David & Goliath
According to God's Word Series
Read time: 5 Minutes
Consider David and Goliath. In I Samuel 17 we learn of the formidable giant Goliath threatening Israel. The whole army of Israel fled from him and was sore afraid. David's oldest brothers were serving in the army against the Philistines at the time and Jesse, their father, sent David with food and a request to find out how the war was progressing and to ask about David's three brothers. When David heard of Goliath he was not intimidated but declared the power of God. When King Saul heard of David's stand he sent for him. David is the youngest of Jesse's sons, a youth, 16-17 years old (according to E.W Bullinger), reddish skin, lighter compared to the darker Israelites and fair, not a burly warrior, but a shepherd. When Saul met him he didn't believe that David would be able to fight Goliath. But David's answer was God's answer, he declared the power of God.
I Samuel 17
:37 David said moreover,
The LORD that delivered me out to the paw of the lion,
and out of the paw of the bear,
he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine.
And Saul said unto David,
Go, and the LORD be with thee.
Saul tried to get David to wear armor and trust in his physical ability to defeat the enemy but David knew it wasn't going to be by his strength but by the power of God.
Goliath is physically a very imposing foe. His height is six cubits and a span, 6 and 1/2 times the length of a man's arm from elbow to fingertip. Men at this time were only about 5-5 1/2 feet tall. I have seen estimates that Goliath was from 8 to 11 1/2 feet tall. He had a brass helmet on his head and the coat of mail weighed about 125 pounds. His spear was like a weaver's beam and the head of it weighed 15-21 pounds. His legs were covered and he had an armor bearer that went before him with a full body shield. How would any one person be able to defeat this giant? Do you have any giants (figuratively) in your life?
I Samuel 17
:42 And when the Philistine looked about, and saw David,
he disdained him: for he was but a youth, and ruddy,
and of a fair countenance.
:43 And the Philistine said unto David,
Am I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves?
[we can image his voice thundered across the valley, the armies of Israel were terrified by him]
And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.
[think about it: this cursing would be excessively foul and frightening]
:44 And the Philistine said to David, Come to me,
and I will give thy flesh unto the fowls of the air,
and to the beasts of the field.
:45 Then said David to the Philistine,
Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear,
and with a shield:
but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts,
the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.
:46 This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand;
and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee;
and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines
this day unto the fowls of the air,
and to the wild beasts of the earth;
that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.
:47 And all this assembly shall know
that the LORD saveth not with sword and spear:
for the battle is the LORD’s, and he will give you into our hands.
The curse that the wicked levied against David, God's chosen, was performed on the enemy. God does tell us this often in His Word, especially in Psalms.
:48 And it came to pass, when the Philistine arose,
and came and drew nigh to meet David,
that David hasted, and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine.
:49 And David put his hand in his bag,
and took thence a stone, and slang it,
and smote the Philistine in his forehead,
that the stone sunk into his forehead;
and he fell upon his face to the earth.
:50 So David prevailed over the Philistine
with a sling and with a stone,
and smote the Philistine, and slew him;
but there was no sword in the hand of David.
:51 Therefore David ran,
and stood upon the Philistine and took his sword,
and drew it out of the sheith thereof,
and slew him, and cut off his head therewith.
And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled.
David relied on God's direction and used a stone, a device that is used to get the sheep's attention, to slay the evil assaulting God's children. Does God have your attention now? All that were present knew the significance of this act.
By faith David slew Goliath, not with a weapon, but by believing God and obeying. David obeyed God's direction to sling this stone between the eyes of the giant and God delivered Israel from the Philistines. It was clearly not by David's prowess or strength but by the power of God that the enemy was destroyed. The weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty, spiritual, to the pulling down of strongholds. (II Corinthians 10:3-5)
To God be the Glory.
Related: Orientalisms: The Shepherd