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Study Resources :: Text Commentaries :: F.E. Marsh :: Readings 101-150 (Countenance - For)

F.E. Marsh :: 107. David and Goliath

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I. SAMUEL 17:38-51

DAVID, in his triumph over the giant, illustrates the power and victory of faith.

  1. Renunciation of faith (1Sa 17:39). Saul is an illustration of the man of the flesh, who counts upon a good armour for protection, and he seeks to encumber the man of faith with a like protection. The man of faith tries on the armour, but finds that he cannot act in it, and therefore puts it off. Earth resources are not God’s resources, hence the man of faith must not depend on the former, but on the latter. The man of faith puts off the weights that would hinder him (Heb. 12:1), the clothing of the old man (Eph. 4:22; Col. 3:8), and the weapons of earth’s warfare (2 Cor. 10:4).
  2. Weapons of faith (1Sa 17:40). A staff, a sling, and five smooth stones out of the brook Kidron, are all the weapons that faith takes. The staff of the Lord’s presence (Isaiah 50:10; Psalm 23:4), the sling of God’s Word, and the five smooth stones which are found in the stream of Christ’s mediatorial action and Person are the weapons of faith. The five smooth stones are—
    Christ is, Christ can, Christ has, Christ will, Christ does.
    • Christ is.” His living presence is our confidence and consolation (Isaiah 41:10).
    • Christ can.” He can conquer, for He stooped to conquer, and accomplished His purpose (Luke 11:22; Heb. 2:14; Col. 2:15; 1 John 3:8).
    • Christ has.” All power is His, and He has all power for us (Luke 10:19; Mark 16:17).
    • Christ will.” He has promised the victory, therefore it is sure (1 John 5:4-5).
    • Christ does.” Faith makes His promise a present effect, and a continuous reality (Eph. 6:16; Rev. 12:11).
  3. Courage of faith. David did not wait till the giant came up to him, he advanced towards the enemy (1Sa 17:40). The Christian should not always stand on the defensive, he should be offensive at times (2 Cor. 10:5).
  4. Persecution of faith (1Sa 17:41-44). Faith is sure to be taunted with folly, and sneered at for its unreasonable action. Christ is the Man of Faith, and as He was “despised” (Is. 53:3), “reviled” (1 Peter 2:23), “hated” (John 15:18), and scoffed at (Matt. 27:43); so shall we be, for the servant is not above his Lord (John 13:16).
  5. Testimony of faith (1Sa 17:45). Not in his own name, nor in his own strength did David come against Goliath, but, as he declared, in the name and strength of the Lord. In a like manner, the believer testifies that the power of the Lord, and the name of Jesus, are the potent forces by which spiritual results are achieved (Acts 3:12-13; 1 Cor. 2:4).
  6. Confidence of faith (1Sa 17:46). David has no doubt as to the issue of the battle. Mark his confidence. “The Lord will deliver thee into mine hand, and I will smite thee.” Faith’s confidence is not born of self-assertion, but is begotten by the sure word of God. Since we have a “sure word” (2 Peter 1:19), we have every right to say “we are sure” (John 6:69).
  7. Resource of faith (1Sa 17:47). “The battle is the Lord’s.” Faith recognises that the battle is not its own but the Lord’s, and what foe can stand against Him? The resource of faith is the Almighty God. The Power of faith lies in the Power which faith lays hold of.
  8. Victory of faith (1Sa 17:49-51). When the man of faith takes the stone of Christ’s victory over evil, and puts it in the sling of Divine utterance, and slings it in the strength of the Holy Ghost, it will bring down any foe. The Christian should never expect defeat, but always count upon the victorious Lord for complete and continual victory.
106. David and Goliath ← Prior Section
108. David, King over Israel Next Section →

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.


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