I’m thinking about the close link between the story of Samson in Judges 13 and John the Baptist in Luke 1.  There are so many similarities that one suspects we are meant to see the similarities.  Indeed, it’s as if John the Baptist is Samson but as Samson should have been.  

     Notice the parallels between the story of John the Baptist and Samson: 
  1. Manoah’s wife was barren.  Elizabeth was barren.
  2. An angel announces Samson’s imminent arrival.  An angel announces John’s imminent arrival.
  3. The angel tells Manoah’s wife that Samson must be a Nazirite from birth.  The angel tells Zechariah that John should not drink any wine or strong drink.
  4. Samson’s mission was to be God’s instrument of judgment against the Philistines. John’s mission was: Luke 1:16-17 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”
  5. Samson was not faithful to The Lord.  For this he paid a terrible price, but at the last accomplished God’s purpose for his life.  John the Baptist was faithful to The Lord and prepared the way for the Messiah.
  6. Samson died because of his mission.  John the Baptist died because of his mission.

     Samson was the type, John the Baptist was the fulfillment of the type.   Samson was a picture of man trying to do God’s will but in his own strength (literally).  John the Baptist was man given over to obedience to God, working in the strength that God provided.  

     Be like John, not Samson.