“Samson went down to Timnah and at Timnah he saw one of the daughters of the Philistines. Then he came up and told his father and mother, “I saw one of the daughters of the Philistines at Timnah. Now get her for me as my wife.” But his father and mother said to him, “Is there not a woman among the daughters of your relatives or among all our people that you must go to take a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?” But Samson said to his father, “Get her for me, for she is right in my eyes.”
– Judges 14:1–3
There’s so much here in these three verses in Judges and so much that leads us to pray. I want to point out a couple of things in particular. One, Sampson uses language here at the very end of verse three, that is the worst language possible.
God, help us not to give ourselves to what seems right in our eyes when it goes against God’s word.
A Picture of Sin and Evil
That’s what we see at key points in the book of Judges, the people of God doing what is right in their own eyes. You read the book of Judges and it is horrible. Some of the pictures of sin and evil that we see in this book. And it’s what happens when people do what is right in their own eyes, instead of doing what is right according to God and his word.
And that’s what’s happening here in Samson’s life. He has taken things into his own hands. He’s making one of the most significant decisions in his life, who he’s going to marry. And he’s making that decision according to what is right in his eyes. And the picture is, as you think about all three of these verses, Samson is going outside of God’s word to his people.
Judges 14:1–3 Calls Us Not to Go Against God’s Word
God has told his people not to knit their lives closely like this, particularly in marriage with the Philistines, with those outside of the covenant, people of God in the Old Testament. And Samson is doing exactly the opposite of what God has said.
So, as we think about our lives, significant decisions in our lives, even down to, for those who are single or if you’re a teenager, a child, or a parent of a child who is not yet married, to pray that God would give wisdom to marry someone according to His word, not according to what is right in their eyes in the world. And then for all of us to pray that God would help us not to give ourselves to what seems right in our eyes, when it goes against God’s word.
Judges 14:1–3 Shows Us the Danger of Disobedience
God, we pray for that. We pray for that in each of our lives today, that you would save us from doing what is right in our own eyes. How do we know we will be tempted all day, today, tomorrow to do what is right in our eyes? God, we know that’s where sin entered the world with Adam and Eve doing what was right in their own eyes. They disobeyed you. They rebelled against your word, just like we see Samson doing here. God, help us to see the disastrous effects of that. To run from what is right in our own eyes and to live according to what is right in your word.
Praying for the Spread of the Gospel in Singleness
God, I pray, especially for those who are making decisions about who they might marry or will make that decision in the days ahead, God I think about my own kids, I just think about single brothers and sisters, God, we pray that as long as you grant them singleness, that you would help them to thrive for your glory, for their good, for others good, for the spread of the gospel in singleness, and God, should you lead them to marry, please keep them in step with your spirit. That they might marry someone who loves you with all their heart and soul and mind and strength. Loves you supremely and loves others selflessly.
God, we pray that they would make wise decisions in who they marry. That they would marry according to what is right in your word, not what is right in their eyes. God deliver us all, save us all daily from doing what is right in our eyes. Keep us in step with your spirit in what is right according to your word. We pray this in Jesus’ name. We pray this in Jesus’ name according to Judges 14:1-3. Amen.