“Whose son are you?”

How could this be?  In the story of David and Goliath, after the giant had been killed and Israel had won the battle, King Saul asked David a strange question, “Whose son are you?”  King Saul had just had some kind of conversation with David when David was volunteering to fight Goliath.  Even before that, David had stood before king Saul and played the harp to soothe the King’s distressing spirit.  Perhaps David’s appearance had changed from the time he had played the harp to the time he defeated the giant.  How could King Saul not have known who David was?

And Saul said to him, “Whose son [are] you, young man?” So David answered, “[I am] the son of your servant Jesse the Bethlehemite.”          I Samuel 17:58

Why did the King want to know who David’s father was?  For one thing, David’s victory for Israel had brought the blessings of no taxes to David’s family.  David had also won freedom and great riches and the King’s daughter in marriage.  But King Saul must have also known that David’s faith in God and the favor of God had come from someone.  David’s identity came from his relationship with his father.  I know there are some people who don’t want anything to do with their father and some people have never known their father.  But the child of God should know that we don’t self identify, our identity comes from our Heavenly Father.  He tells us who we are and makes us who we are today.  Paul said, “I am what I am by the grace of God.”  

Perhaps David’s identity had been supernaturally concealed from King Saul only to be revealed at the perfect time. Perhaps this strange question is recorded for me and you to consider it ourselves.  “Whose son/daughter are you?”  It should be obvious who your father is today.  Not only have you taken his name, but we are to take on His holy character and conduct.  We are to take on the Father’s business and do all we can to never shame His holy Name.  “Whose son/daughter are you?”  Through the redeeming work of Jesus Christ on the cross, God has made it possible for everyone to have the Father they are not ashamed of and long to be with.

Killing Fear – Step Four

It takes a lot of faith and determination to kill something you can’t see but you can definitely feel.  In the story of David killing Goliath with a sling and stone, we find the strategy and steps to follow for killing fear in our lives.

Step One –  It matters how you approach the battle of fear.  Successful fear-killers approach “in the name of the Lord.”  Don’t forget that only those who make God the Lord of their lives can use the name of the Lord.

Step Two – Take up your position in faith.  At some point, you must stand still as David did and stand in faith against your fear.

Step Three –  Sling the stone in faith!  That means to release the word, promise, or scripture God has provided for you aiming directly at your fear.  To release it, you must open your mouth and speak it and believe it.

Step Four – Cut off it’s head!

“Therefore David ran and stood over the Philistine, took his sword and drew it out of its sheath and killed him, and cut off his head with it. And when the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled.“ I Samuel 17:51

Just to be sure that Goliath was dead, David removed the giant’s head from his shoulders.  Goliath would never again bring fear upon anyone else.  His fear campaign was over forever.  Cutting off the head of your fear is the final step in killing fear.  Many times our fears are subdued or pushed back with an increase of courage, but they come right back.  This was not the first time Goliath had been paraded on the battlefield with the Philistines, but it was the last.  We will always have different fears that come against us, but some fears are zombies that keep coming back again and again.  But how can we cut off the head of fear?  To cut off the head of fear, something must happen inside of you.  David could have left Goliath laying face down on the ground and ran with the army against the Philistines, but instead David went to terminate the main source of their fear.  Believe that just as God provided the stones to bring Goliath down, He provided the sword to finish the job.  It just so happened that Goliath brought the sword that would sever his head from his body.  To cut off the head of fear, you must use the sword of God’s Word.  Draw out the sword of His Word and use it against the fear.  Jesus consistently used the Word against the enemy in Matthew 4.  We are to do the same.  “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God”
No weapon formed against you shall prosper.”  Isaiah 54:17
We are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.”   Romans 8:37
In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart! I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33

Killing Fear – Step Three

How would your life change if you could kill the fear of that one thing that always holds you back?  Taking a step of faith is almost impossible without killing the fear that never fails to raise its ugly head.  Fear often speaks to us to remind us that we don’t have the education or experience to do what we really want to do.  Fear says, “You don’t have what it takes.”  Fear never fails to mention the financial cost of taking a step of faith.  Fear is the whispering voice that loves to whisper the word failure.

In the story of David and Goliath, David took three steps to kill the fear that had paralyzed the entire Israelite army.  Step one focused on how David approached Goliath.  He approached Goliath in the name of the LORD because he had made God the Lord of his life.  In step two, David took up his position to stand against Goliath.  In step three, David slung the stone.

