Take a moment for this difficult Super Bowl-like Bible quiz of 32 questions. Who in the Bible do you know of whom these things can be said?
1. His birth is announced ahead of time by an angel.
2. This child’s mother hears the angel say that she will become pregnant and give birth to a son.
3. His father was not there at that angelic announcement.
4. This child’s mother, after the angel speaks to her privately, relays what was said to her husband.
5. The Bible records, “The woman gave birth to a son and named him _______.”
6. This child is consecrated from birth to deliver his people.
7. The Spirit of the Lord was upon him.
8. He kept the company of Prostitutes.
9. He spoke in parables.
10. He miraculously escapes death by getting away from crowds who want to kill him.
11. A donkey plays a key role at one point in his life while he is surrounded by thousands of people.
12. He picks a “bride” unworthy of his love.
13. He is betrayed by someone very close.
14. He is betrayed for pieces of silver
15. Rulers pay off his betrayer.
16. Despite having supernatural power, he is bound and handed over to his enemies.
17. He is then tortured.
18. He is blindfolded/blinded before his death.
19. He is publicly mocked, jeered by the crowds before he dies.
20. He carries something heavy on his shoulders to the top of a hill.
21. At a critical point in his life he tells God that he is thirsty.
22. He dies willingly.
23. He chooses the exact timing of his own death.
24. He dies a virgin.
25. He dies with something on his right and on his left.
26. He was a Nazarite.
27. He launched his ministry at a wedding feast.
28. He provided the wine at that wedding.
29. He had unconditional love for people who did not deserve it.
30. He is called, “Light.”
31. He accomplished a greater victory in his death than he did in his life.
32. Because many people hated him, some of those he loved were persecuted and put to death.
So, who is this person? The answer is Jesus.
The answer is also — Samson. Unlike the trend today that sees Samson in a negative light, the past is full of saints who saw him in a positive one. A short list of those luminaries includes Martin Luther; John Calvin (the great French theologian and pastor in the Protestant Reformation of the 1500’s); Jonathan Edwards (the great preacher of the 18th century); John Milton (author of Samson Agonistes); and Charles Spurgeon. And, add to that early list the author of Hebrews who wrote of Samson that the world was not worthy of him (v. 38, c.f. v. 32).
God gave Hebrew Testament prefigurements of Jesus, foreshadowings, visual aids, human signposts that pointed straight to Jesus. They were part of how God prepared his people for his arrival.
So how about reviewing Samson’s record and seeing him one of the greatest bible-quarterbacks to have ever lived. Replay his game tapes for yourself. Check the footage from Judges, the Gospels, and Hebrews. From the right angles, you too may see that Samson threw perfect passes of the image of Jesus. Have you caught any of them — or are you like most modern receivers who have fumbled Samson’s every throw?
You can always improve. Now that’s something to celebrate!