Goliath – Who He Is
The name Goliath means “great.” Goliath was a famous giant from the Philistine city of Gath. For 40 days, he openly defied the armies of Israel, challenging them to send a man out to fight him. He was killed by the shepherd boy, David, with a single shot of a stone from his sling (1 Samuel 17:4). His height was "six cubits and a span;" taking the cubit at 21 inches, that’s 10-1/2 feet tall. He had four brothers, which may be the reason David picked up five stones for his slingshot when he confronted Goliath. David cut off Goliath’s head and carried it to Jerusalem; he hung Goliath’s weapons in his own tent (1 Samuel 17:51, 53). Goliath’s sword was later preserved at Nob as a religious trophy (1 Samuel 21:9). David's victory over Goliath was a turning point in his life.
Goliath – Part He Plays in the Bible
Goliath represents the many obstacles and pitfalls we encounter in life, whether they be spiritual or physical. While we may never encounter giants in the flesh as physical enemies, we do encounter symbolic giants that can confront us in the spiritual and physical realm. These Goliaths will try to win over us, but, like David, we have the grace of God on our side, and God will empower us to confront and conquer those enormous giants. Like David, we can use the least of our weaponry to defeat them. We do not need heavy artillery for the job; all we need is the power of prayer, the Word of God, and God’s grace to defeat whatever we encounter that keeps us fearful.
Goliath – Our Own Goliaths
What are some of the Goliaths we face in life?
- Intimidation. Unfortunately, the Israelites were dismayed and terrified (1 Samuel 17:11). Yet David, a young boy, faced the enemy with confidence. David trusted God because he had a relationship with Him, so he could stand up to any intimidation.
The Unbelieving World. The unbeliever is happy if the Christian is ineffective. But if you share the Gospel and tell people about God’s wrath and judgment of sin, you may experience an intense hatred from the unbelieving world. Still, it is our duty to Christ, as Christians, to preach the truth, no matter what the cost may be, and to help fulfill The Great Commission.
Ignorance of Our Weapons. To fight the enemies of our world, we must learn to use the spiritual weapons within our reach. David’s victory had more to do with his spiritual weapons than his skills with a slingshot. When we study God’s Word, we put on a vital part of "the full armor of God" (Ephesians 6:11). We are challenged to "stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God" (verses 14-17).
Believing You Are Alone in the Battle. Hebrews 13:5-6 assures us, “’Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you.’ So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?’”
- Not Exercising Faith. Faith is a powerful weapon against the enemy, and exercising that faith, whether small or large, will bring you great rewards. “This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God” (1 John 5:4-5).
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