Faith for the Fight
Waking each morning you stare it in the face. This challenge seems to be taking over your life and you are at a loss as to how to rid yourself of this giant standing before you. You wonder if you can face this today or if you will just try to hide from it again. In your minds eye you picture David, a small child with only a pebble to defend himself, standing in front of a monstrous warrior in full battle armor caring a spear that likely weighed more than David himself. How could David have won when the odds were so clearly against him? Where did he find the courage to even step up to this battle?
When giants walked the earth, casting fear into the hearts of men, God was working - raising up a nation strong enough to defeat them. The only problem was, Israel lacked faith. Even though the Philistines were a persistent thorn in the their side, they couldn‘t find the courage to step up to the battle. Just to the east of Philistia lay the land of Gath, the home of the giants. History seems to indicate that these giants formed a pact with the Philistines, participating with them in the perpetual torment of Israel.
It seems the giants of Gath had something of a bad reputation. Their great stature was more than a little intimidating. Goliath stood over nine feet tall and was capable of wearing 125 pounds of armor with out falling over! They possessed military prowess and a propensity for war - they nearly thirsted for it. These giants were natural killers, corrupt and violent, a product of the terrible social climate of an ancient day.
These warriors were a trump card the Philistines held against the smaller nation of Israel. Just one of these giants was able to lower the spirits of an entire nation. With the mere challenge of single combat, Goliath struck such fear in Saul’s soldiers that they fled from his presence. These soldiers, who formed the army of the only living God, ran from the presence of a single man. For forty days Goliath called out his challenge then turn back camp laughing at Israel and mocking God.
David comes to the battle, sent by his father to tend his brothers needs. Hearing the challenge of Goliath, he is incensed at this ’uncircumcised Philistine’ who would dare to defy the armies of God. After circulating through the camp, David finds that not one man has risen to face the challenger even with the reward Saul has offered for the giant’s head.
In an audience with Saul, David offers to face the Philistine who has so disheartened Israel. Saul questions David’s abilities and he replies with the best answer know to man - the Lord will deliver me. Choosing not to run from the challenge, David takes up his sling and sets off to meet the giant face to face. He places his complete confidence in the fact that his God is superior to any mortal, giant or no. Aiming below Goliath’s helmet, he lets loose a single stone and it strikes true - one giant slain.
So how did this small boy with pebbles for weapons slay the giant? Goliath did have a weakness as a result of his great size, he was overconfident. Secure in his own power he felt no need to seek the strength of Jehovah. On the other hand, David placed his trust in Jehovah‘s strength and not his own. Sounds overly simple doesn’t it? How could that be the answer? There must have been some military strategy behind sending a small boy to battle a giant, some secret to the fall of such a formidable foe? Yet, the defining moment of the battle came down to trust in God.
Moving forward a few hundred years we find a child, born to the house of David that first slayer of giants. The only Son of God, entered this world and was tempted by the same challenges we face today. He conquered them all and then paid a price so high, He was able to purchase your salvation and leave a plan, outlining a way for you to conquer the giants that challenge your faith today. They come in so many forms but you know who they are, they have sought us out from the beginning of time. They stalked Eve in the garden and tried to entrap Christ in the wilderness. Have they been after you lately?
Cravings and desires of this life are temptations brought by these giants. Eve ate the fruit of knowledge simply to satisfy a basic human need right? Not quite, her desire was deeper than mortal hunger. She knew that the morsel, which grew on that tree, was for God alone. How many times had she passed near it and looked away without feeling drawn to it? But this time the allure was so strong. The light shone through the branches and the fruit caught her eye; and there he was, standing beside the tree questioning her heart. He lured her with half truths and ensnared her with her own pride. Her resolve faltered and the giant, taking the opportunity, won the battle. Had Eve but looked ahead of her and saw her Father walking in the garden, her strength would have been bolstered and her aim would have be sure.
John names them pride and lust. They call out their challenge to us, involving us in spiritual warfare daily. Whether we choose to acknowledge it or not we are right there on the battle field. If you turn from these giants they will kill you. But if you choose to stand and fight, you will eventually win and that, my fellow soldier, is a promise.
We need confidence that there is always a way out of the trouble we find ourselves facing. There is no temptation, no giant so strong that we don’t have a weapon to defeat it. (1 Cor. 10:13) Look over your shoulder. Go on, do it! Do you see the strength of the One standing behind you. Honestly, if He created you He can certainly sustain you.
Here’s a few things to remember as you face your giant . First, trust God with all your heart. You have meet this struggle before and failed because you fought with your own might - this time seek God’s strength. In your weakest moment, God can do great things through you. He’s your savior, you’ve taken His name. Now, don’t doubt His POWER. Ephesians 3:20 tells us “(He) is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work on us.”
Second, meet your giant face to face. Don’t run from it. It will always be there lurking in the shadows until you, with Gods help resolve the problem. Consider the word of David from Psalms 81:13-14 “If my people would but listen to me, if Israel would follow my ways, how quickly would I subdue their enemies and turn my hand against their foes!” Do you see how powerful this God is, who stands at your back as you do battle? Give Him the opportunity to vanquish your giants.
Finally, aim right between the eyes. The weapons you have been given are quite effective in giant slaying, use them. Revel in the strength of the Lord. 2 Corinthians 10:4 shows us “The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world....they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” Imagine the power that is but a prayer away then use it. Slay your giants, keeping your confidence in the Lord.
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Good exhortation! I'm reminded of this simple truth through what you've written. Thanks, sis!
I enjoyed this insightful piece -- it was an interesting and thought provoking analogy -next time I face a giant I will aim for between the eys!