Step Three – Sling the Stone

“Then David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone; and he slung [it] and struck the Philistine in his forehead, so that the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the earth. 50 So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. But [there was] no sword in the hand of David.”  I Samuel 17:49-50

David’s steps of faith in killing Goliath were all calculated and intentional.  David intentionally stood still at a distance from Goliath to load the stone into the sling with enough time to sling the stone.  Remember also, David didn’t come to the battlefield with stones, but he gathered them from the battlefield at the brook.

If you don’t know already, today is the day to learn how to sling a stone.  What that means is that you and I have to get a stone provided by God and release it.  A stone is a word or scripture or truth or promise God has given you personally to overcome the fear coming against you.  Once you receive it, then you release it.  Releasing that word is not a mystery.  You release that word given by God by opening up your mouth and speaking it in faith. For it to kill fear, it must come from the Lord, and it must be released by you in faith.  Faith still “comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.”  Romans 10:17.

I can promise you that the enemy who is always against you wants you to keep your mouth shut because he knows what happens when God’s people begin to open their mouths in faith.  It would have done David no good at all to have approached Goliath in the name of the LORD and to take up his position if he had not released the stone.  God will always be faithful to give you what you need to speak against fear, and when you speak it in faith, it will do what Goliath did, “fell on his face to the earth.”    

Killing Fear – Step Two

Killing the fear in our lives so that it doesn’t get back up is the great challenge we all face.  In the battle of David and Goliath, David knew what to do to kill the giant.  He knew the steps to take.  He didn’t run onto the battlefield to stand up and stop Goliath before he had bowed down faithfully to God.  To kill any fear in your life, you must come against it in the name of the LORD.  And the only way you can effectively use the powerful name of the Lord is by making the true and living God the Lord of your life.

The next step David took to kill Goliath is critically important:

Step #2. You must take your position.

“So it was, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hurried and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. 49 Then David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone; and he slung [it] and struck the Philistine in his forehead, so that the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the earth.” I Samuel 17:48-49

I’m certain that David was the first person to ever come against Goliath who wasn’t shaking in fear.  David was like a sniper with a sling and a stone with Goliath in the crosshairs.  David ran towards Goliath and took his position.  He didn’t continue running.  Hitting the target requires getting in a still position.  There is coming a moment in your future when you will need to take your position and stand against fear.  You must take your position in complete faith in God to be with you.  David said to Goliath, “This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you.”  I Samuel 17:46.  Those are the words of someone who is taking their position and taking a stand against fear.

The apostle Paul wrote: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”  Ephesians 6:10-11

God is the one who gave David what he needed to take his position and take a stand against Goliath, and God will supply what you need as well.  When the enemy sees you standing instead of fleeing in fear, that should be a clear sign that you are linked up with the Lord Most High.  When you have the assurance of God’s presence, you will be able to kill fear.

 

Killing Fear – Step One

You do not need a license to kill fear, but you do need the Lord Almighty.  In the shocking battle of David and Goliath, David demonstrated not just how to kill a giant, but also how to kill fear.  Goliath personified fear in this Old Testament story.  As a child of God, you need to learn quickly how to kill fear in your life.  There will always be circumstances in your life that will open the door for fear to walk right in.  But what did David do?  How did David kill fear?  Does it matter, just so long as fear loses its head?  It does matter, and there are specific steps you need to take to kill fear.

Step #1.     It matters how you approach fear. 1 Samuel 17:45 “Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.”  

To kill any fear in your life, you must come against it in the name of the LORD.  Many people will speak the name of the Lord, but it makes no difference in their life.  That’s because you can’t throw God’s name around like any other name.  To come against the enemy in the name of the Lord, you must give reverence to His name and understand who it is you are calling on for help.  His name is not like my name or someone else’s name.  To come against the enemy in name of the Lord, He must be your Lord.

Many people want a Savior in their life, but they don’t want a Lord.  If you make the true and living God the Lord of your life, then you can count on Him showing up as Lord over your battles.  To make Him Lord means to accept Him and have faith in Him and to surrender to His will for your life.  To make Him Lord of your life means that He must be Lord over every aspect of your life.  To make God the Lord of your life means that you give Him the place of authority and you constantly look to Him for direction.  Remember that you can’t use His name in a battle against fear until you make Him Lord of your life.

