7 Battle Lessons from David vs. Goliath

When poring through the story of David vs. Goliath, there are battle lessons that we can embrace and employ as we stand as the guardians (servant-warriors) of our communities.

  1. Be sure your cause is righteous.

And David said to the men who stood by him, ‘What shall be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?’” (1 Samuel 17:26)

  1. Be prepared for opposition from within.

“Now Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spoke to the men. And Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, ‘Why have you come down? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your presumption and the evil of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.’” (1 Samuel 17:28)

  1. Courage might be spelled v-o-l-u-n-t-e-e-r. Volunteers step up to the plate when no one else will.

“When the words that David spoke were heard, they repeated them before Saul, and he sent for him. And David said to Saul, ‘Let no man’s heart fail because of him. Your servant will go and fight with this Philistine.’” (1 Samuel 17:31, 32)

  1. If God has called you into battle, he has prepared you for the fight.

“And Saul said to David, ‘You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him, for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth.’ But David said to Saul, ‘Your servant used to keep sheep for his father. And when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock, I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth. And if he arose against me, I caught him by his beard and struck him and killed him. Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God.’” (1 Samuel 17:33-36) 

  1. Have confidence in the Lord’s calling.

“And David said, ‘The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.’” (1 Samuel 17:37)

Then David said to the Philistine, ‘You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.’” (1 Samuel 17:45)

  1. Use the equipment that you’ve used in training.

“Then Saul clothed David with his armor. He put a helmet of bronze on his head and clothed him with a coat of armor, and David strapped his sword over his armor. And he tried in vain to go, for he had not tested them. Then David said to Saul, ‘I cannot go with these, for I have not tested them.’ So David put them off. Then he took his staff in his hand and chose five smooth stones from the brook and put them in his shepherd’s pouch. His sling was in his hand, and he approached the Philistine.” (1 Samuel 17:38-40)

  1. Have courage to engage in the battle the Lord has placed before you.

“When the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. And David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone and slung it and struck the Philistine on his forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the ground. So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. There was no sword in the hand of David.” (1 Samuel 17:48-50)

Finally, I pray these lessons will assist as you face your own Goliath, wherever it may be.

– Jim McNeff

(Feature image: Marc Cooper)

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Showing 6 comments
  • M.C. Wiliams

    Shared on my Centurion pages.

    • Jim McNeff

      Thanks, Brother!

  • Scott Silverii

    This is incredible. I’ve been studying heart-shaped leadership as it applies to David, and your article captures it all and more. You’ve got spiritual insight!!!
    Love you, Brother.

    • Jim McNeff

      Thanks, Scott!

  • Tony Gunter

    Great insight Jim …

    • Jim McNeff

      Thank you, Tony!

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