(Judg. 14:4) Did God honor Samson’s marriage to this Philistine girl?

CLAIM: The Bible teaches that believers should not marry non-believers (Ex. 34:11-16; Deut. 7:1-4). However, this passage states that Samson’s marriage “was of the Lord” (Judg. 14:4). How can this be the case?

RESPONSE: Samson was too wrapped up in himself to care about God’s purposes. Therefore, God used Samson’s lust to accomplish his purpose. In the same way, Pontius Pilate was a cruel dictator, who ordered Jesus to be tortured and killed. But, God used this for his purpose (Acts 2:23; 4:27-28). Kaiser notes, “Scriptural language frequently attributes directly to God what he merely permits.”[1] God wasn’t approving of the marriage. Instead, he was redeeming a bad situation to liberate the Jews from the Philistines.

[1] Kaiser, Walter C. More Hard Sayings of the Old Testament. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity, 1992. 132.