It is likely that all of us have heard or read the story of David and Goliath in 1 Samuel chapter 17. David ran an errand for his father, bringing food for his brothers. The oldest, Eliab, immediately challenged David as the motivation for visiting the battlefield. David was likely little more than a boy, based on “ruddy complexion,” meaning red or not shaving yet. Goliath was a giant! We can calculate Goliath’s height at about 9 feet 9 inches tall. His armor alone weighed about 126 pounds. Goliath was a terrifying sight to behold!
We know more about how we are built now, and there is a pituitary gland behind the eyes that causes many things to happen in the body, one of which is growth. If a tumor develops there, this could cause excess secretions of a growth hormone. In addition, the tumor can cause significant vision problems. This could explain Goliath’s condition.
Every day for 40 days (a biblical time of testing), Goliath taunted the army of Israel. No one in Israel wanted to fight Goliath. David heard the taunt, and thought how dare this Philistine defame the name of the one true God! David volunteered to fight the giant. The Israel army soldiers took David to the king, where King Saul, himself a tall man, head and shoulders above anyone else, wanted to outfit David with the King’s armor and sword. David tried it on, but none of it fit, and he was not comfortable enough to fight in it. Wisely, David declared that he had fought off the lion and the bear in defending the flock. He could do the same with the giant.
David picked up 5 smooth stones and went to the battlefield. If Goliath’s condition was one also of poor vision, which may explain why he had a shield bearer (who may have also been his walking guide), when David ran toward Goliath, loading his sling, Goliath may not have been able to track the movement. It could also be that the giant could not see the sling being whirled or the stone flying.
There are some encouragements that we can take away from this well-known biblical story:
As each of us faces our own personal giants in this season of turmoil, fear, and uncertainty, we can acknowledge that God is living, active, and it is He who wants to work in us and through us to His great pleasure! We can stand in victory because of our faith in God.
Praise God that He will not take us to a battlefield, without giving us all of the resources required for victory!