Throughout the Word we are told to study. When we become part of the covenant and begin to study, our thinking should begin to become more like God’s. However, this change is not so that our spirits will change; they were immediately transformed when we were born again. The part of us that needs to change is our mind or soul.
Troubles and trials come from Satan, and the way that you deal with them reflects your attitude. Isaiah 55:7-9, gives us an example of human view- point and divine viewpoint.
Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
When you face a situation, you need to make a choice – are you going God’s way or man’s way? Are you going with your thinking or covenant thinking? Because the covenant has provisions and blessings, Psalm 103, says to forget not all His benefits. We are to study before God and renew our minds with the Word so that when a situation arises, God’s covenant immediately comes to mind.
Isaiah 55:3, tells us, Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David. . . Notice it did not say your spirit shall live; it says that your soul shall live. Your spirit is made alive when you accept Jesus, but God wants your soul to come to life and to be filled with His Word which produces life. The “sure mercies” mentioned here mean the “secure benefits.” The world’s benefits are not too secure. Man’s answers are only as good as man, but when God gives us a guarantee or benefit, we know it is backed up by all of heaven and what’s more, God cannot change. He is not a man that He should lie. The same promises that were given to Abraham and to David are secure today.
God established a covenant with David and David learned God’s viewpoint towards life. Although man would place a potential king in high places to learn to be a king, chapter sixteen of I Samuel tells us that God taught David to handle problems in a much different way. It must have worked, because David became the greatest king Israel ever had.
While it is true that David failed God, he also repented before the Lord and God forgave him. Because of this forgiveness, David went on to be a greater king than before. David ruled the nations so well that God said, “I am going to make my son come from his loins. He will be the seed of David.”
God promised David that he would have a son that would rule forever. When Jesus comes back to serve in the Millennium and rule over the nations, the Bible declares that David will rule and reign with Him.
David lived during a time of great apostasy. Saul was the king and he had turned against the Lord. He tried to rule a supernatural race by his own might and with his natural mind.
God didn’t want a natural king to reign over Israel, but the whole nation rose up and demanded a king. When God allowed them to have a king, He intended that king to rule with the voice of God. God puts a man in office, He puts an anointing upon him to hear from Him and to rule and reign supernaturally. But, because Saul had turned from the Lord, his anointing lifted. Thus, he was left as a natural man trying to govern this great nation. Look what happened to him – he went insane. How many of you know that without the anointing you are no good? If you try to do the things God has called you to do without his anointing, the devil will see to it that you crack up. You have to do God’s calling supernaturally.
Samuel was close to Saul and loved him as his own son and when Saul cracked up, Samuel almost did too. God told Samuel that the anointing was gone from Saul. Upon hearing this, Samuel cried for days. God spoke to Samuel about this in I Samuel 16:1. And the Lord said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons.
Samuel was looking at this situation from man’s viewpoint and was crying even though God had already rejected Saul. The Bible tells us that there is a time to mourn, but then it must end so that we can carryon with life. Israel was told to mourn over Moses but when it was enough, they were told to get up and go. God is still here day after day even though people die. Furthermore, when God takes his anointing off one person, He puts it on another.
God tells Samuel that He has already provided a new king and that Samuel is to anoint him. This should have made Samuel rejoice to know that it was not his responsibility to pick the new king. However, according to verse two, Samuel does not rejoice. And Samuel said, How can I go? If Saul hear it, he will kill me. And the Lord said, Take an heifer with thee, and say, I am come to sacrifice to the Lord. (I Samuel 16:2).
Samuel is afraid that Saul will kill him. How many of you know that when God sends you on a mission, He doesn’t send you to die? To appease Samuel, God gives him the excuse of sacrificing a heifer and reassures him that He is in control. God tells Samuel, And call Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will shew thee what thou shalt do: and thou shalt anoint unto me him whom I name unto thee. And Samuel did that which the Lord spake, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the town trembled at his coming, and said, Comest thou peaceably? (I Samuel 16:3-4)
Bethlehem was a small town, so when a great prophet came to town, everyone noticed. In fact, the elders were afraid, but Samuel tells them that he has come only to sacrifice to the Lord.
When an elder of the church went over to tell Jesse that Samuel was in town, Jesse gathered together seven of his eight sons. David, the youngest son, was left in the field to watch the sheep and had not even been told of Samuel’s arrival.
Let’s look at how Jesse handles this situation. Verse six of I Samuel 16, gives us a good example of man’s viewpoint in this situation. And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the Lord’s anointed is before him.
