Community Group Study Notes
- Why is it sometimes difficult for us to see what God sees? Based on what you heard in Sunday’s message, how can we change our perspective to align with His?
- What does it look like in your everyday life to trust God in all things? What discernible difference is there when you trust God this way?
- Based on what you heard in Sunday’s message, what is one action step you can take in response?
Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods.(Psalm 40:4)
We are in a season called March Madness in college basketball. During March Madness kind of odds makers in Las Vegas try to figure out, they kind of do the math and they figure out who are the odds on favorites to win, who are the odds on favorites to lose. I can tell you this. One of the things that they did not see coming was a 13 seed called the University of Buffalo beating a number four seed in Arizona. That's just in the men's tournament because the women did even better and went to the Sweet 16 in the tournament before they lost. We're super proud of kind of our folks from home here. They've made us significantly proud at the University of Buffalo in terms of what they've done.
Something happened in the March Madness tournament that has never happened in the history of the tournament. That is there was a 16 seed, which is the lowest seed you can be in the tournament, that beat a number one seed. The University of Maryland, Baltimore County beat mighty Virginia in the first round of the tournament. That's never happened before so the people that were doing the math, that just exploded on them and it messed up everyone's bracket on the earth because it's never happened before and it did happen. There's something about those stories that we love, isn't there? You've got University of Maryland, Baltimore County, who nobody's ever really heard of their basketball program. They're this little program and then they're taking on this giant of Virginia and they end up winning. We're like, "Oh man. That's something cool about that." We just resonate with it.
That's probably why in literature we resonate a lot with kind of the little person or the little people that end up doing something great and end up taking on something so huge that you'd never think that that would be the case like little Frodo who is a little hobbit with hairy feet from the shire who's kind of entrusted with the ring of power so that he can deliver that to the fires of Mordor and save Middle Earth and whips Sauron and all the mean people. I mean, that's the deal. We're like, "Come on, Frodo." When Frodo does it, we're like, "Yeah, man. Little hobbit, he took on the world. It was awesome." I don't know if you did that, but that's what I did. Maybe more recently, Katniss Everdeen who is from the poverty-stricken coal mining District 12 in Panem and gets chosen somehow, even though she really knows how to operate a bow and arrow, but somehow she's able to take on The Capitol, which was filled with evil and President Snow and somehow stand up to them. It was pretty extraordinary. We identify with these kinds of stories.
You could take it in real life if you wanted to and take a woman named Rosa Parks who sat on a bus and started to take on by just sitting on a bus humbly but strongly and bravely and took on an entire governmental system of oppression and injustice and helped to sow the seeds in that moment of what would then become stuff like Martin Luther King's message after that. We look at that and all of those scenarios that we're talking about, whether it's basketball or whether we're talking about literature or we're talking about real life historical events, we would say these are like David versus Goliath stories. You've got kind of this small thing taking on this gigantic thing. We think, "Man, if were doing the math, nobody would be betting on certain things." Nobody's going to go, "I'm going to take Frodo for the win." Nobody's doing that. He's a hobbit from the shire with huge feet and hairy feet, but he's like this big. Just pat him on the head. He comes over sometimes for Thanksgiving. It's crazy.
When we talk about this in our culture, we actually use the terminology, whenever we talk about the small person taking on the big person, it's always David versus Goliath. That's what we talk about. Well, I think it would help us, if there's ever a story that kind of identifies and shows to us kind of a response of, "Hey, don't do the math on this one. The betting odds are not with David against Goliath." That's a story that I think we should look at. Here's what I want to do. I want to introduce kind of the beginning of that story to us in 1 Samuel 17 and then after that we're going to look at the greater text of that story and see if we can understand some things that maybe God would want to say to us in and through this story as we conclude our Don't Do the Math series today.
Look in 1 Samuel 17 beginning in verse one. It says, "Now the Philistines gathered their forces for war and assembled in Sokoh at Judah. They pitched camp at Ephes Dammim, between Sokoh and Azekah. Saul and the Israelites assembled and camped in the valley." Saul was the King of Israel. "They camped in the Valley of Elah and drew up their battle line to meet the Philistines. The Philistines occupied one hill and the Israelites another, with the valley between them. A champion named Goliath, who was from Gath, came out of the Philistine camp. His height was six cubits and a span." That's over nine feet. "Goliath stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel, 'Why do you come out and line up for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and are you not the servants of Saul? Choose a man and have him come down to me. If he is able to fight and kill me, we will become your subjects; but if I overcome him and kill him, you will become our subjects and serve us.' Then the Philistine said, 'This day I defy the armies of Israel! Give me a man and let us fight each other.' On hearing the Philistine's words, Saul and all the Israelites were dismayed and terrified."
You probably understand the setup to this story, right? You've got this massive, gigantic guy named Goliath who comes out on behalf of the Philistine army and challenges anyone from the Israelite army so that basically they can fight on behalf. If one wins, then that army gets to take over the other army and have them be subject to them. That's kind of the idea. What he does is he comes out every day and he starts defying Israel, he defies Israel's God, and basically is cursing them. This is what he's doing. Everybody, including King Saul, everybody is terrified of this guy. They don't know what to do with themselves. They're freaking out. That's when in the story we're introduced to David. Now, what I'm going to show you, it's a little bit of a larger swath of scripture. I'm not going to put it on the screens. I'm actually going to read it to you. You can either follow along in your copy of the text or you can listen and just engage in the story because it's a really extraordinary story.
I'm going to pick up in verse number 12 of 1 Samuel 17. It says, "Now David was the son of an Ephrathite named Jesse, who was from Bethlehem in Judah. Jesse had eight sons, and in Saul's time Jesse was very old. Jesse's three oldest sons had followed Saul to the war: The firstborn was Eliab; the second, Abinadab; and the third, Shammah. David was the youngest. The three oldest followed Saul, but David went back and forth from Saul to tend his father's sheep at Bethlehem. For 40 days the Philistine," which is referring to Goliath, "came forward every morning and evening and took his stand. Now Jesse said to his son David, 'Take this ephah of roasted grain and these 10 loaves of bread for your brothers and hurry to their camp. Take along these 1o cheeses to the commander of their unit. See how your brothers are and bring back some assurance from them. They are with Saul and all the men of Israel in the Valley of Elah, fighting against the Philistines.'
Early in the morning David left the flock in the care of a shepherd, loaded up and set out, just as Jesse had directed. He reached the camp as the army was going out to its battle positions, shouting the war cry. Israel and the Philistines were drawing up their lines facing each other. David left his things with the keeper of supplies, and he ran to the battle lines and asked his brothers how they were. As he was talking with them, Goliath, the Philistine champion from Gath, stepped out from his battle lines and shouted his usual defiance, and David heard it. Whenever the Israelites saw Goliath, they all fled from him in great fear. Now the Israelites had been saying, 'Do you see how this man keeps coming out? He comes out to defy Israel. The king, Saul, will give great wealth to the man who kills him. He will also give him his daughter in marriage and will exempt him and his family from taxes in Israel.'
David asked the men that were standing near him, 'What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and removes this disgrace from Israel? Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?'" You got to like David. "They repeated to him what they had been saying and they told David, 'This is what will be done for the man who kills him.' When Eliab, David's oldest brother, heard him speaking with the men, he burned with anger at his brother, David, and he asked, 'Why have you come down here? And with whom did you leave those few sheep in the wilderness? I know how conceited you are, David, and how wicked your heart is; you came down only to watch the battle.' 'Now what have I done?' said David. 'Can't I even speak?'
He then turned away to someone else and brought up the same matter, and the men answered him just like they did before. What David said was overheard and reported to King Saul, and Saul sent for David. David said to Saul, 'Let no one lose heart on account of this Philistine; your servant will go up and fight against him.' Saul replied, 'You're not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a young man, and he has been a warrior from his youth.' But David said to Saul, 'Your servant has been keeping his father's sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, I struck it and I rescued the sheep from its mouth. When that animal turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it.'" That dude's a stud.
Verse 36, "'Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the paw of this Philistine.'" He said hand, but he meant paw. "Saul said to David, 'Go, and the Lord be with you.' Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on David and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them. 'I cannot go in these,' he said to Saul, 'because I am not used to them.' So he took them off. Then he took his staff in his hand and chose five smooth stones from the stream and he put them in the pouch of his shepherd's bag and, with his sling in his hand, he approached the Philistine.
Meanwhile, the Philistine, with his shield bearer in front of him, kept coming closer to David. He looked David over and saw that he was little more than a boy, glowing with health and handsome, and he despised him. He said to David, 'Am I a dog, that you come at me with sticks?' And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. 'Come here,' he said, 'and I'll give your flesh to the birds and the wild animals!' David said to the Philistine, '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, who you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hands, and I'll strike you down and cut off your head.'" My man. "'This very day I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord's, and he will give all of you into our hands.'
As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him. Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell facedown on the ground. So David triumphed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone; without a sword in his hand he struck down the Philistine and killed him. Then David ran and stood over him. He took hold of the Philistine's sword and he drew it from the sheath. After he killed him, he cut off his head with the sword." All right. Now, this is an extraordinary story. It's a story that we've heard and sometimes we only hear sometimes the synopsis version. That's a David versus Goliath struggle, but when you read it, you start going, "Man, this story is loaded with truth."
Now, as incredible a story as this is, I want to help make sure that I kind of set the temperature for you in the room today because I want to make sure that your expectation is not something that's going to go unmet. If what you're expecting today is a message on how to kill the giants in your life, you're going to leave dissatisfied. That is not what this message is going to be about because I don't believe that fundamentally that's what this text is actually all about. I believe that there are definitely some practical considerations because this was a real historical event and we certainly can derive some encouragement about how we deal with the enemy from this particular text, but there are other things that I want you to see today that I don't want us to miss. I'm going to need you to stay with me because I'm going to ask you to view this text with different eyes maybe than you have seen it before because when you begin to view this text with the eyes of looking back into it, we have the benefit of living in the time that we live in, but looking backwards into this text, you'll begin to see that this text is extraordinary in the way that it unpacks the reality of the gospel.
You see, that's what I want us to be able to see today when we begin to kind of lift up our eyes. You see, contextually speaking, one of the things that's really important about where this story falls is it falls halfway through redemptive history. If we take the time of redemptive history from the time of Abraham's promise that God made to Abraham, "Through you, a seed is going to come that's going to rescue the world," that's what he said to Abraham, and then we look at kind of the fulfillment of redemptive history when Jesus came and he died and he rose again, the thing that happens at the halfway point between those two things is this event right at the halfway spot. Now, why is that important for us? Well, it's important for us because the halfway point that we're talking about is between Abraham's promise that Israel had known and was clinging to, this idea that a seed from Abraham was going to come and was going to be the rescuer of the world. This was every generation's hope and every generation of Israel clung to that promise. Halfway from that promise to the fulfillment of that promise in Jesus, we've got this story of David and Goliath.
Now, the promise that was made to Abraham, "Through you, a seed is going to come that's going to rescue the world," that promise was actually anticipated by an earlier promise. The earlier promise happened in the Garden of Eden. In the Garden of Eden, as you know, Adam and Eve decided that they were going to walk independently of God, that they thought that they knew better than God. They chose a different route from God. They gave into the temptation of the serpent, who was really kind of the embodiment of the evil one, the ancient evil one, Satan himself. That serpent tempts them to walk kind of independently from God. Well, God obviously deals with Adam and Eve as a result of that, but God also deals with the serpent.
In dealing with the serpent, God actually makes a promise when he is cursing this serpent. You remember it? It's in Genesis chapter three. Here's what it says. "So the Lord God said to the serpent, 'Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he,'" her offspring, "'will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.'" That was the kind of original promise and then God makes this promise to Abraham, "Through you a seed is going to come that's going to rescue the world." Then, ultimately, we see the fulfillment of that.
Here's what we know. We know that Genesis three actually is pointing to Jesus when it talks about crushing the head of the enemy, "I'm going to put enmity between you," enemy, serpent, "and the woman's offspring," who was obviously pointing ultimately to the Son of God, "and he's going to crush your head." That was the promise of Genesis three. It was pointing toward Jesus. The promise of Genesis 12 was that there's a seed that's going to come through Abraham and it's pointing to Jesus. Here we are now, halfway through redemptive history and God, through the story of David and Goliath, is reminding us that he hasn't forgotten his promise. You see, when we start to unpack the story, here's what we first see. Right when we open the story, we see that there is an enemy and it's a giant enemy, Goliath, stands over nine feet tall, nine and a half feet tall, whatever it is. He's this humongous giant of a person. He is an enemy who is loud and defiant and who is cursing Israel and Israel's God.
Interestingly enough, when we begin to read the text of the description of Goliath, we begin to see what people in the original audience might have seen when we pay close enough attention. Look at the description, "A champion named Goliath, who was from Gath, came out of the Philistine camp. His height was six cubits and a span. He had a bronze helmet on his head and wore a coat of scale armor of bronze weighing 5,000 shekels." Some translations say 6,000. "On his legs he wore bronze greaves, and a bronze javelin was slung on his back. His spear shaft was like a weaver's rod, and its iron point weighed 600 shekels. His shield bearer went ahead of him." You see, when you begin to read this and you see exactly what the early ancient Israelites would have seen when they were reading this passage, here's what they would have seen coming at them. Every description in here about Goliath has to do with six, the number of man.
It starts to talk about his height. It starts to talk about the weight of his javelin. It starts to talk about the point of the spear. In fact, there are six descriptions related to his armor and his weapons. All spread through here, what you keep seeing is six, six, six, six. Six is the number of man and is often the number that is associated with an enemy. The description of his armor is that he is wearing scale armor. What interpreters would tell you about scale armor is that it was set up in such a way to make it look serpent-like. What you have walking out of the Philistine camp to take on Israel that is cursing their God and is defying the armies of God is a giant serpent-like man. You start to think about it in those terms and you start going, "Huh. Maybe I ought to play a little closer attention to this passage of scripture."
Here's what happens. The giant dressed in serpent-like armor comes out defying God and striking fear in all of Israel and what does God do? Listen carefully. He raises up an assuming boy from Bethlehem. That sound familiar? He raises up an assuming boy from Bethlehem who does what? He shows up to confront and destroy evil. You know, that's exactly what Jesus did in his appearing. In fact, here's how 1 John says it, "The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil's work." That's exactly why he came. You see, what we start to look at when we see this story is we start seeing this unfolding beautiful picture of the gospel because this story, even though it's historical and real and happened, it's also pointing to something greater. God hasn't forgotten his promise. What he said he was going to do when he said, "Through the woman, the offspring of the woman is going to crush the head of the enemy." When he promised through Abraham that the seed was going to come, that was going to rescue the world, here we are halfway through redemptive history before its fulfillment, and God is setting in front of us a story to remind us that God is faithful and that God will do what he said he was going to do.
You see, David was sent by his father to his brothers, but his brothers rejected him, so too Jesus. Jesus was sent by his Father to his brothers, Israel, and they too rejected him. What does John's gospel in chapter one say? "Jesus came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him." I find that really extraordinary because when you think about what David was doing, he was giving us an early picture of Jesus. When David goes to war, he doesn't go to war as a warrior. He goes to war as a shepherd and so did Jesus. Listen to what John 10 says. Jesus says, "I'm the good shepherd and the good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep." Jesus, instead of using kind of the weapons of warfare, he used the weapon of love and he laid down his life for the sheep. Then, do you know what David did ultimately? I find this pretty extraordinary. David was somebody who was representative of the people of Israel. In other words, listen to this, Israel sent out a representative to fight on their behalf.
