Isaac and Samson

samson and the lion statue under blue sky

It is said that when two stories overlap each other in uncommon ways, they are commentaries of each other. The story of Isaac and Samson are such occurrences. Below is a list of uncommon relationships that eventually unfold to reveal a hidden revelation.

40 years
Isaac was 40 years old when he married Rebekah.
(Genesis 25:20)
Israel harassed by Philistines for 40 years.
(Judges 13:1)
A barren woman
And Isaac intreated the Lord for his wife, because she was barren:
(Genesis 25:21)
…and his wife was barren, and bare not.
(Judges 13:2)
Prophecy given to the woman that 2 nations will battle
Two nations are in thy womb, and two manner of people shall be separated from thy bowels;
(Genesis 25:21-23)
…for the child shall be a Nazarite unto God from the womb: and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines.
(Judges 13:5)
A hairy child
And the first came out red, all over like an hairy garment;
(Genesis 25:25)
…and no razor shall come on his head:…
(Judges 13:5)

The beginnings of each story provide interesting comparisons, but there is not much else that stands out until we reach the end of Samson’s story. Samson is captured, blinded, and made to be a fool for the Philistines.

Two blind Isaacs
And it came to pass, that when Isaac was old, and his eyes were dim, so that he could not see,
(Genesis 27:1)
But the Philistines took him, and put out his eyes,
(Judges 16:21)

ויהי כי טוב לבם ויאמרו קראו לשמשון וישחק לנו ויקראו לשמשון מבית האסירים ויצחק לפניהם ויעמידו אותו בין העמודים

Judges 16:25

Just previously in Judges, we read a peculiar verse and a play on words happens, but only found in Hebrew. The word “ויצחק” in Hebrew (tsâchaq) bears a similar root to “יצחק” (Yitzchak) which is the name, Isaac. So looking at this verse, the Philistines bring Samson forth to play sport with him, or mock him… to literally make him as… Isaac.

A young boy leads by touch
And Isaac said unto Jacob, Come near, I pray thee, that I may feel thee,
(Genesis 27:21)
And Samson said unto the lad that held him by the hand, Suffer me that I may feel the pillars whereupon the house standeth, that I may lean upon them.
(Judges 16:26)

And in the end, Samson destroys these Philistines with physical strength and vengeance. But the multitude of relationships, the many comparisons are too important for us to skip over between the stories. What is Samson’s story telling us when compared to Isaac’s life? Samson’s life was filled with a revenge of strength against the Philistines. Two nations battled and Samson’s great quote is…

As they did unto me, so have I done unto them.

Judges 15:11

These are words that can go two different directions. In the case of Samson, we see revenge and strife, but in another quote we see something else.

And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.

Luke 6:31

It is a giving a receiving of kindness, of grace, of love.

Isaac too encountered the Philistines, but his reaction was much different than Samson’s. “And Isaac went unto Abimelech king of the Philistines unto Gerar.” (Genesis 26:1) And the Philistines eventually become jealous of Isaac, jealous unto aggression. The Philistines take Isaac’s wells that he’s been digging, but what does Isaac do? He walks away. “And he removed from thence, and digged another well; and for that they strove not: and he called the name of it Rehoboth; and he said, For now the Lord hath made room for us, and we shall be fruitful in the land.” (Genesis 26:22) He doesn’t seek revenge.

What becomes of this?

That thou wilt do us no hurt, as we have not touched thee, and as we have done unto thee nothing but good, and have sent thee away in peace: thou art now the blessed of the Lord.

Genesis 26:29

The Philistines speak to Isaac asking Isaac to do unto them as they have done to him. Do good unto others that it may be done unto you. This is true strength, not the physical strength of Samson. It takes a stronger person to turn away from vengeance and seek peace. In the end, the Lord will provide blessings.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *