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David and Goliath: Round 1

Text: I Samuel 17:1-40
Speaker: Jim Newheiser
Outline: PDF
Date: August 31, 2008

We have come to one of the most famous stories in the Bible: David and Goliath. The idea of the little guy beating the big guy has been used of underdogs in sports and politics. This story has been told in so many times and in so many ways that many have lost touch with the original biblical text and its central meaning.

For example there is a Veggie Tales episode in which Dave, upset over not being allowed to join his brothers who have all gone off to war, is resigned to staying at home and taking care of the farm. When a giant pickle is sent to attack his village, Dave relies on God’s teachings, and his own self-esteem, to fight the monster.

David’s defeat of Goliath is not meant merely as inspiration for mediocre sports teams. Nor is the primary point that YOU can overcome YOUR personal problems. The battle between David and Goliath is part of the a cosmic battle which began in the Garden of Eden, as the LORD’s anointed defeats the blasphemous oppressor of His chosen people.

While the account of the actual battle is very brief, the buildup is extensive. We will spend this week on the preliminaries in which David has to overcome the unbelief of Saul and the people of Israel and the scorn of his brother before he can even enter into combat with Goliath. Next week we will consider the battle and its aftermath.

While our primary focus will be on how David is a type of Christ, we will also see how we can follow David’s example as we engage in spiritual warfare.

David Enters King Saul’s Service

Text: I Samuel 16:14-23
Speaker: Jim Newheiser
Outline: PDF
Date: August 24, 2008

In last week’s text David, the man after God’s own heart, was secretly anointed by Samuel to be the next king of Israel. Saul, however, is still on the throne. The rest of I Samuel will chronicle the rise of David and the decline of Saul.

The first recorded encounter between David and Saul is quite remarkable. The LORD takes His Spirit from Saul and sends an evil spirit to torment him. Saul seeks a musician who can ease his suffering and by God’s providence David is summoned. This passage has some interpretive challenges: Can we lose the Spirit of God? How can the LORD send an evil spirit? Are our problems caused by evil spirits?

Our text also has wonderful practical applications: How is music used spiritually in our day? How is our culture filled with people like Saul – miserable because of their alienation from God but seeking only temporary relief through music, money, entertainment, etc.? How can we emulate David in being an instrument of God’s mercy to our culture?

Finally, as always, we see Christ clearly portrayed as the Anointed One who first was a servant before being enthroned.

God Looks at the Heart

Text: I Samuel 16:1-13
Speaker: Jim Newheiser
Outline: PDF
Date: August 17, 2008

This week we come to a crucial turning point in I Samuel as the LORD identifies his choice for king of Israel to replace Saul, the failed people’s choice for king. This text contains one of the most famous phrases in Scripture, “For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.”

Our desire should be to see ourselves and others as God sees. The world is blind to the beauty of Christ who is most beautiful of all.

Come, for Everything is Now Ready

Text: Luke 14:1-24
Speaker: David Magowan
Date: August 10, 2008

This week guest preacher David Magowan, of Whitby Evangelical Church in Whitby, England, unpacks Luke 14:1-24.

Saul Loses His Kingdom

Text: I Samuel 15
Speaker: Jim Newheiser
Outline: PDF
Date: August 3, 2008

I Samuel 15, in which King Saul is ordered by God to slaughter all of the Amalekites is one of the most challenging texts in the Bible. We are forced to come to grips with God’s holy sovereign justice and His demand for exact obedience.

Saul’s problem with the Lord’s command was different from ours. He didn’t mind killing a bunch of Amalekites. Instead He objected to the Lord’s command that he destroy the valuable spoils of war because he feared upsetting his soldiers. Saul’s imperfect obedience results in the Lord taking away his kingdom.

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