God Provides the Stones

Sometimes the most important details are missed, and that holds true in the story of David and Goliath.  After David got the go-ahead to fight against Goliath, he had to find five smooth stones.  David didn’t show up to the military standoff with stones already in his pouch, as if he somehow knew he would be engaged in a battle, but he had to take a quick moment down at the brook to gather the stones.

SCRIPTURES

“Then he took his staff in his hand; and he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag, in a pouch which he had, and his sling was in his hand. And he drew near to the Philistine.“ I Samuel 17:40

As soon as David received authorization to take on Goliath, he immediately took his staff and sling and went down to the brook to find the perfect stones.  David would not leave this important detail of gathering stones into anyone else’s hands, but “he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook.”  The critically relevant detail for us to understand is where David got the stones.  The stones were already on the battlefield at the brook.  We can even consider this thought, how long had those stones been there at the brook?  God in heaven already knew an epic battle would take place between the Philistines and Israel and that David would come looking for stones to attack Goliath with.   Let this speak to you today, that whatever you need for your battle is already in place.

God already knows the battlefields you will step into throughout your life and has already strategically placed all you need to get your victory.

David gathered up the stones and took them with him.  He gathered more than he needed and was well equipped to take down the giant.  You may be on a battlefield of some kind right at this moment.  If that’s you, take a moment and ask God to show you what you need to gather.  David was “more than a conqueror” and so are you!

Five Smooth Stones

Who would have thought that you can take down a giant with a stone?  Yet a sling and stones were David’s choice of weapons as he went out to fight Goliath, the Philistine giant.  The other solders in Israel’s army and the Philistine’s army were equipped with swords and shields, but not David.  David’s weapons were different in this epic battle and still highly effective.

SCRIPTURES

“Then he took his staff in his hand; and he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag, in a pouch which he had, and his sling was in his hand. And he drew near to the Philistine.“ I Samuel 17:40

David’s choice of weapons showed that he was trusting in God for the victory.  It gives us some great insight for the battles in our own lives.  We use weapons today, but ours should be different, just as the apostle Paul advised.

“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare [are] not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds”  2 Corinthians 10:3-4

Let me suggest to you some possibilities as to why David chose five smooth stones.  This is God’s way of speaking to us today using an Old Testament story about weapons available to us.  We have mighty spiritual weapons in God.  We have the weapons of prayer and praise and the weapons of truth and God’s Word to get our victories!  The scriptures don’t come right out and tell us why David chose five smooth stones, but here are some possibilities to consider.

IT’S POSSIBLE…

1.  David gathered five smooth stones because he always carried five smooth stones in his pouch.  What appears to be strange to us, was normal for him.

2.  David gathered five smooth stones because he was practical.  He gathered what he thought he might need.  Gathering five stones was not a lack of faith on David’s part, but it showed the practical side of his faith.  Our faith today has a practical aspect to us, it’s not all left to what we can’t see.  Yes we “walk by faith and not by sight,” but we do walk, and we do ask, seek, and knock.

3.  David gathered five smooth stones because he had heard of Goliath’s brothers.  But there’s not a word in this story to suggest this, and if Goliath had four brothers, they didn’t appear to be at the battle.  And David even asked, “Who is this uncircumcized Philistine?  It doesn’t appear that David knew who Goliath was.  

3.  David gathered five smooth stones for five opportunities.  When I worked for the sheriff’s department, I carried a 9 mm Ruger that held 15 rounds.  I also had two clips on my belt that held 15 rounds each.  That’s 45 rounds total.  I always had this thought that if I can’t do the job with 45 rounds, I just need to run!  David may have gathered five stones to give himself with distance five opportunities to take Goliath down. 

4.  David gathered five smooth stones because from a child that’s what he had been taught.

5.  David gathered five smooth stones because God told him to gather five smooth stones.

There is a reason David gathered five stones, and it should speak to us about how with only one stone, he had more than what he needed.  As a child of God, you have more than what you need to take down the giants that try to stop you in life.  Be encouraged today, don’t try to fight your battles with conventional weapons of your flesh, but use the mighty weapons in God to take down every giant.

