One of our favorite Bible stories as children is the story of David and Goliath from 1 Samuel 17. Children love this story since the hero is a young boy not much older than those hearing the story told in Sunday School class. But the story of David and Goliath is not just for children. It is a fascinating story that never gets old to read.
David Obeyed His Father
The chapter opens as Israel and the Philistines are facing off in battle. David’s older brothers (who were introduced to us in chapter 16) were with the army of Israel while
David was at home tending the sheep. David’s father, Jesse, sent him to the war zone to deliver some food to his brothers and find out news about the war. David quickly arranged for others to take care of the sheep while he took off for the battlefront. This concern to make sure that the work was properly accomplished is a good insight as to who David would become as king—he took care of his responsibilities. Later, when David ignored his responsibilities as king, he got into great trouble (2 Samuel 11).
David’s Righteous Anger
David arrived at the battlefield to find his brothers and the rest of the Israeli army cowering in fear from the taunts of Goliath of Gath. Goliath was the champion of the Philistine army. Though he was about 9 feet tall, he spoke words that angered David. Goliath was claiming the God of the Israelites was not able to help them in battle. Whatever fear David may have had, it was secondary to the righteous indignation he had for the words of the giant. Goliath had blasphemed David’s God and David aimed to stand up for what was right.
David Before Saul
Ignoring the potential danger, David trusted in God to help him fight Goliath. David said that he would fight the giant. He was immediately taken before King Saul. Though he was a young man, he had experienced enough danger in his life to know God was in control and would protect him through the battle. David told Saul as much and Saul offered David the royal armor. Whether David felt unworthy or unwieldy using Saul’s armor, he refused to accept the kind and generous offer. More than likely David simply trusted in the God he knew than in the armor he did not know.
David and Goliath in the Valley
After leaving Saul, David ran towards Goliath prepared to fight. He gathered 5 smooth stones from the river and pocketed 4 of them. The 5th one went into the sling prepared for Goliath. They ran towards one another.
Goliath mocked David and said that he was not afraid of a little boy. David said that the Philistine came with a sword, shield and spear, but David came with confidence in the God of Israel. David boldly replied that he had no fear of Goliath and that the birds would be picking the flesh off his giant body by the end of the day.
David let fly the stone in his sling. The stone hit the giant between the eyes and the stone sunk into his forehead. Goliath fell forward while both armies watched. David then pulled the giant sword from its sheath and chopped off the head of the Philistine champion.
David returned to King Saul with the head of Goliath. In the mean time, the army of the Philistines retreated as quickly as they could. Their champion was dead and they apparently were ill prepared to face the army of God. The Israelites chased the Philistines and won the victory that day. When they returned to the empty Philistine camp they took the treasures they could find.
David trusted more in God than in weapons of war. He knew that his battle was on behalf of the living God of Israel. Interestingly, David fought for God when it was appropriate but he did not try to take the throne from Saul. He let God fight the battles for him. David fought for causes, not personal agenda.
While we don’t fight physical giants today, we do fight spiritual giants and emotional problems. Will you stand for God and allow Him to do battle on your behalf?
Another Article of Interest:
The Holy Bible, King James Version