1 Samuel 17 Preparation Of The God-Heart — Borrowed Victory

Theme: Just as Israel ran in David’s victory, so do we run in Christ’s. By observing David, let us observe Christ, that we might see an increase in His victory in us.

  • There was an ugly, yet impressive, foe — sin, the world system run by the devil — Jesus defeated, for we could not.
    • That is what the story of David and Goliath is about.
  • This passage points most clearly to Christ, for David is a great type of Christ in winning the battle over our foe.
    • We run in the victory of Christ, just as Israel ran in David’s victory.
    • Today: 5 Things David (and Jesus) Did — that we can also do to borrow His victory.

Consider The Scene (1 Samuel 17:1-11)

1 Now the Philistines gathered their armies for battle. And they were gathered at Socoh, which belongs to Judah, and encamped between Socoh and Azekah, in Ephes-dammim. 2 And Saul and the men of Israel were gathered, and encamped in the Valley of Elah, and drew up in line of battle against the Philistines. 3 And the Philistines stood on the mountain on the one side, and Israel stood on the mountain on the other side, with a valley between them.

  • 1 The Philistines: Perpetual enemies of Israel.

4 And there came out from the camp of the Philistines a champion named Goliath of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. 5 He had a helmet of bronze on his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail, and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of bronze. 6 And he had bronze armor on his legs, and a javelin of bronze slung between his shoulders. 7 The shaft of his spear was like a weaver’s beam, and his spear’s head weighed six hundred shekels of iron. And his shield-bearer went before him.

  • 4 A champion named Goliath of Gath: An impressive foe.
    • 4 Height: Depending on the measurement and text used, between 6’9” and 11’6”.
    • 5 Coat of mail: Weighing 5K shekels of bronze, or 150 pounds.
    • 7 Spear’s head: Weighing 19 pounds (600 shekels).

8 He stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel, “Why have you come out to draw up for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and are you not servants of Saul? Choose a man for yourselves, and let him come down to me. 9 If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will be your servants. But if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall be our servants and serve us.” 10 And the Philistine said, “I defy the ranks of Israel this day. Give me a man, that we may fight together.” 11 When Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.

  • 10 Give me a man, that we may fight together:
    • In ancient times they would sometimes send a representative from each opposing side for a single combat.
      • Six mentions of this in 2 Samuel.
      • The Iliad records similar battles.
      • Marduk from ancient Babylon is another example.
    • Goliath’s heart was like Satan’s.
      • Ezekiel 28:17 (ESV) — 17 Your heart was proud because of your beauty…

12 Now David was the son of an Ephrathite of Bethlehem in Judah, named Jesse, who had eight sons. In the days of Saul the man was already old and advanced in years. 13 The three oldest sons of Jesse had followed Saul to the battle. And the names of his three sons who went to the battle were Eliab the firstborn, and next to him Abinadab, and the third Shammah. 14 David was the youngest. The three eldest followed Saul, 15 but David went back and forth from Saul to feed his father’s sheep at Bethlehem. 16 For forty days the Philistine came forward and took his stand, morning and evening.

  • 15 David went back and forth: He continued in his occasional role as the court musician.
  • 16 For forty days Goliath taunted Israel.
    • Forty — The number of testing or proving or purifying.
      • Noah on ark, Moses in the desert, Israelite generation wandering in the wilderness, Jesus’ fast, infallible proofs after resurrection.

1 David (and Jesus) Went — So We Must Go! (1 Samuel 17:12-20a)

17 And Jesse said to David his son, “Take for your brothers an ephah of this parched grain, and these ten loaves, and carry them quickly to the camp to your brothers. 18 Also take these ten cheeses to the commander of their thousand. See if your brothers are well, and bring some token from them.”

  • 18 Bring some token from them: The only means Jesse had at his disposal to receive solid news from his sons.

19 Now Saul and they and all the men of Israel were in the Valley of Elah, fighting with the Philistines. 20a And David rose early in the morning and left the sheep with a keeper and took the provisions and went, as Jesse had commanded him.

  • David rose / left / went / as Jesse had commanded him:
    • David went, in obedience to his father.
    • Jesus went, in obedience to His Father.
      • John 8:29 (ESV) — 29 And he who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him.”
  • David (and Jesus) Went — So We Must Go!
    • We must go, in obedience to our Father.
      • Stuck in drugs, alcohol, or pornography? GO to Regeneration!
      • History has made your afraid of people? GO to a Life Group.
      • Alone on your university campus? GO to the Young Adults ministry!
      • Always quitting and never able to commit? GO to volunteer yourself!

