(Judg 13:1-5) And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD; and the LORD delivered them into the hand [power] of the [uncircumcised unsaved] Philistines forty years [a symbolic time of testing]. And there was a certain man of Zorah, of the family of the Danites [judges], whose name was Manoah [rest]; and his wife was barren, and bare not [seven barren women in the Bible]. And the angel of the LORD appeared unto the woman, and said unto her, Behold now, thou art barren, and bearest not: but thou shalt conceive, and bear a son. Now therefore beware, I pray thee, and drink not wine nor strong drink, and eat not any unclean thing: For, lo, thou shalt 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 [a process] to deliver Israel out of the hand [power] of the Philistines.
1. Zorah = Heb: a wasp (as stinging): hornet /// to scourge, i.e. to be stricken with leprosy: leper, leprous.
2. Nazarite = Heb: separate, i.e. consecrated (holy); hence an unpruned vine.
3. Vows of a Nazarite: 1. shall not drink wine nor eat any fruit of the vine or unclean thing. 2. shall not cut his hair. 3. shall not have contact with the dead.
4. (Exo 20:25) And if thou wilt make me an altar of stone, thou shalt not build it of hewn stone [something cut, i.e. dressed stone]: for if thou lift up thy tool [cutting instrument] upon it, thou hast polluted it.
5. (Zec 12:1) The burden of the word of the LORD for Israel, saith the LORD, which stretcheth forth the heavens, and layeth the foundation of the earth, and formeth the spirit of man within him.
6. formeth = Heb: (through the squeezing into shape); to mould into a form; espec. as a potter; fig. to determine (i.e. form a resolution):-- X earthen, fashion, form, frame, make (-r), potter, purpose.
7. (Phil 1:6) Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it [to fulfill further (or completely)] until the day of Jesus Christ:
8. (Rom 12:1) I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice [i.e. a Nazarite], holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
9. (Rom 12:2) And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed [i.e. a process] by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
10. deliver = Heb: rescue, be safe, bring (having) salvation, save (-iour), get victory.
ASHKELON = Heb: migration, fire of infamy
THE BEGINNING OF DELIVERANCE FROM THE PHILISTINES
(Judg 14:19) 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 which expounded the riddle. And his anger was kindled, and he went up to his father's house.
1. Ashkelon = Heb: migration; in the sense of weighing-place (i.e. mart), fire of infamy; one of the five principal cities of the Philistines.
2. infamy = Dict: 1. evil fame, shameful notoriety, or public reproach. 2. infamous character or conduct.
3. Samson took thirty spotted defiled garments (spotted and defiled with sin) from thirty uncircumcised unsaved Philistines in Ashkelon and gave them to his thirty uncircumcised unsaved Philistine “companions” at the wedding feast. BUT THERE WAS NO GAIN! Yes, the thirty companions had technically solved the riddle, but by “some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.” (John 10:1). They cheated with Samson’s wife. Therefore, the thirty companions were still going to Hell, “not having a [righteous] wedding garment.” (Mat 22:12).
GAZA = Heb: strong
SAMSON’S CRUCIFIXION, AND RESURRECTION
(Judg 16:21) But the [uncircumcised unsaved] Philistines took him [Samson the Son of God, now as a type of Christ], and put out his eyes [i.e. no light], and brought him down to Gaza, and bound him with fetters of brass [symbolic of the bindings upon us of our sins, binding us to this world; i.e. the nails of the cross]; and he did grind in the prison house [he paid the penalty for all our sins].
1. (Mat 27:45) Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour.
2. Gaza = Heb: strong; one of the five principal cities of the Philistines.
3. fetters of brass = Heb: copper; fig. base (as compared with gold or silver): chains, filthiness.
4. grind = Heb: to grind meal (the work of a woman or a slave, however, the work was indeed seed).
(Judg 16:22-24) Howbeit the hair of his head began to grow again after he was shaven [to be bald, i.e. to shave; fig. to lay waste]. Then the lords of the [uncircumcised unsaved] Philistines [a sea people originally from the island of Crete in the Mediterranean Sea] gathered them together for to offer a great sacrifice unto Dagon their god [the fish-god], and to rejoice: for they said, Our god hath delivered Samson [sunlight] our enemy [hated; adversary] into our hand. And when the people saw him, they praised their god: for they said, Our god hath delivered into our hands our enemy, and the destroyer of our country, which slew many of us.
1. (John 3:19) And this is the condemnation [damnation, judgment], that light [Samson, sunlight] is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
Commentary: But how about the three remaining uncircumcised unsaved Philistine cities? Judgment will come upon all uncircumcised unsaved men. Let us temporarily leave Samson and the judgment of God in the city of Gaza and follow the trail of Dagon their God from Gaza to the next biblical mention of one of the five principle Philistine cities...
ASHDOD = Heb: ravager, fortress
(1 Sam 5:1-7) And the [uncircumcised] Philistines took the ark of God [the Ark of the Covenant, Samson the Son of God in type], and brought it from Ebenezer [stone of help] unto Ashdod [ravager, fortress, stronghold; one of five principal Philistine cities]. When the [uncircumcised unsaved] Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon [a Philistine adaptation of the Canaanite god Baal], and set it by Dagon. And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again. And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the LORD; and the head of Dagon and both the palms [power] of his hands were cut off upon the threshold [the sill of a doorway]; only the stump of Dagon was left to him. Therefore neither the priests of Dagon, nor any that come into Dagon's house, tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod unto this day. But the hand of the LORD was heavy upon them of Ashdod, and he destroyed them, and smote them with emerods, even Ashdod and the coasts thereof. And when the men of Ashdod saw that it was so, they said, The ark of the God of Israel shall not abide with us: for his hand is sore [severe] upon us, and upon Dagon our god.
1. emerods = Dake’s Annotated Reference Bible: Heb: ophel, tumor; emerod. From aphal, to swell. Emerods is an old spelling of the modern hemorrhoids (bleeding piles; Deut 28:27).
GATH = Heb: wine-press
(1 Sam 5:8,9) They sent therefore and gathered all the lords of the Philistines unto them, and said, What shall we do with the ark of the God of Israel? And they answered, Let the ark of the God of Israel [Samson the Son of God in type] be carried about unto Gath. And they carried the ark of the God of Israel about thither. And it was so, that, after they had carried it about, the hand of the LORD was against the city with a very great destruction: and he smote the men of the city, both small and great, and they had emerods in their secret parts.
1. Gath = Heb: wine-press; one of the five principal Philistine cities. Inhibatants called Gittites. Residence of the Anakim, men of great stature. Goliath and other giants belonged to this race. Its site is uncertain, for Gath disappeared mysteriously from history by an unknown calamity referred to in Amos 6:2.
EKRON = Heb: eradication, extermination
(1 Sam 5:10-12) Therefore they sent the ark of God [Samson the Son of God in type] to Ekron [eradication: extermination, torn up by the roots; one of five principal Philistine cities]. And it came to pass, as the ark of God came to Ekron, that the Ekronites cried out, saying, They have brought about the ark of the God of Israel to us, to slay us and our people. So they sent and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines, and said, Send away the ark of the God of Israel, and let it go again to his own place, that it slay us not, and our people: for there was a deadly destruction throughout all the city; the hand of God was very heavy there. And the men that died not were smitten with the emerods: and the cry of the city went up to heaven.