David’s character and virtue are contrasted with Saul’s vice and downfall. David is insignificant to his family and to Israel. The opening scene of chapter 11 is Samuel going to Bethlehem in search of a new king. The prophet life must be a lonely one. The elders of Bethlehem trembled when they met Samuel asking if he has come in peace. The stage is set from the beginning as God says to Samuel, “Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”
David was a “man after God’s own heart.” This doesn’t mean that God created him differently than he created Saul, or anyone else. He did not especially design him in the form of his own heart. David’s desire in life was God’s heart. Everything he did, was evaluated and viewed through the lens of God’s heart. He refuses to kill Saul because he was anointed by God even though Saul was trying to kill him. He danced in the streets in his underwear before the ark because he was so overcome by God’s glory. He waited on God’s timing for him to be king when he could have easily started a coup and led the people to overthrow Saul. He, even at a young age, refused to stand by and allow an uncircumcised Philistine to continue to defile the ranks of the LORD, God!
When reading the story of David and Goliath we can take it in a few different directions. On one hand, God’s power is manifested in the arm of David as he fell the giant with a rock from a sling. On the other, David used the abilities God blessed him with, which he developed over time, to bring honor God. The first telling of the story can quickly turn the narrative into a miraculous one of God intervening. The second telling is about recognizing the gifts you have developed and turning them toward God to bring Him honor. I believe the second telling deserves the greater emphasis. You have been blessed with talents and abilities. What are you doing to bring honor to God with them?
David points us to Christ in the kind of king he is. We’ll talk more next week about all the Davidic references to Jesus. David was not the perfect king but he did point to the perfect King. David killed Goliath. This is more than an underdog story. This is a story about how a life, that has been dedicated to following the heart of God, develops and strengthens to the point of standing off with a giant. With the conquering of Goliath, we know there will be other giants in David’s life. Christ stood before the Goliath called death and conquered it for good (1 Cor. 15:26).
Because Christ conquered death, the giants we face are diminished. As the body of Christ, we’ve been given power through the Holy Spirit to overcome the Goliaths in this world. While our minds quickly jump to the Goliaths we personally face (insecurity, worthiness, relationship issues, etc.), what does it look like for us as a church to look at the Goliaths of the world around us and work towards conquering them (race issues, poverty, broken families/marriages, hunger, etc.)?
As the Body of Christ, how do we come together and stand on the battle field before Goliath with confidence? Take time to read 1 Corinthians 12-13 at some point. This whole section is about unity in the Body of Christ. Here are verses 7-14:
7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.
12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.
Your gifts are for the common good of the Body of Christ, the church. We are all baptized by the same Spirit so we are all part of the same Body. How are you developing your gifts so that Queen City church of Christ can be a stronger Body facing Goliath in our corner of Charlotte? How are you getting better acquainted with the other parts of the Body so that we are stronger together? Get involved with a Small Group, in a Bible class, host a game night, help with events, etc. Find ways to invest in the Body of Christ at QCC so that we can be stronger together and have confidence in the face of Goliath through the Holy Spirit.