2 David (and Jesus) Saw A Living God — So We Must Walk By Faith! (1 Samuel 17:20b-27)

20b And he came to the encampment as the host was going out to the battle line, shouting the war cry [and that’s all] 21 And Israel and the Philistines drew up for battle, army against army. 22 And David left the things in charge of the keeper of the baggage and ran to the ranks and went and greeted his brothers. 23 As he talked with them, behold, the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, came up out of the ranks of the Philistines and spoke the same words as before. And David heard him.

  • 23 And David heard him: Goliath spoke the same words for those forty days, but now someone new heard his proposal.
    • Perhaps you’ve felt like the same old sins, the same old temptations, and the same old lies keep on trapping you. Introduce Christ to the equation!

24 All the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him and were much afraid. 25 And the men of Israel said, “Have you seen this man who has come up? Surely he has come up to defy Israel. And the king will enrich the man who kills him with great riches and will give him his daughter and make his father’s house free in Israel.” 26 And David said to the men who stood by him, “What shall be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?” 27 And the people answered him in the same way, “So shall it be done to the man who kills him.”

  • 24-27 Men of Israel said / And David said:
    • Notice the contrast between the men of Israel and David.
      • Men: this man. David: this uncircumcised Philistine, meaning Goliath was out of the covenant.
      • Men: the man who kills him. David: the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel, because it would be for God’s glory in Israel he would do this.
      • Men: defy Israel. David: defy the armies of the living God, the first mention of God in the chapter.
        • For the men of Israel, Goliath was alive, but for David, God was alive!
        • To the men of Israel, God was dead — maybe not theologically or positionally, but practically.
    • Jesus also came to a world barely seeing God.
      • Of course, He knew God was alive.
  • David (and Jesus) Saw A Living God — So We Must Walk By Faith!
    • Our response to much in life is a matter of our perspective.
      • The men of Israel (led by Saul) had one view of Goliath.
      • David had another view of Goliath.
      • Colossians 3:2 (ESV) — 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.
      • 2 Corinthians 5:6–7 (ESV) — 6 So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight.

3 David (and Jesus) Pushed Past Doubters — So We Must Push Past Doubters! (1 Samuel 17:28-30)

28 Now Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spoke to the men. And Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, “Why have you come down? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your presumption and the evil of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.” 29 And David said, “What have I done now? Was it not but a word?” 30 And he turned away from him toward another, and spoke in the same way, and the people answered him again as before.

  • 28 Eliab / I know your presumption and the evil of your heart: So hurtful. So wrong.
    • Proverbs 27:4 (ESV) — 4 Wrath is cruel, anger is overwhelming, but who can stand before jealousy?
    • David moved on, just as Jesus did.
    • But just as James and Jude, the brothers of Jesus, became His disciples, so would David’s brothers become part of his band.
      • 1 Samuel 22:1 (ESV) — 1 David departed from there and escaped to the cave of Adullam. And when his brothers and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him.
  • David (and Jesus) Pushed Past Doubters — So We Must Push Past Doubters!
    • Doubters outside us.
      • Matthew 10:36 (ESV) — 36 And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household.
    • Doubts inside us.
      • Mark 9:24 (ESV) — 24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!”
      • Moses: Exodus 3:11 (ESV) — 11 But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?”
    • Sometimes they are there to test us.
      • 1 Peter 1:6–7 (ESV) — 6 In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.**

4 David (and Jesus) Saved The Flock — So We Must Think Of The Flock! (1 Samuel 17:31-37)

31 When the words that David spoke were heard, they repeated them before Saul, and he sent for him. 32 And David said to Saul, “Let no man’s heart fail because of him. Your servant will go and fight with this Philistine.” 33 And Saul said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him, for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth.” 34 But David said to Saul, “Your servant used to keep sheep for his father. And when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock, 35 I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth. And if he arose against me, I caught him by his beard and struck him and killed him. 36 Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God.” 37 And David said, “The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” And Saul said to David, “Go, and the LORD be with you!”

