>> Monday, June 29, 2009
Forty days. You know, lots can happen in forty days. The Bible has many instances where forty days was significant, too. It's easy to do a Google search on it if you're interested. One that really stood out to me was from the Old Testament.
The Philistine soldier Goliath goaded the Israelites for forty days. Did you know that? I didn't. He came out and taunted them and gloated. All he wanted was one person to come fight. If the Israelite won, then the Philistines would be their servants. If Goliath won, then the Israelites would be theirs.
Goliath was BIG, though. Who in their right mind would take a wager like that? No one. No one in the Israelite army anyway. Just look at his armor. No one could touch him with all that on!
He was over nine feet tall.
He had a bronze helmet on his head
wore a coat of scale armor of bronze
on his legs he wore bronze greaves, (a piece of plate armor for the leg between the knee and the ankle, usually composed of front and back pieces)
and a bronze javelin was slung on his back.
His spear shaft was like a weaver's rod,
His shield bearer went ahead of him.
Along came teenage David, a boy that had been taking care of his father's sheep. He walked up to the giant with only a staff in his hand and five smooth stones that he chose from the stream that he put in the pouch of his shepherd's bag, and a sling in his hand. How could the army stand by and watch a young boy do what they should have been man enough to do? They were wimpy for forty days and then David brought them to victory.
His secret weapon was his faith in God.
"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. This day the LORD will hand you over to me, and I'll strike you down and cut off your head." (1 Samuel 17:45)And God gives us armor to put on now. This armor is much more reliable than old Goliath's, too. Here is our armor we should put on every day before going into battle:
belt of truth buckled around your waist,
the breastplate of righteousness in place,
feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation
and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. (Ephesians 6:14-17)
Do we have to get taunted and goaded for forty days before we finally stand firm and put on our armor to do battle? Paul says:
"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. (Ephesians 6:10-13)We may not have to fell a giant today but we do have a house to clean or kids to take care of. Maybe we have hard decisions to make or relationships to mend. Maybe we have to wake up to another day of physical or emotional pain. Whatever it is, however big or small, let's stop being wimpy. Let's "be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power."