Sunday, June 8, 2008

Fighting the Good Fight

For the battle is the Lord’s. I Samuel 17:47
The Old Testament is full of truths revealing to us the great plots of God’s plan for redemption for the human race.

God has a plan by which each one of His followers can win in life’s war. In our lesson today of David and the giant God gives some guide lines that can help us as we face our giants. I want us to investigate some spiritual significance’s of warfare from this story.

For Israel and the Philistines had put the battle in array, army against army. I Samuel 17:21

The battle had come to a standstill because the Philistines had a giant. They didn’t know what to do until David came along.

David had a magnificent giant to face.

And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. And he had an helmet of brass upon his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail; and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of brass. And he had greaves of brass upon his legs, and a target of brass between his shoulders. And the staff of his spear was like a weaver's beam; and his spear's head weighed six hundred shekels of iron: and one bearing a shield went before him. I Samuel 17:4-7

This man was a little over nine feet tall. His armor weighted about 150 pounds, the head of his spear was 20 pounds. His head and shoulders, his chest, and his legs were all clothed in brass. He was a magnificent sight to look upon and very terrifying.

David never underestimated who the giant was, and we better not underestimate who the devil is. Underneath all the armor was a very wicked Man.

Let me take just a minute to give you a description of Satan.

And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 2 Corinthians 11:14

Now we don’t know what an angel looks like but we picture them as a beings with wings that fly around doing everyone good deeds, right? Well, the scripture says that Satan has transformed himself into an angel.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: I Peter 5:8

Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. John 8:44

What giant do you have in your life that keeps you defeated and in fear?
  • Is it the giant of bad habits?
  • Is it the giant of Bitterness?
  • Is it the giant of Worldliness?
Whatever keeps you from being blessed by God in your life is your giant.

David saw the Children of Israel in retreat and fearful.

And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him, and were sore afraid. I Samuel 17:24

They were people who were in a covenant relationship with God. But David found them in the bondage of fear before Goliath and all that he stood for.

Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. Luke 21:26

What is the significance of all of this?

On the one hand there is Goliath in all his impressiveness. There could not be a more striking picture of Satan and his powers than Goliath. He may not strut around in armor like Goliath, but he is impressive and far more powerful than Goliath. Because Satan is of the spirit world we can’t fight with Him.

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Ephesians 6:12

Here is the picture of the present day church. It is set in battle against a strutting, arrogant, proud adversary. We see the enemy all around us gaining ground rapidly, and we find that the church is powerless to do much about it.

"In any city you will find a modern Satan who seems irresistible, arrayed in all kinds of fascinating grabs. He clothes himself in the philosophy of modern education, especially the theory that man is essentially good and needs only to be trained and educated to become perfect, a theory which denies the whole truth of the Bible that man is essentially sinful. You will find Satan in the fascinating garb of the liberty between the two sexes, in the slack standard that exists today among people." --Alan Redpath, 1962.

I wonder what he would say today?

We see our world turned upside down and we are fearful as to what might happen in the days to come. The Israelites had lost sight of the power of their God and they were losing the battle! There they sat helpless and fearful. They sat in defeat and were doing nothing about it.

There may be some here today that profess to know the Lord and yet live in defeat and fear. Your giants have caused you to lose sight of the God you serve. You feel helpless and fearful to do anything about it. It seems that the harder you try to live a victories Christian life the more you fail. Maybe this is what Paul was talking about in Romans chapter 7.

Reading from the Message:
"What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely decide. So if I can’t be trusted to figure out what is best for myself and then do it, it becomes obvious that God’s word is necessary.

But I need something more! For if I know the law but still can’t keep it, and if the power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions, I obviously need help. I decide to do good , but I don’t really do it. I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway. My decisions, such as they are, don’t result in actions. Something has gone wrong deep within me and gets the better of me every time.

It happens so regularly that it’s predictable.

I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one to help me?

The answer, thank God, is that Jesus can and does!"

King Saul is a type of the Old Testament law. Saul faced such a giant. Saul was to be the leader and king of the Israelites. Saul was called by God to be King. But Saul had forfeited through disobedience the anointing of the Spirit of God. He had lost contact with his source of his Spiritual victory. So there he sat in fear and defeat. He was not willing to face the giant himself. Because Saul sat in defeat his whole army sat in defeat.

Have you ever thought about the fact that how we live affects other?

A mighty deliverance was given by God that day.

Goliath said "Give me a man." (Be careful, Goliath, what you wish for.) The issue was to be settled by a representative from each side.

This whole issue is not the Devil arrayed against a multitude of Christian people but rather the Devil against God. It is Satan versus Jesus. The whole issue of our giants is settled by our representative. Whatever happens to each representative would happen to those who followed them.

David is a picture of the Lord Jesus, who has overcome Satan at Calvary, and also a picture of every child of God who is being made one with Him through faith and obedience. Christ is the head and we are His body, therefore if He won a victory over Satan so have we.

No wonder David said, "The battle is the Lord’s."

  1. David was anointed by God. I Samuel 16:12. Jesus was anointed at His baptism by the Holy Spirit.
  2. David was sent by his father. I Samuel 16:13. Jesus was also send into Battle. I John 4:14.
  3. David was scorned by his brothers. I Samuel 17:28. Jesus came unto His own and they received Him not. John 1:11 He was rejected of men. Isaiah 53:3.
  4. David was strengthened by his past experiences. I Samuel 17:33. Jesus had a face-to-face conflict with Satan in the wilderness and defeated Him.
  5. David was sustained by the Word of God. I Samuel 17:45, 47. In His wilderness experience Jesus used Scripture to defeat Satan.
  6. David’s victory was brought about by the power of God and not by the sword. I Samuel 17:46. It was the power of God that brought Jesus back from the grave.
  7. David’s victory brought victory to all of the Israelites. I Samuel 17:51-51. Jesus' victory at the cross brought us the victory also.
  8. David won the battle and so did those who followed Him into battle. Jesus won the battle and so can we because of Him.

There is a secret to overcoming the giants.

And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.
And Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father's house.
Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.
And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle. I Samuel 18:1-4

In our concluding glimpse of this story, you will notice that a spectator became fully dedicated to David.

  • Jonathan knit (gave) himself to David.
  • Jonathan loved David as his own self.
  • Jonathan make a covenant with David. (Because the word said "He loved Him as His own soul.")
  • Jonathan gave David what he had: his robe, his sword and bow, his belt.
  • David became champion to Jonathan.

The battle over our giants in our lives is not won by might or power of our own but by giving ourselves to Jesus, for He has already won.

So many Christians believe in the God of history and the God of the past and the God of prophecy; we believe in the great things He is going to do when He comes again.

But the question is, do we believe in Him today? Can He defeat the giants that are in our lives? Can we have victory?

They who know the Saviour shall in Him be strong, Mighty in the conflict of the right against wrong. This the blessed promise given in God word, Doing wondrous exploits, they who know the Lord. In the midst of battle be thou not dismayed, tho’ the powers of darkness against thee are arrayed. God, thy strength, is with thee, causing thee to stand ; Heaven’s allied armies wait at thy command!

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