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Encounters With God: David – The Need for Courage

31 Oct

David-vs-GoliathCourage is essential for a soldier in battle and for the soldier of Christ in the fight of faith.

1 Timothy 6:12 (NIV)
12  Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

2 Timothy 4:7-8 (NIV)
7  I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
8  Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day–and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.

Courage is the strength of the soul. Spiritual strength includes steadfastness, bravery, faith and honesty. It does not come by accident but is deliberately developed.

God has no use for cowards.

Hebrews 10:38-39 (NIV)
38  But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him.”
39  But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved.

Courage is needed because God:

Commands it…. Pledges His support.

Joshua 1:9 (NIV)
9  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Philippians 1:27-28 (NIV)
27  Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in one spirit, contending as one man for the faith of the gospel
28  without being frightened in any way by those who oppose you. This is a sign to them that they will be destroyed, but that you will be saved–and that by God.

Hebrews 10:35-39 (NIV)
35  So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.
36  You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.
37  For in just a very little while, “He who is coming will come and will not delay.
38  But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him.”
39  But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved.

Matthew 28:20 (NIV)
20  and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Hebrews 13:5-6 (NIV)
5  Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
6  So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?”

Philippians 4:13 (NIV)
13  I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

  1. Gives assurance of success. Joshua 1:8 (NIV)
    8 Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.

    Revelation 2:10 (NIV)
    10 Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life.

Newspaper article, “Goliath’s secret out! He was a weakling” (Reprint from Dayton Daily News)
Nashville, Tenn. (AP) — Goliath was sickly giant weakened by glandular problems and probably didn’t notice David hurling the fatal pebble at his head, researchers theorize. Dr. Pauline Rabin, a psychiatrist, and her husband Dr. David Rabin, an endocrinologist, both of Vanderbilt University, claim there is evidence in the Bible that Goliath might have suffered from a combination of ailments which made him physically vulnerable to the small rocks David loaded into his sling shot.“

There is considerable evidence in the Bible especially in Samuel, that Goliath didn’t take much notice of David. He was disdainful of the small, slight David and took no notice when he picked up the stones,” Mrs. Rabin said Wednesday. “He didn’t duck or raise his shield and consequently, David apparently had little trouble striking him with the stone,” She said. The two say Goliath suffered from gigantism and possibly a rare disorder called endocrine neoplasia, which causes tumors to grow in the endocrine gland. “It would explain why Goliath was so large, why he couldn’t really see David and why he was killed by a small rock from a slingshot,” Mrs. Rabin said.

She said one reason Goliath probably took little notice of David was because the disease had put pressure on his optic nerve, resulting in diminished vision. “He could see but it was sort of like a horse wearing blinders. He had to turn his whole head. He also probably had a bone defect in his skull and probably had a lot of cysts,” The psychologist said.

1 Samuel 17:1-58 (NIV)
1  Now the Philistines gathered their forces for war and assembled at Socoh in Judah. They pitched camp at Ephes Dammim, between Socoh and Azekah.
2  Saul and the Israelites assembled and camped in the Valley of Elah and drew up their battle line to meet the Philistines.
3  The Philistines occupied one hill and the Israelites another, with the valley between them.
4  A champion named Goliath, who was from Gath, came out of the Philistine camp. He was over nine feet tall (9’6”).
5  He had a bronze helmet on his head and wore a coat of scale armor of bronze weighing five thousand shekels (150 pounds);
6  on his legs he wore bronze greaves, and a bronze javelin was slung on his back.
7  His spear shaft was like a weaver’s rod, and its iron point weighed six hundred shekels (18 pounds) . His shield bearer went ahead of him.
8  Goliath stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel, “Why do you come out and line up for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and are you not the servants of Saul? Choose a man and have him come down to me.
9  If he is able to fight and kill me, we will become your subjects; but if I overcome him and kill him, you will become our subjects and serve us.”
10  Then the Philistine said, “This day I defy the ranks of Israel! Give me a man and let us fight each other.”

