He stood as a titan on the battlefield, his intimidating presence mortifying the ranks of the armies of Israel. According to one translation of scripture, Goliath was “the shock trooper.”1 This giant would have made the average NBA player look like a preschooler. Standing “six cubits and a span” (1 Samuel 17:4), somewhere near nine and ½ feet tall, Goliath must have appeared surreal to the Israelites. “Shocking” was no doubt an appropriate term to describe him. Twice each day—80 times in all—this gargantuan Philistine stood before them and cursed the God of Israel, causing the Israelite soldiers to cower in fear at his terrifying challenge, “Send out a man to fight me” (see 1 Samuel 17:8-10). He was confident, intimidating, relentless.
To David, the young shepherd-boy, however, the fact that no one had accepted Goliath’s challenge was even more shocking than the giant’s menacing size. After all, greater things were at stake than just this one battle. The Philistines, Israel’s archenemies, were determined to conquer the people of God and eradicate them from the land. David knew that Goliath’s challenge was winner-take-all!
David saw beyond Goliath’s size and daunting intimidation. He knew something bigger was at stake. Perhaps this is what young David was implying with the question—“Is there not a cause?”—when he announced he was going to face this giant (1 Samuel 17:29, KJV). What a probing question.
David’s question implied: There are some things more important than our individual lives. Our decision shouldn’t be made based on how terrifying, imposing or indestructible this giant seems; there is a cause far bigger and far more important than the potential cost of facing this menacing giant.
What was this “cause” David spoke of? (Some of them should sound familiar.)
The well-being of Israel’s wives and children hung in the balance
Homes and possessions were on the line
The blood that had been shed by others to purchase their freedom was about to be trampled underfoot
Israel’s freedom was at stake
The very purposes of God through His covenant with Abraham were in jeopardy
The Cause of Christ That last statement is loaded with significance. Goliath’s challenge was about so much more than simply one nation fighting another; it concerned more than just a squabble over a few square miles of dirt. The freedoms and destiny of one nation, although very significant, cannot compare to the greater cause hidden in this drama. The very purposes of God on the earth were at stake! God’s covenant with Abraham had been initiated in order to establish a Messianic lineage, an entry point for He Himself to enter earth’s fallen race and redeem the world. And this divine cause was in jeopardy. No wonder satan was fighting Israel so fervently through this demonized giant—an eternity for billions of people was at stake; companionship for Father God and a Bride for His Son were on the line; the integrity and vindication of Yahweh, who promised to redeem fallen humanity, were at risk; and the recompense due satan, the destroyer, also hung in the balance.
Indeed, there was a cause!
Satan didn’t know how God planned to do all of this, but He knew it involved the seed of Abraham. Was David aware of all this? Not fully, but he certainly realized this was about more than simply the well-being of Israel. God, the text tells us, was being “taunted.” Goliath “cursed David by his gods” (1 Samuel 17: 43, 45), revealing the deeper and more subtle plot unfolding on this ancient battlefield. It was a battle between the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of satan.
Thinking of this greater cause, David, lover of God, responded with this goal in fighting the giant: “that all the earth may know there is a God in Israel, and that all this assembly may know that the LORD does not deliver by sword or by spear; for the battle is the LORD’s and He will give you into our hands” (1 Samuel 17:46-47). Clearly, David understood that a cause greater than the survival of his nation was at stake...a noteworthy cause worth fighting and, if necessary, dying for.
And fight David did, killing the shock trooper and removing his head! History was made; the cause was saved and Israel’s destiny protected. Such is the role of destiny-driven, cause-minded people: preserving causes and writing history.
America’s destiny, like Israel of old, is being challenged. Today’s Goliaths have made their stand and issued their challenge. Spiritual giants are trying to abort our destiny, and in doing so, frustrate the plans of God around the world. Anyone who cannot discern that the war against America’s identity, as well as other conflicts in the earth currently, has no discernment. God is calling cause-minded warriors who perceive the situation in America clearly enough—and believe in the cause passionately enough—to become history-making, destiny-preserving giant-killers. I hope you’re one of them.
