May 2009 - Vol. 30
The Battle is the Lord's, by Paul Jordan, continued



Your clothes don’t fit
 “And Saul said to David, ‘Go, and the Lord be with you!’” So Saul agrees. Exasperated or exhorting? Hard to tell.

“Then Saul clothed David with his armor.” Maybe a sign of official commission? Maybe it made him look more impressive? Maybe Saul just wants to protect him? Maybe the boy is so hidden in the armour as to reduce the embarrassment factor for Saul? All we know is that it doesn’t fit.

“David then said to Saul, ‘I cannot go with these; for I am not used to them.’” Perhaps Saul expects David to do things the way he would. But David is young and he’s going to take an innovative approach. The goals remain, but the method looks different.

Instead “he took his staff in his hand, and chose five smooth stones from the brook.” 

Imagine the scene. The young boy appears on the battle field, the underdog gladiator on whom rests Israel’s future. “He drew near to the Philistine.” 

Much at stake. Hollywood can’t match this moment. 

Who knows if his brothers were aware of what was going on. Gasps. It’s David. What’s he doing? I can’t believe you let him out of your sight. Dad’s going to kill us… But this is David’s day. He is on stage. And no one else can take his turn.

Approaching, Goliath sees him. “Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks? Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air …” You are not serious? Sending a little boy? A babe cannot win a war!

David boldly proclaims: “You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin; but I come to you in the name of the Lord, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down, and cut off your head.” 

Quite a speech. And then, the motor of his zeal, “…that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.” 

So that all the earth may know that God is alive! David declares his love. The fuel in David’s heart is the Spirit of God. And his seemingly risky, selfless action is so that God can be known. And so it begins.

The battle is the Lord’s
He runs at him. He doesn’t even tentatively pick his steps like a predator about to pounce. He runs. “The battle is the Lord’s and he will give you into our hand. …David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine.” 

Interestingly, David doesn’t say he will give you into my hand this time but our hand. Not only is he doing this so that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, he is also doing this on behalf of his people. “David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone, and slung it, and struck the Philistine on his forehead; the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the ground.” A thud echoes in a stunned valley as six cubits of warrior hit the dust. Disbelief gives way to glory. What a day! What a victory! 

David has taken his turn!

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