November 24, 2008

A call to arms...

I just read this morning, a very familiar story for many people... the tale of David and Goliath in the seventeenth chapter of 1 Samuel. For those of you who may not know the story or have not read it in some time... it begins with the army of the nation of Israel cowering in the shadow of the Philistine army and it’s champion, the giant soldier Goliath. He is daily taunting the ranks of the Israelites. The Israelite see an insurmountable task... to defeat the obstacle before them. In the mist of this, we see the youthful David, the youngest son of Jessie of Bethlehem, arriving to bring supplies to his older brothers and return with news for his father. David sees the fear among the ranks and begins to question the soldiers. We soon see this young shepherd, who refused to don the armor of a warrior, walk out to meet the giant Philistine. With a simple sling and stone the young boy kills the man who held the Israeli army at bay.

Why do I write about this story? Why recount the tale again, though for many it is such a familiar story? Because I was struck again by David… here we see a young man, one who would later be king over God’s people and the writer of much of the Psalms, have faith in his Lord. Unlike so many around him, he stood up and ask the question, "...Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God? (1 Samuel 17:26)" Wow! What a statement. He stand with these veteran soldiers and challenges their courage and devotion. Later in the account, David says to Goliath, "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. 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." Standing before a seeming insurmountable foe, David speaks with conviction and total faith in the outcome.

I wonder how often I am the armies of Israel, cowering in the corner of life. Wonder when God will step in and save me. I am unsure how often I have been David standing before giants in my life with the confidence of this young man. Oh, that I would have the faith to stand and say that I am a servant of the Most High and you will not win this battle.

Each of us daily fights the giants in life, whether we do this on a personal level or as part of the body of Christ, we must stand like David and say who are these people or this circumstance that it should defy the soldiers and armies of the living God. Let us fight so that the whole world will know that their is a God!