The children of your servants will continue. Their offspring will be established before you. Psalm 102:28

Judges 13-14

Judges 13

The Birth of Samson

1 The Israelites again did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord; and the Lord delivered them into the hand of the Philistines for 40 years.

2 There was a certain man of Zorah, from the family of the Danites, whose name was Manoah; and his wife was barren and was without children. 3 The angel of the Lord appeared to the woman, and said to her, “See now, you are barren and without children; but you shall conceive and bear a son. 4 Now therefore please beware and drink no wine nor strong drink, and do not eat any unclean thing; 5 for you shall conceive and give birth to a son. No razor shall touch his head, for the child shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb. He shall begin to save Israel from the hand of the Philistines.”

6 Then the woman came and told her husband, saying, “A man of God came to me, and his face was like the face of the angel of the Lord, very awesome. I didn’t ask him where he was from, neither did he tell me his name; 7 but he said to me, ‘You shall conceive and bear a son; and now drink no wine nor strong drink. Do not eat any unclean thing, for the child shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb to the day of his death.’ ”

8 Then Manoah entreated the Lord, and said, “Oh, my Lord, please let the man of God whom you sent come to us again, and teach us what we should do for the child who shall be born.”

9 God listened to the voice of Manoah, and the angel of the Lord came to the woman again as she sat in the field; but Manoah, her husband, was not with her. 10 The woman quickly ran and told her husband, saying to him, “The man who came to me that day has appeared to me,”

11 Manoah arose and followed his wife, and came to the man, and said to him, “Are you the man who spoke to my wife?”
He said, “I am.”

12 Manoah said, “Now when your words come true, what shall the child’s way of life and mission be?”

13 The angel of the Lord said to Manoah, “Of all that I said to the woman let her beware. 14 She may not eat of anything that comes from the vine, neither let her drink wine or strong drink, nor eat any unclean thing. Let her observe all that I commanded her.”

15 Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, “Please stay with us, that we may prepare a young goat for you.”

16 The angel of the Lord said to Manoah, “Though you detain me, I will not eat your bread. If you will prepare a burnt offering, you must offer it to the Lord.” For Manoah did not know that he was the angel of the Lord.

17 Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, “What is your name, that when your words come to pass, we may honor you?”

18 The angel of the Lord said to him, “Why do you ask about my name, since it is incomprehensible?”

19 So Manoah took the young goat with the grain offering, and offered it on the rock to the Lord. Then the angel did an amazing thing as Manoah and his wife watched. 20 For when the flame went up toward the sky from off the altar, the angel of the Lord ascended in the flame of the altar. Manoah and his wife watched; and they fell on their faces to the ground. 21 But the angel of the Lord did not appear to Manoah or to his wife any more. Then Manoah knew that he was the angel of the Lord.

22 Manoah said to his wife, “We shall surely die, because we have seen God.”

23 But his wife said to him, “If the Lord wanted to kill us, he wouldn’t have received a burnt offering and a grain offering at our hand, and he wouldn’t have shown us all these things, nor would he have told us such things as these at this time.” 24 The woman bore a son and named him Samson. The child grew, and the Lord blessed him. 25 The Spirit of the Lord began to move him in Mahaneh Dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol.

Judges 14

Samson’s Marriage

1 Samson went down to Timnah, and saw a woman in Timnah from the daughters of the Philistines. 2 He came back and told his father and his mother, “I have seen a woman in Timnah from the daughters of the Philistines. Now therefore get her for me as my wife.”

3 Then his father and his mother said to him, “Isn’t there a woman among your brothers’ daughters, or among all my people that you must go to the uncircumcised Philistines for a wife?”
Samson said to his father, “Get her for me, for in my eyes, she is right.”

4 But his father and his mother did not know that it was from the Lord; for he sought an occasion against the Philistines. Now at that time the Philistines ruled over Israel.

5 Then Samson went down to Timnah with his father and his mother, and came to the vineyards of Timnah; and a young lion roared at him. 6 The Spirit of the Lord came mightily on him, and he tore him as he would have torn a young goat with his bare hands, but he did not tell his father or his mother what he had done. 7 He went down and talked with the woman, and she pleased Samson well.

Samson’s Riddle

8 After a while he returned to take her, and he went over to see the carcass of the lion; and there was a swarm of bees in the body of the lion, and honey. 9 He took it into his hands, and went on, eating as he went. He came to his father and mother and gave some to them, and they ate it, but he did not tell them that he had taken the honey out of the lion’s body. 10 His father went down to the woman; and Samson made a feast there, for the young men used to do so.

11 When they saw him, they brought 30 companions to be with him.

12 Samson said to them, “Let me tell you a riddle now. If you can tell me the answer within the seven days of the feast, and find it out, then I will give you 30 linen garments and 30 changes of clothing; 13 but if you cannot tell me the answer, then you shall give me 30 linen garments and 30 changes of clothing.”
They said to him, “Tell us your riddle, that we may hear it.”

14 He said to them,

“From the eater came food.
From the strong came sweetness.”

