honey out of the carcass of the lion. So his father went down unto the woman, and Samson made there a feast, for so the young men used to do.
  5. And it came to pass, when they saw him, that they brought thirty companions to be with him. And Samson said unto them, I will now put forth a riddle unto you. If you can certainly declare it to me within the seven days of the feast and find it out, then I will give you thirty sheets and thirty changes of garments. But if you cannot declare it to me, then you shall give me thirty sheets and thirty changes of garments. And they said unto him, Put forth your riddle, that we may hear it. And he said unto them, Out of the eater came forth food, and out of the strong came forth sweetness. And they could not in three days expound the riddle. And it came to pass on the seventh day that they said unto Samson’s wife, Entice your husband that he may declare unto us the riddle, lest we burn you and your father’s house with fire. Have you called us to take that we have? Is it not so? And Samson’s wife wept before him, and said, You do but hate me, and love me not; you have put forth a riddle unto the children of my people and have not told it to me. And he said unto her, Behold, I have not told it to my father nor my mother, and shall I tell it to you? And she wept before him the seven days while their feast lasted. And it came to pass on the seventh day that he told her, because she pressed intently upon him; and she told the riddle to the children of her people. And the men of the city said unto him on the seventh day, before the sun went down, What is sweeter than honey? And what is stronger than a lion? And he said unto them, If you had not plowed with my heifer, you would not have found out my riddle. And the spirit of the Lord came upon him, and he went down to Ashkelon and slew thirty men of them, and took their spoil, and gave change of garments unto them who expounded the riddle. And his anger was kindled, and he went up to his father’s house. But Samson’s wife was given to his companion whom he had used as his friend.
  6. But it came to pass within a while after, in the time of wheat harvest, that Samson visited his wife with a kid. And he said, I will go in to my wife, into the chamber. But her father would not suffer him to go in. And her father said, I truly thought that you had utterly hated her, therefore I gave her to your companion. Is not her younger sister fairer than she? Take her, I pray you, instead of her. And Samson said concerning them, Now I shall be more blameless than the Philistines, though I do them a displeasure. And Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took torches, and turned tail to tail, and put a torch in the middle between two tails. And when he had set the brands on fire, he let them go into the standing grain of the Philistines, and burned up both the shocks and also the standing grain with the vineyards and olives. Then the Philistines said, Who has done this? And they answered, Samson, the son-in-law of the Timnite, because he had taken his wife and given her to his companion. And the Philistines came up and burned her and her father with fire. And Samson said unto them, Though you have done this, yet will I be avenged of you; and after that, I will cease. And he smote them hip and thigh with a great slaughter, and he went down and dwelled in the top of the rock Etam.
  7. Then the Philistines went up and pitched in Judah, and spread themselves in Lehi. And the men of Judah said, Why are you come up against us? And they answered, To bind Samson are we come up, to do to him as he has done to us. Then three thousand men of Judah went to the top of the rock Etam, and said to Samson, Do you not know that the Philistines are rulers over us? What is this that you have done unto us? And he said unto them, As they did unto me, so I have done unto them. And they said unto him, We have come down to bind you, that we may deliver you into the hand of the Philistines. And Samson said unto them, Swear unto me that you will not fall upon me yourselves. And they spoke unto him, saying, No, but we will bind you fast and deliver you into their hand; but surely we will not kill you. And they bound him with two new cords and brought him up from the rock. And when he came unto Lehi, the Philistines shouted against him, and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon him, and the cords that were upon his arms became as flax that was burned with fire, and his bands fell from off his hands. And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand and took it, and slew a thousand men with it. And Samson said, With the jawbone of an ass, heaps upon heaps, with the jaw of an ass have I slain a thousand men. And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking, that he cast away the jawbone out of his hand, and called that place Ramath-Lehi.
  8. And he was very thirsty and called on the Lord, and said, You have given this great deliverance into the hand of your servant, and now I shall die for thirst and fall into the hand of the uncircumcised? But God cleaved a hollow place that was in the jaw, and water came out from there; and when he had drunk, his spirit came again and he revived. Wherefore, he called the name thereof Enhakkore, which is in Lehi unto this day. And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.