11  On hearing the Philistine’s words, Saul and all the Israelites were dismayed and terrified.
12  Now David was the son of an Ephrathite named Jesse, who was from Bethlehem in Judah. Jesse had eight sons, and in Saul’s time he was old and well advanced in years.
13  Jesse’s three oldest sons had followed Saul to the war: The firstborn was Eliab; the second, Abinadab; and the third, Shammah.
14  David was the youngest. The three oldest followed Saul,
15  but David went back and forth from Saul to tend his father’s sheep at Bethlehem.
16  For forty days the Philistine came forward every morning and evening and took his stand.
17  Now Jesse said to his son David, “Take this ephah of roasted grain and these ten loaves of bread for your brothers and hurry to their camp.
18  Take along these ten cheeses to the commander of their unit. See how your brothers are and bring back some assurance from them.
19  They are with Saul and all the men of Israel in the Valley of Elah, fighting against the Philistines.”
20  Early in the morning David left the flock with a shepherd, loaded up and set out, as Jesse had directed. He reached the camp as the army was going out to its battle positions, shouting the war cry.
21  Israel and the Philistines were drawing up their lines facing each other.
22  David left his things with the keeper of supplies, ran to the battle lines and greeted his brothers.
23  As he was talking with them, Goliath, the Philistine champion from Gath, stepped out from his lines and shouted his usual defiance, and David heard it.
24  When the Israelites saw the man, they all ran from him in great fear.
25  Now the Israelites had been saying, “Do you see how this man keeps coming out? He comes out to defy Israel. The king will give great wealth to the man who kills him. He will also give him his daughter in marriage and will exempt his father’s family from taxes in Israel.”
26  David asked the men standing near him, “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and removes this disgrace from Israel? Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?”
27  They repeated to him what they had been saying and told him, “This is what will be done for the man who kills him.”
28  When Eliab, David’s oldest brother, heard him speaking with the men, he burned with anger at him and asked, “Why have you come down here? And with whom did you leave those few sheep in the desert? I know how conceited you are and how wicked your heart is; you came down only to watch the battle.”
29  “Now what have I done?” said David. “Can’t I even speak?”
30  He then turned away to someone else and brought up the same matter, and the men answered him as before.
31  What David said was overheard and reported to Saul, and Saul sent for him.
32  David said to Saul, “Let no one lose heart on account of this Philistine; your servant will go and fight him.”
33  Saul replied, “You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a boy, and he has been a fighting man from his youth.”
34  But David said to Saul, “Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock,
35  I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it.
36  Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God.
37  The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” Saul said to David, “Go, and the LORD be with you.”
38  Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head.
39  David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them. “I cannot go in these,” he said to Saul, “because I am not used to them.” So he took them off.
40  Then he took his staff in his hand, chose five smooth stones from the stream, put them in the pouch of his shepherd’s bag and, with his sling in his hand, approached the Philistine.
41  Meanwhile, the Philistine, with his shield bearer in front of him, kept coming closer to David.
42  He looked David over and saw that he was only a boy, ruddy and handsome, and he despised him.
43  He said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come at me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.
44  “Come here,” he said, “and I’ll give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!”
45  David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the LORD Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.
46  This day the LORD will hand you over to me, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. Today I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel.
47  All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the LORD saves; for the battle is the LORD’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.”
48  As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him.
49  Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell facedown on the ground.
50  So David triumphed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone; without a sword in his hand he struck down the Philistine and killed him.

The source of David’s courage: “The battle is the Lord’s.”

David’s courage was not because of: his personal size or strength, his military armament. Saul tried to put his armor on David but he refused to wear it because he had not “proved” it. Numbers or the support of others.

David’s courage was founded upon his great faith in God. He knew that God was with him. He knew “the battle is the Lord’s.” (1 Sam. 17:47).

Hebrews 11:30 (NIV)
30  By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the people had marched around them for seven days.

“The battle is the Lord’s” today. There is a need for people of deep faith and courage who will go out against the

“giants” of today. The “giants” of today include: a. Worldliness.  b. Compromise.  c. Indifference.  d. Lack of growth.

All of these “giants,” and more, can be conquered if we will have the same faith and courage of David.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on October 31, 2016 in Encouragement

 

2 responses to “Encounters With God: David – The Need for Courage

  1. Terry Davenport

    November 1, 2016 at 7:42 am

    Gary, This is good. I may have overlooked something, but it seems you quote the newspaper article and go right into the scripture without a statement refuting their error in trying to explain away David’s success due to his faith in God. Did you think the article was credible? Terry

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Like

     

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