Most battles have more obvious lines drawn to enable clear identification of the attacker that must be stopped. But not always so. There are unclear boundaries and many soldiers in uniforms too faded to ascertain whether they be on the Lord’s side or not. We often think of the story of David and Goliath as an example of a clear cut case but a closer look provides insights.
Sa 17:37 David said moreover, The LORD that 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 Saul said unto David, Go, and the LORD be with thee.
In the above text, one discerns three spirits at war or shall we say at play …, the spirit of the Philistine Goliath, the spirit of Saul and the Spirit of God on David. These are like forces, persons or even institutions in a virtual field involving nations, mindsets and cultures …yet very real when considering implications of battle outcomes,
The easiest to identify of the three and perhaps understand … bold in its clear intent – is Goliath who has come against the agenda of God and to steal the joy and peace, ultimately to enslave and kill. Goliath is undisguised and must be stopped … indeed he is the anti-God adversary that makes no pretenses of an avowed intent to devour first with fear and dearth of truth and eventually with plagues, poverty, barrenness, bondage, disease and destruction. Goliath challenges the reign of the most High and proposes an alternative culture and mindset that must be imposed on captives – if unstopped.
The other spirit, is the spirit of Saul. The agenda of this spirit is not as clear. This spirit knows of God, speaks for God and even prays in the name of the Lord … asking the Lord to be with David. But this spirit is sunk in a mire of lukewarmness … the shameless leadership that watches a young teenager approach what appears to be sure defeat. Like that of Lot, this is a genteel compromised spirit enmeshed in a fallen environment and a darkened culture … too careful to take risks to challenge Goliath. This is the master of alliances …craving popularity … perhaps scheming already to negotiate a truce with Goliath – should David fail. The spirit of Saul instantly dislikes David … mocking him with the offer of armor that he knows too well he will not be able to lift. But the tepid spirit of Saul is cursed to be spit out as eventually happens. But this spirit unlike that of Goliath is not the wicked adversary that must be beheaded …rather Saul is needed very much around to occupy the throne on which David must eventually sit. Saul is needed to introduce David into his destiny and to complete the training of God’s elect in survival as David learns to fight the far more dangerous domestic battles. The spirit of Saul is the spirit that though clever and experienced, is paralyzed in compromise, greed and inner doubts. Unlike Goliath, David is not sent to fight this spirit - just like Abram does not fight Lot. Instead, he must learn to wait on God , learn his lessons, and be perfected as he maneuvers around Saul as best as he can. He will suffer far more anguish from the spirit of Saul than Goliath who is soon to be beheaded.
The Spirit of God is with David. This is the Spirit of sure victory in the strength of the Lord. This is the Spirit that moves forward for God… the Spirit of the reigning champion … the Winner … the Holy Spirit …that sets David apart to be different in victory where the older brothers and more experienced military fails. The Spirit of God is bold, confident in the name of the Lord and declares the cause of Jehovah with no apology. This Spirit does not fit in the armor of the lukewarm and the correctness that turns God’s children into the laughing stock of the enemy. The Spirit of God discerns the lukewarmness of Saul … but David is focused on the Goliath that must be stopped … as though he already knew Saul was already irrelevant.
God is raising a conquering army filled with soldiers like David, filled with His Spirit. Jesus – the unconquerable conqueror leads the army. Goliath, Saul…watch out.
Prayer. Lord, keep me burning with the Holy Spirit of God