Olsen Park Church of Christ

“The Battle is the Lord’s”

(1 Sam. 17:1-54)

Introduction.  He was a young shepherd.  The Bible doesn’t tell us how old, it simply refers to him as a “youth.” He was the king’s musician, and had already been anointed by Samuel to be the future king of Israel. By God’s hand he had killed a lion and a bear, but this young man was about to come up against the greatest opponent he had ever faced.

      By our standards this enemy was over nine feet tall. His armor weighed 150lbs. His spearhead alone weighed twenty pounds. We are (of course) speaking of David and the Philistine warrior Goliath. This is a familiar story to Christian and non-Christian alike, yet far too often we “put it on the back shelf” with Bible stories that we reserve for children and fail to see the powerful message it tells all who would seek life. You see David was coming face to face with a giant, who by the world’s standards could not be defeated, but through faith in God—he found the power!

      What are the giants in your life?  Maybe it’s a physical hardship. Perhaps it’s an illness. Maybe there is something about a relationship you have that is not what it should be. Maybe you are going through a financial or emotional difficulty. Or maybe you face a spiritual giant, that involves a temptation you need to overcome, or a doubt you need to conquer. Or perhaps it is simply that your life is without purpose, hope, value, or meaning. This morning I would life for us to look at seven lessons from David’s encounter with Goliath that can offer us encouragement to overcome the giants in our lives. 

I.    Don’t be discouraged when the enemy seems overpowering (1 Sam. 17:1-11). A nine foot warrior threatening the army of Israel would have been a pretty intimidating thing. But there was more to David than you could see with the eyes.

A.    God Judges  the Heart (1 Sam. 16:1-13). Out of all the sons of Jesse, God had chosen David—the youngest of eight brothers!

B.     The Narrow Way (Matt. 7:13-14). In Christ we must recognize that we are called to a life that by appearances may not seem too impressive, but in truth it is the way to eternal life.

II.    Don’t allow the enemy to speak evil of God (1 Sam. 17:22-26). It upset David that Goliath spoke this way. By speaking against the people of God he was speaking against God.

A.    God’s name blasphemed (Rom. 2:17-24). It should bother us when people speak against God and His people. What should bother us even more is when our behavior and hypocrisy causes the name of God to be blasphemed by those in the world.

III.  Don’t be turned by those who would sway you (1 Sam. 17:28-32). David’s brother assumed the worst about him and tried to discourage him.

A.    Approve of those who practice them (Rom. 1:28-32). In Christ those around us will not only discourage righteousness but approve of wickedness.

B.     “They think it strange” (1 Pet. 4:3-5; Prov. 14:19).  What an upside down world it can often become. People will approve of what is wrong and discourage doing right because they “think it strange.”

IV.  Remember evil is overcome by small, simple things of God (1 Sam. 17:33-37). It would not be a massive opponent that would face Goliath. It would not be a hardened, battle tried warrior—it would be a young shepherd with faith in God.

A.    The wisdom of God (1 Cor. 1:18-29). The Gospel appears to our world as foolishness, but it is the small, humble, simple, power of God unto salvation.

V.   Be certain to wear your armor (1 Sam. 17:38-40). Whether it was because Saul’s armor was too big, or simply that David had not “tested” or used them in battle, David couldn’t use the best armor in the camp. What he needed was five smooth stones!

A.    The armor of God (Eph 6:10-17). As Christians we need to make certain that we face our giants with the right armor. It is not worldly armor, but the spiritual armor of God.

VI.  Through God’s power, have confidence in the face of evil (1 Sam. 17:41-47). In spite of the accusation that David’s brother made about his motives, from all that we can see, David appears to have been humbly aware that any power he had was because of God.

A.    The power of the gospel (Rom. 1:16). In Christ we can’t defeat a single giant alone. But through the Gospel God has given us all that we need to prevail.

B.     Deliverance from evil (2 Pet. 2:4-9). Just as God has delivered people in the past, He can deliver us if we will only submit to His will.

VII.     Remember that the enemy runs from victory (1 Sam. 17:48-54).  I imagine that you could have heard a pin drop in that Philistine camp when their mighty warrior fell to the ground and that young shepherd took his head from him. When that happened all their defiance failed and they ran.

A.    Resist the devil and he will flee from you (James 4:7-10). The Bible promises that when we resist Satan there is some sense in which he flees from us. That doesn’t mean we’ll never have another battle, but Satan is a coward—he runs from the victorious in Christ.

Kyle Pope 2010

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