Samson And Delilah As Seen in Cartoon – Or a Parable on the Wages of Lust and Power

052314The video below is a dramatization (sort of) of the story of Samson and Delilah as well as a commentary on lust and power. In case you would like to review the story of Samson and Delilah, CLICK HERE.

As the video opens, two superheroes are summoned to an emergency. They rush to the scene, but in a reckless fashion, and a great crash occurs. And here is a symbol for pride, for too often we rush headlong into solving problems, but often with little concern for other problems we may create in the process. For example, our quest to “end poverty in our time” has resulted more in the demise of the family; our quest to liberate the world from tyranny (through violence, drone strikes, and war) has led more often to inciting even more violence, and to the rise of new villainies.

After the crash, the superheroes seek to blame each other for the accident. And here is an image for our tendency to shift blame and avoid personal responsibility. We speak endlessly of our rights and the freedom to do as we please, but we want none of the responsibility. And of course any consequences are someone else’s fault.

There then ensues a great conflict between them to wrest control of the situation. And here is an image for power and the desire to overpower others. It merely serves to usher in a brutal and deadly struggle—one in which ultimately no one can win. Rather, all suffer devastating loss. Even victory is brief before the cycle of violence repeats.

Our male superhero, let’s call him Samson, seems to have the upper hand in the conflict. But the female superhero, let’s call her Delilah, is not to be undone and seeks to overcome Samson through her charms. And here is lust. For Samson, whatever his strengths, has a fatal flaw that destroys many men—lust. And as a result of it, many men (and women) and have ruined their lives. They’ve brought on poverty, STDs, abortion, teenage pregnancy, shattered dreams, broken families, and broken hearts.

The end of both of these superheroes is death and destruction. For pride, irresponsibility, unrestrained power, and lust unleash only devastation, destruction, and death—both individually and collectively.

In the biblical story, though Delilah “won,” it was only for a moment. And so it is with every worldly victory; it is temporary at best. Only heavenly victory and treasure stored up there will prevail. The wages of sin is death (Rom 6:23).

19 Replies to “Samson And Delilah As Seen in Cartoon – Or a Parable on the Wages of Lust and Power”

  1. Right, worldly victories are temporary at best. So, why are we working so hard here in the world in order to be happy in the world when we know that it is heaven where we can be happier?

    On that note, where is Heaven, how do the disembodied souls thrive there, what do the souls do there, and compare / contrast that doing to the doing that we do here. If there is a huge gap between the doing there and the doing here, why are we not taught to do the doing as if we were in Heaven?

    1. In my experience the less that you work to be happy in this world and, instead, you focus on generosity and sharing, namely, the love of neighbour ideal, the happier you actually are. Like heaven on earth. Therefore the concept of heaven (the now) and hell (previous experience of selfishness) start to make full sense in this very world.

      1. But still, are laity considered to belong to the “world”? That’s not right, is it? Why should laity belong to the “world” while trying to be a disciple of Christ? Does that make sense?

    2. Heaven is with God and He is everywhere. Souls don’t thrive, they are everlasting. What they do there is wait for the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. They rest in the eternal peace of the perpetual light of the Holy Trinity in contrast to what goes on here where the Light shines among the darkness and the darkness comprehends it not because one is in denial and blinded by the temptations of sin. There is a huge gap between the doing here and being there because doing here is either learning to following the teachings of Christ in the commandments to do God’s will and be in Him or else you do the will of the devil by turning away from your mission to be with God and pursue worldly temporal pleasures. Contrary to what you may think, we are taught to do God’s will through the teachings of the Catholic Church. So stop working so hard to be happy in the world, it is a false premise. Start working to find the Light among the darkness and be at peace in the glory of God.

  2. A timely post in light of the tragedy in California today, which, if the early reports are correct, was driven by lust, power-seeking, and pride.

  3. To me it looked like they both acknowledged that she was at fault, which is why she was trying to manipulate him into giving her the “proof.” So I have a different take. I think it shows that women are mercenary and men are buffoons who idealize women. He wasn’t really lusting–his fantasy was all about romance, family and commitment. He thought highly of her, despite that she had wrecked his car, but it wasn’t reciprocated. He was a “loser” for idealizing her and wanting to give her commitment with starry eyes which made him easy to manipulate. The last scene, her getting blown up, was a non-sequitur. They added that in to make it emotionally satisfying even though it doesn’t make sense.

