IN THE DAYS OF HIS POWER SERIES.
TOPIC: THE DAVIDIC ORDER OF GIANT SLAYERS
COMPILED EDITED BY:-
Rev. Innocent Peace-Udochukwu
President Living Fountain Ministries Int’l LIFOM
“These four were descended from the giants in Gath, and they fell by the hand of David and by the hand of his servants.”
Every giant introduces a person to himself – A crisis doesn’t make us it only reveals who we are.
People who reach giant positions have defeated giants – no team or individual has ever achieved greatness without, somewhere, facing a great obstacle.
Giants are often tools by which God uses to prepare us for bigger things.
Giant killers don’t start off as giant killers
MOST PEOPLE FEAR THE GIANT MORE THAN THE REWARD
We cannot evaluate every thing in light of what we see. What is observable is real, but it is not the ultimate reality. Behind what we see is an all-powerful God, and we must remind ourselves of this reality.
I DECLARE UNTO YOU THAT THE LORD ISN’T RAISING UP WEAK, LIMP-WRISTED WIMPS BUT HE IS RAISING UP A MIGHTY ARMY.
HE IS LOOKING FOR THOSE THAT WOULD DARE TO STEP INTO THE ENEMY’S CAMP AND TAKE BACK WHAT HE HAS STOLEN FROM YOU.
LISTEN TO ME THE BIBLE SAYS THE KINGDOM OF GOD SUFFERS VIOLENCE AND THE VIOLENT TAKE IT BY FORCE.
Whenever I read this great passage, I am reminded of Israel’s trouble with giants in Numbers 13-14. After two years in the wilderness, Israel had arrived at the banks of the Jordan River. God had promised them the land on the other side of Jordan, but they stopped to send in spies to examine the land. When those spies returned, they reported that the land was a good land, but that it was a land inhabited by many great giants, Num 13:27-28. In fact, ten of the spies were absolutely terrified of the giants they had seen there, Num. 13:33. Caleb and Joshua, who had seen the same giants, tried their best to get the people to trust in the Lord, enter Canaan and claim the land, but the people listen to the majority report and refused to battle their giants. As a result, they were all condemned to 38 more years of wilderness wandering. They were to wander until that faithless generation had died out.
38 years later, they arrive back at the Jordan River. Moses speaks to them to prepare them to enter Canaan. As he does, he lets them know that they are about to face some giants on the other side of Jordan, Deut. 9:1-2. What’s the point? Israel fled from those giants 38 years before, when their children came back 38 years later, the giants were still there and they had to be faced.
I am speaking to a group of people who are facing some giants. How do I know? We all face giants. I even have a few of my own! The bottom line is this: you may not want to face your giants. You may want to run from them in fear. You may want to avoid them and hope that they will just go away. You need to know that your giants will not just go away. They must be faced and they can be defeated.
This passage presents David as a young man. He is a young man filled with faith in the Lord. David is a young man who was not afraid to go to battle with the giants of life and claim victory in the name of the Lord. David was a giant killer and you need to know that you can be too!
That giant you are facing right now, regardless of its nature, can be destroyed and it can be defeated.
This text gives us precious insight into how that can be accomplished.
A little background related to this text might be in order. David’s father Jesse had sent David to bring some supplies to three of David’s brothers who were fighting in Saul’s army, vs. 12-13, 17-18. When David arrives at the battlefield, he finds Saul and the armies of Israel cowering in fear because of the taunts and threats of a giant named Goliath, vs. 1-11.
It seems that Israel and the Philistines were carrying out an ages old ritual. Each army would produce a champion; these champions would fight to the death and the side which won that battle would claim victory over the enemy. The loser of that battle would become the servants of the victor.
Of course, the champion chosen by the Philistines was no ordinary soldier! In fact, his stats are quite impressive. He was some 9’ 9” tall! He wore armor that weighted in at 175 pounds. He carried a spear that weighed over 32 pounds. This monster was covered in brass, from head to toe. He was a formidable opponent, and his defeat seemed in question!
For 40 mornings and evenings, this giant had taunted the armies of Israel and had been challenging them to send out a man to do battle with him. For 40 mornings and evenings the Israelites had heard the challenges and had retreated to their tents in fear.
“Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel; and David went down, and his servants with him, and fought against the Philistines: and David waxed faint.
And Ishbi-Benob, one of the descendants of Rapha, whose bronze spearhead weighed three hundred shekels and who was armed with a new sword, said he would kill David.
But Abishai son of Zeruiah came to David’s rescue; he struck the Philistine down and killed him. Then David’s men swore to him, saying, “Never again will you go out with us to battle, so that the lamp of Israel will not be extinguished.”