Jesse thinks that his oldest son who is in the military would be the Lord’s logical choice. After all, who would make a better king than an experienced military man?
Now let’s take a look at verse seven to see how different the Lord’s point of f view is from Jesse’s. But the Lord said r unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.
Despite the Lord’s admonition, Jesse r goes on undaunted and in verse eight he calls for his second-born son. Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. And he said, Neither hath the Lord chosen this.
Notice that Jesse made Abinadab, pass before Samuel. He probably told him, “Stick your chest out Abinadab, pull in your chin, and put on your best kingly smile, because if it wasn’t Eliab, it is bound to be you.” But what did God say? . . . Neither hath the Lord chosen this.
In verse nine we are told that Jesse also made Shammah pass by, but he too was rejected by God. Furthermore, according to verse ten, he made his c seven sons pass in front of Samuel t again. Again, Jesse made seven of his t sons to pass before Samuel. And r Samuel said unto Jesse, The Lord hath t not chosen these. He reasoned that one of the seven had to be the king. You r see, Jesse was using man’s reasoning to determine what God wanted.
But Samuel knew the voice of the Lord and thought as God thought, and he asked Jesse, . . . Are here all thy children? (verse 11 a) Jesse answers, . . . There remaineth yet the youngest, and r behold, he keepeth the sheep. (verse 11 b) Because Jesse had not mentioned David before, he probably thought he was so young and inexperienced that God wouldn’t want him as king. That’s man’s attitude. The Word tells us, “Let no man despise your youth.”
Also, by mentioning that David keeps the sheep, Jesse is implying that a shepherd is not kingly material because he is dirty and he smells. He also is not even fit to bring before a prophet of God.
Jesse cannot comprehend how God could use a shepherd; however, as we have seen, when God wants to train somebody, He does it differently than men. A good example of this is the way God prepared Moses. From a human viewpoint Moses was in the finest possible place to be trained to run a nation. He was under Pharaoh. But he got so full of pride that when God told him to deliver His people, Moses tried to do it with his fists. When everything began to fall apart around him, God had to put Moses into the wilderness for forty years where He trained him to manage two million people by training him to run a few hundred sheep.
God is doing the same thing with David. David has been keeping the sheep, which are the dumbest of all animals to keep. They don’t have good reasoning faculties. For example, they will die of thirst before they will drink moving water. In Psalm 23, the Hebrew for “still waters” actually says, “he leads me by stilled waters.” The shepherd must hollow out a place to catch the water that it will be still and the sheep will drink it.
The Bible compares people to sheep because the divine view of life is so different from natural thinking that, while the solution to a problem may be simple, the human viewpoint can’t see it or understand it.
David’s experiences keeping sheep prepared him for the fight against Goliath. In the natural, David didn’t have any more strength than anybody else, but he had God’s viewpoint of life. When he was stuck in a situation, God’s Word rather than human reasoning rose up in him.
In I Samuel 17, David fights Goliath. Notice Saul’s attitude toward David in verse 33. And Saul said to David, Thou art not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him: for thou art but a youth, and he a man of war from his youth.
Saul points out the fact that David is young (and therefore must be inexperienced) while Goliath has been a man of war for many years. Man’s reasoning questions how a youth could fight Goliath.
But God prepared David as we see in verses 34-36.
And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a Iamb out of the flock: And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him. 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.
When David was faced with the lion, he could have relied on human reasoning which would tell, “You are just a young boy and lions are bigger and stronger than a young boy, (or an old boy!) And, after all, what’s one sheep? There are a lot more.” But as we know, David didn’t use human reasoning, for in verse 35, we are told that he killed the lion (and a bear) and took the Iamb from its mouth. God called David to protect those sheep, and he did it with the zeal of the Lord Jesus Christ!
David knew Goliath had been trained in the army, but he was saying, “I have also learned. God has trained me.” When God placed him out there to keep the sheep, He knew there would be lions and bears, but He also knew that when David trusted Him, the supernatural strength of God would come upon him to slay the lion and the bear.
An interesting point is that, this is the first time anyone has ever heard these stories. David kept his mouth shut about both of these incidents. While human viewpoint would have boasted about these feats, it’s only now, when he has been challenged, that David tells of them.
Another interesting thing about David is that prior to this time he had been Saul’s armor-bearer. (I Samuel 16). An armor-bearer was a young boy chosen to carry the king’s armor into battle. This position was a guarantee of a great future. But in I Samuel 17:15, we learn that David left Saul to return home and are for his father’s sheep at Bethlehem.
