“And the Philistine said, I defy the armies of Israel this day; give me a man, that we may fight together. When Saul and all Israel heard those words of the Philistine, they were dismayed, and greatly afraid” (1 Sam. 17:10,11). “Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied” (v. 45).
When I was young I loved hearing stories of David and his bravery while taking care of his father’s sheep and when he faced the giant Goliath. Today I am older and can apply these stories to spiritual life. In verses 10 and 11, Goliath rings out a challenge to the Israelites, who turn and cower before him. I also see a lowly shepherd boy bringing food to his brothers. Hearing of the challenge, he bravely takes his simple sling and five smooth stones. Placing his faith in God, he conquers the armored giant. The all-powerful God who had helped in the past had helped him again.
Today I believe that the church of God does not face the giants of David’s time. We face the devil and his spirit of darkness. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Eph. 6:12). The devil would like to frighten God’s people today as Goliath did in David’s time. First Peter 5:8 says, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” The devil causes us to look around and see different ones falling by the wayside, and we start to doubt that God is still leading the church.
How often are we tempted to trust in ourselves and think we can conquer the devil on our own instead of putting our faith in God? The devil would like us to put our salvation in our works instead of the blood of Jesus. The Bible does not talk about David trusting in his sling but of his trusting in the Lord. How often do we fear the future and what it might bring? What about when earthly things fail us? Where is our faith then? We do not think of the easy lifestyle and all we have going for us as a giant, but if we do not treat these blessings as from the Lord and respect them as such, we will find that they will rise up and become our enemies. We read in 1 Timothy 6:17, “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.” There are many different “giants” the devil wants to bring to challenge us that could be written about, such as, pride, offense, inferiority, and more.
In closing, let us echo Paul’s words in 2 Timothy 4:7,8, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.”
From Messenger of Truth, Vol. 110, No. 25, December 12, 2012