Severing the head..it’s a gruesome thought I know. Honestly, it’s always been one of those details in the Bible I’ve asked myself before ‘is it really necessary to include?’ And as it always is with God, things become necessary once I realize the significance. The severed head I’m speaking of is Goliath’s.
A quick recap of this well-often told story in 1 Samuel 17. David has already been anointed to be the next King of Israel by Samuel but is still young and Saul is still the current King. The Israelites in 1 Samuel 17 find themselves once again battling a very well-known enemy, the Philistines. Can I pause here? Throughout my life, but especially these last 3oo+ days, I find myself battling (over and over and over and over again) some pretty well-known enemies. Enemies that I thought I had defeated in previous rounds, only to see them rear their ugly head and strike fear into my heart yet again. I have realized that I, just like the Israelites, am standing in front of my Goliaths, immobile and petrified by my fears. I hear their taunts of all the things that can and likely will happen if my Goliath-sized enemies have their way. I have listened to them yell in my head and heart all of the ways my family will suffer at their hands while facing total annihilation, and I believed I could do nothing about it.
1 Samuel 17 says that for 40 days, Goliath came out and tormented the Israelites. My Goliath has been doing it far longer than 40 days. But TODAY, I realized something. I need to act just as David did. David saw what everyone else saw. David heard what everyone else heard. David knew the capabilities and likely truth behind the words being slung at them just as everyone did. David wasn’t immune to the fear or to the truth behind the words. But David knew His God was GREATER than the fear he may have felt. David saw the fear..the lies..the torment..Goliath as TOO BIG for GOD to miss. Do I?
Do I see my Goliath-sized fears as ones too big for God to miss or am I secretly praying that God will make the Goliath-sized fears go away so that I don’t have to do battle with them? For most of my life, I have wished and willed and worked hard to quieted down my Goliaths hoping that they don’t come back; but bullies always do.
Unlike David, I’ve never actually gone face-to-face battle with them and cut off the head so that they CANNOT return. There are 2 passages in this story I LOVE. The first, 1 Samuel 17:45-47:
“ David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day the Lord will deliver you into my hands, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. 47 All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.”
David is VERY clear that He wants EVERYONE to know that THIS battle is not David’s but the Lord’s. I love this because it’s such a good reminder for me that MY battle is not mine either. If I will TRUST God and give Him ALL of my worries and fears, it is HIS job, not mine to destroy my Goliaths. It is HIS job to meet my needs-not mine. WHY? Why is it God’s job and not mine? “So that the WHOLE WORLD will know that there IS a God in Israel.” And that anyone who sees my journey/our story will know that it wasn’t my unique strength or gifting or some ability I have, that others may not, that allowed victory, it was GOD alone because “the battle is the Lord’s.”
And once God goes to battle, it’s for COMPLETE freedom. He doesn’t do anything half-way. He wants to GUARANTEE that I’m free from THIS Goliath forever so, He cuts off the head of my fear; of everything that once tormented me. Not only does David cut off Goliath’s head in verse 51, “David ran and stood over him. He took hold of the Philistine’s sword and drew it from the sheath. After he killed him, he cut off his head with the sword.” But I love that he uses Goliath’s OWN weapon to do it. And you know, I think God is the same way. He takes whatever our Goliath’s weapons are and uses the same weapons against our fears to severe the head so that it can NEVER come back to taunt us again.
When God saves, He’s in the business of COMPLETE victory and COMPLETE freedom!
I don’t know about you, but my Goliaths have tormented me long enough. I can’t wait to see their severed heads on display as a reminder to myself and everyone else along on our journey that THIS battle is the Lord’s and He WILL have COMPLETE VICTORY.
Whatever you’re walking through..whatever fear you face. Don’t let it taunt you one more day. There is NOTHING you will go through that is TOO big for God. Tell all of those ‘logical whispers’ to be quiet and allow God to battle for you. After all, it’s His battle to fight-not yours. Tell your fears..your worries who your God is. Find a promise of God’s and say it over and over and over again until your feel His peace wash over you. Don’t hide in fear for one more day. Stand confidently in the face of your giant with your promise and let God severe the head of your fears for good. TODAY is a GOOD day for COMPLETE VICTORY!