The Enemy Within 6.
He woke up suddenly and looked around him. He had a bad headache and seemed to be suspended between two worlds. He felt completely lost. Two candles were almost burnt out in the holders.
A woman lay beside him. Her hair covered the pillow. She moaned softly and rolled over. He looked closely at her. It was Suki.
He dragged himself out of bed and stumbled into the bathroom. Alcohol did more to distabilise him than a thousand Philistine soldiers. He entered the bathroom and poured some water on his head. The water ran down his locks, his back and dripped on the floor.
“Who’s there?” Suki asked from the bedroom.
“Go back to sleep,” Samson murmured.
There was some ruffling of sheets and seconds later she went back to sleep.
Samson sat on a chair. The window beside him was open and the darkness crept in, making the candles struggle to brighten the room.
It was like the state of his soul: open, vulnerable and dark.
He shook his head to clear it but the effects of the alcohol clung to him, like a blood thirsty vermin, refusing to release his mind to think clearly.
Even if he succeeded in clearing his head, could he clear the turmoil going on in his soul? Could he regain the peace that once reigned in his soul? How did he get to where was, in the house of Suki, a prostitute? He had given his life to the cause of freeing his people from Phillistine oppression. He had served his people whole heartedly. But what happened to his relationship with the God of Israel? While he was busy winning battles with the Phillistines, he was losing the battle in his own soul. He had slowly slipped away from the path that was set for him by the angel before he was born. He had deviated from obedience to the strict Nazarine discipline he grew up with. The angel had warned his parents that strict observance of the Nazarine vow was of the utmost importance for him to maintain his power. He thought it was of no real importance, but the events of his life had shown otherwise. He had broken the Nazarene vow, defiled his calling and what was left was an emptiness in his soul which his love for pleasures couldn’t satisfy.
Jahula, his Ethiopian friend had asked him to repent, give up his pursuit of unrestrained pleasure and follow The Lord whole heartedly. He had been too proud to acknowledge his sin and repent. Here he was in the house of a prostitute. His lust was dragging him into a deep pit.
Suki woke up, got out of bed, came behind the chair and put her arms around him.
“Why don’t you sleep?” she asked.
How could he sleep when his soul was tormented by his moral failure?
“I have slept enough,” he answered her.
“Will you be attending Delilah’s party later today?”
He was silent and thought about it.
“That’s good. The party is in your honour.”
Samson noticed some movement outside the window. He suspected that there were men laying in wait for him. Jahula had warned him but he was obstinate. He would never run away from a band of Philistines.
“Suki, please go back to bed. I must leave before dawn.”
“It is just past midnight. Please stay with me until dawn,” she pleaded with him.
“No. I must leave now,” he insisted.
The enemy would be expecting him to leave at dawn and attack him as he left the city. But if he left now, he could use the cover of darkness to fight his way out of the city.
“How will you leave? By now the city gate is closed,” Suki was worried for him.
“I will find a way,” he tried to sound confident but some doubt pulled at his heart.
It occurred to him that if he hadn’t come to see Suki, he wouldn’t have put himself in this present predicament. Jahula was right. He had lost his path and needed help and healing for his soul. He doused his face again with some cold water and put on a black cloak.
Suki embraced him and put her head on his chest.
“I must leave now,” he broke away from her embrace and headed for the door.
“Samson, please come back to me,” Suki said.
He stopped but didn’t turn around.
“Be careful,” she whispered.
He didn’t answer her.
He didn’t say goodbye.
He opened the door, walked out and the darkness embraced him.
“Who goes there?” a gruff voice asked, hidden in the darkness.
Samson didn’t answer.
“Stop! I say stop!”
Samson ignored him and kept on walking.
Suddenly a dozen men materialised out of the darkness, holding torches and carrying deadly weapons. Samson slowly removed the hood from his head and faced them.
“Kill him!”someone shouted and a fight began.
More men appeared and fought him. They fell before him.
He fought his way until he reached the city gate. The doors were shut and locked with chains.
He was trapped!
Behind him were hordes of Philistines coming for him and before him stood the impregnable city gate. He would surely die in Gaza unless….
When the Philistines woke up the next day, they found the city gate was gone! The chains lay useless on the ground.
Samson had escaped from their hands again.
The rulers of the city of Gaza gathered around the chains which lay broken and impotent on the ground.
“We were this close to capturing him last night,” said a fat man who kicked the chains in anger.
“Does Delilah know what she’s doing?” a war-lord asked.
“She does,” the king of Gaza said with certainty. “Samson will not be the first man she has brought down to his knees and destroyed,” he said.
“And he won’t be the last,” said a prince and they all laughed.
“He is in love with her. His misplaced love will destroy him,” an ugly war-lord said.
“Delilah must not fail us,” the king said and walked away with his bodyguards.