The Clarion That Calls

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As Samson was grinding at the mill, a messenger of Jahveh visited him, saying, "Samson, you are in misery: rise up and free yourself!" But Samson answered, "The toil is hard; and, when it is finished, I have no strength left," and turned again to his task. The messenger said again, "Jahveh will deliver Philistia into your hands." And Samson said, "What is that to me, for I am blind?" Yet he raised his sightless eyes. Then he bent again to toil.

The messenger was cast down. Nevertheless, he returned, and said, "You are strong yet your own sons live in slavery." Samson answered, "Were my labours lightened then might I deliver them." And, as he spoke, he stretched his arms.

The messenger said to himself, "Surely, have been sent in vain." Howsoever, he turned once more, and cried, "The children of Israel sigh by reason of the bondage rise up, and you shall deliver them." Samson answered, saying, "But the Philistines will slay me." And the messenger answered, "So will it be, Samson: your brethren need your death." And Samson said, "To-morrow they make sport of me, and to-morrow God will deliver his people by my hand."

For his soul had learned to see that death is not better than life: that, having given his life for love, a man may not withhold his death.