‘He picked up five smooth stones.’ 1 Samuel 17:40 NLT
In David’s day they fought ‘by representation’. One man would fight for the nation as a whole, and the country of the losing warrior became subservient to the country of the conquering warrior. The upside is obvious, isn’t it? Everybody didn’t have to die! So David versus Goliath was really Israel against the Philistines. It was a one-on-one contest: winner takes all. We’re familiar with David’s victory over the giant with faith, a stone, and a slingshot. Yet Scripture tells us he picked up not one, but ‘five smooth stones’. Why? It wasn’t a lack of faith—he knew that Goliath had four brothers. Observe:
(1) Giant-killers realise that their giant represents greater issues. A giant never stands alone; behind him lie his causes. Overeating, addiction, abuse and anger are all driven and supported by other issues. Somewhere behind the obvious giant are his supportive brothers—pain, guilt, loss, and shame. David was prepared with five stones—one for Goliath and one for each of his four brothers. What lies behind your giant? With God’s help you can conquer both the giant and his support team.
(2) Giant-killers are not overwhelmed by the challenges. Never allow your fears to overwhelm your faith. The Bible says that ‘God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.’ (2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV) Fear will feed on the failures of the past, but you can’t allow yesterday’s failure to overwhelm today’s faith. So take your failings; list them on a piece of paper and boldly print at the top of the page: ‘Things I don’t need to try again! Lesson learned.’
SoulFood: Dan 1:3–21, Dan 3:7–30, Dan 5:10–12, Dan 9:1–19
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2023