When David asked about the giant, his older brother ridiculed him. “Why did you come down here? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness” (vs. 28)? “Those few sheep.” I can read between the lines. He was saying, “Who do you think you are? You are nothing but a little boy who takes care of sheep, a few sheep at that. And what makes you think you have any right or experience being here?” (I wonder… could it be Eliab’s biggest fear was not his little brother facing Goliath in battle, but rather, fear that he, and the others, would look bad because they lacked the courage to face him themselves?)
This is the voice that often will come from those we love and hold most dear. It’s the voice that ridicules your dreams and asks “Why do you think you have a right to face this giant? Who are you to think you are equipped, able or strong enough to battle this giant? What qualifies you?” I have heard this voice through friends who meant well, but insisted I stop dreaming. I once heard the voice tell me I was an anchor around my husband’s neck. The voice spoke when God placed me in positions within the church others felt I wasn’t qualified for. “Why you? What qualifies you? Who do you think you are?” The voice can speak through others who insist, “you will never change.”
David didn’t allow his brothers’ mockery to stop him from pursuing Goliath. I’ve allowed negative thoughts to convince me I wasn’t able; unlike David, who was persistent enough to eventually grab the King’s attention. When the King doubted whether David was able, David explained who he was, including every way the Lord had already rescued him. How has the Lord already been faithful to you in prior situations? Be persistent; don’t allow the voices of doubt to hold you hostage to the giant.
When Saul tried to fit David with his armor, David knew right away he couldn’t wear it; the armor wasn’t made for David, it was made for Saul. David picked up five smooth stones, his staff and his sling. He then proceeded to tell Goliath: “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied”(1 Samuel 17:45). We must remember that God equips us for our specific battles, no one else. Don’t try to wear the armor of another. Don’t use anything other than what God has equipped you with to fight the giant and has He ever equipped us! Just look at our armor He has provided: “Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:14-17 NLT).
And then you have the army. “When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they turned and ran” (vs. 51 NLT). An entire army stood behind Goliath, and when he was taken out, so were they. They felt extremely brave as long as they had Goliath standing in front of them. Once they saw him fall, they fell too. If David had looked at Goliath and then the army behind him, he might have felt outnumbered. But he didn’t look at the army; he kept his focus on the big guy --the one doing all the talking. How often do we see the giant, hear the threats of the giant, and then peek around at the “army” standing behind the giant? The army of all the “bad things” that could happen if we try to slay the giant. If I confront ________________, then ________________ might happen. If I try to challenge _________________ then ____________________ could happen. God began to expose to me, years ago, that admitting I was wrong was a huge giant for me. There were times I could be as wrong as the day is long, but I refused to believe it or acknowledge it. While that giant stood before me, taunting me in my pride, I would peek around to the army of “what will people think of me if I confess I was wrong” that stood behind the giant. Perhaps it’s just time to face the giant and take your eyes off of the “might happen, could happen or what will people think” army that stands behind the giant. When you find yourself challenged by a giant, don’t look at the army of what-ifs that stand behind. Keep your focus on the giant, take our your sling and stone, and get ready for battle.
“And everyone assembled here will know that the Lord rescues his people, but not with sword and spear. This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us” (vs. 47). The truth found in God’s Word is gifted to us; this is our stone, and faith is our shield. When we hide the Word in our heart, we are able to pull it out, place it within the sling, and cast it upon the giant’s taunt. Don’t wait: “As Goliath moved closer to attack, David quickly ran out to meet him”(vs.48). We need to do the same—move out quickly, without hesitation, and confront the giant that dares to defy the servant of the Living God.
What is your giant telling you? I’m sure it isn’t this…V is for Victory. “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57 NKJV). God is the One telling you that. Are you running towards the victory or hiding behind fear?