Today’s war for America has already begun and the opening volley was fired in the 60s. Though our battle is certainly of a different nature, “we wrestle not against flesh and blood” (Ephesians 6:12, KJV), it is no less real and will be no less intense. And most certainly, as was the case in Israel’s battle with Goliath, the destiny of our nation and the purposes of God on earth are at stake.
Calling For Today’s Giant Killers
In this war, the eternal destinies of souls are at stake. Is there another great generation of spiritual soldiers who will storm our “Normandy”—the gates of hell—and lay it all on the line for a righteous cause? Is not our eternal cause just as noble as was the cause of American’s down through history.
Just as it was in David’s day, God’s reputation is certainly part of our cause. Is He not taunted daily in our land and cursed in the name of false gods? Are not His words and laws mocked? In the past, America, more than any other nation, has been known as an example of what it means to be a Christian nation. Our sin, however, now mocks and reproaches Him, while presenting a false picture of what a nation “under God” should look like. Our government leaders mock Him. Our educators and media mock Him. Our motto, “In God We Trust,” is currently no more than a faith-filled statement of hope, clung to by a remnant determined to make it a national reality once again. For those who know and love Him, this should be one of our motivating causes.
Am I being overly dramatic in making such shocking comparisons with Israel and assertions about the world? Come on, Sheets, I can almost hear some thinking. Is America’s destiny really at stake? Is the eternal well-being of billions of people actually hanging in the balance? Is God being mocked? Are we that far from what our Founding Fathers intended?
Without a doubt.
But there is good news. As leaders take counsel against Him (Psalm 2:1-3), the terrifying laugh of Yahweh is ringing in the heavens (verse 4). The Ruler over all the earth is reminding us of His promise to His Son: “I will give You the nations as Your inheritance,” (verse 8). “My rod of iron is still strong, and is about to be extended” (verse 9). A generation of passionate, God-honoring patriots are arising who, like David of old, believe enough in the cause of Christ to risk everything for His cause. Greatness is being restored, not at a political level, but a heart level.
Greatness is found when Godly character and courage overcome giant-sized challenges, no matter the cost. “When Lewis Morris of New York was about to sign the Declaration of Independence, his brother advised against it, warning he would lose all his property. Morris, a plain-spoken founding father, responded ‘...Damn the consequences, give me the pen.’”2 That is greatness.
Morris displayed the heart of a cause-minded David staring down the mocking “Goliath” of his day. We must do the same. Our giants are socialism, humanism, liberalism, out of control government, abortion, immorality, drugs, breakdown of the family, materialism, love of pleasure, human trafficking, fatherlessness—make your own list. But without question, God is raising up a generation of Lewis Morris’s, warriors who will stand up, accept the challenge, take hold of their pens, - or 5 smooth stones - and write history.
America will find her heroes, giants will fall, revival will explode and the cause of Christ will be accomplished.
Pray with me:
Father, You said, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, Nor will the flame burn you” (Isaiah 43:2). We lay hold of Your promise today. You have told us to be bold and courageous. You commanded us not to fear. We refuse to cower in the face of today’s Goliaths.
You have said that in this era giants will fall, principalities will be removed from places they have ruled for centuries. Your gospel will go forth with power and bring forth abundant fruit. We hold fast to these promises. We know there is more at stake than just our freedoms and prosperity. The redemption of a billion souls is at stake. Let Your rod of authority descend on those who oppose You. We pray that they kiss the Son, as the Psalm commands (Psalm 2:12). But if they refuse, crush their influence and rule.
We ask You to restore greatness to this nation, in order that we might partner with You once again. Awaken the church to this incredible privilege. Greatness is not measured by wealth or power. Greatness is measured in the heart. Give us hearts of love, faith, boldness and loyalty. Give us leaders with integrity, character and, yes, common sense. And give us 1 billion souls! Amen.
The ekklesia decrees that the cause of Christ will prosper and succeed. Giants will fall, principalities will lose their hold, and the harvest will come in.
Some of today’s post was taken from my book Giants Will Fall.
Click on the link below to watch the full prayer.
Metzger, Bruce M. The Bible in Translation: Ancient and English Versions. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2001). P.124.