Key Verse 1 Samuel 17:45
45 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.
Recently I watched a YouTube video about Nick Vujicic. Nick was born with no arms or legs. As the video begins, we see several pictures of Nick from the time he was just a baby and throughout his years growing up. Each picture candidly reveals Nick’s joy and unshakable spirit of optimism. At the close of the video Nick makes it clear that his relationship with God is the driving force in his life. Before you read the story of David and Goliath found in 1 Samuel 17, take a few moments and watch this video clip.
1. What do you think are the greatest challenges Nick faces in his life?
2. Have you ever faced what seemed like an impossible situation?
3. Where did you find the strength to make it through?
4. How did your faith in God help you?
Study the Word
The story of David and Goliath really begins in the 8th chapter of 1 Samuel when the people went to the prophet and demanded a king. The first king to ever take the throne over Israel was Saul. On the outside he looked like he would make a great king (1 Samuel 9:1-2). But this would not prove to be the case.
· Saul lacked self confidence (1 Samuel 9:21)
· Saul was reluctant to become a leader (1 Samuel 10:20-23)
· At times Saul was not able to inspire the people (1 Samuel 13:7)
· Saul was impatient (1 Samuel 13:8-15)
· Saul was so reckless , his own army opposed him (1 Samuel 14:45-46)
· Saul disobeyed the Lord and then lied about it (1 Samuel 15:9-31)
In some ways you could say that Saul was his own worst enemy. The only person Saul could blame for his defeats and failures was himself. Eventually Saul would be replaced by a shepherd boy named David. Read the story of David and Goliath (1 Samuel 17). Compare David’s character and faith to that of King Saul. David showed great courage even though he faced an impossible situation.
1. David faced criticism.
· Saul’s army did not offer hope. (17:24)
· Eliab, David oldest brother, accused him of having evil intentions (17:28)
· Saul told David he was too young and inexperienced (17:33)
· Goliath defied David (42-43)
2. David faced his own limitations.
· David was young, inexperienced and “delicate” (17:33, 39, 42).
· David could not rely on the most modern military equipment (1 Samuel 17:38-39)
3. David faced an invincible opponent. He knew he was no match for Goliath. Goliath struck terror into the hearts of the Jewish Army. He stood between nine and ten feet tall. His armor alone weighed 150 pounds, and the tip of his spear weighed 15 pounds. Goliath was the great champion of the Philistines.
4. Read the verses below and discuss the ways David’s words reflect his heart and character.
· 17:26—David’s response to the army.
· 17:29—David’s response to his brother.
· 17:37 David’s response to King Saul.
· 17:45-47 David defies Goliath.
· Key verse 17:45
David’s enemy was very real and very powerful. Yet it only took one small stone to bring down the great giant Goliath (1 Samuel 17:48-54). One version of the Bible says, “So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone… “(17:50) One definition of prevail is to “become dominate or to prove superior in strength, power, or influence” (Dictionary.com). God did not help David to simply avoid defeat. He wasn’t interested in just survival. He didn’t want to just win. God caused David to completely dominate his enemy. So much so that the Philistines were shamed, embarrassed, and filled with fear and trembling. God made an example of Goliath. Everyone knew that, “this is what will happen if you dare to defy God”.
1. Now look at a second video about Nick. In what ways is it evident that Nick is one who is prevailing and not just surviving? Have your group discuss ways that Nick’s prevailing spirit has helped him to live life to its fullest. How has he inspired others? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ciYk-UwqFKA&feature=related
2. Read Ephesians 3:14-20 and John 10:10. What does this passage say about abundant living and a prevailing spirit?
3. What are the giants in your life? Do you believe God can help you overcome and even prevail? How can the other members of your group pray with you and support you as you face these giants?
4. 1 Samuel is a story o f two kings. Saul’s life was dominated by cowardice, greed, disobedience, impatience and self reliance. These all eventually led to Saul’s demise. David was faithful, courageous, humble, obedient, and reverenced God. He is described as a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). It seems David’s character had a lot to do with the fact that God helped him prevail over Israel’s enemy. The dividend of faith and faithfulness is victory. What can you do to develop these characteristics in your own life? What steps can you take to become a person of faith and faithfulness?