Lessons From Expert Feelers (3.8): A battle begins with a word

30 07 2010

Here is a second Biblical example of how bold, courageous speech can scatter darkness and bring order to creation:

2. David and Goliath:

Bernini's incredible David sculpture. Click the pic to learn about it!

You probably know the story: Israel is at war with the Philistines.  Goliath, one of the Philistines, is a giant of a man, a fierce warrior, who steps to the front of the battle lines each day to taunt the Israelites, challenging someone to fight him man to man.  The Israelites wilt in terror day after day.

Along comes David – a little boy, filled with zeal for God.  David sees Goliath step forward with his daily challenge and is filled with indignation.  David’s love for God and deep faith causes him to utter those unforgettable words:

“What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and removes this disgrace from Israel?  Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?” (1 Samuel 17:26)

I don’t know if there’s a single sentence in Scripture that makes me want to grab a sword and slash at something more than this one!  I love the passion of this little boy, and the way it shakes me out of my worldly ideas of practicality.  When I read this story, up until v. 26, I’m thinking, “Oh crap, this huge guy is threatening us… What could I do other than cower in terror?”  But after v. 26, I’m right there with David, feeling like I could take on a giant.

Again, powerful words have the ability to articulate truth in a way that rouses us from our slumber, transforms our hearts, and inspires us to action.

Application: A battle begins with a word! It’s interesting that David’s statement began with simple curiosity: “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine…”  But very quickly, the deep convictions of his heart were revealed: “… and removes this disgrace from Israel?”  And then the big kaboom: “WHO IS THIS UNCIRCUMCISED PHILISTINE THAT HE SHOULD DEFY THE ARMIES OF THE LIVING GOD?!?!?”

Hip-hoppers battle with words

Do you have giants in your life that you are afraid to face?  The place to begin the battle is in your own mind!  If you let yourself admit – with words – what you really think and feel, your convictions will grow firmer and you’ll become resolute and determined to do what needs to be done.

On the other hand, if you’re not totally clear on what you think – on why the battle even needs to be fought – then you may never make it to the battlefield.  Or you’ll get there, and then when your life is at stake you’ll think, “Oh crap… Why am I doing this again?”


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