Do you know the story of David and Goliath?
The story of David and Goliath is one of the most well-known narratives in the Bible. Similar to Noah and the flood and Moses and the Exodus, the story of David vs. Goliath is a classic biblical story that many people know. However, the story is often understood as an underdog story of the little guy overcoming the giant. In our culture, the story often becomes a motivational tale that inspires you to overcome the giants in your life.
The story of David and the giant is not an underdog story. It's not a narrative of overcoming adversity.
It's about God.
David, the small, young shepherd fights the 9ft giant because of his devotion to God. Goliath is cursing the God of Israel and the people of Israel. He is challenging God and threatening God's people.
The story points us towards two significant spiritual truths.
1. God will defend his glory.
God exists to glorify himself; he exists to honor and glorify his name and he has created all things to bring glory to himself. When someone such as Goliath openly challenges God, the Triune God will not remain silent forever. He will speak. He will defend his name.
In this story, God defends his glory through David. God uses David to teach the Philistines (and us) a lesson about his glory. God will be glorified.
The lesson from this story is this: Are you, like David, living for the glory of God? Or are you living for the glory of self?
David was compelled to live and act for the glory of the God of Israel. He understood the greatness of God and was willing to do whatever it took to bring God glory. Do you share the attitude of David? Are you living for God's glory?
2. God sends a representative from his people to defend his people.
David is called from among God's people to defend Israel against the threat from the Philistines. This foreshadows the coming of Jesus Christ and his redemptive work on behalf of the people of God. Jesus Christ, identifying with God's people at his baptism, comes to defend God's people against their spiritual enemies of sin, Satan, and eternal death.
He represents God's people and defends them, not with a sling or a sword, but with his life. He sacrifices his life on the cross, disarming all rulers and authorities and freeing God's people from the threats of sin and hell. David's conflict with Goliath foreshadows the redemptive work of Jesus Christ that will occur almost 1,000 years later.
Is the story of David and Goliath an underdog story?
No. Rather, it's a story about living for the glory of God and about God's rule and defense of his people through the life, death, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.