First Samuel 17 Commentary
See what difference the anointing makes. A freshly anointed Saul had burned with anger when he was told about Nahash’s threats on Jabesh Gilead. Nahash’s Ammonites were a formidable force. The Spirit of the LORD had come upon Saul so powerfully that he feared nothing and advanced against the Ammonites. Without the anointing, Saul was now a sitting duck, a cowering chicken, and a man without hope.
But there is someone who is anointed. He burns with anger at the hearing of Goliath’s insults. He fears nothing. But the anointing is packed in weakness – a fact Eliab, David’s eldest brother quickly notices. How wrong Eliab is! David isn’t conceited. His heart is not wicked. The LORD has a different assessment. The anointing lies with David. It is often true that saints carry with them power that the world cannot see, let alone appreciate.
Standing against the LORD’S army is Goliath. Goliath is described as a huge warrior standing at 3 meters tall. Again, the LORD is inviting us to look at the inside and not the outside. Look at the invisible and not the physical.
The anointing worked in a very different way. Goliath would be killed but not by strength as was the case for the Lion or the Bear. It is at this point that David typifies the Christ whose victory over sin was not won with human strength though very much available.
David is given human weapons but he failed to walk properly. He wasn’t used to them. The battle would be won but not with human weapons.
Goliath curses David by his gods while David approaches the Philistine in the name of the LORD God. This battle is no longer human; it is a battle of the gods. Every saint involved in warfare must understand this.
Then the Spirit of the Lord came on Gideon, and he blew a trumpet, summoning the Abiezrites to follow him. Midian was defeated. Judges 6.
Then the Spirit of the Lord came on Jephthah. The Ammonites were defeated. Judges 11.
Samson went down to Timnah together with his father and mother. As they approached the vineyards of Timnah, suddenly a young lion came roaring toward him. The Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon him so that he tore the lion apart with his bare hands as he might have torn a young goat. Judges 14
When Saul heard their words, the Spirit of God came powerfully upon him, and he burned with anger. The Ammonites were defeated. First Samuel 11.
So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David. First Samuel 16. Under this anointing, first the Lion and the Bear, then Goliath; this would be David’s life.
And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets, who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies. Hebrews 11.
Gideon, Jephthah, Samson, Samuel, and now David, are heroes of faith. But look carefully, who is the real hero?
If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” Luke chapter 11 verse 13.
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