And he found a new jawbone of an donkey, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith.
I. IT WAS A NOVEL WEAPON. Samson again shows his inventiveness and originality (see ver. 4). To succeed in sudden emergencies we must have presence of mind to choose and act rapidly and freshly. The slave of routine is helpless in every critical moment of life.
II. IT WAS THE MOST CONVENIENT WEAPON AVAILABLE. If Samson could have laid his hand on a sword he would not have picked up the bone. It would be foolish, rash, and presumptuous to reject the better means in order to make a display of strength or originality in the use of inferior means. But when the only thing available is a comparatively poor expedient, it is better to use this than nothing. While we are waiting for the perfect weapons to be forged the opportunity for victory passes. Thus inferior men and inferior methods must often be used for want of better ones. It is wrong for us to refuse to do any work for Christ because we have not the best possible natural powers or cultivation. It is better to serve as we are than not at all.
III. IT WAS A SIMPLE WEAPON. Many would have despaired with such a prospect as Samson's. But difficulty is the inspiration of genius. In spiritual warfare God sometimes blesses the poorest means when faith and zeal are making the best use of them. God's strength is thus most perfect in our weakness, because then we most reed it, are most likely to seek it trustfully, and will be most inclined to use it obediently.
IV. IT WAS A RIDICULOUS WEAPON. The hero would seem to be humiliated as he condescended to use such a weapon. But he was great enough to despise ridicule. It is weak and wrong to decline to use the only available means of rendering God good service because we fear they are undignified. True dignity is found not in pedantry and pomp, but in simple, brave independence. Great needs conquer foolish vanity. When the Philistines are on us we are in no mood to ask or to care whether our conduct will excite the laughter of the idle. If Christians realised more fully the awful depth of the world's sin and misery, they would be less sensitive to the trivial ridicule with which men may regard their work. How many promising lives have been poisoned by the narcotic of a false respectability!
V. IT WAS A SUCCESSFUL WEAPON. This is the one matter of consequence. Success refutes all objections. Ridicule is now turned into admiration, The very simplicity and folly of the means increases the glory of the result. So the great question in the Christian warfare against evil is that this is effective. If so, all the world's foolish criticism will be drowned in the triumph of victory. - A.
Parallel VersesKJV: And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith.