Pick Your Battle
I meant you may be seated.
The Year 1980 at the Olympics the world witnessed a miracle. There was a hockey Miracle. So we'll take it with a grain of salt but it was nonetheless a miracle when Team USA Hockey beat the Russians and why was it considered a miracle? It was considered a miracle because the Russians had then the most famous most well-known best hockey talent in the world on their team and everyone knew it going into the games everyone who knew anything about hockey was favoring Russia to win. They knew that they would be everything especially Team USA Team USA wasn't even really on the radar because they were filled with a test at the talent. That was just unproven and untested. and yet When all was said and done? Team USA 1423 The announcer at the time if you go back to YouTube, you can watch this was Al Michaels and he said the quest the famous line. Do you believe in miracles? The crowd just went crazy happen to be at Lake Tahoe that year so they were home home team advantage. And the Russians just stood there on the Isis us was celebrating this way in disbelief. How in the world did we lose that game? How did they beat us? We love Underdog stories, don't we? I love stories about the little guy beating the big guy. I think part of the reason why we like Underdog Story so much is because we feel like Underdog most the time. Branislav can seem like a never-ending battle. Sometimes against forces that are bigger than we are problems that we know that we are big enough wise enough smart enough strong enough to solve. an underdog stories remind us and give us just a little bit of hope that even when we Face situations that seem hopeless just maybe just maybe We can come out on top. But if we really want to win. We're going to need more than just a story to give us hope. I want you to think about a situation in your life right now. It seems bigger than you. A problem that you don't know if you're going to be able to fix it. Maybe it's Financial. Maybe it's relational. Maybe it has to do with physical health. Maybe it's a spiritual problem. It can be any number of things and maybe you're just inundated with problems right now. You're facing these things that are bigger than you. How can we win the battle?
We're going to win.
The most important thing that we can do is make sure that were fighting the right battle. And we're going to learn that today by looking at probably the most famous one of the most famous stories in the Bible and probably the most famous Underdog Story of all time.
Now few weeks ago when we talked about the beginning of David story. We set it up by showing that Israel had rejected God as their King and they wanted a human King. Unearthly King that was going to make them just like all the other nations. They wanted a king was going to fight their battles for them raise an army that could take care of these problems that were all around them. So they didn't have to figure out how to deal with this on their own. God warned them that this was a bad idea and yet they still insisted and so they appointed saw as their King and yet that didn't work out too. Well, why did they choose saw do you remember? Because he was a big guy. They were looking for somebody to defend them here was a man who was obviously a warrior the Bible says that he was a head taller than anyone else and yet as time went on even though stall started out things went, okay. They quickly turned from bad. the worst
the guy was not done with this route, even though they had made this bad decision, even though he had let them make this bad decision. God is still faithful. Even when we are faithless, even when we make bad decisions in our own life God is still there to help us and he wants to redeem this decision of Israel to ask a king. So God chooses the next king the one who will take the throne after soul. The only difference is he doesn't choose a big man. In fact, nobody even David's own father. Would have thought that he would have been chosen because David was called by his dad the the runt. You're just a little maybe 12 13 year old Shepherd boy. But when Samuel season God tell Samuel, that's the one. Because David had a strength of inner character.
that mattered more an ultimately is going to matter more because his we're going to see in this story. It is not physical size. That is not what matters most. The Israelites pics all because he was a big man. The only problem is that the enemy had somebody bigger. and so one day the Israelites have gathered their army to battle the Philistines. The Philistines have invaded Israelite territory. And the scene is set where you have this these two hills and there's this Canyon in between them is more like a like a ravine. And you have the Philistines lined up on one side and you have Israel lined up on the other. They're going to do battle.
the only problem is
but that day they line up for battle. a man named Goliath steps out from the ranks of the Philistines He is big. We'll see how big I measured this out.
This is how big
9 foot 9 inch I was about six cubits and a span. Is that all it was?