In the course of time, there was another battle with the Philistines, at Gob. At that time Sibbekai the Hushathite killed Saph, one of the descendants of Rapha.
In another battle with the Philistines at Gob, Elhanan son of Jair the Bethlehemite killed the brother of Goliath the Gittite, who had a spear with a shaft like a weaver’s rod.
In still another battle, which took place at Gath, there was a huge man with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot—twenty-four in all. He also was descended from Rapha.
When he taunted Israel, Jonathan son of Shimeah, David’s brother, killed him.
These four were descendants of Rapha in Gath, and they fell at the hands of David and his men.
We now are reading exploits off the giant-killer plaque.
Just as the gospel is the good news of the dragon-slayer, so also is the gospel the good news of the giant killer.
The two lists of David’s mighty men (21:15-22 and 23:8-39) show God’s remarkable blessing of David for his submission to Israel’s Commander-In-Chief. David’s small army accomplished amazing feats because God was with David. David’s divine election, coupled with his customary trust and obedience Godward, resulted in many forms of fertility (military, political, and influential). This record of four giant killers emphasizes the supernatural character of the victories David was able to enjoy because God fought for him by using various men in his army. These warrior stories are similar to the stories of the minor judges in Judges 12:8-15 in that they introduce a character, provide minimal detail, and give no theological coloring.
The giant” (vv. 16, 18, 20, 22) appears to have been the father or ancestor of all four of the huge Philistine warriors mentioned in this passage. However, the Hebrew word translated “giant” (raphah) is a collective term for the Rephaim. The Rephaim were the mighty warriors who originally inhabited the Canaanite coastal plain (cf. Gen. 15:19-21; Deut. 2:11; 3:11, 13). They terrified ten of the 12 spies that Joshua sent out from Kadesh Barnea (Num. 13:33).
The “four” that “were born to the giant [Heb. raphah] in Gath” (v. 22) were: “Ishbi-benob” (v. 16), “Saph” (v. 19), “Goliath [probably Lahmi]” (v. 19), and the “man of great stature” (v. 20). Evidently Goliath had four brothers.
“David began his glory with the conquest of one giant, and here concludes it with the conquest of four.”
The point of this brief section is that God blessed David with military victories far beyond anyone’s normal expectations because he was God’s faithful anointed servant.
David first made his mark in the history of Israel by killing Goliath of Gath with his sling and a stone. Because a cubit varies, Goliath was somewhere between 9 and 11 feet. Incidentally, this was not a little rubber band slingshot, but was rather a weapon of war (Judg. 20:16), the stone of which was about the size of a modern softball. Here, at the end of David’s career, we see that he and his men were conducting the final mop-up operations. They killed these last four giants.
What about the New Testament? The gospel of Luke compares the Lord Jesus with a strong champion who defeats the strong man, and who takes his panoply (his armor). The language is strongly reminiscent of David’s defeat over Goliath. And so what does this mean for us? The invasion of Canaan is a type for the antitype of the Great Commission. Canaan was full of giants, and so is the unbelieving world today. The greatness of the opposition is part of the point. This must never be used as an excuse on our part for whining about how big they are. They are supposed to be big. They are giants. Instead of worrying about how big they are—too big to fight—we should be rejoicing in the fact that they are too big to miss.
This theme is picked up by Paul in Ephesians . . .
“Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints” (Ephesians 6:13–18).
We are told to put on the armor of God, but we are also told to put on Jesus Himself.
When we put on the Lord Jesus, we are not doing it for a fashion show. We put on the Lord Jesus at the armory of God, which is the gospel of grace. And we do it because there are giants in the land.
Men or women, consecrated to God, if the Lord impels you to do anything for him do not ask me, do not ask my fellow church officers, but go and do it. If God has helped you in the past, draw a parallel, and argue from it that he will help you in the present. Go, and the Lord go with you, but do not fall a prey to that wicked unbelief which would rob you of your strength.
God alone is the source of power, he alone can render real aid; let us then rest in him, even if no other help appear. Is not the Lord alone enough? That arm which you cannot see will never be palsied, its sinews will never crack, but all the arms of mortals upon which you so much love to lean must one day turn to dust in the tomb; and while they live they are but weakness itself. Trust ye in the Lord for ever, for in the Lord Jehovah there is everlasting strength. David had found wisdom’s self when he said, “My soul wait thou only upon God, for my expectation is from him.”
God has a spiritual army with a host of angels whom He can summon in a minute and turn things around at the drop of a dime. When you operate spiritually connected, you have the blessing of being covered by God and His army of angels. God’s blessings flow to those who are connected to Him. While Goliaths in our lives will come, we need to address the Goliaths in our lives spiritually, knowing that the Goliaths in our lives can and will fall.
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