In the Land of Giants

Title: In the Land of Giants

Bible Book: 1 Samuel 17

Author: Jerry N. Watts

Subject: Problems; Goliath; Giants



As a kid when I heard the word “giant”, all I thought of was that old TV commercial for the Jolly Green Giant vegetables. (sing) I also thought of Jack and the Beanstalk and His words; "Fee, fi, fo, fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman: Be he alive, or be he dead, I'll grind his bones to make my bread!" The best part of that story was when Jack chopped down the beanstalk and the giant (the danger) was gone.

The Bible speaks of Giants on many occasions. The Children of Israel came to Kadesh Barnea, sent the committee to scout the land, and then heard a report about the “giants” in the land. This Report could have rightly been named, “The good, the bad, and the ugly.” The good was there indeed flowing with milk and honey, the bad was the discovery of “giants” in the land, and the ugly would most definitely have been the decision of the people to focus on the size of those giants instead of the size of their God. The result? The Giants won. Frequently giants do win but they don’t have to.

Arguably, we have read the most famous “giant story” in the Bible and maybe in history itself. The story of David and Goliath has been told and retold time and again. With this story firmly place in our mind, let’s investigate the being in the Land of the giants.

If there is a universal symbol for Giants, it would be the Philistines; for they were big people and almost always fighting God’s people. In fact, it’s safe to say that the Philistines always opposed God’s people and even to God himself. Such is the nature of Giants. In the same way Goliath faced down armies of Judah and attempted to intimidate David, Giants face us down today. Our giants carry a different name but in a more realistic way they discourage, defeat, and on occasion debilitate us. What are these? A complete list would require all of working together to name them all, but a partial list of “giants would include; financial, family, grief, guilt, discouragement, depression, temptation, loss, and many more.

For the next few minutes, let look at Giants get some help.

I. Enlightenment

Most of us spend little time thinking of those things in our lives which constantly defeat us.

A. Description of a Giant

Let’s get our description from Goliath

1. Distressing

Remember he’s the enemy and he’s good at what he does. The very nature of a giant is he’s huge, he’s strong, & maybe the best. Judah was indeed distressed at seeing Him.

The same happens to us when Satan sends a giant to us. He sends the best, the biggest, and the “baddest”. The distressing part is that from a human perspective it will appear that you cannot win against your giant. That is Satan’s plan.

2. Daring

In basic terms, Goliath came out and gave a “double dog dare” to the army of Israel. He taunted them and “tried to get them to engage” on His terms. He wanted someone to take him on alone. He made it a matter of pride. When our giant can get us to engage emotionally, as a matter of pride, we will be alone and we will be defeated. He is counting on our nature.

3. Diligent

This is incredible. Too often in the work of the Kingdom we grow weary in well doing and faint or fade away. Not so with the enemy. Goliath continued day after day, he was relentless, 40 days he continued the challenge, just waiting for someone to be offended enough to take him on, ALONE!

Just as a reminder, Satan knows your weakness & when you’re weakest. His plan is to break you at that point.

4. Demoralizing

The giant desires to makes you feel helpless & hopeless. He wants you to believe there is no way out and now way to win. In verse 24, the men “ran” from Goliath and I dare say, they saw no end in sight. In the face of a giant, frequently we are demoralized wondering if it will ever end.

5. Dangerous

Generally, the giants Satan sends into our life does indeed have the ability to “defeat us.” Goliath could have & should have killed David, but David knew a little truth which we’ll talk about in just a few minutes.

Here is our QUESTION for right now; “what is there in your life that affects you like a giant?” Can you name one or more?

B. Detection of a Giant

It is my belief that many have giants wreaking havoc in their life and really do not realize that it’s the enemy so now that we have described the giant, let look at some way to detect him with some recognizable attributes of the giant.