  • 35-36 I went after him and struck him and delivered it [the sheep] out of its mouth / lions and bears:
    • David is a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). Like David, Jesus goes after the sheep who is in despair (Matthew 18:12-14). Jesus is the Good Shepherd who lays down His life for the sheep (John 10:11, 14-15).
  • David (and Jesus) Saved The Flock — So We Must Think Of The Flock!
    • Parents: fathers and mothers.
    • Soldiers: your nation.
    • Leadership: your employees.
    • Social workers: your clients.
    • Church: one another…
      • 1 John 3:16 (ESV) — 16 By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.

5 David (and Jesus) Utilized Humble Instruments — So We Must Utilize Humble Instruments! (1 Samuel 17:38-51a)

38 Then Saul clothed David with his armor. He put a helmet of bronze on his head and clothed him with a coat of mail, 39 and David strapped his sword over his armor. And he tried in vain to go, for he had not tested them. Then David said to Saul, “I cannot go with these, for I have not tested them.” So David put them off. 40 Then he took his staff in his hand and chose five smooth stones from the brook and put them in his shepherd’s pouch. His sling was in his hand, and he approached the Philistine. 41 And the Philistine moved forward and came near to David, with his shield-bearer in front of him. 42 And when the Philistine looked and saw David, he disdained him, for he was but a youth, ruddy and handsome in appearance. 43 And the Philistine said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. 44 The Philistine said to David, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and to the beasts of the field.” 45 Then David said to the Philistine, “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 of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down and cut off your head. And I will give the dead bodies of the host of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air and to the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, 47 and that all this assembly may know that the LORD saves not with sword and spear. For the battle is the LORD’s, and he will give you into our hand.” 48 When the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. 49 And 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. 50 So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. There was no sword in the hand of David. 51a Then David ran and stood over the Philistine and took his sword and drew it out of its sheath and killed him and cut off his head with it.

  • 39 I cannot go with these, for I have not tested them: David tried Saul’s armor, but it was not for him.
  • 40 Staff
  • 40 Sling: It would wrap around the right wrist on one end and held with the thumb on the other side.
  • 40 Five smooth stones: David instead went with a sling and stones, a weapon he was familiar with.
  • 50 David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone…there was no sword in the hand of David:
    • David defeated Goliath with humble instruments.
    • Christ defeated sin and death with humble instruments.
  • David (and Jesus) Utilized Humble Instruments — So We Must Utilize Humble Instruments!
    • Psalm 33:16–18a (ESV) — 16 The king is not saved by his great army; a warrior is not delivered by his great strength. 17 The war horse is a false hope for salvation, and by its great might it cannot rescue. 18 Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his steadfast love…
    • The cross, the Spirit, the word, prayer, and fellowship.
  • 51 Took his sword / and killed him and cut off his head with it:
    • The methodology of God:
      • Pharaoh’s armies in the Red Sea he’d trapped Israel against.
      • Haman on the gallows he’d prepared for Mordecai.
      • Satan on the cross he’d designed for Jesus.
    • Let the depression, discouragement, or disappointment drive you to God — the weapons turned around for good!

Conclusion (1 Samuel 17:51b-58)

51b When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled. 52 And the men of Israel and Judah rose with a shout and pursued the Philistines as far as Gath and the gates of Ekron, so that the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron. 53 And the people of Israel came back from chasing the Philistines, and they plundered their camp. 54 And David took the head of the Philistine and brought it to Jerusalem [perhaps pinning it to the wall or throwing it over the wall, putting the Jebusites on notice], but he put his armor in his tent. 55 As soon as Saul saw David go out against the Philistine, he said to Abner, the commander of the army, “Abner, whose son is this youth?” And Abner said, “As your soul lives, O king, I do not know.” 56 And the king said, “Inquire whose son the boy is.” 57 And as soon as David returned from the striking down of the Philistine, Abner took him, and brought him before Saul with the head of the Philistine in his hand. 58 And Saul said to him, “Whose son are you, young man?” And David answered, “I am the son of your servant Jesse the Bethlehemite.”

  • 55 Whose son is this youth?: Time has passed, and Saul is self-focused, so he does not recall which family David is from. He would need to, after all, exempt David’s father’s family from taxes, as he’d promised.
  • 52 Rose with a shout and pursued:
    • The armies of Israel were stirred by David’s victory.
      • Let us be stirred by Christ’s.
      • Colossians 2:15 (ESV) — 15 He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him.
      • He slew the giant for you!