Human viewpoint says, “Stay with Saul and you will be a great man.” Divine viewpoint says, “This is not the way I am going to promote you, David. This is man’s way of promotion, but I promote in a different manner. I haven’t released you from the sheep; go back to the sheep.”
This is a good lesson for us. If you want to be in a full-time ministry, and you base your entering it upon one success, search your heart to see if God has released you from where you are. One success does not make a ministry. The reason that David was promoted was not because he had been an armor-bearer, but because he was faithful to what God called him to do.
Now, back to David’s killing of the lion and the bear. Facing them was one thing, but Goliath is an even more formidable opponent. He was 9’9″ tall. His brass helmet weighed ten or twelve pounds and just his clothes weighed 180 pounds. David had to have the divine point of view to voluntarily face this giant!
I Samuel 17:8-9 tells us of Goliath’s taunts.
. . . Why are ye come out to set your battle in array? am not I a Philistine, and ye servants to Saul? choose you a man for you, and let him come down to me. If he be able to fight with me, and to kill me, then will we be your servants: but if I prevail against him, and kill him, then shall ye be our servants, and serve us.
When Goliath says that the Philistines will serve the Israelites, he was lying. God supernaturally revealed to David that the Philistines had no intention of becoming servants of Israel. God revealed that Goliath had four brothers who would attack Goliath’s opponents if Goliath should lose. This is why David picked up five stones – one for each of the brothers. What a man of faith! These brothers are discussed in II Samuel 21:16-22. Eventually David and his men did kill all of them.
Saul used man’s reasoning as an attempt to persuade someone to fight Goliath. I Samuel 17:25 tells us, And the men of Israel said, Have ye seen this man that is come up? surely to defy Israel is he come up: and it shall be, that the man who killeth him, the king will enrich him with great riches, and will give him his daughter, and make his father’s house free in Israel. Look at David’s reaction to the situation, And David spake to the men that stood by him, saying, What shall be done to the man that killeth this Philistine, and taketh away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God? (I Samuel 17:26)
Goliath referred to the Israelites as “the arm of Saul,” and the Israelites said that Goliath had come up to defy Israel, but David called them “the armies of the living God!” He saw this situation from God’s point of view. Consequently, his motivation for fighting Goliath was not anything Saul was offering as a reward. Rather, he was motivated by the fact an uncircumcised Philistine was coming against his covenant God. How dare Goliath attack this nation which was built upon the promises of Abraham! God said I will be your shield and exceeding great reward. When they attack you, they attack me. I’ll stand beside you. Cursed is everyone that curses you, and blessed is everyone that blesses you. David’s speaking is the first confession of faith that the soldiers had heard for forty days. Until now they had been hearing negative things. One young boy was the only one to give the divine viewpoint, to stand on the Word, and remember the covenant, to forget not the benefits.
The news of David reached Saul and the king sent for him. This is when David tells the king of his exploits with the bear and the lion. Saul then approved of David and told him to go fight the giant.
As we know, David rejects the use of Saul’s armor and takes only his staff and slingshot. Along the way he picked up five smooth stones (remember, one for each giant brother) and “hasted” toward Goliath. In verses 45-47, David again speaks faith-filled words with confidence because he remembers the God who parted the Red Sea and saved the children of Israel.
Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied. This day will the Lord deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcasses of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. And all this assembly shall know that the Lord saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the Lord’s and he will give you into our hands.
What kinds of giants are you facing today? The battle is not yours; it is the Lord’s. When you became a born-again child of God, to attack you is to attack God! Examine your attitude. Do you try to defend yourself with your own strength, or are you relying on God’s strength? Are you an Israelite soldier shaking in your boots? Or are you going to look at your problems as David did?
David killed Goliath and the Philistines fled because they knew he wasn’t natural, he was supernatural. “There- fore David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him, and cut off his head therewith. And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled.” (verse 51)
Don’t be afraid to stand up for the Lord, for the Lord will take care of you and the people will take notice. In fact, the Israelites were heartened by David and jumped on the bandwagon, “And the men of Israel and of Judah arose, and shouted, and pursued the Philistines. . .” (verse 52)
David was confident in the Abrahamic covenant and he acted on God’s Word. The covenant we have today is even better than the covenant David had. We have a better covenant established upon better promises, and Jesus is not only the great high priest, He is also the mediator of the new covenant. Therefore, we can be even bolder than David as we hasten to destroy the enemy with the Word!