David: the secret king; the shepherd; the musician; the armor bearer; the errand runner; the kid brother. He’s infuriated at the insults the giant Philistine Goliath is hurling at the Israelite army. But when he demands, “Who is this pagan Philistine… that he is allowed to defy the armies of the living God?” (I Samuel 17:26b), his oldest brother, Eliab, tells him to quit running his mouth and showing off and go back to “those few sheep you’re supposed to be taking care of’” (I Samuel 17:28a).
Yet that’s not what David does. If you continue reading in First Samuel 17, you’ll see that David had to all but beg Saul to allow him to fight Goliath, but he finally got his permission. Saul even gave him his own suit of armor and sword. But David wasn’t accustomed to all that gear, so he discarded it and instead “picked up five smooth stones from a stream and put them into his shepherd’s bag. Then, armed only with his shepherd’s staff and sling, he started across the valley to fight the Philistine” (I Samuel 17:40).
Goliath was insulted and infuriated that the Israelite army would send a kid to fight against him. How did David respond to his insults? “You come to me with sword, spear, and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies – the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied” (I Samuel 17:45).
And with that, David “hurled (a stone) with his sling and hit the Philistine in the forehead. The stone sank in, and Goliath stumbled and fell face down on the ground. Then David ran over and pulled Goliath’s sword from its sheath. David used it to kill him and cut off his head” (I Samuel 17:49b, 51).
Little David won the victory over the giant because God was on his side. What giants are you facing? Whatever or whoever they are, your God is bigger and can lead you to victory.
Copyright © 2012
Judy Woodward Bates