1 Samuel 17 Fighting Your Goliath

by | Oct 21, 2023 | 1 Samuel, Old Testament

I. The Enemy

A. Goliath Vs. 1-10

1. Vs. 1-3 The Philistines were in Israelite territory; land that belonged to the tribe of Judah.

a. Saul’s army was across the valley in Elah.

b. Each army was on a mountain, with a valley in the middle.

c. Both were at strategic positions of strength, neither one wanting to advance, for the first one into the valley would be a prime target for the other army’s archers.

d. Even if they made it across, they would be fighting an uphill battle – literally.

2. Vs. 4-7 Cubit– distance between a person’s elbow and the tip of the fingers; approx. 18”.

a. Goliath-between 8’5” and 9’2”. His armor weighed about 125 lbs., spear tip-15 lbs.

3. Vs. 8-10 Naturally speaking, Goliath had an obvious advantage over the Hebrew men.

4. NOTE-Naturally speaking, Satan has an obvious advantage over us. Like Goliath, he is stronger than we are, and he seeks to intimidate us. He constantly challenges us.

B. A Fearful Response V. 11

1. The people were understandably afraid. Humanly speaking, they were outmatched.

2. Humanly speaking, Saul (the tallest), was best suited to fight Goliath, yet his confidence in God was gone. What internal pressure he must have felt. He should have been leading.

II. The Arrival Of David

A. David Served Where He Was Needed Vs. 12-15

1. Saul was afflicted by an evil spirit, but found relief when David played music for him.

2. When not playing music for Saul, David returned to watching his father’s sheep.

B. David Discovered The Need As He Served Vs. 16-20

1. Vs. 16-19 The Israelites were prepared to fight but were not fighting because of fear.

2. V. 20 David was responsible with the sheep and wouldn’t leave until they were taken of. He was obedient to his father and did not neglect his duties with the sheep. David was faithful with the small things, and God would eventually give him the kingdom.

C. Analyzing The Problem Vs. 21-27

1. Notice the spiritual boldness of David’s statement.

2. He does not view the battle as fleshly, but as spiritual. Not a small man vs. a big man.

3. David saw a big man against an infinite God. David had no reason to be fearful.

4. Notice how Saul sought to motivate his troops. He used material enticements.

5. He had no confidence in God, or concern for the honor of God’s name.

D. Carnal Criticism Vs. 28-30

1. V. 28 A spiritually bold person may be seen as arrogant by a carnal thinking person.

2. Carnal people don’t recognize when a person has holy boldness and confidence.

3. Sometimes those closest to us can discourage us the most. David stayed the course.

III. David’s Battle With Goliath

A. David’s Confidence Vs. 31-37

1. Vs. 31-33 Saul analyzed the situation in a carnal way, for he was an unspiritual man.

a. He only saw the size of the problem, and not the victory that God wanted to bring.

b. The 12 disciples were spiritually blind about feeding the multitudes. (Matthew 15)

2. Vs. 34-37 David’s past courage and dependence upon God led to this moment.

a. Our faith is built upon our faith. Today’s faith will give us increased faith tomorrow.

b. Fear will lead to more fear. Everything will start to look like a Goliath.

c. David didn’t know that he was being trained to kill giants and become king.

B. David Didn’t Try To Be Someone Else Vs. 38-40

1. V. 39 Tested them– “I haven’t tried this before. I haven’t been trained with this armor”.

2. David had never needed armor to defeat larger enemies than himself.

3. He went back to what he knew: Dependence upon God, and the weapons that were his, not another’s. David took his staff and found some stones. Staff + stones + God=success

4. NOTE- We cannot “claim” faith when we don’t walk in faith. Lifestyle faith is needed.

5. V. 40 Notice David’s boldness to go out to Goliath.

a. David used the weapons that had been given to him.

b. Important for us to understand the weapons (gifts/promises) that God has given us.

C. The Actual Battle Vs. 41-51

1. Vs. 41-44 Goliath could only view this challenge in the natural realm. False assurance.

a. Notice how the enemy mocks, minimizes, and seeks to intimidate us.

2. Vs. 45-47 What incredible boldness and confidence David has.

a. What a strong prophetic utterance. He is completely God-focused.

b. David’s confidence is in the Lord, not his weapons, or skills.

c. V. 47 David’s desire was that God would be glorified and people would have faith.

3. V. 48 Again, notice David’s boldness to attack.

a. David trusted God, but he still needed to go forward and attack.

b. Biblical faith trusts God but has action. (Peter walking on the water) (Matthew 14)

4. Vs. 49-51 God granted David the victory. David had trained for this as a shepherd.

a. David could not have known that his faith as a teenager would lead to this moment.

D. Others Were Inspired By David’s Victory Vs. 52-54

1. David’s faith inspired others to serve God and to not be afraid.

2. David’s faith brought great blessings to the people of God.

3. David’s faith became the standard of faith for thousands.

E. Saul Inquired About David Vs. 55-58

1. Why didn’t Saul recognize David? Four possibilities.

a. He recognized him but wanted to know his background for the sake of marriage.

b. He could not recognize David because was, too mentally and emotionally unstable.

c. Perhaps Saul never really saw David because David played behind a curtain.

d. Perhaps David had matured and grown a beard in his time away from Saul.

e. Young man in verse 56 means one who is fully grown, mature, and ready to marry

F. Jesus-The “Greater Than David”, From David Guzik

1. David won a great victory, but not greater than the victory Jesus won at the cross. David’s victory over Goliath is a “picture in advance” of the victory Jesus won.

2. Both David and Jesus represented their people. Under the proposal of 1 Samuel 17:8-9, whatever happened to Goliath would happen to the Philistines, and whatever happened to the Israelite who fought Goliath would happen to the Israelites.

3. Both David and Jesus fought the battle on ground that rightfully belonged to God’s people, ground they had lost.

4. Both David and Jesus fought when their enemy was able to dominate the people of God through fear and intimidation alone.

5. Both David and Jesus were sent to the battleground by their father (1 Samuel 17:17).

6. Both David and Jesus were scorned and rejected by their brethren.

7. Both David and Jesus fought the battle without concern for human strategies or conventional wisdom.

8. Both David and Jesus won the battle, but their enemies did not then give up willingly.

9. Both David and Jesus fought a battle where victory was assured before the battle started.