Summary: Facing the Giants in your life over a long period of time.
INTRO: In the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea, Ben Johnson of Canada won the 100-meter dash, setting a new Olympic record and a new world record. Our American contender, Carl Lewis, came in second and most were shocked that he hadn’t won the gold. After the race, the judges learned that Johnson had had an illegal substance in his body. He ran the race illegally, so the judges took away his medal. Though he ran faster and made an unforgettable impression, he did not deserve the reward.
Hours behind the runner in front of him, the last marathoner finally entered the Olympic stadium. By that time, the drama of the day’s events was almost over and most of the spectators had gone home. This athlete’s story, however, was still being played out.
Limping into the arena, the Tanzanian runner grimaced with every step, his knee bleeding and bandaged from an earlier fall. His ragged appearance immediately caught the attention of the remaining crowd, who cheered him on to the finish line.
Why did he stay in the race? What made him endure his injuries to the end? When asked these questions later, he replied, “My country did not send me 7,000 miles away to start the race. They sent me 7,000 miles to finish it.”
-As I read this story I wondered how many of us would have made it to the end, knowing you’re in last place, as you’re running the fans are turning and leaving. I wondered what went through his mind.
Review: So far we’ve looked at the giant of fear and intimidation and last time the giant of discouragement.
Today we are going to look at a different type of giant. I call it the giant of the journey.
-This giant has to do with time. In the case when David defeated Goliath it probably took a few hours from the time he heard Goliath challenge to conquering him.
-But the giant of the journey can be only conquered over a long period of time. It’s not a quick fix, it’s more like a season.
TITLE: The Giant of the Journey
TEXT: 1 Samuel 27:1-6
When you face this giant rather than a quick battle, you’re in and out and it’s over, this is going to war and it’s hard for a long period of time, one thing after another, day in and day out. Let me try and explain by David’s life.
I. Background. After David’s great victory against Goliath, King Saul stood up and took notice of this young valiant warrior.
A. King Saul was so pleased with him that he took him into his courts.
1. The king’s son Jonathan loved David, they became the closest of friends.
-It seemed whatever David did he was successful.
B. The season seemed to change. It happened when the king overheard a song proclaiming David killed more enemies than the king.
1. The king’s heart changed toward David. Rather than blessing him, the king became paranoid that David was going to take over his kingdom.
-So the king tried to kill him but he failed.
2. The king became fearful of David so he sent him away as a commander. David was very successful.
-So the king gave David his daughter Michal in order to trick him. He’d have the Philistines kill him.
3. This failed so Saul went on a rampage to kill David but he failed again.
C. David had a couple of different opportunities to kill King Saul, but he didn’t even though David’s men wanted him to.
1. David has been running for his life for quite a period of time. He has a band of outcasts with him.
TS: David has been running so long he probably feels this is his last stand.
II. David was worn out. Saul had been getting the best of David, leaving him to sleep in caves and lurk behind trees.
A. These outcasts and their families depended on David, further adding to his burden.
1. David’s running from a crazed king, hiding wherever he can, leading a ragtag group of soldiers.
-Feeding more than a thousand mouths, the demands are great.
2. David reasons that Saul is going to kill him one day. So the best thing to do is to go to the camp of the enemy so that Saul will stop searching for him. 1 Sam. 27:1 – Read
Q: Have you ever been so worn out you go over to the enemy’s camp to get some relief?
B. No hope and most of all, David’s attention is too focused on King Saul.
1. David walks so long in this fear of Saul that he’ll get relief at any cost.
2. David knows better. On brighter days David modeled how we should follow God. The first time he faced the Philistines in the wilderness, David inquired of the Lord (1 Sam. 23:2). When he felt small against his enemy, David inquired of the Lord (1 Sam. 23:4). When attacked by the Amalekites, David inquired of the Lord (1 Sam. 30:8). Puzzled about what to do after the death of Saul, David inquired of the Lord (2 Sam. 2:1). When crowned as king and pursued by the Philistines, David inquired of the Lord (2 Sam. 5:19).