How can you say “I love you?”

Posted on · Posted in Culture, Discipline, Teenagers, Wisdom

She pouted, “How can you say, ‘I love you,’ when you don’t share your secrets with me? You’ve made fun of me three times, and you still haven’t told me what I want to know! You even lied to me!”  She was so frustrated she tormented him with her nagging until he was sick to death of it.

One the face of it, this sounds like the man in the scenario is at least partially to blame for being insensitive to his girlfriend. Yes, she was wrong to nag him, but it was obvious she thought he drove her to it. After all he was making fun of her and lying, and who likes that! The young woman evokes a sympathetic chord.

That would be one way to look at this short scenario. But this also illustrates the danger of listening to just one point of view. However, hang on, the plot gets thicker!

As we dig deeper we learn that the young woman was not as “put upon” as it first appeared. She actually intended to make a large amount of money at her boyfriend’s expense with the information she was so intent on extracting from him. Now, she becomes less sympathetic to our eyes. The pouting and challenging his love for her are less convincing once we a get peek at her true motives.

Now for the third layer of new data. Her boyfriend actually knew that the reason she wanted his secrets was so that she could betray him! He continued to stay with her because she brought him pleasure. If your were starting to feel some compassion for the boyfriend – that just vanished. What was he thinking! He was being as stupid and selfish as she was being deceptive.

Obviously, this is a story about two people who cared only about themselves. And, just as obviously, their names are Delilah and Samson. Delilah was a Philistine and had no intention of honoring Israel’s God. But Samson knew that what he was doing was wrong before God, yet all he cared about was what his flesh wanted.

Samson relied on his great strength to protect him. But he had forgotten that God gave him that strength. Samson turned from God thinking he could do as he pleased. He loved sin rather than loving his God. It is easy for us to look back at Samson now and observe how foolish and stupid his actions were. But when anyone looses sight of honoring God they become as obviously stupid as Samson.

There are two important take-aways from this story. The first one is to look beyond how things first appear. The second one is that no matter how smart you think you are, no matter how strong you think you are, no matter how much you think you want something, no matter how right you think you are, there is one inescapable reality:

Sin makes you stupid!

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Jay Younts
John A. (Jay) Younts is the Shepherd Press blogger, and is a ruling elder serving at Redeemer Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church in Moore, South Carolina. He has written Everyday Talk, Everyday Talk About Sex & Marriage, Finding the Right Track, the In Touch With Paul stewardship series, and What About War. He has studied and taught about biblical childrearing for 30 years. He and his late wife Ruth have five adult children.