Digging in Deeper: 1 Samuel 17:55-56

“As soon as Saul saw David go out against the Philistine, he said to Abner, the commander of the army, ‘Abner, whose son is this youth?’ And Abner said, ‘As your soul lives, O king, I do not know.’ And the king said, ‘Inquire whose son the boy is.'” (ESV – Read the chapter)‬‬

One of the questions that quickly comes to the mind of the perceptive reader here is how chapters 16 and 17 can be harmonized. One seems to say one thing and the other another thing. This is the kind of apparent conflict that gives critics of the Scriptures plenty of ammunition to fire away at its credibility…or so they (and sometimes we) think. But, while this is yet another place where things are harder than usual to understand at first glance, a little bit of thinking reveals that it does not pose nearly the challenge that it seems.

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Morning Musing: 1 Samuel 17:26

“And David said to the men who stood by him, ‘What shall be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?'” (ESV – Read the chapter)‬‬

David understood something that the rest of the Israelite army, including Saul, failed to see. The conflict with the Philistines and specifically Goliath here was not simply a battle between two opposing armies. It was a spiritual battle between two opposing Gods. Goliath wasn’t just challenging Israel’s ability to field a suitable champion to face him in battle, he was challenging the efficacy of the God of Israel to oppose him in battle. Read the rest…