Most of my life I considered David and Goliath a story about the underdog winning. I am guessing that you might have looked at it the same way. David was just a young shepherd boy from the tiny town of Bethlehem. The words that come to mind as I think of David are “scrappy” and “tenacious”. Nice words but then there is Goliath and there are words like – “huge” and “warrior.” It is in light of that reality that I came to the conclusion that this is an underdog story but I was wrong. I had framed this familiar story completely wrong.
The story should be framed like this. Goliath was an incredibly powerful and enormous man. He was an experienced soldier who created fear in virtually all who stood against him as they looked at his size, his sword and his spear. He was fearless as he mocked his enemies who quaked with fear in his presence. Goliath was a force to be reckoned with!
So the stage is set.
- We have the powerful giant Goliath on one side of the battle. On the other side we have God, the creator of the world and the creator of Goliath.
- We have Goliath with his words of mockery and we have God with His words that bring forth all that is – He made it from nothing!
- We have Goliath with his spear and his sword and on the other side we have God. The God that whips up things like the Redwoods, volcanoes, elephants and blue whales.
- On this side Goliath’s muscled arms are lifted in defiance and on the other side God holds the universe together with His “arms.”
With this as the backdrop God calls David to stand before Goliath as His representative. David understands this very clearly and that is why he speaks the way he does in I Samuel 17.45-47.
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. This day the LORD will deliver you into my hands…and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. 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.”
It is vitally important that we understand that this is the same backdrop in which we live out our days. Though the forces standing against the Kingdom of God seem strong and capable of destruction, they all pale into insignificance when they attempt to defeat the eternal promises of God that we have been given. God will prevail today just as He did in the days of David. Though it may seem dark at the moment the conquering Light of Jesus’ Cross and Resurrection will always be victorious in the end.
In God’s Care,