David and Goliath
20 Early in the morning David left the flock in the care of a shepherd, loaded up and set out, as Jesse had directed. He reached the camp as the army was going out to its battle positions, shouting the war cry. 21 Israel and the Philistines were drawing up their lines facing each other. 22 David left his things with the keeper of supplies, ran to the battle lines and asked his brothers how they were. 23 As he was talking with them, Goliath, the Philistine champion from Gath, stepped out from his lines and shouted his usual defiance, and David heard it. 24 Whenever the Israelites saw the man, they all fled from him in great fear. 25 Now the Israelites had been saying, “Do you see how this man keeps coming out? He comes out to defy Israel. The king will give great wealth to the man who kills him. He will also give him his daughter in marriage and will exempt his family from taxes in Israel.” 26 David asked the men standing near him, “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and removes this disgrace from Israel? Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?” 27 They repeated to him what they had been saying and told him, “This is what will be done for the man who kills him.” 28 When Eliab, David’s oldest brother, heard him speaking with the men, he burned with anger at him and asked, “Why have you come down here? And with whom did you leave those few sheep in the wilderness? I know how conceited you are and how wicked your heart is; you came down only to watch the battle.” 29 “Now what have I done?” said David. “Can’t I even speak?” 30 He then turned away to someone else and brought up the same matter, and the men answered him as before. 31 What David said was overheard and reported to Saul, and Saul sent for him. 32 David said to Saul, “Let no one lose heart on account of this Philistine; your servant will go and fight him.” 33 Saul replied, “You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a young man, and he has been a warrior from his youth.” 34 But David said to Saul, “Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, 35 I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. 36 Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. 37 The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine.” Saul said to David, “Go, and the Lord be with you.” 38 Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. 39 David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them. “I cannot go in these,” he said to Saul, “because I am not used to them.” So he took them off. 40 Then he took his staff in his hand, chose five smooth stones from the stream, put them in the pouch of his shepherd’s bag and, with his sling in his hand, approached the Philistine. 41 Meanwhile, the Philistine, with his shield bearer in front of him, kept coming closer to David. 42 He looked David over and saw that he was little more than a boy, glowing with health and handsome, and he despised him. 43 He said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come at me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. 44 “Come here,” he said, “and I’ll give your flesh to the birds and the wild animals!” 45 David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day the Lord will deliver you into my hands, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. 47 All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.” 48 As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him. 49 Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell facedown on the ground. 50 So David triumphed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone; without a sword in his hand he struck down the Philistine and killed him. (1 Samuel 17:20-50)
Today we continue our pursuit of principles from the David & Goliath story that we can use to overcome challenges. Yesterday, we focussed on information and opposition. Today we focus on perspective and confidence. The entire army of Israel faced the same giant but David appeared to have a different perspective on the problem. Please prayerfully read and reflect on the passage and answer the questions below and remember, the group benefits when you share your comments. Thank you very much to all who have been sharing comments!
- Having garnered some information on the challenge, David provides a perspective on the problem in verse 26. How did his perspective impact his approach to Goliath?
- David’s perspective translated into a high level of confidence as captured in verses 32 – 37. What was the source of his confidence?
- What principles do you derive from David’s perspective and confidence that are applicable to challenges you face?
March 7, 2017 at 6:55 am
David approached Goliath from the perspective that God was in charge in the battle, not David himself. David had confidence in God Almighty, not in himself. We as God’s children, should apply this principle when ‘battles’ come up in our lives.
March 7, 2017 at 7:49 am
When we face a daunting or what seems to be an impossible task, David illustrates that our strength, courage and confidence is provided by God. God’s protection has been and will always be with those who believe in Him.
March 7, 2017 at 9:55 am
God Almighty is the Supreme Husbandman and he prepared David steadfastly for this very moment. He did this partly by giving victories into David’s hand in killing bears and lions probably with the very same device or similar basic tool – a slingshot. By the time David faced this particular challenge he had these victories under his belt and KNEW he could take Goliath down as easily as he did with the lion and bear – predator creatures of enormous strength and ferociousness.
By virtue of his great faith, it is clear David a very close walk with GOD and by the time he faced Goliath – a very experiential one as well. Experiences he could look back and draw upon in the moment of decision. This afforded him a perspective that was far removed from his countrymen, including the King who was (also) God’s anointed.
This helps me see clearly that the point of practicing the Disciplines is to help Christians have a closer walk with God to enable a life of peace, prosperity and success even in the midst of trials that are sure to come.
March 7, 2017 at 10:51 am
Very good – the trials David faced in the past were God’s provision of preparation for the future!
March 7, 2017 at 10:48 am
I love David’s perspective, or more precisely, God’s truths as he displays…
David saw Goliath as opposition to God not merely as opposition to Israel. As someone commented yesterday, the Israelites saw Goliath as opposing themselves, defying Israel, while David saw him defying or opposing the armies of the living God! The Israelites forgot the source of their strength while David focused on it!
The source of David’s confidence was his personal experience, but not merely experience of battle, or even of battle against the odds. No!, his confidence-inspiring experience was that of trusting God in battle against the odds and experiencing God’s faithfulness! He had first-hand experience of God working through him and giving him otherwise unlikely victories as he trusted and obeyed. He was experienced with the armour of God(!) so this was merely one more battle.
The battle is won before it begins! – oh that I (indeed we) may remember that truth and be spurred on by it in the daily, so that when the momentous comes, it may be just another day!
March 7, 2017 at 10:55 am
March 7, 2017 at 11:48 am
3. For David, it would have been easy for him to state his confidence as an extension of his self due to his past achievements (ex. I was able to conquer a bear and lion; therefore, I can conquer Goliath.) However, this is not what David does. His confidence lies in the Lord, which means that whatever he achieves is not of his own doing or strength, but of someone much stronger and capable. A lot of the times when facing challenges, I give myself pep talks that include “having more confidence in myself.” But why place the foundation of my confidence in myself, when I can place it in a God whose abilities far surpass my own? This passage is a great reminder to double-check whether you’re trying to rely on your own strengths alone, or whether you’re able to entrust the battle to someone much stronger.
March 7, 2017 at 3:55 pm
Thanks for the reminder.
March 7, 2017 at 8:18 pm
Wow – I am truly inspired by commentary today!
David’s ability to see the challenge of Goliath through spiritual eyes is certainly a lesson I want to apply with consistency. If I can only see my challenges the way God wants me to see them, then I will have useful knowledge.
I am convicted by the fact that I often forget God’s historical acts of power in my life when faced with a challenge. In contrast, David not only remembers but he translates the memories into extreme confidence.