“And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.”  —2 Corinthians 9:8

Faith and Focus

When you are in a battle, you can’t afford any distractions.  When David went out to fight against Goliath, he was extremely focused so that nothing, not even the belligerent and belittling words of Goliath, drew his mind away.  David could have been distracted by the armor bearer walking in front of Goliath or by the Philistine army standing behind him glaring at him.  David could have been distracted by the noise of Israel’s army supporting him from behind. David could have been caught up in the moment emotionally, but instead he drew near in this epic battle the same way we should, with faith and focus.  Faith and focus are the key ingredients for victory when you are in a battle.

SCRIPTURES

“So it was, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hurried and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. 49 Then David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone; and he slung [it] and struck the Philistine in his forehead, so that the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the earth.“                          I Samuel 17:48-49

More than likely you are in some kind of a battle right now.  The battle may be for your highest affections or your unwavering devotion to God.  The battle may be concerning your health or something happening at your work place.  Your battle may be concerning your marriage or a relationship with your child.  Many times we forget that the battlefields are not only on foreign soil, but they come to where we live and raise our families.  We battle with temptations meant to take us captive.

No one was telling David, “You’re taking this thing too serious,” or “Just relax, because it’s all going to work out.”  You can just imagine that the chant from Israel’s army was the same, “Focus, focus, focus!”  No doubt, David’s eyes were on Goliath and every move he made, but his faith was on God who gave him strength and courage to get the victory.  Remember this, a truly victorious life is lived by those who recognize their battlefields and bring their faith and focus together.  Because of David’s faith and focus, God gave him the power to hit Goliath in the forehead with a stone and the giant fell down.  Giants still fall when they face those who have faith and focus!

The LORD

Have great confidence in the Lord today!  Many today place their confidence in every other thing except the Lord, maker of heaven and earth.  In the story of David and Goliath, David completely aligned his life with the Lord, maker of heaven and earth, so much so that when King Saul questioned David’s abilities to fight Goliath, David said, “The LORD.”   “The LORD,” was David’s answer.  Think about it!

SCRIPTURES

“Moreover David said, “The LORD (YEHOVAH), who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” And Saul said to David, “Go, and the LORD be with you!” I Samuel 17:37

David’s confidence and faith didn’t come from a flash of emotion, but it came from a personal relationship with God.  David had killed a lion and a bear and was proficient with a sling and stones, but ultimately David looked to God as the answer.  I can tell you that the Lord wants to be your answer.  He wants to rise above everything in your life that you place your confidence in and He wants us to trust completely in Him.  We have to trust God more than we trust our own abilities and experience.  We have to trust God more than we trust our education and what’s in our bank account.  We have to trust God more than we trust our spouse or best friends.  He must become our answer, because everything else has the possibilities of failure, but God never fails!  He has never lost a battle and He never will.

The Lord may not always do what you think He should do, but He still has never failed those who completely trust in Him.  The next time you sense the call of God on your life to take on a challenge and your abilities come into question, respond as David did, “The LORD.”

Defining Moments

Your life will be filled with big defining moments.  Many of those big moments will be characterized as positive, transitional and life-changing, but there will also be big moments that challenge you to rise to the occasion.  Recently, while attending a high school graduation, I thought about the magnitude of the moment when the life of that student and family were about to radically change.  The same things happens when someone gets married, the birth of a child, a relocation for a job, which are all positive big moments, but other big moments will be characterized as negative, adding adversity and fear.  In the story of David and Goliath, David came to an unexpected big moment in his young life when he came to the battlefield and saw Goliath standing and all of Israel’s army falling away in fear.  David  rose above his own fears in that big moment.

SCRIPTURES

“Then David said to Saul, “Let no man’s heart fail because of him; your servant will go and fight with this Philistine.” I Samuel 17:32

You need to believe this if you are a child of God, that you were made for big moments, especially those that cripple the lives of others.  You have been equipped through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit to rise up and stand against giants.  Many of the big moments in your life will just come, and you have no options because they are built into the path and course of your life, but other big moments come with options.  You can turn away and do nothing as many do, or you can put your mind on God and confront, stand, fight, challenge and bear witness to the power of God in your life.  David was able to stand and fight against Goliath in this big moment in his life because it was time for Goliath to fall, and it was time for Israel to move forward, and it was time for David to be known.  That big moment for David paved the way for another big moment down the road when he would sit upon the throne of Israel as their King.  Remember that big moments like this are often God’s way of moving you to His plan for your future.  Be ready for the next big moment!

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