(presented by: Naomi Blankenship)

      In the days when there were giants in the land, there was a shepherd boy whose name was David.  His fathers name was Jesse.  David had eight brothers and he was the youngest of the sons of Jesse.  

       The three eldest of his brothers went out with the army of Israel to fight for their king, Saul, against the mighty Philistine army while their little brother David stayed behind to watch his father’s sheep in Bethlehem.

      The Philistines were very strong because they had a champion fighter that was a giant who was from a family of giants.  His name was Goliath and he was from the area of Gath.  Goliath stood about thirteen feet and four inches tall and loved to brag.  His enormous size made all the Israeli soldiers very frightened and they hesitated to go up against the strong, terrifying Goliath. 

     Goliath had a special armor that weighed about 194 ˝ pounds.  His helmet was made of brass and he was armed with a coat of mail. (In ancient times, mail was made of quilted linen with rows of metal plates secured by brass pins.  Sometimes mail was made of iron rings closely locked together, or pieces of animal horns and hooves were sown into the cloth with overlapping plates of metal).  Goliath wore brass greaves, which were plates of metal that covered the calves of his legs.  He wore a target (breast plate) of brass on his chest.  Goliath carried a large wooden spear with a spearhead of iron attached to the end.  The head of the spear weighed about 23˝pounds.  His shield was large enough to cover his whole body and was carried by a man that went before him. 

     Goliath yelled out at the Israeli army and said unto them, “Why are ye come out to set your battle in array?  Am not I a Philistine and you servants to Saul?  Choose you a man for you, and let him come down to me.  If he be able to fight with me, and kill me, then will we be your servants: but if I prevail against him, and kill him, then shall ye be our servants, and serve us. …And the Philistine said, I defy the armies of Israel this day: give me a man that we may fight together.”  This made King Saul and the army of Israel very afraid. 

      King Saul and David’s brothers along with the Israeli army were in the valley of Elah fighting with the Philistines.  Jesse told David to go and check on his brothers and to carry them some corn and loaves of bread to eat.  He also, gave David cheeses to take to the captain of the Israeli army.  Thus, David rose up early in the morning and left his sheep with a keeper while he took the food, as his father Jesse had told him, to his brothers that were with King Saul’s army. 

     David reached the trench where the army was fighting and he greeted his brothers and gave them the food that was sent by their father.  As David talked with them, there came the giant Goliath out from among the Philistine army to speak to the Israeli army, and David heard him.  When he spoke all the men of Israel trembled and were sore afraid of Goliath but, David spoke to the men and said, “What shall be done to the man who killeth the Philistine, and taketh away the reproach from Israel?  For who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?” 

        The soldiers replied to David that King Saul had declared that the man who could kill Goliath in combat would receive great riches, and the king himself would give him his daughter’s hand in marriage, and would make all his father’s house free in Israel.

    David’s oldest brother, Eliah, was angry at David’s comment.  Eliah said to David, “Why camest thou down hither? And with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness?  I know thy pride and the naughtiness of thine heart; for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle.”  And David said, “What have I done?  Is there not a cause?  

        David turned to the others present repeating his cause and the others agreed with Eliah, the oldest brother of David.  The words David had said came before King Saul and he sent for David.  And David said to Saul, “Let no man’s heart fail because of him; thy servant will go and fight with this Philistine.”  And Saul said to David, “Thou art not able to go up against this Philistine to fight with him: for thou art but a youth, and he a man of war from his youth.

     David said unto Saul, “Thy servant keep his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock.  And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth; and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him.  Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing that he hath defied the armies of the living God.”  David said moreover, “The Lord hath delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, He will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine.”  And King Saul said, “Go and the Lord go with thee.

      King Saul gave little David armour, a sword, and a shield, but David refused them because he was not used to wearing heavy armour and wanted to use what he was comfortable wearing.  Instead, David took his staff in his hand, and chose him five smooth stones out of the brook, and he put them in a shepherd’s bag, which he had, even a scrip; and his sling was in his hand; and he drew near to the Philistine.  And the Philistine came and drew near to David. The man that held the giant’s shield went before him.  When the Philistine looked around and saw David, he felt David to be an unworthy opponent because of his youth and ruddiness. 

     The Philistine said to David, “Am I a dog that thou camest to me with staves?”  And the Philistine cursed David by his gods and said to him, “Come to me, and I will give thy flesh to the fowls of the air, and the beasts of the field.

     Then David said, “Thou camest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield; but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.    This day the Lord will deliver thee into my hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.  And this assembly shall know that the Lord saveth not with a sword and a spear; for the battle is the Lord’s and he will give you into my hands.

     When the giant came near to him, David ran toward the Philistine army to meet him.  David put his hand in his bag of stones and took one out and slung it, and hit the giant in his forehead, and he fell upon his face to the earth.  David had no sword, so he ran toward the giant and stood upon him.  He pulled the giant’s sword from the sheath and cut off his head.  When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead they fled from David and the armies of Israel.  The men of Israel arose and shouted and ran after the Philistine army through the valley unto the gates of Ekron.  The children of Israel collected the spoils from the tents of the Philistine army.  David took the head of the giant and brought it into Jerusalem, but he put the giant’s armour in his tent.

    When Saul saw David go forth against the Philistine, he said unto Abner, the captain of the host, “Whose son is this youth?”  And Abner said, “As thy soul liveth, Oh King, I cannot tell.”  And the King said, “Enquire thou whose son the stripling is.” 

      As David returned from the slaughter of the giant, Abner met him and took him before King Saul with the head of the Philistine in his hand.  And King Saul said unto him, “Whose son art thou young man?”  And David answered, “I am the son of thy servant Jesse the Bethlehemite.”  When he had finished speaking, the soul of Jonathan, Saul’s son, was knit with the soul of David.  Saul took him that day and would not let him go anymore to his father Jesse’s house for he was loved of King Saul and his son Jonathan as one of their family.    

    Jonathan gave David his robe and garments and made a covenant with him.  David was put over the men of war by King Saul for his bravery and his courage.  David behaved wisely and did what Saul requested of him.   

      Always remember, when a problem too big for you to deal with comes along, let the Lord God Almighty help you by your continual prayer.  Do as the Word of God says and pray always to Him and He will help you through difficult times.  He will bless us as He did little David who later became King David of Israel, (who was also loved of God).

      If Jesus (Yeshua) has touched your heart and you would like to accept Him as your personal Lord and Savior, please just