  9. Then went Samson to Gaza, and saw there a harlot, and went in unto her. And it was told the Gazites, saying, Samson has come here. And they encompassed him in, and laid wait for him all night in the gate of the city, and were quiet all the night, saying, In the morning, when it is day, we shall kill him. And Samson lay until midnight, and arose at midnight, and took the doors of the gate of the city, and the two doorposts, and went away with them, bar and all, and put them upon his shoulders, and carried them up to the top of a hill that is before Hebron.
  10. And it came to pass afterward that he loved a woman in the valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah. And the lords of the Philistines came up unto her and said unto her, Entice him, and see wherein his great strength lies, and by what means we may prevail against him, that we may bind him to afflict him. And we will give you, every one of us, eleven hundred pieces of silver. And Delilah said to Samson, Tell me, I pray you, wherein your great strength lies, and with what you might be bound to afflict yourself. And Samson said unto her, If they bind me with seven green cords that were never dried, then I shall be weak and be as another man. Then the lords of the Philistines brought up to her seven green cords which had not been dried and she bound him with them. Now there were men lying in wait, abiding with her in the chamber. And she said unto him, The Philistines are upon you, Samson. And he broke the cords as a thread of flax is broken when it touches the fire. So his strength was not known.
  11. And Delilah said unto Samson, Behold, you have mocked me and told me lies. Now tell me, I pray you, with what you might be bound. And he said unto her, If they bind me fast with new ropes that never were occupied, then shall I be weak, and be as another man. Delilah therefore took new ropes and bound him with them, and said unto him, The Philistines are upon you, Samson. And there were men lying in wait abiding in the chamber. And he broke them from off his arms like a thread.
  12. And Delilah said unto Samson, Hitherto you have mocked me and told me lies. Tell me with what you might be bound. And he said unto her, If you weave the seven locks of my head with the web. And she fastened it with the pin, and said unto him, The Philistines are upon you, Samson. And he awakened out of his sleep, and went away with the pin of the loom and with the web. And she said unto him, How can you say, I love you — when your heart is not with me? You have mocked me these three times, and have not told me wherein your great strength lies.
  13. And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words, and urged him, so that his soul was vexed unto death, that he told her all his heart, and said unto her, There has not come a razor upon my head, for I have been a Nazarite unto God from my mother’s womb. If I be shaven, then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak and be like any other man. And when Delilah saw that he had told her all his heart, she sent and called for the lords of the Philistines, saying, Come up this once, for he has shown me all his heart. Then the lords of the Philistines came up unto her and brought money in their hand. And she made him sleep upon her knees, and she called for a man, and she caused him to shave off the seven locks of his head. And she began to afflict him, and his strength went from him. And she said, The Philistines are upon you, Samson. And he awoke out of his sleep, and said, I will go out as at other times before, and shake myself. And he knew not that the Lord was departed from him. But the Philistines took him, and put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza, and bound him with fetters of brass. And he did grind in the prison house. Nevertheless, the hair of his head began to grow again after he was shaven.
  14. Then the lords of the Philistines gathered them together in order to offer a great sacrifice unto Dagon their god, and to rejoice; for they said, Our god has delivered Samson our enemy into our hand. And when the people saw him, they praised their god, for they said, Our god has delivered into our hands our enemy, and the destroyer of our country, who slew many of us.
  15. And it came to pass, when their hearts were merry, that they said, Call for Samson, that he may make us sport. And they called for Samson out of the prison house, and he made them sport, and they set him between the pillars. And Samson said unto the lad that held him by the hand, Suffer me that I may feel the pillars whereupon the house stands, that I may lean upon them. Now the house was full of men and women, and all the lords of the Philistines were there. And there were upon the roof about three thousand men and women that beheld while Samson made sport.
  16. And Samson called unto the Lord, and said, O Lord God, remember me, I pray you, and strengthen me, I pray you, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes. And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars upon which the house stood and on which it was borne up, of the one with his right hand, and of the other with his left. And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines. And he bowed himself with all his might, and the house fell upon the lords and upon all the people that were therein. So the dead whom he slew at his death were more than they whom he slew in his life. Then his brethren and all the house of his father came down and took him, and brought him up, and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol, in the burying-place of Manoah his father. And he judged Israel twenty years.






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