In I Samuel, Chapter 17, we find the army of Israel on one mountainside and the army of the Philistines on another mountainside. They were facing each other across a valley getting ready to do battle. There was one of the Philistines, Goliath of Gath, who came out and challenged Israel to send out their champion to fight him. The men of Israel were afraid. Even King Saul, the military leader of Israel, a man head and shoulders taller than any man of Israel (I Samuel 9:2), was afraid to go out and face Goliath. In the midst of battle, the men of Israel fled when Goliath entered the fray. Why were they so afraid of Goliath? I really can't imagine. He was just a little fellow, no more than nine or ten feet tall. Okay, Goliath was a mighty big man, but this was the army of the nation of Israel, God's chosen people (Deuteronomy 7:6, 21; 20:3, 4). God had promised them that if the nation kept his commandments, all their enemies would fall before them. Five of them would chase an hundred, and an hundred would put ten thousand to flight (Leviticus 26:7,8).
Jesse of Bethlehem had eight sons. His three oldest were in Saul's army. Jesse, worried for their safety and worried that they were getting enough to eat, sent his youngest son, David, to go see about them and bring them food. David was a young man, a shepherd. We don't know just old David was at the time, but we know he was under the age of twenty (the minimum age for military service). When David arrived at the battlefield, he heard Goliath as he challenged the army of Israel to send out their champion to fight him. David chided his brothers and the other soldiers for letting Goliath's challenge go unanswered. Finally David was called before King Saul and there he offered to go out and fight Goliath himself.
Saul tried dissuade David, pointing out that while he was just a boy, Goliath was seasoned warrior trained to fight from his youth.
David insisted nevertheless. He related to King Saul how, while keeping his father's sheep, a lion and bear took a lamb from the flock. "Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God. David said moreover, The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. And Saul said unto David, Go, and the Lord be with thee." (I Samuel 17:36, 37)
Saul relented and had David equipped with his own armor and armed with his own sword. Now I would imagine that this armor and sword would have been the finest of any in Israel, after all, it belonged to the king. It was likely the strongest, the lightest, and crafted with the most cunning of any of all the land. Yet as David started to go out to face Goliath in Saul's armor, he changed his mind and put off the king's armor saying, "I cannot go with these; for I have not proved them" (I Samuel 17:39). So David went out dressed in the garb of a shepherd, armed with only his staff, a sling, and five smooth stones. You know the rest of the story. David was delivered from the giant, Goliath. David prevailed against Goliath and became the hero of all Israel. Why? Because he put off the unproven armor of King Saul and went out to face the enemy trusting in the proven armor of God.
We face an enemy every day, more powerful, more deadly than Goliath. Our adversary, being spiritual in nature, is not affected by any weapons crafted of man (Ephesians 6:12; II Corinthians 10:3, 4). Our lives and freedom are not just at stake, our adversary would see the destruction of our immortal souls (I Peter 5:8). We must equip ourselves with the whole armor of God to be able to stand against the adversary (Ephesians 6:11, 13). Some put their trust in armor that has not been proven. Many people look to King Saul for their armor, in other words armor after the cunning of man. They seek their armor in the creeds, disciplines, and catechisms of religions of men. They gird themselves with the writings of respected "christian" authors and go out to face an enemy who knows all the vulnerabilities of their armor, because he designed it (I Timothy 4:1).
The whole armor of God is described in Ephesians 6:14-17: "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:"
Truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, and faith can only be found in the Word of God. We must put off the armor of King Saul and put on the proven armor of God to be able to stand in the evil day. We find out how we can do this in II Timothy 2:15, 16: "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness."
Are you wearing the whole of God which has been proven time and time again, or are you wearing the armor of King Saul?
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