The giant is anything which attempts to take your mind off of Christ. For Paul’s it was his thorn in the flesh, for the young ruler it was his wealth, for the Jews it was the law. You see, Satan will not limit his giants to the ugly Goliaths, he can and will us the seemingly good and attractive to lure us into choosing the good over the beat. He is a master of deception & his deception is all about taking your mind and heart off of Christ. The giant will also tempt you to embrace the un-scriptural. Just a personal note, this is one of the huge giants in our culture today and it is tearing at the very fabric of the local church. I never cease to be amazed at the believers who think believers and the church should live comfortably with sin. When the Bible speaks it is a principle for time and eternity which we should live with and adhere to without question. Turn to 1 Corinthians 5. Please listen, we should not be “heartless” and look for ways to discipline people (the first desire of discipline is always reconciliation), but as children of God we should not be spineless either. To “live and let live” becomes a giant in our lives as we’ll never become the person God desires for us to be if we embrace that which is un-spiritual.

The next giant is one that strikes home to all of us. It is anything we do and the desire is blatantly selfish. One of the saddest stories about this very issue is found in Acts 8. It is the story of Simon the Sorcery. Much has been written about this Simon, but truthfully, very little is known beyond what we read in this story. In a nutshell, Simon was known for his high-profile antics of magic and claiming to be something special. When Phillip came to town, along with many others, Simon believed and was baptized. Following Phillip around, he literally saw the works of God and when the Holy Spirit fell on the people, Simon knew that He wanted to have this power. But he wanted to power to build up himself instead of honoring God. Could it be that Simon was a forerunner of the 21st century believer who has come to believe that instead of doing ministry to honor God and help honors, I’ll just give my money and get what I need? Sounds hard? Let’s read verse 20. Peter does have a way with words. This is a strong giant which has destroyed many lives.

Another giant we can detect is one in which the result does not honor God. Paul, his mentor Barnabas, and John Mark started on a mission trip together only to see John Mark quit. Whether quitting, procrastinating, or any other of a dozen things we are tempted to do, it does not honor God and will pull us down.

For the sake of time, let’s just list a few other potential giants. Things we are unable to resist, we call them addictions. Whenever things seem hopeless, we call it depression. Those times we think “life’s not fair”, “other have more”, called covetousness.

Candidly, SATAN scouts you out and sends his best to attack. In the world of sports, every team has scouts to discover the weaknesses of the opponent and then use this knowledge to defeat their opponent. This is the same tactic used by our spiritual enemy. This is why when you encounter a giant, he might seem unbeatable. Certainly, this was the case for Israel with Goliath.

C. Destruction of a Giant

Let me offer you three thoughts.

1. Tools

Don’t go it unarmed and alone. Get counsel like David did from Saul. Then use the tools which God gives you (2 Corinthians 10:4). Most of the time God will begin with what you have in your hand right there, right at that time!

2. Truth

The first truth is this; have the right focus. All the soldiers and the King were focused on Goliath, but not David. He was focused on God. Pick up David’s words beginning in verse 45 which ends with “The battle is the Lord’s.” If we could burn that truth in our hearts, life would take on new meaning. By the way, God knew Goliath’s weakness - the open helmet. I wonder if the rock between the eyes speaks more to David’s talent or God’s accuracy. David trusted God and the giant fell.

3. Triumph

David did not declare victory until Goliath was dead! Just like Jack and Beanstalk. One more interesting tidbit; David used Goliath’s own weapon to finish him off. In ancient times, the head of your opponent was a sign of VICTORY!

II. Encouragement

Let me end with 4 words of encouragement.

A. Be Prepared

Put on the proper Armor found in Ephesians 5. Don’t wait until you are facing a giant to study. Psalms 119.

B. Be Pure

Sin will leave YOUR helmet open. Sadly we may excuse sin, but God doesn’t. Sin killed His Son so He doesn’t dismiss it. However, in battle armor may get a cinch. Spiritually, it can be repaired with repentance and confession.

C. Be Prayerful

When giant comes, seek God’s heart. Perhaps we don’t understand that when we can’t see His hand we can still trust His Heart.

D. Be Persistent

Know who the enemy is and never let up.

Just as surely as David met the 9 foot tall Goliath, you and face giants of our own. They wear many faces. We may TRY to work it out but only with Jesus can we win in the land of the Giants. What will you do?

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