Pursue Your Purpose, Proclaim God’s Power 1 Samuel 17
SUMMARY The narrative of David and Goliath is one of my favorites. David, the unassuming, youngest of eight brothers, is going about his daily responsibility as a shepherd when – unknowingly – his destiny unfolds around him. He starts the day simply being obedient to his father and going to help his brothers who are in battle. Before it’s over, he had slain Goliath, restored integrity to his people, and moved closer to the destiny of king that God had. Whether it be President of the United States, principal of school, leader of your home, or a leader of your high school basketball team or chess club, be assured that God has continually growing purposes for you in your life. Pay attention along the journey. Pursue your purpose and your passion in the same way David did in this text. Always look for opportunities to prepare yourself and to plan for the future. And remember, when you have done all that you can do, proclaim God’s power – for the battle is not yours, it is the Lord’s.
Purpose and Passion. In each of us God has planted some purposes and some Godly passions to direct us to those purposes. God had purpose for David that he would be king, even though David did not know it at the time. But, particularly in this text, as David pursued his Godly passions with integrity his purposes and his destiny began to unfold. It is the same for us.
- Look at David in 1 Samuel 16:1 and 8-13. He is young and last chosen but, God had purposes for him. What does it mean for God to have a purpose for our lives? Reflect on and discuss your past purposes? Future purposes?
- Look at 1 Sam 17:12-24. Consider that we know what God’s purpose for David was, but David didn’t, he was just taking some food to his brothers. What does that mean for us and God’s purposes in our lives?
- Look at verses 25-32 to see David’s passion. He is deeply offended and moved to action. When we seek God’s purposes for our life, they are often found by what creates passion in us. Reflect on and discuss things (past and present) that stir in you the desire to act, to see some action, or that you want to pursue.
Preparation and Planning. God plants inside us these purposes and this passion but that does not leave us without responsibility. To be all that God has made us to be, we must both be prepared and we must appropriately plan. We see in this text that David was both well-prepared and that he had a plan for what he wanted to accomplish. We need to have the same.
- Look at verse 34-37. Although David was young, he had experience. It is important that we prepared for the opportunities that God will present. How do you to about being prepared? Read Colossians 3:23 and discuss how often we do a good job of this (or not).
- Look at verses 38-40. Not only was David prepared but he knew himself well enough to know what would work for him (this is also part of preparation). He had a plan. We do move by faith but God is also a God of strategy. How often do you find yourself jumping up and changing directions? Do you ever have a plan and then repeatedly change it? We have to trust what God has given us.
Proclamation and Power. Some responsibility resides with us. Ultimate victory resides with God. David was confident from his preparation and his planning but most importantly he was confident in the power of his God. He knew that he was involved in the Lord’s battle and that the Lord would provide him with the victory. We need to know the same. See verses 41-50 (some of my favorites in the Bible!)
- Goliath is big and powerful and he tries to intimidate young David in 41-43. Why do we think David was not intimidated by this obstacle that stood between him and his (yet unknown) destiny? What do we see in verses 45- 47 that shows where David’s confidence lies? When we are well prepared and planned, we then leave things in God’s hands?
- When we battle, whose battle is it? Who is glorified? (hint, see verse 47)
- During the presidential campaign, once source of the President Obama’s strength was his confidence in his preparation and his plan. Do we see any similarity here with David? Did he follow Saul’s plan of the plan God gave him?