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Elementary: David and Goliath

Elementary: David and Goliath

Author: Kaitlyn Peterson
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Goliath Game

Find a place you can hang a target that is about 9ft tall. Give your kids bouncy balls, ping pong balls, ect to try to hit the target starting close and move backwards until they can't hit it.  Talk about how scary it would have been to fight someone that tall! But David trusted in the Lord and knew he would help him, just like we know God helps us when we are scared. 

Story and Discussion

How many of you know someone really tall?

No, like really tall?
Tall enough to touch the ceiling?
Well today we are going to talk about a giant…who was…giant!

Now, at lot of you, maybe even all of you are going to know this story backwards, forwards, and upside down.   That’s ok.

I want you to listen anyway, because we are going to talk about some things you’ve probably never realized before about a story you’ve heard 100 times probably.

The Philistine army is headed toward Israel. And they aren’t trying to make new friends. They have one purpose, and it is to divide Israel up into two. If the nation of Israel is split into
multiple parts it becomes weaker…and that would be, mission accomplished.

So King Saul, who remember last week, is still the king, marches his army toward the incoming Philistine army. He wants to cut them off before they can march any closer.

King Saul and the army of Israel meet the Philistine army in the Valley of Elah. The armies of Israel on the northern ridge, the Philistine army on the Southern ridge. And then…nobody moves. Neither army wants to retreat and neither amy wants to charge into battle…at least not yet.

So the Philistine army sends down their mightiest warrior into the valley floor, and he calls out to the Israelites,

‘Why are ye come out to set your battle in array? am not I a Philistine, and ye servants to
Saul? choose you a man for you, and let him come down to me. ‘

1 Samuel 17:8

The giant’s name…you all might already know is???


Well, as many of you probably know…

none of the Israelites are real interested in going down into the valley to fight this giant warrior with his glistening bronze armor, his sword, and his spear at the ready.

For days Goliath taunts them. Calling anyone who will listen to him to come down and fight him…to the death.

If they win, the Philistines will surrender…if Goliath wins, all of Israel will become the servants of the Philistine army. Slaves for the rest of their lives.

As you might imagine, no one in the Israelite army was really excited about fighting Goliath…it kinda seemed like a death wish.

Who wants to go fight a huge warrior to the death and risk his whole nation’s freedom in the process?

There aren’t any takers.

Until the lunch take out order arrives.

Ok, it’s not really take out, but David, arrives at camp to check on his brothers. (The same brothers who got passed over to be king) Hearing and seeing Goliath David immediately volunteers to fight him.

King Saul, understanding that David’s odds of winning aren’t great, tries to help him out by giving him some of his own battle armor. But David won’t have it.

David is going to fight Goliath on his terms.

So David begins to walk down to the valley floor picking up 5 stones along the way.

Seeing David approaching Goliath begins to laugh.

The best Israel can send is some random short guy? This is going to be cake!

Now many of you know what happens next….but I want to share something with you, that you probably never knew.

Most of you know that David takes his sling, with a stone inside and kills Goliath when the stone lands in his forehead.

But almost all of us think of David as using some sort of kids toy. A slingshot doesn’t sound that…impressive.

Slingers, as they were called in ancient times, were really, really, really good with this simple weapon.

Most of the them could hit a target 200 yards away with a stone from their slingshot.

That means they could hit a target 2 football fields away from them. That is a LONG WAY.

Not only that, but many slingers could hit a bird…in flight.

Slingers were deadly accurate with their weapon.

Now that’s all pretty cool, but we still don’t think of the rock coming out of the sling as going very fast.

And that’s where we are all wrong.

First of all, the stones in the valley of Elah were….special. They were made of barium sulphate which means they were twice as dense as normal stones.

Combine this with the fact that a rock from a slingshot typically flew at 35 meters per second and you aren’t talking about a kids toy anymore. You are talking about a seriously deadly weapon.

The rock from David’s sling had the stopping power of a .45 caliber handgun. We are talking about a devastating weapon. (a fascinating look at this)

David’s sling had taken out the Philistine’s mightiest warrior.

You see, God wasn’t just putting David in a fight against Goliath to help end the war. God was showing us something about David…and something about Saul.

Do you remember what Saul did when David said he would fight Goliath?

He laughed. And he tried to give David his armor. He was trying to make David’s outward appearance look stronger, and he wasn’t trusting God. David trusted God that what he had was enough.

That’s why Israel needed a new King. That’s why God appointed David to be the next King. David trusted God no matter what was happening in the world around him, and that was something that God wanted in a leader.

David and Goliath Lesson Questions

Who were the Israelites at war with?

What was intimidating about Goliath?
Hewas very tall

What did Goliath tell the Israelites?
If he won the battle, he would keep them as slaves, but if they won the battle, the Philistines would be their slaves.

What was David doing when Goliath spoke to the Israelites?
Delivering food to his brothers

What did King Saul do when David said he wanted to fight?
Laughed and tried to give him armor

Did David accept the armor King Saul gave him?

How did David beat Goliath?
He slung a stone at his forehead

Do you ever feel like you are up against a “Goliath”?
Answers may vary

What does the story of David tell you about your chances when you are up against a “Goliath”?
Answers may vary (if you have God on your side you won’t lose)

Currently the world is crazy with the Corona virus and it can seem like a "Goliath" in our lives but what are some ways we can help defeat some of the scary things it makes us feel? guide your kids to answers that make them feel safe like hugging a favorite stuff animal or praying about our fears.

David and Goliath Video Version

The end of the video shows Goliath beheading, so use as appropriate for your aged child.

Verse Activity