stonesOne of the most well-known and beloved stories of the entire Bible has to be the story of David and Goliath.  I remember listening to my Sunday school teacher, Mrs. Clark, tell the the story while acting our the different roles: now David, now Goliath.  I can also recall memorizing the story a few years later in Sunday school when Mr. VanNostrand challenged the class to commit it to memory.

It a great story.  A story of good versus evil.  Of right over might. Of faith.

David, as you recall, was the youngest of 8 brothers, several 3 of whom served in King Saul’s army.  In the valley of Elah, the Philistine army does battle with Saul’s army.  Goliath, the Philistine giant, taunts and teases Saul’s men, saying that they have no one brave enough to face and fight him.  For several days, this scene repeats itself.

One day, Jesse, David’s father, sends young David to the battlefield to deliver food supplies to his brothers.  While there, Goliath again steps out and taunts the soldiers of Saul.  As David hears this, he asks a simple question: “What’s in it for the one who defeats this Philistine?”  It was a fair question.

Pretty soon, King Saul gets wind of David’s question and summons him.  As the King speaks to David, David recounts how he defeated the bear and the lion when he was a shepherd of his father’s flock.  He then goes on to say that the God who saved him from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will save him from the Philistine Goliath.

As Saul listens to David, he determines that David would face this enemy.  But first, David must be prepared for the battle.  So Saul clothes David with his own armor and gives David his own sword.  But it is too much.  David cannot maneuver in the King’s armor, it is too big, too bulky.  And he cannot lift the King’s sword.  David must have thought to himself, “If I face the giant in this armor, he will squash me like a bug.”

So, David removes the armor, picks up his own spear and chooses 5 stones from a riverbed, places them in a pouch with his sling and off he goes to face the enemy.

As he arrives again on the battle field, he hears Goliath taunting the army with the same challenge as before.

It is here that I like to imagine David standing up among his brothers and other soldiers, getting ready to walk out and face Goliath.  And as he steps forward, one of his brothers grabs his arm and says something like this; “David, what are you doing?  Are you crazy?  You’ve never done battle before and this giant will kills you with one swipe of his arm!  You can’t be serious.  Go home and let us handle this.”

When David hears this, he reaches into his pouch, pulls out the 5 small stones.  Holding them in his palm for all to see, he points to them and says, “I go out to face the battle of this day with what little I have and my faith in God.”