SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 2 (EGW)

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Chapter 13

2-5. A Lesson to Mothers—Many whom God would use as His instruments have been disqualified at their birth by the previous wrong habits of their parents. When the Lord would raise up Samson as a deliverer of His people, He enjoined upon the mother correct habits of life before the birth of her child.... 2BC 1005.7

In instructing this one mother, the Lord gave a lesson to all who should be mothers to the close of time. Had the wife of Manoah followed the prevailing customs, her system would have been weakened by violation of nature's laws, and her child would have suffered with her the penalty of transgression (Good Health, February 1880). 2BC 1005.8

2-23. Manoah Meets Christ—Manoah and his wife knew not that the One thus addressing them was Jesus Christ. They looked upon Him as the Lord's messenger, but whether a prophet or an angel, they were at a loss to determine. Wishing to manifest hospitality toward their guest, they entreated Him to remain while they should prepare for Him a kid. But in their ignorance of His character, they knew not whether to offer it for a burnt-offering or to place it before Him as food. 2BC 1006.1

The angel answered, “Although thou detain me, I will not eat of thy bread; and if thou wilt offer a burnt-offering, thou must offer it unto the Lord.” Feeling assured, now, that his visitor was a prophet, Manoah said, “What is thy name, that when thy sayings come to pass we may do thee honor?” 2BC 1006.2

The answer was, “Why askest thou after my name, seeing it is secret?” Perceiving the divine character of his guest, Manoah “took a kid, with a meat-offering, and offered it upon a rock unto the Lord; and the angel did wondrously; and Manoah and his wife looked on.” Fire came from the rock, and consumed the sacrifice, and as the flame went up toward heaven, “the angel of the Lord ascended in the flame of the altar. And Manoah and his wife looked on it, and fell on their faces to the ground.” There could be no further question as to the character of their visitor. They knew that they had looked upon the Holy One, who, veiling His glory in the cloudy pillar, had been the Guide and Helper of Israel in the desert. 2BC 1006.3

Amazement, awe, and terror filled Manoah's heart; and he could only exclaim, “We shall surely die, because we have seen God!” But his companion in that solemn hour possessed more faith than he. She reminded him that the Lord had been pleased to accept their sacrifice, and had promised them a son who should begin to deliver Israel. This was an evidence of favor instead of wrath. Had the Lord purposed to destroy them, He would not have wrought this miracle, nor given them a promise which, were they to perish, must fail of fulfillment (The Signs of the Times, September 15, 1881). 2BC 1006.4

5. Simplicity Leads to Readiness in Service—He who will observe simplicity in all his habits, restricting the appetite and controlling the passions, may preserve his mental powers strong, active, and vigorous, quick to perceive everything which demands thought or action, keen to discriminate between the holy and the unholy, and ready to engage in every enterprise for the glory of God and the benefit of humanity (The Signs of the Times, September 29, 1881). 2BC 1006.5