Summary: This sermon is about developing the courage we need to face the giants in our lives. Based on story of David & Goliath.
“GIANT-KILLING COURAGE” 1 Sam. 17
INTRO – I love the way that God has given us so many wonderful stories in His Word about the ways that He has worked in His people’s lives. There is so much we can learn & apply to our lives right now today in 2016 as we look at the different people in the Bible.
- Maybe you identify w/ Thomas as you wrestle w/ doubts sometimes. The wonderful end of the story is that the Lord Jesus helped Thomas overcome those doubts in John 8!
- Maybe you identify w/ Martha as you hustle about in the busyness & distractions of your life. The teaching moment in that story in Luke 10 is that Jesus helped her understand the importance of focusing on Him.
- Maybe you identify w/ Job as you deal w/ the losses in your life & the ongoing struggles that you are having. The awesome conclusion to that story is that, after all the testing he went through, God worked in Job’s life in an amazing way, teaching him, restoring him, & showing His love & power to him.
Today, we are going to focus on another biblical person & find out how we can identify w/ him. We are going to focus on David. Most of us know something about David.
- Wrote many of the Psalms
- Was a shepherd boy who became a great king
- Messed up in a big way w/ Bathsheba
- Was still a man after God’s own heart
- The royal lineage of his family was the lineage from which Jesus Himself came.
And the story we are looking at today may be his most well-known experience. It’s the story of his encounter w/ a giant named Goliath. Here’s my childhood Bible where I first read this story! So let’s jump into this incredible story & see if we can find some giant-killing courage for our lives today.
Goliath’s dimensions – v. 4-7 –Robert Wadlow was the tallest man in the world, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Born in Feb. 1918, grew to a height of 8 ft 11 in., before he died in July 1940 from a septic blister on his ankle that he got from a poorly-fitted brace he had gotten only a week earlier.
But according to the biblical account, Goliath was biegger than Robert Wadlow. Look at Goliath’s dimensions:
- Intimidating Height: Verse 4 says that Goliath’s height was “6 cubits & a span.” A cubit was approx. 18 inches, & a span was 6 inches, which computes out to about 9 ½ feet. To put it in Southern lingo, Goliath was a big-ole boy!
- Impenetrable Armor: Verse 5 – Helmet of bronze & a coat of mail that weighed “5,000 shekels of bronze” – It was a breastplate of bronze plates laid on top of each other like fish scales, & weighed anywhere from 78-156 lbs. He also had bronze armor on his legs that protected him from the spikes of any enemy’s boots, & also provided protection when walking through thorns & briars. Very strong armor worn by a very strong man.
- Immense Weapon: V. 6b-7 tell us that he had a massive javelin-type spear for a weapon, slung between his shoulders. For a 9-ft tall man to have weapon like that, it had to be huge. And v. 7 tells us that the shaft was like a “weaver’s beam” & the iron head weighed 600 shekels – about 18 lbs. How would you like for THAT to be hurled at you by a 9-ft tall madman?
Goliath was a big-ole boy!
Goliath’s defiance – v. 8-11 – He was a big-ole boy w/ a big, bad attitude! Goliath threw down the gauntlet – “I am THE Philistine. Send your best man out here & let’s fight to the death.” He taunted them & ridiculed them b/c they were terrified & would not send anyone out to meet him. There was a tremendous sense of dishonor in the inability of the armies of Israel to send a warrior out to meet him. God had worked in their favor many times in the past, so they should have been able to trust Him. But the defiance of Goliath was just too much for them. They were frozen in fear.
David’s duties – v. 12-18 – These verses remind us that, at this point in his life, David was not the great warrior king that we know about later. He was the youngest of 4 sons of Jesse, & stayed behind to take of his daddy’s sheep while the older 3 boys went to fight in the battle. While tending sheep may not seem as important as fighting in the army of Saul, it was in these times of shepherding that David had encounters w/ wild animals & predators that were trying to attack the sheep. God was using David’s everyday duties to prepare him for the great battle that was ahead.