Showdown...Victory Up for Grabs (Part 4)

10:42 AMHeather

There's a battle going on right this moment, according to my Yahoo home page.  A battle for life and death in a mall on the other side of the world in Nairobi, Kenya.  It's frightful.  It's terrifying, really.  To try to imagine what it might be like for those who thought they would just stop by the mall, as they may have done hundreds of times.  Instead, they find themselves caught in the crossfire between good and evil.  Their lives in the balance between life and death.  

That is pretty much what happened to David in 1 Samuel 17, as we have been discussing.  Although David knew he was sent on an errand to a battlefield, I don't imagine he had an inkling that he would take center stage.  That he would go from courier and bystander to the point man for all of Israel.  Life and death.  If you were to boil it down to good and evil, it was God's chosen people, the Israelis, and their enemy, the Philistines.  

Today, we chew on the climax.  If this were a movie, the music would swell to crescendo.  Because today, we will wrap this little series on David from 1 Samuel 17 with the most amazing part of the story.  There have been several pivot points thus far, such as David volunteering to fight.  Refusing the king's armor.  Getting in his own clothes, owning his own weapons.  

Today is the face off.  And, oh, I believe it is rich with encouragement if we just take the time to mine the treasures.  

1.  Read 1 Samuel 17:41-44.  We have seen how Goliath trash talked.  So well, in fact, that even after 40 days of doing it night and day, he STILL has the entire Israeli army on the run in retreat.  But, here, Goliath takes a look at little David.  And he is disgusted. He does not like what he sees.  These verses tell us that he looked David over and he despised him.  Gave him the ole stink eye.  Hated him. Cursed him by his own gods.  Offered to give up David's flesh to feed the birds and animals. 

Gulp.  

We've already begged the question throughout this series, but it bears repeating.  What are the giants you are facing?  How impossible do they seem?  Do they mock you?  Does a little voice in your head seem to despise you, tearing you down with ridicule?  Do you feel as though you will be devoured by your circumstances?  

Listen.  Picture yourself face-to-face and toe-to-toe with those circumstances or people who oppose you.  They are staring you down.  They are a giant with a shield bearer in front of them even.  Reinforcements, so to speak.  That's how big and bad they are. They have a height advantage and a propensity to trash talk us like no one's business.  When it comes to intimidation, they win the gold medal.  


As you stare them down--these giants in your life-- and as you approach the battle, do you stop in your tracks?  Are you defeated before the battle even begins because the odds seem so impossible? 

Let's take a look at David.

2. Read 1 Samuel 17:45-47.   There's an alternative response here, bloggy friends.  Offered by example from a tiny shepherd boy.  Chosen by God.  Anointed by Him for unique purposes.  Filled and equipped by the Spirit of God.  

JUST LIKE WE ARE. 

If you were to compare yourself to David, you'd find that you are starting your battle with very much the same resources.  David didn't come to battle with any secret weapon that you don't have yourself.  Let me say that again.  Whatever battle you are entering, you have the exact same secret weapons that David had.  Except maybe a slingshot.  But, you have the same Big God on your side.  You have been anointed by Him for unique purposes.  If you are a Christ follower, then you have been filled and equipped by the Spirit of God.  Whatever your mundane, boring, unglamorous daily life--you are no different than David.  

So, can we respond like David?  Can we look to our giant, no matter how insurmountable it seems and respond to the defeating taunts like David did. "Oh yeah?  BUT, I come in the power of the Lord Almighty.  And that is more than enough."

Are we so intimately walking with our Lord, so acquainted and sure of his power, that we know we are overcomers?  Can we stand firm on the promise that although in this world we may have troubles, greater is He who is in us than he who is in the world?  Can we remember that in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us?  Can we know that the power of the Most High God is at our disposal--on our side?  Can we believe that this is more than enough?  

That is what it boils down to.  Belief.  That the same God who parted the seas, spoke all that is from nothing, calmed the storms, shut the lion's mouths, defeated the giant Goliath, and conquered sin and death is OUR God.  He is on our side.  He fights our battles.  He reigns victorious.  

And He lives in you.  No, my dear friend, you never face any battle alone.  You have the power of all heaven fighting for you.

3.  1 Samuel 17:48.  Oh, how I love this verse.  It makes me want to squeal with delight.  I mean, read the verse slowly.  

