1 Samuel 17:48 (NKJV) 48 So it was, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hastened and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine.
Yesterday we looked at the last character besides David in the story of David and Goliath. No study of this story would be complete without taking a closer look at the man who won the battle, David. We began a few weeks ago by looking at 1 Peter 5:8-11. Peter tells us that we must be sober and vigilant because our adversary, the devil, goes about like a roaring lion.
We have an adversary. His primary purpose is to hurt God by keeping his children separated from him by sin. His secondary purpose is to steal, kill and destroy any human being whether they are born again or not. This will also hurt God. Those who are born again must remember that this adversary exists. He is a defeated foe but not one who is ready to give up the fight. He is taking many people, both Christians and those who do not know Jesus, down as he continues to oppose God. The battle between David and Goliath is a type of every battle we fight while on the earth. What we see in David can give us keys that will enable us to win every time, both for ourselves and those around us.
The verse above is one small statement but it says a great deal about what caused David to be victorious. It says that David ran to meet the Philistine in battle. We know Goliath was a massive man, somewhere in the around 9 feet tall. We know David was young, but we do not know his size. We do know he was smaller than Saul who was probably more than 2 feet smaller than Goliath. David wore no armor, he had no weapons that would be considered suitable for war. Yet he ran toward the enemy not away from him. This tells us that David was confident he would defeat this mountain of a man.
We have talked about where David’s confidence was placed. It was not in his skill, his size or his weapons. David was confident that God was with him. He was confident that he was fighting in the power of the God of Israel. He understood that everything else was irrelevant. If God was for him no one, not even a 9-foot giant could succeed against him.
What is your battle against? We know it is against the devil, our adversary. However, he manifests in many ways. It could be health, family or financial. It could be emotional or job related. No matter the opponent, if God is on your side there is nothing that can keep you from winning except you. If you quit, you lose. If you separate yourself from the Body of Christ, you will likely lose. If you do not give time and self to the God of the Bible and the Word itself, you will have no strength. David did those things in the context of his life and won. David ran to the battle.
One of the devil’s favorite tactics is to keep us from fighting at all. We have seen that was Goliath’s purpose in the battle. He intimidated the Army of Israel until they hid in their camp and refused to come out. David would not give in to that intimidation. He understood who he was in God and who God was in him. He also understood that the choice was to fight or submit to slavery. There may be many reasons we are not inclined to fight. It may not be our personality. We may have been defeated before or we may be too lazy to fight. Nevertheless, there will be battles. We will have to choose between bondage of some kind and fighting for what God has given us.
David ran to the battle. All of us would rather avoid the battles of life. That will not make them go away. There will be battles. If the battle is inevitable, do not try to avoid it. You will not be able to hide from the battle. Until you show yourself and the enemy that his tactics will not work, he will continue to do the same things. Until you prove to yourself that Christ in you can win the victory, you will continue to fall in the same traps. David ran to the battle with Goliath.
Sometimes we think that if we just do not “rock the boat” the devil will leave us alone. He will not. He will do all he can to keep you in the condition you are in. I imagine that very few people ran toward Goliath in a fight. He was used to seeing them run away. What a shock it must have been when this young man with no armor and no weapons ran toward him. So it is with the devil. He expects you to run away. When you do not, he is not sure what to do.
James 4:7 (NKJV) 7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
This is a promise from God and exactly what David did. He was submitted to God. He believed in his power and promise. That is one of the ways we submit to God. We believe he told the truth. We believe his Word. When we do that, we can resist the devil. David ran to his battle with Goliath. When he defeated him, the rest of the Philistine Army ran away from him. Sometimes we are going to have to defeat giants in our lives and circumstances. When we do, the real enemy, the devil will flee from us.
There have been many times in my life that I have had to fight difficult battles. There were times when I just wanted it all to be over. I knew that if I quit, I would not find real peace but some type of bondage. I would never possess the land God wanted me to possess unless I fought through. It was in one of these times that God said to me, “I thought you were competitive.” I realized that God was right. I like to win. I do not like to win if there is no competition. I admitted to God that I was. He said, “Than why don’t you see this battle as a competition.” I realized that he was telling me to run to the battle.
You may not be as competitive as I am, but you have nothing to lose by trusting God in your situation. Go to His word and find a promise that applies to you. Meditate on that promise. Speak it over your life. Find a way you can act on what you believe. Many of our battles have been financial. When we were facing lack, we often took the last bit of money we had and gave it to God or someone in need. Inevitably we saw God move on our behalf. We ran to the battle instead of away from it.
You may be facing something like depression or some emotional struggle. These are some of the most difficult battles I have ever faced. They are very real. We want to run away and hide or retreat into ourselves. That will not help. Find someone to talk to. You are not alone and there is no condemnation for feeling the things you feel. Go to the Word of God and let God breathe life into your emotions. He really is there. The action you can do is revealed in the book of Hebrews.
Hebrews 12:12 (NKJV) 12 Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees,
How do we do that? He tells us in the next chapter.
Hebrews 13:15 (NKJV) 15 Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.
Praise is a powerful thing. It is not just emotional, but it works through our emotions. Nehemiah tells us that the joy of the Lord is our strength. Praise releases the inner joy that is ours in Christ.
One more thing about running to the battle. God has given us mighty armor with which to fight. We read about it in Ephesians 6. When we read about it, we find that all of the armor faces front. There is no protection on the back side of the armor. God will cover our back, but the armor he gives us is designed for frontal assaults. Running to the battle seemed like foolishness to David. In the end it was one of the keys to victory. It will be for you as well. Run to the battle not from it.