He was armed to the teeth. He was muscular the spear that he used wait about 25 lb you imagine carrying that around and using it and tossing around like it's nothing. I remember being in high school and having to work out the the rare occasion that I did and having to use a medicine ball that medicine ball was about 20 lb I thinking that thing was just torture and yet he carries his spear around 25 lb, like nothing he comes out from the Philistine line and he begins to say listen, there's no reason for all of us to get involved in this war. I'll represent the Philistines you send somebody out from Israel who is going to fight me and whoever wins if y'all win then will be your slaves and if we win and then y'all will be our slave to seems like a pretty good good challenge to me. Now who was the biggest man in Israel at this time? so who was the one who should have stepped out of that line in order to face this enemy so But he wouldn't do it.
The entire reason that Israel it asked for a king of somebody to fight their battles Philistine send out their big man. We should send out our big man and yet he's the king. Nobody can make him do what he wants to do. He is not going to scared. And so for 40 days this continues every morning Goliath marches out into the middle of the Ravine and says send the champion send somebody and nobody is coming. that is until David stepped on the scene Now David was not in the army. David told her brothers were.
So one day Jesse David's father is worried about his brothers. They've been out there for 40 days until he sends David with some food. He wants to check and see how his sons are doing and so David Goes to the line and he's checking on his brother's. This is not even David's battle.
If anybody would have been excused from walking away sure that soldiers are scared sure. Saw this scared David. He didn't have any real reason to get involved. Does he?
He could have walked away and nobody would have thought any less of him. And yeah, this is checking on his brother's he hears goliah stuff out from the ranks. I need to hear some make those same statements about is God. And he says who in the world does he think he is? Do you realize? Davis like this guy doesn't realize who he's messing with. You see the faith of David. Sure. He's that big. But David knows it is God Is Bigger. And we know the rest of the story David marches out before Goliath. Not armed to the teeth taking only with him a sling with five stones. And we hear the sound of it goes the stone and Goliath right in the middle of the forehead and he false.
And David takes the sort and he cuts off his head. This is what he says before. He doesn't want you to see this first Samuel chapter 17.
Goliath looks at this little boy and you can imagine the same. Really? This is who you're sending out to fight me not even a warrior and David says this 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 you can imagine how is that the Lord will deliver you into my hands and I'll strike you down and cut off your head this very day. I will give the carcasses of the Philistine Army to the bird and the wild animals. The whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. All those gathered here will know that that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saved for the battle is the Lord's and he will give all of you into our hands. the giant false
for a minute I imagine. I imagine both of the Army's looking at this and just staring at it and disbelief or just like a long time before they realize what actually happened. Imagine a shout erupting from the Israelite Camp imagine the screams of Terror from the Philistine can't because if this Shepherd boy can kill Goliath and he's not even a warrior than what in the world must be back there. We know a bunch of cowards but still if you know that that's what they thought and so they run in the Israelites are emboldened by David's Victory and they chase the the Philistines all the way back to their own. How did this happen? How was David able to defeat that?
People will look at Underdog victories today and people in the world will look at it and say that if you're going to be an underdog and you're going to win, then you really need to look within yourself and you really need to dig deep and find something there. Maybe you've heard that the statement. It's not the size of the dog in the fight. Can you finish it? But it's a size of the fight in the dog, right? Yeah. So the reason why underdogs win is because they want it more because they have desire they have determination that that the big guys just don't have it. Maybe that's true in certain circumstances, but that's that's not what happens here. I'm not going to tell you that if you were going to defeat those giants that are in your life if you were going to win this Underdog battle than you just look within yourself because the truth is that you maybe you can get a little bit farther doing that. Maybe you can push yourself a little bit farther, but at some point you're going to look within yourself and you're going to run out of gas, you're going to know that I'm just not big enough to face. This David did not win by looking within himself David. One by looking to the Lord and we sit we encourage us to do that. You have to trust in the Lord and and that's great. But it even goes a little bit deeper than that. The lesson that I have today is something I never really noticed before it's something that God kind of brought to my attention. And that's this. The reason David one was because this battle was not just God fighting David battle. This wasn't even David's battle at all. Was it know who's battle? Was it? Look at what David says in 1st Samuel their 747 all those is not by sword or spear that the Lord saved for the battle is the Lord's. This was not just a battle won by divine intervention. This battle was won because it was of divine interest. David was fighting God's battle. He picked the right one. And that is exactly why he want to know what does that have to do with you in me?
How many times when you pray? Are you really concerned about what God wants for your life? How often do we want God to intervene in our struggles? Temple fill our desires to fight our battles to defeat our enemies and yet God is not interested in that as much as he is interested. and saying Who shall I send who will go for me? God is looking for people who will pray like Jesus said. not my will. But your will be done.
And a lesson for us in this if you're taking notes and you want to write this down is simply this that when we rise to fight Gods battle Giants full. David one because this wasn't David's battle because he was willing to fight God's there are other battles that David could have been fighting that day everybody. There was fighting a battle.
The truth is if David is the one who picked the right battle to fight. And what I want to do is I want to show you three battles that David could have bought three ways that he could have been distracted to where he would not have even gone out to face the giant because he was too busy fighting these other battles and incidentally, these are three of the same battle that we tend to get distracted on today because you can pick the Five Guys battle today and I'm going to show you how the end of this message but let's look at these distractions for a minute the first battle the David could have fought the Battle for self-preservation. Why did nobody want to go out to fight Goliath?
Like a diorite what God was asking of Israel even what God was asking of Saul was a bit risky what guy was asking if David was incredibly risky. and yet David thought that it was worth the risk because he was more concerned about his love for God. He was about his love for himself. Look at what it says. Chapter 17 verse 32 David said this all let no one lose heart on the counter this Philistine your servant will go and fight him no salt looks a day, but he says that's that's not good. He said you're not able to go out and get this Philistine and fight him. You are only a young man and he has been a Warrior from his youth but David said the saw your servant is been keeping his father. She win a lion or bear came and carried off a sheet from the flock. I went after it struck it and rescue the sheet from its mouth when it turned on me. I seized it by its hair Struck it and killed it. Your servant is killed both The Lion and the bear be uncircumcised. Philistine will be like one of them because he has defied the armies of the Living God. It's all continues assist the Lord to rescue me from the Paw of the line on the part of the bear or rescue me from the end of this Philistine salsa to David go and the Lord be with you. Why was David so confident that he was able to take this on?
It's because he had been fighting God's battle for a long time before this day ever showed up. He fought Gods battle by being faithful in the little things that he was given to do. And he did those for God and for his glory listen to me if you want Giants to fall in your life. You will never be successful in bigger things if you're not faithful and smaller. Thanks. God had a path of preparation for David to lead him to this point.
And David was walking on that Pat. It's one of the things that attracted cut the David so much it was that heart of faithfulness that he saw it while he was out tending sheep where nobody saw. It was that same faithfulness that was on display when he was before the Giant.
Sometimes what God will ask us to do will be risky as well. but if we are more interested in staying safe and staying comfortable and preserving what we have. And Jesus said something about that. He says whoever nieces that whoever finds their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.
And the truth is that Jesus has asked all of us. To embark on this kind of risky Mission not not taking on Giants so to speak. But to deny ourselves look at what he says in Luke chapter 3 know what it looks like or 9:23, and he said to them whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves. Take up their cross who took up their cross. Those who are about to die take up your cross daily and follow me. In other words every single morning you wake up. You have a choice of which battle that you were going to fight. Are you going to fight for yourself today? Are you going to fight God's battle? It's an invitation to everyone. And Jesus as if you were going to follow me if you're going to walk with me.
And this is what you must do. Because what you want and what God wants a * those are going to be at odds and when that happens which way you going to choose. David chose not to fight the Battle of self-preservation. He chose to fight Gods battle in the giant fell the second one the battle for self-interest so offered a pretty sweet benefits package for anyone who was going to go out and take on Goliath. Here's what it says in verse 25, I believe now. The Israelites have been saying you see how this man keeps coming out referring to Black the king will give great wealth of the man who kills him. You will also give him his daughter in marriage and will exempt his family from taxes in Israel. That's a pretty sweet deal. Right don't have to pay taxes for the rest of your life. You imagine the IRS doesn't call you at all anymore and your whole family your family is probably like pushing you to do to take care of death and taxes, you know, one of those things a certain so, you know, we could get rid of one of those right now give his daughter in marriage or David never mentioned any of that. When you go to Sephora and says, I'll go find them. It doesn't say but let me make sure let me get a contract. Let me sign this. Let me make sure that this is going to pay off for me in the long run Davis not interested in himself and sometimes people will get interested in the things of God because those things tend to benefit them. And it can look like you're fighting God's battle. But the truth is that in your heart. You really only in it for what you can get out of it. now there's nothing wrong with benefiting that God wants us to benefit from following him and we will there are blessings tremendous blessings brother forgot. He has good things for us. But if we're only in it for ourselves and we are fighting the wrong battle why we do something to God is just as important. It's what we do. It says you're here today as you said in church. And as you Worship in sing the songs in as you go out and you you try to live for God in your life ask yourself. Why am I doing this is my doing these things because I love God and I doing these things because I love me because the truth is if you're doing them because you just love yourself and they're benefiting you personally then you are not fighting Gods battle. The final battle that didn't distract us at the Battle for self-defense this when it's subtle, but it trips a lot of us. When David is inquiring about Goliath he's asking. What's going to be done for this guy? The guy who goes out and fight them? David's older brother Eli of you. Remember him few weeks ago. We looked at the lion. Samuel nearly anointed Ally of is King because Ally I was a big guy to lie. I was David's oldest brother. But I lie of hears David talking about going to fight Goliath and this is what he says when the LIE of David's oldest brother heard him speaking with the man he burned with anger at him and asked why have you come down here? And with whom did you leave those few sheep in the wilderness? I know how conceited you are and how Wicked your heart is you came down only to watch the battle. Now any of these things that I've said, are they true at all? Alliance is David your heart is wicked. What does God say about David's heart? But it says you're so conceited David. David come to check on them eat. He wasn't even interested, but nobody's going to fight so he figures if somebody's got to do this.
You're trying to live for God and somebody insults you maybe it's somebody in the church. Maybe it's somebody that you're close to what happens when somebody offends you what happens when they are in the wrong.
We typically rush to defend ourselves, don't we? to attack the buyback to say Well, you're obviously wrong. So let me spend a lot of time point-by-point showing you how you are wrong. Maybe sometimes we say, well I'm not going to go to church there because of what somebody said.
I'm not going to follow it because the church is full of hypocrites. How often do we let other people? Determine the battle that we are going to fight. How many times does God want something for us? But we refuse to take it because of what somebody else because of what he said because of what she said.
We're offended or hurt where unforgiving we are angry and we are better.
I'm nobody can draw you into a fight like your siblings. You can fight with your siblings at the drop of a hat. It doesn't matter how old you are right? It's just like something instinctive from you growing up in their household and you can imagine that David probably really wanted to defend himself here. You know what he does. Can I even speak look at what it says next then turned away.