As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, 
David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him.  

There it is, folks.  The showdown at the OK Corral.  The giant moved closer to attack.  And maybe your battle feels just like this.  The enemy is closing in.  The circumstances are moving closer to attack.  The fight is on!  

And David--just a regular person like you and me--he ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him!   I think of that scene from the movie Braveheart.  The opposing sides are staring each other down.  Faces painted blue, the men offer their battle cry, "FREEDOM!"  And they charge.  The run (or ride their horses) quickly toward the battle line to meet the enemy.  

I wrote this verse out for my kids' nightly Scripture cards the other day.  Here is the note I wrote for each of them:

"Whatever Goliaths come against you, you can run quickly toward the battle line when you choose to see your GIANT GOD who dwarfs all opposition."  

I do belief!  Help my unbelief!  (Mark 9:24). 

Oh, Lord, plant this truth so deeply into our hearts that all doubt is removed--that it is just a matter of fact.  That we know victory is inevitable.

Health crisis?  Complete healing is coming--this side of heaven or the other.  Financial crunch?  God is bigger.  He owns the cattle on a thousand hills.  Relationship troubles?  Your big God is also your Heavenly Father who wants to extend his everlasting love to you, His child.  Broken heart?  He wants to quiet you with His love.  He wants to rejoice over you with singing.  

He wants to let you know that you are an overcomer.  Because the One who came to overcome the worst that satan could throw at him--death on a cross--is the One who made you His very own.  

4.  Read 1 Samuel 17:49-51.  David had said, "for the battle is the Lord's and He will give all of you [not just Goliath] into our hands."
He knew and believed as a matter of fact with no debate necessary that His God reigned.  His God defended his cause.  His God protected his people.  

As we draw into battle every day, do we fight our own battles?  Do we engage with a child over a discipline issue on our own strength, or breathing a quiet prayer for help?  Do we look at a long task list and feel defeated already because we are just so tired?  Or do we say, "This day is yours, Lord.  Equip me for it."  Do we really let  EVERY battle be the Lord's?  Or do we rely only on ourselves?  

Who is fighting your battle?  If you are anything like me, you wrestle for control over and over and over again throughout the day.  And that's okay.  To lay down the request, to ask for help...and then pick it back up.  And then lay it down again.  God knows we are but dust.  He remembers how we are formed.  He doesn't mind wrestling things out with us.  Just ask Jacob about that one.

Here is the truth of every battle for every one of us.  He will give all of them into our hands.  Ultimately.  Have you read the end?  We win!  The end.  God wins.  He is the victor.  Nothing can stand against God and win ultimately.  Circumstances can overwhelm us, yes.  Troubles can flood us.  Sorrows will come.  But, He never leaves our side.  Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father, living to intercede for us.  God will faithfully sustain us through it all. 

Do me a favor and glance back at verse 50. Listen, here's the deal.  You may not have a sword.  You may not even have armor. In fact, you may feel laid bare.  You may be outnumbered or dwarfed by what is coming against you.  But because of the Lord--by Him and through Him--your slingshot and stones are enough.  

And you won't just knock your giants down, but you'll cut off their heads!

I have been so convicted as I look at this passage with fresh eyes this last week or two.  This is where God lead me.

They have a form of godliness but deny its power.
2 Timothy 3:5  

It's shameful to admit, but I think God was gently showing me how I've compromised.  How I've accepted a powerless faith and called it my own.  I have a form of godliness.  But, all too often, I deny its power.  I forget and ignore and downplay and doubt the power of the Most High God.  

There is power in the blood.    

Would you be free from your burden of sin?
There's power in the blood, power in the blood
Would you o'er evil the victory win?
There's wonderful power in the blood
There is power, power, wonder-working power
In the blood of the Lamb
There is power, power, wonder-working power
In the precious blood of the Lamb

How long will we have a form of godliness and profess the name of Jesus?  But deny the power that He has in our lives?  Are we like the Israeli army--living day after day in defeat before we've even gone to battle?  Do we run away at the first threat?  
OR, are we going to choose to be like David?  Running headlong toward the battle line, toward the giants, confident in the victorious power of the Most High God?
Let the name of Jesus be our battle cry!   

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