While Samson was on his way to a Philistine city to visit a Philistine woman, he was attacked by a lion. God gave him the strength to easily kill the lion with his bare hands. Later, when he was on his way to the Philistine city again to marry the Philistine woman, he found that some bees had made a nest in the lion’s body. He took some honey out of the dead lion and shared it with his parents. But he didn’t tell anyone where the honey came from.
Samson challenged 30 Philistine men to try to solve a riddle by the end of his week-long wedding feast. They agreed that the losing party would have to give the winning party 30 sets of clothes. So Samson told them a “riddle” that they couldn’t possibly make sense of without knowing about the lion incident that no one but Samson knew about.
The Philistine men realized that Samson was unfairly trying to take their property. So they threatened to burn down his new wife’s house unless she told them the answer to the riddle. Samson’s wife cried constantly for the rest of the week until Samson gave her the answer. Then she told the answer to the men, and the men gave the answer back to Samson.
Samson knew those 30 Philistine men must have cheated, since there was no other way they could have possibly solved his “riddle”. But he gave them the promised 30 sets of clothes… which he got by killing 30 other Philistine men.
As revenge, Samson burned up the Philistines’ crops. As revenge, the Philistines burned up Samson’s ex-wife and her father. As revenge, Samson murdered a bunch of Philistines. As revenge, the Philistines got some Israelites to tie up Samson and bring him to them so they could imprison him. As revenge, Samson broke out of the ropes and killed another thousand Philistines with a donkey jawbone. As revenge, the Philistines tried to kill him, but he got away.
The moral of the story
Don’t play risky games with people you’re not sure will play fairly.