They could not in three days declare the riddle. 15 On the seventh day, they said to Samson’s wife, “Entice your husband, that he may explain the riddle to us, or we will burn you and your father’s house down. Have you called us to impoverish us?

16 Samson’s wife wept before him, and said, “You just hate me, and don’t love me. You’ve told a riddle to my people, and haven’t told it to me.”
He said to her, “I haven’t told my father or my mother, so why should I tell you?”

17 She cried before him for the seven days, while their feast lasted; and on the seventh day, he told her, because she pressed him severely; and she told the riddle to her people. 18 The men of the city said to him on the seventh day before the sun went down, “What is sweeter than honey? What is stronger than a lion?”
He said to them,
“If you had not plowed with my heifer,
you would not have found out my riddle.”

19 The Spirit of the Lord came mightily on him, and he went down to Ashkelon and struck 30 of their men. He took their plunder, then gave the changes of clothing to those who declared the riddle. His anger burned, and he went up to his father’s house. 20 But Samson’s wife was given to his companion, who had been his friend.

John 1:29-51

The Lamb of God

29 The next day, John saw Jesus coming to him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!

30 This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who is preferred before me, for he was before me.’ 31 I did not know him, but for this reason I came baptizing in water: that he would be revealed to Israel.” 32 John testified, saying, “I have seen the Spirit descending like a dove out of heaven, and it remained on him. 33 I did not recognize him, but he who sent me to baptize in water said to me, ‘On whomever you will see the Spirit descending and remaining on him is he who baptizes in the Holy Spirit.’ 34 I have seen, and have testified that this is the Son of God.”

Jesus Calls His First Disciples

35 Again, the next day, John was standing with two of his disciples, 36 and he looked at Jesus as he walked, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God!” 37 The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. 38 Jesus turned and saw them following, and said to them, “What are you looking for?”
They said to him, “Rabbi” (which is to say, being interpreted, Teacher), “where are you staying?”

39 He said to them, “Come and see.”
They came and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day. It was about the tenth hour. 40 One of the two who heard John and followed him was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41 He first found his own brother, Simon, and said to him, “We have found the Messiah!”. 42 He brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him, and said, “You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas” [which is by interpretation, Peter].

Jesus Calls Philip and Nathanael

43 The next day, he was determined to go out into Galilee, and he found Philip. Jesus said to him, “Follow me.” 44 Now Philip was from Bethsaida, of the city of Andrew and Peter. 45 Philip found Nathanael, and said to him, “We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, wrote: Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”

46 Nathanael said to him, “Can any good thing come from Nazareth?”
Philip said to him, “Come and see.”

47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and said about him, “Look, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no deceit!”

48 Nathanael said to him, “How do you know me?”
Jesus answered him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.”

49 Nathanael answered him, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are King of Israel!”

50 Jesus answered him, “Because I told you, ‘I saw you underneath the fig tree,’ do you believe? You will see greater things than these!” 51 He said to him, “Most certainly, I tell you all, hereafter you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

Psalm 102

A Prayer of the afflicted, when he is overwhelmed and pours out his complaint before God.

1 Hear my prayer, O Lord!
Let my cry come to you.
2 Do not hide your face from me in the day of my distress.
Turn your ear to me.
Answer me quickly in the day when I call.
3 For my days consume away like smoke.
My bones are burned like a torch.
4 My heart is blighted like grass, and withered,
for I forget to eat my bread.
5 Because of the sound of my groaning,
my bones stick to my skin.
6 I am like a wild bird in the wilderness,
like an owl among the ruins.
7 I watch, and have become like a sparrow that is alone on the housetop.

8 My enemies reproach me all day.
Those who are mad at me use my name as a curse.
9 For I have eaten ashes like bread,
and mixed my drink with tears,
10 because of your indignation and your wrath;
for you have taken me up and thrown me away.
11 My days are like a long shadow.
I have withered like grass.

12 But you, O Lord, will remain forever;
your renown endures to all generations.
13 You will arise and have mercy on Zion;
for it is time to have pity on her.
Yes, the set time has come.
14 For your servants take pleasure in her stones,
and have pity on her dust.
15 So the nations will fear name of the Lord,
all the kings of the earth your glory.
16 For the Lord has built up Zion.
He has appeared in his glory.
17 He has responded to the prayer of the destitute,
and has not despised their prayer.
18 This will be written for the generation to come.
A people which will be created will praise God.
19 For he has looked down from the height of his sanctuary.
From heaven, the Lord saw the earth;
20 to hear the groans of the prisoner;
to free those who are condemned to death;
21 that men may declare the name of the Lord in Zion,
and his praise in Jerusalem;
22 when the peoples are gathered together,
the kingdoms, to serve the Lord.

23 He weakened my strength along the course.
He shortened my days.
24 I said, “My God, do not take me away in the middle of my days.
Your years are throughout all generations.
25 Of old, you laid the foundation of the earth.
The heavens are the work of your hands.
26 They will perish, but you will endure.
Yes, all of them will wear out like a garment.
You will change them like a cloak, and they will be changed.
27 But you are the same.
Your years will have no end.
28 The children of your servants will continue.
Their offspring will be established before you.”

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