The battle between David and Goliath is one of the most famous in world history. The idea of a boy defeating a giant with a sling and a stone is so far-fetched, we’ve simply never forgotten the day David pulled off the upset.
But have you ever considered the thought that it might not have been an upset at all?
In a short time, our world will return to normal, though it’ll be a “new normal.” Our “Goliath” will be a virus that has killed thousands and will probably sicken millions before it completes its run through humanity.
Maybe it would be good to consider why David thought the odds were overwhelmingly on his side as he raced toward his giant in the Elah Valley.
The story is in 1 Samuel 17. No doubt, you’re already familiar with the details.
Goliath and the Philistines came to the Elah Valley from nearby Gath. Goliath was indeed a giant. “Six cubits and a span” comes out to the largest man you’ve ever seen. He had a bronze helmet, body armor, leg guards and the largest spear in the land. He had so much weight on him, he needed a shield bearer to walk in front of him.
Think of Goliath as a tank. He’s stronger than can be imagined, protected by metal and poised to destroy his enemy. He was a fearsome looking man of war.
Why would David think he had an advantage? After all, David had no armor, no spear, no sword and no bulk. He had never fought even a regular-sized tank before this day.
And yet he went down into the valley, pocketed five stones and then headed toward Goliath as if he really thought he could win the battle.
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. 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. 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.” – 1 Samuel 17:45-47
David was right. His first stone buried itself in Goliath’s head. Like a batter stunned by a pitcher’s beanball, Goliath came crashing to the ground. David ran right up to the fallen giant, pulled Goliath’s own massive sword out of its sheath and brought it down on the big man’s neck.
And just like that, sports announcers the world over had a great illustration for basketball games featuring a great underdog against a heavily favored opponent.
But again, David didn’t act like he was surprised. What did he know that we missed? What advantage could he have possibly have had in such a lopsided fight?
Try speed and agility. David’s mobility worked in his favor. He also had a long-range weapon in his hands. What was Goliath going to do if David missed with his first stone? Chase David? He’d never catch him!
If Goliath was a tank, then David was the jet fighter with precision missiles at his disposal! Tanks will never win such a battle!
So strange that David is the only person in the valley who thought outside of the box. Why hadn’t anyone else analyzed the situation properly?
Listen to a bit of outside-the-quarantine thinking. When our leaders announce that America is returning to normal in a few days, you already know what they’re going to tell you. You’ll still need to wash your hands with soap multiple times a day. You’ll want to keep your distance from people with anything remotely resembling the flu. If you come in contact with the virus, you’ll have to do a self-quarantine for 14 days.
In the meantime, you’ll be free to go to the grocery store. You’ll be welcomed back to work, school and church.
Yes, an invisible enemy will still be waiting. But if you use your head and take all the necessary precautions, you’ll be fine. If you contract the virus, you’ll follow doctor’s orders.
The one thing we must not do is hide inside for the rest of our lives, as if we were Saul’s frightened solders, terrified of an enemy that can be defeated.
God gave you a brain … and soap. As this crisis progresses, use them both!