You see, in the ancient world, that would happen from time to time, kind of the great warrior would come out and would challenge the other. If they won, then they got to take over the other enemy or whatever. David comes out and he faces the enemy on behalf of Israel. He is a representative. That's exactly what Jesus did. In fact, Goliath would come out every single day for 40 days, the scripture says, 40 days morning and evening, 40 days and nights. Goliath would show up and every single person in Israel was frightened and terrified except one. Jesus, when he announced his ministry and he came out of the waters of baptism, he went into the wilderness and there he was with the enemy for 40 days and 40 nights and he threw every temptation he could throw at him, yet Jesus was the only one who would not yield to temptation.
You see, you start to see the picture of the gospel in and through everything that's happening in this passage of scripture. Then, do you know what's so astonishing about this passage? Once David throws the stone and slings the stone, it hits Goliath, Goliath goes down. What does David do? David comes over to Goliath and uses Goliath's own weapon to cut off his head. That's exactly what happened with Jesus because the enemy of Jesus, Satan himself, and the enemy of our souls, he thought that he had Jesus dead and gone when he nailed him to a cross, but Jesus took Satan's own weapon to cut his own head off. It's extraordinary. Every time that I think about this idea, I'm kind of overwhelmed with the reality that what Jesus did is he took the weapon that was formed against him and he used it to actually trample the enemy. That's what David did. He took Goliath's own sword. Goliath thought he would be using that sword on David and he took Goliath's own sword and cut his head off.
You know, Jesus talked about this idea, in fact. Listen to what he said in John chapter 12, "Now is the time for judgment on this world. Now the prince of this world will be driven out and I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself." He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die. You see, often times when we read that passage and we talk about when Jesus is lifted up, we think that means we're singing songs about Jesus. That's not at all what Jesus was talking about. Jesus was actually talking about him being lifted up on the cross. You see, when you got nailed to a cross, you were laying on the ground basically on wood. Once they nailed you in, then they lifted you up and put you in a hole. Jesus was signifying the kind of death he was going to die.
Every time I hear that passage, I can not get away from the words of the great now departed and with Jesus, the great black preacher EV Hill, because when he talked about that passage of scripture, he said, "I know that we don't have everything that Jesus said. John even tells ut that all the works that he's done, all the things that he's said, that'd be too much for anything." He says, "But sometimes I use my sanctified imagination to think about what that might have been like when they finally saw their handiwork and all the rulers and all those infested by the enemy had Jesus laying on a cross." He says, "There he is just kind of laying there on wood. I wonder if maybe Jesus just said, 'Hey, go ahead and nail my feet because I'm not running. Go ahead and nail my hands because I'm not fighting, but you better not lift me up, because when I am lifted up, I will draw all people to myself.'" Every time I hear that passage, I hear his voice ringing in my ear.
You see, when Jesus was lifted up, he was conquering, listen to this, he was conquering the enemy. He was cutting the head off the enemy with the very instrument and weapon that the enemy has used against him just like David did. This is a glorious picture of the gospel. By the way, if you want just another note here, Goliath said, "I'm going to feed your carcass to the wild animals and the birds." David said, "Oh, no. You're not. You and all the Philistines are going to be fed to the wild animals and the birds." Do you know that Jesus says the same thing? The resurrected Son of God, when you begin reading how everything transpires at the very end of the age in the book of Revelation, do you know that we are told that that's exactly what happens? Listen to what Revelation 19 says, "I saw an angel standing in the sun, who cried in a loud voice to all the birds flying in midair, 'Come, gather together for the great supper of God, so that you may eat the flesh of kings, generals, and the mighty, of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, great and small.'" All of those enemies who opposed God will be judged and defeated. That's what we see in the picture of David and Goliath.
