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 perspective and confidence. Today we focus on the instruments of warfare, and motivation. David could dress to impress or dress to win. He chose wisely. How about us? Please prayerfully read and reflect on the passage and answer the questions below and remember, the group benefits when you share your comments.
- In verses 38 – 40 we see that David rejects the expected instruments of war and opts for what he is used to. Why was this important in him overcoming his challenge?
- In verses 46 – 47 David makes some powerful statements about his motivation for taking on his challenge. What was his motivation and how important was this for his victory?
- What principles do you derive from David’s instruments of warfare and his motivation that are applicable to challenges you face?
March 8, 2017 at 6:49 am
David’s rejection of battle attire is important and comforting. There’s comfort in knowing that David won the battle against the enemy of the people of God without anything except God’s protective presence upon him. Now it’s not possible for anyone to say David won because he had protective gear and weapons. His victory can solely be attributed to God.
David wanted to prove to the “whole world” that there was a God in Israel. I would be surprised if anyone who witnessed the event between him and Goliath, walked away with any doubt that Israel most certainly had a God, and that God is a mighty One.
This event and outcome should remind us that whatever situation or battle we face, faith and the whole armor of God is all we need.
March 8, 2017 at 7:42 am
David knew he would stand a better chance of overcoming his enemy in attire, or by means he was accustomed to. Winning by proven methods.
He was fighting to show there was a God in Israel. When you fight for what is right and true you will fight wholeheartedly.
My slingshot and pebble – my knees and His Word. Those are the weapons I have experience and victories with.
March 8, 2017 at 8:12 am
David like a good soldier was preparing for the battle that lay ahead. His preparation started first in prayer and then progressed to the physical. .This enabled him to discern the armor was not the correct fit and he should rely totally on God for guidance. David realized the battle was not his but the living God of the Israel armies. David unashamedly proclaimed to all the enemy and all around to hear, that Goliath was coming not against him but His Almighty God. David was proclaiming to the enemy and all those around, in advance that the victory did not belong to him but to His Almighty God. This is important that we remember to Go d in prayer first and give Him all the praise and glory due to Him in advance, for the Victory He will give to us/
March 8, 2017 at 10:10 am
Though David had not yet tried out his gear in human battle before, he had already successfully used them on ferocious animals in the past.
Sometimes a new battle brings with it new challenges and it may not be wise to use an untried approach.
By equating this enemy (Goliath) with his other successful exploits(lions and bears), he felt obligated to use his old gear that brought him success.
David also identified his past victories as a shepherd boy as coming from the Lord. By identifying this battle as belonging to the Lord, victory was in sight and assured.
March 8, 2017 at 10:49 am
1. The expected instruments of war was not the right fit for David – not only was he new to the art of war and therefore lacked the training and experience to use such gadgets – the tunic, coat of armor and helmet was (tailor) made for Saul not David – so its easy to see why he was uncomfortable in it. This part of the story is very relatable. More importantly GOD used this moment for HIS NAME’s SAKE therefore this victory had to be a miraculous one, not one won through conventional human wisdom.
2. David was used by GOD in the sight of Israel and ‘all those gathered’ to put man’s wisdom in its proper place – subordinate to GOD’s- the LORD does not save by sword or spear i.e. not by man’s own strength but by HIS own discretionary WILL. By these miraculous interventions, people can know there is a GOD. Therefore David, as agent of the Lord motive was to save Israel from its enemies, bring glory to GOD and remind Israel where their Hope lies. He also desired great wealth and to marry the King’s daughter, although this was not his primary motive.
3. There are things that I desire that I am unable to achieve on my own strength though I desire it greatly. Conventional wisdom has failed me because much is outside of my control, the odds are against me lacking a number of things which in conventional terms could bring success. In this regard, I have held unto the promise that those who delight themselves in the Lord, will be given the desires of his heart …(Psalm 37:4)
March 9, 2017 at 7:19 am
David’s rejection of the expected instruments of warfare is a beautiful demonstration of his focused dependence on God. Trusting and depending on God as our source of strength and confidence does include the gifting that He has clearly already given us (David’s skills with the sling in this case) but David would not redirect any of His faith in God towards faith in man (Saul’s advice re his armour) or faith in anything else.
David’s motivation was God’s glory and name. We will never go wrong with such motivation. That is our very purpose!
March 9, 2017 at 9:48 am
Thank you this is very helpful! @ not redirecting his faith in God towards faith in man.