USEFUL ARMOR-part 2
David came before King Saul, the ruler of Israel. The young shepherd was brought before the king, because he had a burning question residing in his heart, “Is there not a cause?” This question landed him squarely in Saul’s presence, meeting him face-to-face; now seeing each other eye-to-eye (1 Sa. 17:29-31). It was the first of many encounters to come. Of course, the Holy Spirit made the arrangements.
When David met Saul, Scripture records that David was the first to speak, and his statement exposed the true problem and revealed the remedy; he said, “Let no man’s heart fail because of him (Goliath
); your servant will go and fight with this Philistine” (1 Sam. 17:32). The presence of Goliath, the hearing of his words, the knowledge of his greatness, quenched any courage that might have been in the king’s heart or in his army. They feared him, which left them paralyzed from any action. One man’s greatness eliminated their entire pool of glory. The people of God, the army of the Lord, were diminished and drained; they were in dread of Goliath. But David’s bold statement revealed the answer to the problem as well; by one’s man’s faith shall the ungodly presence of Goliath be swept aside. David will go and fight!
A tremendous utterance of boldness! Picture David before King Saul speaking of fear, and then follow it up with the faith for victory. So many make such bold statements today, yet they do not follow it up with any act of faith that supports it. For every bold statement, there must be a bold step that matches it, or else it was merely pretense. Without a step, this is just a shameless statement; someone looking to be considered spiritual. So many are in church today speaking a bold faith, while keeping their eyes on the reactions and responses of others. They talk about praying for others, but quiver when it comes time to pray for someone outside of their comfort zone, that is, where they’re viewed as they liked to be seen. They have surrounded themselves with those who relish in their spirituality. They don’t rely on Christ’s great power, they simply talk of it to others they already know believe the same way. They rest in the orderly ranks of the army of the Lord. They do nothing in fear of someone’s taunt, scoff, or glance of unapproval, especially the respected family members like Eliab. They fear accountability, so they do not act on a thought that comes from the question, “Is There Not a Cause?”
David’s remedy meant he was accountable to it, or else he was a fake. Even more so, his statement said that he would be victorious, not that he would just try; not that he was willing, leaving some element of skepticism in play in case in didn’t work out. He declared victory over the giant. The step had to bring victory, not just step before Goliath and call it victory. David had to step into that valley, engage the enemy, and bring victory. Faith sees the victory and acts accordingly. Faith sees past the problem and always sees the problem-solver at work. David’s willingness was not youthful exuberance with an unfounded faith. David was not a man of pretense. David was not operating from a desire to be seen and known by man, if so, he would have immediately defended himself when his older brother jibed him at the battle line. This was not pride at work, though his brother saw it that way. Pride in a person will often times see another’s boldness as boasting, because this arrogant spirit filters their own thoughts and perverts proper perspective of anything godly. David saw victory because he knew God and he knew victory.
I have witnessed many who will enter the safe confines of the king’s tent and make bold predictions and statements full of faith, only to falter like cowards, or fail like any other when it came time to put a step to it. Somehow the bold faith uttered in the tent lost its place when it came time to step out in front of the army and before the enemy. Nothing ever gets accomplished, nor is any victory won simply because someone was spewing bold faith. Any weak, spineless individual can do this.
"Is there not a cause" was the question. The problem was fear in the heart of every individual suited up with armor who could not find the courage to step out and believe God. The problem was a heart of timidity that taunted anything that was not in alignment with its shameful insecurity. The problem was a king who couldn’t see past his own inferiority. The answer came from the one unlikely to achieve anything great for Israel; the remedy was resting in the heart of one young man who believed that this challenge was God’s battle.
Why do so many Christians fear stepping out and engaging the enemy? Simply, they give greater value to their own lives; they prefer their places of safety. They want “me-time” and enjoy “me-life.” Their thoughts say, “Why bother risking your own comforts and conveniences, after all, “It’s the Lord’s battle.” This truth is no longer our reliance and fuel to step forward in the fight; rather it has become our excuse to do nothing.
Many applaud those who stepped up and out in time past, and thank the Lord that He raised someone up to do so, but they will not take their own stand, not even with their own friends and family members. They cry out and say, “We need revival,” but they want God to raise someone up, just not them. Why not? They fear the jeering army and taunts from those close to them. For many, they soothe themselves with thoughts of battling Goliath, and tell themselves that they would fight for God if the Lord empowered them or called them to do so, yet they do not take any step to do so. Useful armor begins with a heart to believe God and a willingness to step out, even in the smallest of ways. Great battles are won by the unknown foot soldiers who obeyed their commander’s orders. “Is There Not A Cause?” -----ITNAC-----Be BOLD In Christ!
Blessings to you!
Your Friend in Christ,
Dr. Gary H. Cote
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