You know what you see here? You see a picture of the gospel of Jesus Christ halfway through redemptive history. Here's God saying, "I haven't forgotten my promise. I told you from the very beginning, I promised you, enemy, that your head was going to be crushed. Your head was going to be crushed by the one who was going to come. I told Abraham that there is a seed that is coming through you even though you and Sarah are barren and you're old and you think that she's way past the point of being able to give birth. It's not going to happen. I'm going to give you a promise and through you is coming a seed that is going to rescue the world." That would eventually happen, but halfway through redemptive history, God is saying, "I haven't forgotten. I want to remind that I've still got one who is anointed." As you remember, Samuel had anointed David kind of in private because God had rejected Saul. Now, David hadn't said much about that at this point. He didn't want to say anything about that. He was the anointed one. God sent his anointed one to face off and square off with the enemy. You know what he ended up doing? Crushing his head.
If you want to summarize this passage, not only what this passage teaches as the big idea in its past historical setting, but also what it was pointing to, you could say it simply this way. God crushed the head of the enemy through his anointed one. That's the big idea of what happened in this passage. God crushed the head of the enemy through his anointed one. Now, this story, halfway through redemptive history, reminds us of God's faithfulness, but this is also a historical story. It happened in a real place at a real time. I've been to the Valley of Elah. I've picked up stones in the Valley of Elah. I've slung a slingshot in the Valley of Elah. I was terrible at it, but whatever. David wasn't. I want to give you some practical pieces out of this passage of scripture before you leave because I want your faith to rise. I want your faith to rise today.
I want to give you just, I'm going to give two words, not individual words. I'm going to give a word to two groups of people. Here's the first group that I want to give a word to: leaders. Jerry, pull up a chair, dude. I also know that we've got a lot of leaders, pastors, teachers that watch. I want to give a word to leaders. Here's the word. Don't get used to it. Let me show you what I mean. When David was getting ready to go fight and he said, "I'll be willing to do this," Saul called him in. Listen to that interchange between Saul and David. It says, "Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic and he put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them. 'I cannot go in these,' he said to Saul, 'because I am not used to them.' So he took them off."
See, ladies and gentlemen, this is a great word for leaders because when you begin to look at, stay there, Jerry, when you begin to look at 1 Samuel as a whole book, here's what you find out about 1 Samuel. 1 Samuel as a book is about two different kinds of leaders. It's about a leader who walks in the flesh and a leader who walks by faith. Saul, King Saul is a leader who walked by the flesh and David is a leader who walked by faith. What we're reminded in this passage of scripture is that when David is now going to go take on the giant, Saul comes in and he says, "Hey, wear my armor. Here's my helmet. Here's my armor. Here's my tunic. Here's my stuff." David, out of courtesy and being gracious, he puts it on, but then he immediately says, "This is not what I'm used to. You know what I'm used to? I'm used to trusting God in the middle of the wilderness when the lion and the bear come after me. That's what I'm used to. I'm not used to trying to do this the same way the world does this."
I've got a word for leaders, including this one right here. It doesn't matter what the size of your platform is because you better remember how you got to that platform. It was not by your own ability. It was by trusting in God and letting him do what he wants to do in and through your life. Don't start wearing the armor now. Make sure that you still learn to trust God in all things. That's for me and that's for some of you. We got to remember that because if there was anybody, by the way, who was the best opponent for Goliath in all of Israel, it was Saul. Do you know when you read back a few chapters, you'll find that Saul stood head and shoulders above everyone in Israel, the scripture says? You want the biggest, baddest stud in Israel? Saul was your man, but Saul walked in the flesh. As a result, he wasn't courageous. Remember when Goliath would come out every single day what would happen? It said that Saul and all the people were terrified. He didn't have the courage to deal with him. Why? Because he didn't have God's power. God had removed his hand from Saul's life. He decided he wanted to walk in the flesh. He wanted to do things his own way.
