Mothers of the Bible: Manoah’s wife, Listened to Instruction

We all know the story of Samson and Delilah, but there is much more to his story than we

The angel appeared to Manoah’s wife

often remember.

The story of his birth is a story of great trust and obedience.

His father was known as Manoah and his mother’s name is not mentioned.   She is described as “barren and bare not.”

But, an angel of Jehovah appears to her and says, “Behold now, thou art barren, and bearest not; but thou shalt conceive, and bear a son.”   {Judges 13:3}

Sound familiar?   This reminds me of the story of Sarah and later, Mary, the Mother of Jesus.

Notice that the angel appears to the woman and not to Manoah.

Manoah prayed for the angel to return

The angel goes on to say, “Now therefore beware, I pray thee, and drink no wine nor strong drink, and eat not any unclean thing: for, lo, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and no razor shall come upon his head; for the child shall be a Nazirite unto God from the womb: and he shall begin to save Israel out of the hand of the Philistines.”    {Judges 13:4-5}

The Women of Faith says, “it is significant that the angel appeared to the wife instead of the husband, she would have to follow the rules.”

The angel appeared to Manoah and his wife

There were specific rules the wife had to follow to protect and watch over her son.

What is the first thing you do after an angel appears to you?

The wife went to Manoah and told him about the revelation.  Manoah then lifted up his own prayer to God.  “Oh, Lord, I pray thee, let the man of God whom thou didst send come again unto us, and teach us what we shall do unto the child that shall be born.”   {Judges 13:8}

The angel appears again, upon this prayer, but not to Manoah.  She runs to get her husband and together they come upon the angel.

Samson’s parents were thrilled to have him and vowed to raise him as they promised God

A conversation then ensues with the angel, as Manoah ask what they need to do for this promised child.

The angel says to do as she was bid to not eat of the vine or drink wine or eat anything unclean.

Manoah shows his hospitality, but offering to feed the man.  He is told to offer a sacrifice to God.  We are then told “For Manoah knew not that he was the angel of Jehovah.”  {Exodus 13:16}

Manoah and his wife offer the sacrifice and the angel reveals himself.  “Manoah and his wife looked on; and they fell on their faces to the ground.”  {Exodus 13:20}

Samson was raised as a Nazarine

When he appeared no more, “Then Manoah knew that he was the angel of Jehovah.”  {Exodus 13:21}

The woman has a son and names him Samson.

The angel appearing before Manoah’s wife shows that she was “an obedient and godly woman”.

Until Delilah cuts his hair, Samson never has a “blade touch his head”.   This proves that his mother “did her best to follow God’s instructions for her.”  {Women of Faith}

His parents sought to direct Samson

When Samson wants to marry a daughter of the Philistine, his mother and father discourage him from marrying her.   Together with her husband, Samson’s mother sought to provide wise and godly counsel for their son.

When Samson dies, we are not told if either of his parents are still alive.  However, we’re told “Then his brethren and all the house of his father came down, and took him, and brought him up, and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol in the burying-place of Manoah his father.”  {Judges 16:31}

So, to the very end his family watched over him.

Manoah and his wife showed their faith and trust in God.  They believed the angel and did what was asked of them.  They did their best to provide Samson with godly counsel, although he did not often listen to what they had to say.

Do you provide wise counsel when offered?

 

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