The Prophetic Story of David
In the story of David a variety of events happened that “happened to them as an example and they were written for our instruction upon whom the ends of the ages have come.” I Corinthians 10:11 NASB. Many things that happened in the story of David were to tell us of how God worked in the past and give us reassurance on the things yet to come. One of the prophetic stories about David was his interaction with Samuel and when David was anointed as the King by Samuel and yet was not established as King for many years in the future. This is one of the comparisons with Jesus, the Son of David. The focus of this study is that of David and Goliath and the prophetic implications in this story.
In the story of David and Goliath it is plain that David was a representative of God as head of Israel – God’s people and Goliath was a representative of Satan – the champion of the Philistines and a type of God’s enemies. In the story of I Samuel 17 God arranges for David to come to the battlefield between the Israelites and the Philistines 40 days after war is declared. For the last 40 days Goliath comes out to challenge God’s people and King Saul, the rejected King of Israel ( I Samuel 13:13-14; I Samuel 15:26 is afraid to fight Goliath. After 40 days of tension the God of Israel allows David to come on the scene of battle. As David is talking to his brothers and Goliath comes out at the time of the morning sacrifice (a statement of Satan’s attempt to counterfeit the sacrificial service give by God I Samuel 17:16 versus Numbers 28:1-4). When David sees that the armies of Israel are afraid of Goliath he is stirred to defend the honor of God and His people I Samuel 17:26. When Saul hears the words of David he calls David to talk to him because no one else in all of God’s army is willing to fight Goliath I Samuel 17:32. Saul looks at David and sees that he is young and declares that David is not skilled enough to fight the man Goliath.
At this point of the story David declares an early version of Daniel 2 and 7. David says that as a shepherd a lion came to take some of the sheep from his father’s flock. David says that the Lord God of Israel delivered him and he took the sheep from the lion and killed him. The same happened to a bear who tried to do the same as the lion did. Then David declares that he will do the same to the “this uncircumcised Philistine” I Samuel 17:36-37. Now in the prophecies of Daniel 2 and 7 there is an interesting sequence of events. Daniel 2 says that there was a great idol revealed to King Nebuchadnezzar and the idol consisted of a variety of metals – Gold, Silver, Brass, Iron, and Iron mixed with clay. These metals signified the coming kingdoms in the time of Nebuchadnezzar. The Gold symbolized Babylon, the Silver symbolized Medo-Persian, the Brass symbolized Greece, the Iron symbolized Pagan Rome, and the mixture of Iron and Clay symbolized Papal Rome. At the end of the vision a stone was cast and struck the Image in the feet and destroyed the image and the kingdom of God was set up. In the vision of Daniel 7 the concepts of Daniel 2 are repeated with beasts taking the place of metals. The Lion symbolized Babylon, the Bear Symbolized the kingdom of Medo-Persia, the Leopard symbolized the kingdom of Greece, and the Dragon like beast symbolized Rome Pagan and Papal. In the story of David he killed the lion and he killed a bear through the power of God. In I Samuel 17 he soon will kill a great man, the champion/Deliverer of the Philistine kingdom, a kingdom at war with God’s people. This champion, Goliath, was covered with Brass I Samuel 17:5-6. These three enemies of God’s symbolic shepherd is an outline of what Jesus will do to the enemies of God’s church in the future.
After discussing the situation with King Saul David is still willing to fight Goliath, as Jesus, the King of God’s church, would do with all of the champions of the world. King Saul attempts to weigh him down with his own armor. Now at this time Saul was the tallest, biggest man in Israel and David was not of the same size as Saul but with a heart settled with God. David decides that he cannot use Saul’s armor for it would interfere with his movements and his armor was not of the world but of heaven (Ephesians 6:11-18). David was going to go forth to this battle in the power of the name of God.
As David approaches Goliath he stops at a creek to get stones for his sling. He picks up five stones (the number of giants in the kingdom of the Philistines II Samuel 21:15-22 and the number of kingdoms in Daniel 2). Then he approaches Goliath and gives him one more chance to submit to the God of Israel. Goliath’s response is to curse David by the gods of the Philistines. All of Israel watches to see if God will deliver them through the King that He has appointed to lead Israel; one who did not look imposing like Saul but one who was hidden in the righteousness of Christ. They heard the testimonies of the two antagonists and then saw them approach one another. Goliath was so enraged at the sight of a young man coming out to fight him and not one worthy of getting him honor that “In his rage he pushed up the helmet that protected his forehead and rushed forward to wreak vengeance on his opponent.” Patriarchs and Prophets page 648. When David saw what Goliath did he knew that God had granted him great deliverance and he cast the stone and hit the giant in the forehead. When the giant fell to the ground David sprang on the huge body of the giant, drew out Goliath’s own sword and cut his head off. When the Philistines saw their champion fall they all fled. The Israelites were as surprised as the Philistines but they gathered their courage and chased after the Philistines and won this great battle.
In the story of David a stone was cast and hit the giant in the forehead and God won this great battle through His servant David. In Daniel 2 a great stone is cast without hands and hits the great idol in the feet, showing that the battle will be won in the end of time. In both cases it was God that won the battle. In both cases He will use His loyal people to accomplish this task. In the battle with the Philistines God used this battle to bring the boy David to the view of the people of Israel in the manner most effective in winning the confidence of the people of Israel that this young man was the true champion of Israel. In the great battle of Daniel 2 and 7 Jesus is the Champion of spiritual Israel and He wins the kingdom for His people and establishes them as Kings and Priest over His kingdom (Daniel 7:13-27).
In both stories, that of David and that of the Son of David, God is the real hero and the real power in the story. Both men did not have the appearance of what God’s people thought a hero should look like but both men went forward in the power of God and fought a spiritual battle, and both won the victories on a physical and spiritual plane. God’s name was glorified and all honors went to God the Father.
It is the purpose of this little story to show that in the Bible God has hidden His great wisdom in His Word and will reward all who seek it with deeper and deeper understandings of His wisdom and His plans. I pray that this little study will be a blessing and an encouragement to study the Word more deeply and more humbly trusting that the God of Israel will bless.