16 Samson went to Gaza,(A) where he saw a prostitute and went to bed with her. 2 When the Gazites heard that Samson was there, they surrounded the place and waited in ambush for him all that night at the city gate. They kept quiet all night, saying, “Let’s wait until dawn; then we will kill him.” 3 But Samson stayed in bed only until midnight. Then he got up, took hold of the doors of the city gate along with the two gateposts, and pulled them out, bar and all. He put them on his shoulders and took them to the top of the mountain overlooking Hebron.
4 Some time later, he fell in love with a woman named Delilah, who lived in the Sorek Valley. 5 The Philistine leaders(B) went to her and said, “Persuade him to tell you[a] where his great strength comes from, so we can overpower him, tie him up, and make him helpless. Each of us will then give you 1,100 pieces of silver.”
6 So Delilah said to Samson, “Please tell me, where does your great strength come from? How could someone tie you up and make you helpless?”
7 Samson told her, “If they tie me up with seven fresh bowstrings that have not been dried, I will become weak and be like any other man.”
8 The Philistine leaders brought her seven fresh bowstrings that had not been dried, and she tied him up with them. 9 While the men in ambush were waiting in her room, she called out to him, “Samson, the Philistines are here!” [b] But he snapped the bowstrings as a strand of yarn snaps when it touches fire. The secret of his strength remained unknown.Read full chapter
13 The Israelites again did what was evil in the Lord’s sight,(A) so the Lord handed them over to the Philistines forty years. 2 There was a certain man from Zorah,(B) from the family of Dan, whose name was Manoah; his wife was unable to conceive and had no children. 3 The angel of the Lord appeared to the woman and said to her, “Although you are unable to conceive and have no children, you will conceive and give birth to a son. 4 Now please be careful not to drink wine or beer,(C) or to eat anything unclean;(D) 5 for indeed, you will conceive and give birth to a son. You must never cut his hair,[a] because the boy will be a Nazirite(E) to God from birth, and he will begin to save Israel from the power of the Philistines.”
6 Then the woman went and told her husband, “A man of God came to me. He looked like the awe-inspiring angel of God. I didn’t ask him where he came from, and he didn’t tell me his name. 7 He said to me, ‘You will conceive and give birth to a son. Therefore, do not drink wine or beer, and do not eat anything unclean, because the boy will be a Nazirite to God from birth until the day of his death.’”Read full chapter