A nonbeliever's SECOND reading of the Bible

A nonbeliever's SECOND reading of the Bible
Hunc tu caveto.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

David Slays Goliath (1 Samuel, Chapter 17)

David slays Goliath.  From kingjamesbibleonline.org

Perhaps one of the most well-known stories of the Bible is about young David killing the giant Philistine champion named Goliath.  

Prior to David's encounter with Goliath, the Israelites and the Philistines have been battling it out for at least 40 days near the Valley of Elah, in a place called Ephesdammin. During each of those days, the 10-foot tall Goliath would start off the day taunting the Israelites, saying that if one of them can defeat him, then the Philistines will be their servants; and vice versa.  No one took him up on this offer.

David wanted to take him up on this opportunity, but he was young and he wasn't part of the Israelite army.  But after hearing about these taunts, David approached Saul (who still thinks he is king) and tells him that as a shepherd, he killed a lion AND a bear at the same time when they took one of his father's lambs.  He even saved the lamb by taking it out of the lion's mouth.  

This story deserves a little attention.  After all, it is highly unlikely that both a lion AND a bear would ever cooperate to take a lamb from a flock.

But this story was meant to convince Saul that he (David) can easily take on Goliath.  Apparently, Saul was convinced!  He offered David his sword and some armor, but David refused and instead chose five smooth stones by a nearby river and his sling.

When Goliath sees David approaching him, he laughs.  After all, David just a youth.   Goliath had a huge sword, a brass helmet, and some heavy mail.  So, Goliath was well armed and armored.  David, on the other hand, just had his robe, a wooden staff, a sling, and some rocks.  David was not put off at all, he said a few choice insults, calmly grabbed a stone from his bag, and then slung it at Goliath.  

Too bad this story is probably not real, because the one shot, one kill with a measly sling would make any sniper proud.  The stone embedded itself into Goliath's head, who then fell face down.  David took Goliath's sword and cut off his head.

The sight of this scared the bejesus out of the Philistines, who turned tail and ran.  The Israelites seized the opportunity and pursued the routing army.  

Needless to say, Saul was thoroughly impressed by David's performance.

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