    1. The stereotype of men and women in the cartoon is just that. It would have been as possible the other way around. As women also idealise men easily, the idea is that all the Power and the Glory is due to God. Any displacement of this truth can only bring trouble sooner or later.

      1. No way that cartoon works with the roles reversed.

        Chesterton wrote: “Women are the only realists. Their whole object in life is to pit their realism against the extravagant, excessive, occasionally drunken idealism of men.” That’s the nice way of looking at the dynamic. The cartoon looks at it in a not-so-nice way. But the stereotypes are true.

        1. As a women I can tell you that it is not true. Men also try to charm us women, and they sadly succeed when they do so through malice. Not when you understand your faith fully, mind. But the point is that both genders are at risk of the same weaknesses.

          1. Yeah it is. It’s true in general. That’s the best you can expect from stereotypes. A cartoon with a man crashing into a woman, then manipulating her into giving him the evidence, then killing her and saying “stupid girl” or something as he drives away would not be funny. The reason this cartoon is funny is that the stereotypes are true.

    2. Patrick: the final scene is only a non-sequitur if your whole anti-woman interpretation is correct. But it makes sense to me… even though I saw the characters pretty much as you did.

      I agree that they both knew she was at fault, and that she used her feminine wiles to steal the evidence. He fell for it, because that is a weak area for most men. Of course! Otherwise, she’d have used some other tactic. That his fantasies all looked like romance and family and commitment could be simply because of the intended audience: keeping it G-rated. I doubt many men think of wedding rings when a pretty girl is coming on strong like that!

      That her planted kiss would be his undoing is perfect! That he got the last laugh is justice. They both started out with pride and irresponsibility, so they both ended up in the same place.

      1. There’s no way to give it anything other than an anti-woman/victimized man interpretation. He had apparently been treated unjustly in the past, which is why he’s muttering about, “not this time” and “this time I have proof.” So all he really wants from the start is justice and then (just going by the g-rated version since that’s what we’re given) he later wants love and commitment. But when you think about it, her plan from the moment she puts her lipstick on is not only to escape responsibility, but to murder him. “Not this time” indeed! Poor fool.

        I meant it’s a non-sequitur dramatically. We aren’t given any reason the phone should explode. We can guess that maybe he had a remote detonation device or supply our own reason such as divine justice. I think it’s there just for emotional release because we know in our hearts the buffoon got snookered, again, and in reality, she walks away scot free.

  4. We ARE taught to do the doing as if we were in Heaven: follow the commandments and the preceipts of the church, as best as you can, the church, instituted by Jesus, full of saints and sinners, will lead you to trust in Jesus Christ and that means leaving the old worldly ways and follow in Jesus’ foot steps (teachings) Love him, in your heart, mind and thoughts….look to the life of the saints, embrace the spiritual treasures of the church……
    you have to walk the way and you will find HIM.

    1. Eleonore, you stated what I was getting at: “and that means leaving the old worldly ways and follow in Jesus’ foot steps (teachings).” We know what that means for those who become priests and religious. But what does that mean for people who just get married and have families and jobs or who stay single and just have jobs but don’t break commandments? Who is doing the doing of Heaven more: the priests and religious or everyone else who is doing everything that those in the “world” do except for sinning mortally?

      1. Who is doing the doing of Heaven more; the priests and religious or everyone else who is doing everything that those in the “world” do except for sinning mortally?- We all break commandments including priest and the religious, that is why we participate in the sacrament of confession “repentance” regularly. No one is doing the doing of heaven but God on earth as it is in Heaven. we are merely walking in His grace and that cannot be rated by anyone but God. It is through participating in the sacraments, following the teachings of the Church and God’s commandments that earn the right to be children of God and share in the everlasting life in Heaven whether you choose the sacrament of matrimony, holy orders or remain single as laity. The Pope has said he is no more special in the eyes of God than you. We are one body in Christ. Believe it, trust it, and put your faith in the love of God and your ability to attain it. It’s not a competition it’s our calling. Answer.

        1. Thank you Robertlifelongcatholic. That is a very comforting way to put it.

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