Samson and Women


One of the interesting stories of the Bible is Samson’s fascination with women. Apparently Samson’s parents had tried to get Samson to marry an Israelite woman but the Bible indicates that he did not find Israelite women to his fancy. Biblically it would appear that Samson was following in the same path of women that his more famous kinsman Solomon would follow for he also appeared to be fond of women from different nations but not one woman named was from Israel except for perhaps the Shunamite of the Song of Solomon, and there is only one wife that is specifically named and that was Naamah the Ammonitess (I Kings 14:31)/


Samson’s fascination with Philistine women was in direct violation to God’s specific commands not to marry foreign women (Deuteronomy 7:1-11). God constantly stated, and Israel had had much data about this problem in their history, that foreign wives, would cause their sons to turn away from the God of their fathers and they would end up worshipping the gods that had no power but which ministered to the lusts of the flesh. Samson knew of the history of the people before the flood and how the people of God before the flood – called the sons of God married the daughters of men – those women who did not claim God as their Father and how they ended up doing evil continually (Genesis 6:1-5) and the Lord God destroyed all of those people. Samson also knew of the effect of intermarriage on the children of Israel in Egypt and the warnings God had given to Israel in Deuteronomy 17:17. But it would appear that Samson was like most of us and he trusted in his own strength and wisdom and did not depend upon the wisdom of the Lord to protect him. We know that Samson’s parents try to dissuade him but he insisted on marrying a Philistine woman and it started many troubles in the land and in the life of Samson himself for the seed sown in rebellion brought a terrible harvest in the future.


In the context of Samson’s desire for Philistine women and in the context of God’s commandments not to marry Philistine women we find an interesting text. It would appear from the surface reading that Judges 14:4 was contradicting God’s commands. This text says the following:


“But his father and his mother knew not that it was of the Lord, that he sought an occasion against the Philistines; for at that time the Philistines had dominion over Israel.”


Now we know from the New Testament that there is no shadow of turning and no variableness in the things of God (James 1:17). So we know that God had not changed His laws, nor had He decided that it was ok for Samson to marry a heathen wife. But God knew the character of Samson and that Samson was going to press forward to do this evil in spite of God’s commands and that God would take advantage of this behavior and start the deliverance of Israel from the Philistines but the inevitable conflict of values that would happen when Samson married the wife of his choice. God often uses our rebellions to accomplish His purposes but He would rather us to be totally settled in His wisdom so that He could deliver in the ways that only He could do.


We all know how Samson suffered by the entreaties of his wife and how she betrayed him to her kinsmen. We read of the unnecessary deaths to the wife, her father, and then the many Philistines as a result of Samson’s sinful behaviors and then the sinful behaviors of the Philistines. And then on top of all of that it would appear that Samson does not learn from this but enters into relationships with at least two other women, the last being the “Consumer” Delilah and we know how that story ends up. Oh that Samson could have learned from reading the Word of God that was available to him and to take God at His word that He knows best. But praise God it is now our turn and we have even more information from God about the dangers of marrying outside of our relationship with God and His people (Leviticus 18:22-30; I Kings 11:1-13; Nehemiah 13:23-31; II Corinthians 6:14-18). We can learn from Samson and avoid many, many problems and stay true to the God of our fathers.


Some additional studies on the subject of God’s will regarding marriage outside of the faith:

Solomon’s Marriages -

The story of Genesis 6:1-5 and the marriages between the Sons of God and the Daughters of men -