The Ass’s Jawbone
“…and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and the cords that were upon his arms became as flax that was burnt with fire, and his bands loosed from off his hands. And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith. And Samson said, With the jawbone of an ass, heaps upon heaps, with the jaw of an ass have I slain a thousand men. And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking, that he cast away the jawbone out of his hand, and called that place Ramathlehi. And he was sore athirst, and called on the LORD, and said, Thou hast given this great deliverance into the hand of thy servant: and now shall I die for thirst, and fall into the hand of the uncircumcised? But God clave an hollow place that was in the jaw, and there came water thereout; and when he had drunk, his spirit came again, and he revived… And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.” Judges 15:12-20
When Sampson was in physical bondage, God’s Spirit set him free to fulfill his life’s calling. Sampson then used the jawbone of an animal, an ass, to kill 1000 people. Oh, how thirsty he was after the battle! He needed to be revived! God quenched Sampson’s thirst and revived him by pouring water supernaturally into the hollow part of the ass’s jaw.
How many of us are stuck in bondage and trying to set ourselves free by own our willpower in our own strength if we are even bothering to try to become free at all? From lying and unhealthy relationships and addictions, to pride and greed, to child pornography to homosexuality and adultery, to obsession with power and wealth, to eating disorders and careers we weren’t made for, to depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, to homelessness and poverty, to hopelessness and discouragement, etc., how many of us are hopelessly stuck, maybe even resolved to never be free?
Can you imagine anything wilder than the cords and bands of physical bondage falling right off with no human help? Or a man killing 1000 people in battle with nothing more than an animal’s jawbone? Or a battle-fatigued man finding thirst-quenching, spirit-reviving water in the hollow of an animal’s jaw? Herein is a message for ALL OF US. Freedom from bondage is IN CHRIST. Victory over darkness is IN CHRIST. How many of us are stuck in bondage as we stand at the broken water fountains of life, greedily grasping at driblets of dirty, warm water, turning to everything and everyone but God to quench our thirst for love, acceptance, hope, freedom, peace, joy, trust, provision, etc.? The only water that will satisfy and revive our souls now and forever is the living water (John 7:38) of God’s Spirit promised to those who repent, believe in Christ as Lord, and follow Him forever.
Come to the Lord, oh come to the Lord!