A Sling and A Stone in David’s Hand

(I Samuel 17:40-49)

When we hear the name Goliath, immediately, we associate him with David and his sling in a battle between the two nations.  The story here is one of a series of wars between the Philistines and Israel.  The Philistines were descendants from Ham (one of Noah’s son). They were Canaanites whom God told Israel to destroy. They were the Jebusites, the Amorites, and the Girgashite, among others. Their territory extended from Sidon as you go toward Gerar, as far as Gaza; as you go toward Sodom and Gomorrah and Adamah and Zeboiim as far as Lasha (Gen.10). In their quest to keep their land and their people, they fought Israel. Because Israel did not rid themselves of their enemies entirely earlier, they had to face them through battles to preserve their lives. In this particular battle, the Philistines relied heavily on their champion by the name of Goliath of Gath. He was not an ordinary man for he was a giant. The Bible registers his height as being six cubits and a span [almost ten feet]. He wore a bronze helmet on his head and a coat of mail, and the coat weighed 5,000 shekels of bronze [about 125 pounds]. He had bronze shin armor on his legs and a bronze javelin across his shoulders, and the shaft of his spear was like a weaver’s beam; his spear’s head weighed 600 shekels of iron [about 15 pounds]. And a shield bearer went before him (I Sam 17: 4-7).

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