Summary: A look at a few stones we can use to slay the giants in our lives.
Trials and difficult situations are facts of life. Many times, we find ourselves face to face with giants – problems that seem overwhelming to us. These could be problems at home, with relationships, or other difficult circumstances. We need to know how to respond to every threat by laying hold of the kind of victorious faith that looks beyond what we can see to what God sees. Tonight, we’ll look at what it took for David to defeat Goliath, and how to apply those principles to our own lives.
Now I know that for those of you that grew up in church then this is a story you are very familiar with, but let me begin by summarizing what is going on in our story up until where we will pick up:
The Philistine army had gathered for war against Israel. The two armies faced each other, camped for battle on opposite sides of a steep valley. A Philistine giant measuring over nine feet tall and wearing full armor came out each day for forty days, mocking and challenging the Israelites to fight. His name was Goliath. Saul, the King of Israel, and the whole army were terrified of Goliath.
Why did they wait forty days to begin the battle? Probably for several reasons. Everyone was afraid of Goliath. He seemed invincible. Not even King Saul, the tallest man in Israel, had stepped out to fight. Also, the sides of the valley were very steep. Whoever made the first move would have a strong disadvantage and probably suffer great loss. Both sides were waiting for the other to attack first.
One day David, the youngest son of Jesse, was sent to the battle lines by his father to bring back news of his brothers. David was probably just a young teenager at the time. While he was there, David heard Goliath shouting his daily defiance and he saw the great fear stirred within the men of Israel. David responded, "Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?"
Read 1 Samuel 17:31-39
David remembered all the times that God had delivered him from the brink of disaster. God had always given David the ability he needed to triumph; now he faced one of the greatest challenges of his life – a trained and well-armed warrior named Goliath.
David chose not to wear the King's armor because it felt awkward and unfamiliar. David was comfortable with his slingshot, a weapon he was very skilled at using. There’s a lesson to be learned here:
God is not limited as to what He can use to bring about victory. God will use the unique skills he's already placed in your hands, so don't worry about "wearing the King's armor." Just be yourself and use the familiar gifts and talents God has given you. He will work miracles through you.
Dressed in his simple clothing (no armor), carrying his shepherd's staff, slingshot and a pouch full of stones, David approached Goliath. The giant cursed at him, hurling threats and insults but that didn’t stop young David. As a matter of fact, he didn’t even hesitate for one second. Everybody else cowered in fear, but David ran to the battle. He knew that action needed to be taken. David did the right thing in spite of discouraging insults and fearful threats. The only opinion that mattered to David was God’s opinion.
Read vv. 45-49
Who’s Your Goliath? When David faced Goliath, it seemed like he was up against an impossible situation. What Goliath didn’t understand was that God was on David’s side. With God’s help, David was victorious. Remember that God is the God of the impossible. He specializes in making impossible situations possible!
The fact that I’m standing before you tonight as your pastor is a perfect example of God turning what many people believed to be, myself included, an impossible situation into reality. I spent the majority of my adolescence making a bunch of bad decisions that led to a lot of mistakes and a lot of failures in my life. Even when I sensed God’s calling in my life for me to surrender to ministry I doubted God’s plan. But God didn’t give up on me.
One of my biggest excuses was my fear of speaking in public but once I got around that, once I came to realize that it wasn't about me or my insecurities and inabilities and allowed God to work through me, He began to take all that away. You know, they call it “surrendering to the ministry” for a reason. That’s why I believe so many pastors fail in their ministries and can’t stay in one place longer than 18 months…because they’re allowing themselves to interfere with what God wants to do through them, they haven’t fully surrendered.