And Samson went down to Timnath, and saw a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines.…
The pathway of life has many a lion in it, and our success and happiness depend very much on the way we deal with them. Nearly all the strongest men in our great cities had to encounter, early poverty and hardships; their limited education was got at the cost of self-denial, but learning was all the sweeter when they found it in the carcase of the slain lion. Had there been no Samson in all such young men they would have been frightened by discouragement into a helpless obscurity. One of the Christian leaders in New York tells us that he never has found greater enjoyment in his fine library than he found in the second-hand book which he purchased with his first shilling and read in his father's rustic cabin. Every good enterprise has its lions. Things that cost little count little. When a handful of Christians undertake to build up a mission school in some wretched neighbourhood, or to build a church in some destitute region, they find difficulties "roaring against them" like the wild beast in the vineyard of Timnath. These obstacles endear their work to them. There is a spiritual enjoyment in the after-results of their hard toils that they never could have known if their work had been easier. A sermon heard in a frontier church, whose erection cost sharp sacrifice, after a ten-mile ride over a country road, has some honey in it to a hungry Christian. Did you ever face a lion in undertaking the spiritual reformation of some hardened sinner? And had you ever a sweeter banquet of soul than when you saw him sitting beside you at Christ's table? Even the performance of a duty which presented a disagreeable front has a peculiar satisfaction in it. Captain Hedley Vicars encountered a shower of scoffs from his brother officers in the Crimean army when he was first converted. But he put his Bible on his table in his tent, and stood by his colours. Henceforth, the lion was not only slain, but there was rich honey in the carcase when his religious influence became a power in his regiment. Life's sweetest enjoyments are gathered from the victories of faith. Out of slain lions come forth meat; out of conquered foes to the soul come its sweetest honeycombs. One of the joys of heaven will be the remembrance of victories won during our earthly conflicts.
(T. L. Cuyler.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And Samson went down to Timnath, and saw a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines.