I come to you in the name of the Lord

Today’s Reading: 1 Samuel 17:1-18:4, John 8:21-30, Psalm 111:1-10, Proverbs 15:11

Yesterday, we saw that Saul was halfway obedient. He followed the part of God’s instructions that made sense to him and did what he decided was best with the rest. He was only halfway in. By contrast, David was “all in” when he said he would fight Goliath. He committed to this action at the risk of his own life. Then he proclaimed his faith in God when the Philistine mocked him.

45 David replied to the Philistine, “You come to me with sword, spear, and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies—the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 Today the Lord will conquer you, and I will kill you and cut off your head. And then I will give the dead bodies of your men to the birds and wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel! 47 And everyone assembled here will know that the Lord rescues his people, but not with sword and spear. This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us!”

As David explained to Saul, he had reasons to be confident in himself based on his battles with wild animals. In spite of this, Saul could see that David took a great risk in going to battle against a seasoned warrior. However, David’s faith that God would deliver him and Israel from Goliath and the Philistines was rewarded.

In John 8, the theme of faith continues. Jesus upbraided the people who were listening to Him for their lack of faith.

23 Jesus continued, “You are from below; I am from above. You belong to this world; I do not. 24 That is why I said that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am who I claim to be, you will die in your sins.”

Like David, their only way to escape death was to believe in Jesus. I am most confident in themes that are presented repeatedly in the Bible. These words in John 8 are like those in the famous passage in John 3.

16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

So faith in God is of the utmost importance to our lives on earth and to our lives in eternity.

Psalm 111 seems a fitting conclusion to today’s readings. In verse 7, God’s character is emphasized and in verse 8, those who follow God are encouraged to obey His commandments faithfully.

All he does is just and good,
    and all his commandments are trustworthy.
They are forever true,
    to be obeyed faithfully and with integrity.
He has paid a full ransom for his people.
    He has guaranteed his covenant with them forever.
    What a holy, awe-inspiring name he has!
10 Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true wisdom.
    All who obey his commandments will grow in wisdom.

Praise him forever!

 

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