Is someone else and brought up the same matter and the men answered him as before David never would have gotten all that field and fought Goliath if he had been fighting with his older brother. But he didn't let that distract him from his purpose. And you know, it's Christians. This is exactly what we are called to as well. Look at what it says in 1st Peter 3 verse 9. Peter says this do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult on the contrary repay evil with blessing because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. How can we do this? Why can we say to somebody who is being rude to us? Why can we just not take that to heart? How can we just turn and move on? How can we respond with a blessing? You know, why because God has called us to a much bigger fight. We're not fighting for ourselves. We're not fighting for our desires. We're not fighting so that we can stay where we are. We are not fighting so that we can defend ourselves to anybody so that we can put up this front that we are righteous are holy or better than anyone we that's not what we are fighting about. We are fighting Gods battle. That we can choose to fight all of these battles if we want to but when we rise above these things to fight God's better. That is when God fights through us and Giants fall. But what does it mean? the fight God's battle
I think often times we make it way more complicated than we have to. Some of you were worried that you can't agree to fight God's battle cuz if you do then God's going to send you across the world to be a missionary in Uganda and that may be true for some of you but I doubt that I seriously doubt that they only need so many missionaries down there. He's not going to send this also just chill out. Okay.
What does it mean to fight God's battle?
Remember the story with David in the the lion. And David and the bear and David. Goliath All David ever sought to do. What's to be faithful to God with the things that God had given him? So when God called David to be in obedience sun and to be a Shepherd David did that to the best of his ability? And would David have been given by God this job of taking care of the sheep. David wasn't going to let anything happen to those sheep and so he did his job well. And through that even though David probably had no idea you imagine when David woke up that morning. He didn't know I'm going to kill a giant today.
But he was ready. because he had been faithful to God with the things if you given so I asked you each and everyone of you what has God given to you. What is he interested to you that he wants you to be faithful with do you have a job?
Do you have a job you know what God wants for me. He wants you to do that job to the best of your ability. You want you to go above and beyond not because you're working for your boss, but you work for your boss like you're working for God himself. Are you retired? Are you in between jobs right now?
God wants you to to talk to him and ask him. How can I use my time and such a way that's going to glorify you? You have a spouse.
God wants you to love your spouse the way that Jesus. Love you.
Are you single?
God wants you to avoid the Temptations and expectations as World surrounding single and he wants you to devote yourself fully to him and trust that he will provide that person for you when the time is right. Are you a parent? You have kids. God wants you to raise your kids in the love discipline avalor. Are you kid God wants you to honor your parents and he wants you to obey them. As you are a bang the Lord God wants for all of us to cultivate a daily personal relationship with him talking to him through prayer and listening to him through the word of God. And if you will do these things, I promise you promise you promise you promise you promise you promise you that God will speak to you that there will be times in your life that God will guide you and say, you know what you really need to make this change here. You know, what you really need to do this you really need to go there you really need to talk to this person and you will just know within your spirit that this is God telling you what to do and sometimes sometimes it might be a little risky.
God who calls you
protect you and provide for you and he's using this as an opportunity to show you so that your faith and your trust in him will grow more and more and more. It's not complicated.
God puts out this opportunity before sand says if you will trust me.
If you will stop living for yourself and all these Petty battles that you're fighting and you will fight my battles and I will fight through you. and Giants will
You don't got to use you like that. This battle wasn't about David at all and it's not about us either.
But I promise you if you fight God's battle that he can take you farther.
You would ever ever go on your own.
Pick your battles Church.
Father we love you. We know that you love us. There's not a single person in this room who hasn't disappointed. You not a single person in this room who hasn't turned our backs on you sinned against you father. We have all sinned and fallen short of the glory.
The god there's also not a single person in his room that you have abandoned. You have turned your back on. Are you reaching out to all of us today inviting us into a life that is bigger than our own and I pray that you would encourage today. To make the changes that you have been incurred you've been telling us to God said to take that step of a risk got to tell someone about you to do the things you called us to do.
Because God there in is the life of blessing therein is the life of freedom of Hope of joy of Peace of love.
Give us. the wisdom and the strength to leave all of these Petty battles behind
the trust in you so that you can use us.
To bring Victory to your people.
And you did it for David? Ultimately, you did it for us through Jesus and we look to him and we trust in him and his victory on the cross.
But God you can still use us today the way that you used him. I believe it.
So in this moment, I Pray by the power of your spirit. the Giants football
In Jesus name I pray. You staying with the church?