Perception Of Preparation, Part 2of3, Pastor Phil Sessa

1Samuel 17:38-40, “38 So Saul clothed David with his armor, and he put a bronze helmet on his head; he also clothed him with a coat of mail. 39 David fastened his sword to his armor and tried to walk, for he had not tested them. And David said to Saul, “I cannot walk with these, for I have not tested them.” So David took them off. 40 Then he took his staff in his hand; and he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag, in a pouch which he had, and his sling was in his hand”

My wife and I went to a marriage retreat one year where the speaker shared a story from his marriage about how he cut carrots verses how his wife cut carrots. Whenever he would see his wife cutting carrots he would correct her, and instruct her to cut the carrots his way. She would do it for a time although feeling uncomfortable doing it his way. When he left the room, she usually returned to the way that she initially was cutting the carrots. There are certainly times that one will tell another how to do something based how the first one has always done it. Looking throughout Scripture, how should one fight a battle, walk around a wall seven times (if one is present), fight with 300 men only, or sling stones at the enemies head? There were numerous battles in Scripture, and each army won the battle in a different way. Joshua marched around the Jericho walls, Gideon fought with 300 men, and of course David would slay Goliath with a sling and stone. There were different tactics used to bring about victory, but each victory was the battle plan by God’s as the leader and God gave the victory. The only times Israel lost battle is when they did not go according to God’s plans, or because there was sin in the camp. How should one fight a battle?

When David convinced Saul and the others that he would fight Goliath in battle, Saul began to suit David up in Saul’s armor. However when David tried to walk he couldn’t move well in them. “The king’s tunic and armor would have been very distinctive. If David went out dressed in them, many would have thought that the king himself was going out. Perhaps such a misidentification would have seemed attractive to Saul, who had been sought out by the Israelites to lead them forth in battle. In the Iliad a similar switch occurred when Patroclus went out in the armor of Achilles, hoping to intimidate the Trojans. David’s refusal would have reflected his recognition that without being trained on how to use the armor and weapons to his advantage, they would become a detriment (The IVP Bible background commentary : Old Testament).”

David chose to wear what he knew and fight with a weapon that he was familiar with. The sling was used in organized warfare therefore Goliath should have known its deadly potential. David perceived that if he used this weapon in the past, he could fight with it now. There are many that we can learn from, but God has uniquely wired each of so differently. We must be wise about putting on Saul’s armor. Battles are won and lost based on yielding ourselves to God. Look back to the battles you have won, and you too will acknowledge God’s hand brought the victory. If you trusted Him in times past, can you not trust Him now? Remember Paul’s words, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose,” and thank God right now.” Let God prepare you in His way, and respond obediently, and see God will never let you down.

Until the nets are filled…Blessings, Pastor Phil <><

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