See, Saul should have been the one, but here's what Saul does anyway. Saul hears David has that kind of courage, that David has that kind of anointing. He calls him to himself. Then Saul says, "Here. Wear my armor." Do you know why Saul's doing that? Not because Saul's so nice. He wants Goliath gone, believe me. He wants Goliath gone because that helps him, but he figures, "Hey, David might not make it through this, but if he does and he's got my armor on, I can take part of the credit. The king's armor is what did this." Then, all of a sudden, he's got the credit. Listen. Leaders, including the one talking, do not let the world get glory for what God only should get glory for. Don't let it happen. Don't let the influence of the enemy and the fear of the enemy start making you try to combat the enemy the same way the enemy operates. We are to be a people who walk by faith. We need leaders who walk by faith, not leaders who walk by the flesh, not leaders who are trying to build for themselves an empire, but leaders who are saying, "We want to see the glory of God on display in the lives of his people and in the world that we live in." That's a word for me and a word for some. That's a word for leaders. Don't get used to it.
Let me give a word to all of us before we finish. Here's the word I would give to all of us. The whole world will know that there is a God. Listen to what David said when he was talking. David said to the Philistine, "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 deliver you into my hands, and I'll strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will give the very carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds, and the wild animals and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord's, and he will give all of you into our hands." The whole world will know that there is a God. If there's something we need to be able to grab from this, it's that.
How do we do that? I'm going to give you a couple of quick things. Here's how we do that. How do we let the whole world know that there is a God? Let's look at this passage of scripture. Here's the first thing. You need to be able to see what God sees. You've got to see what God sees. You see, when we back up a chapter from 1 Samuel 17 and we go back to 16, here's what we're reminded of. Samuel goes and looks because God has said, he says, "I've rejected Saul as king. Samuel, I want you to go see another one. I want you to go see Jesse." Well, he goes to see Jesse and he sees some of Jesse's kids. He's like, "That's a stud. That's a stud. There's definitely going to be a king coming out of here." Then God's like, "No, no, no. Go to the little one, the little one out in the field with the sheep. Go get him." He goes out there. Here's what God says, "I don't judge by outward appearance, just by the heart." Man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart. He's reminding us of something very important there. You see, David was someone after God's own heart, the scripture says. Listen, if you want to start seeing things the way that God sees them, you have to have a heart that is God's.
You see, some of us, we've held back our hearts from God. We give him Sundays or we give him a little bit. We throw a five into the offering plate and make it look like, "God, we've tipped you for the week. You still should be waiting on me." God, listen, God wants our whole heart. He wants everything about us. When he has everything about us, all of a sudden, we start seeing everything the way that he sees it. You see, David was able to see what no one else in Israel, including Saul, was able to see. Everyone in Israel saw, big giant, little me. What David saw was big God, little giant, because he saw from God's perspective. We need to see what God sees and we will never do that unless we have a heart that is God's. When our heart is God's, we begin to see things completely differently.
Let me give you a second reminder here. Here's what we help the whole world to know. We don't war like the world. Look at what David said. Verse number 45, "David said to the Philistine, '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.'" You know what he didn't do? David was not dependent upon swords or spears or armor. You know what he needed? He needed God and whatever God had already put in his hand. David did use what he already had. He went to that creek and picked up five smooth stones. Why five? Because Goliath had four brothers and in case any of them were feeling froggy, come at me, bro. David was empowered by God. David was dependent upon the God who had always been faithful to him when he was in the wilderness facing lions and bears coming after his sheep. He decided, "I'm not going to try and do this the same way the world does it. I'm going to continue to rely on the God who got me where I am." What a great reminder for us. We don't war like the world.
You see, the world tells us that we fight fire with fire. It tells us that we combat hate with more hate. It tells us that we try and gain power to combat power, that that's what we do. That's not what we learn. We learn what it means to trust in God and let him be the one who fights our battles for us. That gives me reminder of the last thing. It's this. We trust God's deliverance. If we want the whole world to know, we've got to trust God's deliverance. Look in verse number 47, "All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord's, and he will give all of you into our hands." You see, here's what David knew. David knew that God alone is the one who delivers.
