USEFUL ARMOR, part 7
Goliath made grand boasts before God and the armies of the Lord, both in heaven and on earth. A man trained in the ways of warfare since he was a youth, now stood in front of a young man who believed God. David’s only armor was his trust in the Lord God Almighty, the one who made heaven and earth.
All his life, Goliath would have received whatever he wanted, needed, or demanded; like a top athlete in a Communist regime. All his life, he would have been revered, awed and given place among men. Goliath would have been the center of all attention; seen, revered and regarded wherever he went. He was the Philistine champion of war (1 Sam. 17:4). Standing between nine to ten feet tall, he wore a bronze helmet and an armor that weighed about one-hundred and twenty-five pounds; it was an impenetrable coat protecting him. Goliath carried a bronze javelin between his shoulders and bronze shields on his legs; he was a walking fortress of strength (1 Sam. 17:6). He also carried a spear for his assault. The staff of the spear was like a weaver’s beam and the spearhead was made of iron which weighed fifteen pounds. The mere sight of him made men dreadfully afraid (1 Sam. 17:11, 24). Yet David was not afraid, he moved toward the giant warrior with faith in his heart. David was a man of courage; it was not self-willed confidence thrusting himself forward as many would call strength. Rather, David was calm and confident, knowing the battle was the Lord’s. This is one of the hardest things to learn, to simply trust in the Lord without an anxiousness or an agitation. David’s soul was vexed but free of anxiety. There was no quivering in his voice, nor was there a quaking in his heart toward the presence of a man, even one like Goliath. David was not intimidated by Goliath’s words or his armor, not by his training, nor by his advance. David was in the valley ready to battle.
Goliath’s assistant went before him, bearing Goliath’s shield. They approached David with disgust in their heart and disdain on their lips. David heard Goliath’s poisonous tongue, but David’s faith was larger than Goliath’s threats. David’s original statement was ringing in his spirit, “Is there not a cause?” David responded to Goliath’s advance with his own words saying, “This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. Then all the assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s, and He will give you into our hands” (1 Sam. 17:46-47).
David powerful response was the Holy Spirit's answer to the taunting Philistine devils that trained Goliath all his life. David's faith delivered the message. David saw a mere man, not a mighty man of valor. As the Holy Spirit spoke through David, so He would inspire the Apostle Paul to write, “…that you may have an answer for those who boast in appearance and not in heart” (2 Cor. 5:12b). How many boast in appearance this present day, but David saw it all from the Lord’s perspective and spoke accordingly. A boastful appearance and words of power do not ensure victory. Rather, it is the Lord’s battle and David was the Lord’s weapon of choice.
There is a battle that rages to this day. Goliath represents the flesh nature of man who lives under the influences of devils. The flesh makes its boasts and beats its chest with aggression, seeking to be someone, desiring to be recognized, regarded, and reputed, wanting so badly to be feared and given its honor. But man I still just a man, and there is no man who can contend with God; even devils know there is one God and they tremble (James 2:19). The flesh of man can appear so domineering and insurmountable in this present age, but the person of faith must know there is a God to whom all answer. Every believer must arise and live as David did in that valley, ready to battle all that is contrary to God. The believer must know that devil’s boast and men wage war; that devils seek to be worshipped and men want to be regarded; but all must face the Judge of the universe. Faith knows and trust in the Lord's judgments. Goliath challenged God and said, “I defy” (1 Sam. 17:10). The Lord God had a man ready in the faith to meet that challenge. A young man who seemed most unlikely to accomplish such a feat, yet there he was in the valley moving toward the enemy. David never left a hint of doubt that he would be victorious, because he knew it was the battle of the Lord. David simply said, God will give you into our hand (1 Sam. 17:47). David knew this was a victory for God and for all Israel; this wasn’t about gaining glory for himself or securing a position of royalty or laying hold of some gifts for himself. David was not looking to advance his ministry; this was a victory for Israel. O Lord, make every believer like David. Amen!
Blessings to you!
Your Friend in Christ,
Dr. Gary H. Cote
Part 8 of USEFUL ARMOR is coming next!