Here's what you and I have to make sure that we don't do. We've got to make sure that we don't read this story wrong because what happens sometimes when we read this story is we look in the story and we try and find ourselves in this story. We say, "You know what? We're David." No, you're not David. You're Israel. You're cowering in fear. You need a David. I need a David. We needed, as shrunk in fear from the enemy, we needed one to represent us that could take his head off when we could not do it. We now have a greater than David in the Lord Jesus Christ who has gone to a cross, dying for our sin, using the same weapon that was formed against him to cut the head off the enemy. This is what we need to be reminded of because we can trust God's deliverance. Because of what Jesus has done, we can trust the deliverance of God that may or may not happen in the now, but it is certain it will happen in the future because God's promises stand.
He promised in Genesis three. He promised in Genesis 12. He fulfilled at the cross in the resurrection. Halfway through redemptive history, we've got this picture of David and Goliath that says God has not forgotten his promises. He will not forget his promises. Jesus has crushed the head of the enemy. As a result, we're delivered. You know what that means? Listen to this. When you find yourself putting your faith in Jesus, because Jesus has crushed the head of the enemy, it means the enemy is under the feet of Jesus, which means when we're in Jesus, the enemy is under our feet. He's under our feet. In fact, when Paul was trying to encourage the persecuted church in Rome, you know what he said at the end of that letter? "The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you."
You see, we have to remember this, ladies and gentlemen. When we see what God sees and we have a heart that is God's, we'll begin to see as God sees. We won't war like the world. We're not going to start saying we're going to walk by faith, but now we're going to try and do battle the same way that the world does battle. No, no, no. We're going to trust God's deliverance. Why? Because Jesus Christ has crushed the enemy under his feet. When we're in Jesus, it means the enemy is under our feet. Even though he's under our feet and even though his head cut off like a snake, he still moves. I took a hoe one time in Florida, we were digging around a palm tree at the church and there was a snake coming right out at us. I got that bad boy. There was a man named Bill Brand. I'll never forget it. He was mad at me. He's like, "That's the good kind of snake. Those are the kind of snakes we want." I was like, "No snake do we want. There is no snake that's right here in my feet that I want. At that point, none of them are friends to me."
I took a hoe. I smashed that thing off. His head is over here. His body's just dancing. Now, it's still freaking me out just a little bit because I saw that body dancing. I was like, "That is not cool," but you can pick it up and mess with him. You know why? Head's removed. No more poison to deal with here. Whatever you want to do. Now, you're kind of freaking me out a little bit. It scares me just a little bit, but your head's been crushed. It's gone. We've got to remember that, ladies and gentlemen, when the enemy, because here's what he wants to do. He wants to come out in your life boasting and defying God and being loud and making you scared. "Your marriage doesn't have a chance," he keeps telling you. You've got to remind him, "You're under my feet because I'm in Jesus and he has crushed your head. I'm listening to your squirming body and you've already been defeated. I'm not listening to you. There is a chance for my marriage because Jesus has overcome, because Jesus lives. There is a chance for my marriage."
He'll tell you, "God's never going to use you. Why do you even pay any attention to him?" You've just got to say, "Shut up, man. You're under my feet. I'm not listening to things that I've stepped on. I've stepped on you because I'm in Jesus and he stepped on you. I'm not listening to you anymore." "You'll never be able to get your finances back in order where you can take of your needs and then have more to be able to give." "Shut up. The God of peace is going to crush Satan under my feet. I'm not listening to you today." "You should be intimated to ask those people to join you at Easter because, who knows, they're going to think you're a Jesus freak. They're going to think you're crazy. They're going to think you're nuts." "Who cares? Shut up. Not listening." The one who has overcome can transform any life, can cut down any giant and take his head off. This is what we have to remember, that God has crushed the head of the enemy through his anointed one. Just like he did with David, so too we see in the life of Jesus. The gospel rains on us from all places in the scripture. Be encouraged that the enemy is under your feet as long as you're in Jesus. When you can see the world as God sees it, you'll understand it's always big God, little giant.