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Story Of David & Goliath

In 1 Samuel 17 is the story of David and Goliath. After David killed him with a small stone and slingshot, he went to the body and cut off Goliath's head with a sword. Assuming the stone killed Goliath, why behead him? What lesson from God do we learn from this? To celebrate killing?

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 ---Geraldine on 8/13/12
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bro. Trey, I like very much what you said. I also believe it was a type to the antitype since a type is a preordained representative relationship which certain persons, events, and institutions occuring at a later time in salvation history. The only thing I disagree with is that (1Samuel 17:50) does say the stone killed him.
" So David revailed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone, "and stuck the Philistine and killed him." But there was no sword in the hand of David"
Meaning that the sword did not kill him but the stone did since there was no sword in David's hand. Thanks for bringing it up. I had to do a little searching because I was under the impression the stone did kill him. Peace brother.
---Mark_V. on 11/1/12

Actually it was five smooth stones....David's confidence was purely in the power of God. Goliath was a proud man. Goliath knew there were famous slingers in Israel, yet was either so forgetful or presumptuous as to go with the beaver of his helmet open, Ha, Ha, Ha...David cut-off Goliath's head to complete the execution. David did his business wthout any parade. He had no one cheering him on, only God. David's victory over Goliath was typical of the triumphs of the "Son of David" [Jesus Christ] over Satan and all the powers of darkness, whom He spoiled, and made a show of them openly, Thank You Jesus [Col. 2: 14,15]. I do not like to see proud men win.++
---pat on 10/30/12

Because David told Goliath exactly what he was going to do and did just that.

45 Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.

46 This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand, and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee, and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.
---kathr4453 on 8/17/12

Thanks for all the good explanations from all. It is clear that whether Goliath was dead when he hit the bround, God strengthened at exactly the right places and times for His people, and showed that physical superiority does not make the difference in spiritual matters!
---Geraldine on 8/17/12

Hi Geraldine, I have read several good answers. Now here is what I see. David is a type and shadow of Christ. Goliath is a picture of Satan.
Vs. 49 says David smote the Philistine, but it does not say it killed him. David then takes the sword Goliath had intended to use to conquer David, and cuts off Goliath's head.
Gen3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed, it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
Bruise is a crushing blow.
Christ used the cross at calvary to defeat Satan, the same tool Satan had thought to use to defeat Christ.

Just my thoughts.
---trey on 8/16/12

Geraldine: It's futile & always fatal to try, & stand in opposition to the Lord. That's the lesson.

In reading 1 Samuel 17, it's my understanding the stone did indeed kill Goliath before he was beheading. In my minds eye, I see the assembly (Philistines & Jews) all standing at a distance looking in amazement at him lying face down in the dirt & waiting for him to get up. They needed to know, for certain, that Goliath was dead. That's what the cutting of his head was all about. That finished the matter & left no doubt in anyone's mind as to Goliath's condition. For the Jews, when they saw the severed head, it was a cause for celebration. But, for the Philistines, the sight struck terror in their hearts.
---Leon on 8/16/12

46 [Today] the Lord will deliver you into my hand...[I'll] strike & take your head from you...47 Then [everyone assembled will] know the Lord [doesn't] save with sword & spear,...the battle is the Lords, & [He'll] give you into our hands...David...ran toward the army to meet [Goliath]. 49...[reaching into] his bag...[he] took out a stone...slung... & struck the Philistine...the stone sank into his forehead, & he fell on his face to the earth. 50 So David prevailed over [Goliath] with a sling & a stone,... & killed him. But there was no sword in [David's hand]. 51...David ran & ...took [Goliath's] sword...out of its sheath & killed him...cut off his head with it.

The answer is in verse 47 Geraldine.
---Leon on 8/16/12

Note the importance of the head. The stone hit Goliath in his forehead. Afterward, David additionally cut off Goliath's head.
The message emphasizes that our 1st, biggest enemy is our heads. THE WAY WE THINK.
Goliath was an experienced man of war. Our fleshly thoughts have warred against us for a very long time as well.
When you kill a serpent, you cut off it's head even though it's dead.
OUR GIANT ENEMY(the flesh) was crucified with Christ(the brazen serpent) with thorns surrounding His head.
This is a classic case of the Bible displaying another living example of flesh verses spirit. Faith verses fear.
Do a study of Circumcision and you'll find it tells the same of the story of cutting off the fleshly head. Sorry Guys!
---Legends on 8/14/12

Yes, it says in 1 Samuel 17:50 that he "prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. But there was no sword in the hand of David." So, it says he was killed . . . before it says David got the sword.

But, from a distance, how would anyone else know for sure he was dead? Cutting off the head could make it clear.

Also, Jesus is our Head (Ephesians 5:23). In order to become God's children, we needed to have Satan cut off, with his mindset and way of seeing things. He is love-dead, but still needed to be cut off.

But still now we need to learn how to love and grow more.
---willie_c: on 8/14/12

My impression is that it was done as a message for the Philistines. Goliath was the very best soldier that the Philistines had as a challenger in single individual combat. David killed him with a rock and cuts off his head to show it plainly to the Philistines army in the sounding area. As a warning don't ever mess with us again.
---Blogger9211 on 8/13/12

You also have to remember that the OT was written for the people of Israel and cutting of the head is a celebration of victory over Israel's enemies.
We should celebrate victory over defeating enemies (hopefully by conversion) that are attacking us.
The praying for our enemies that Jesus commands in NT is so that our enemies will become christians. Like Stephen did for Saul in Acts. So that we do not attack them for being different but encourage them to look to Jesus and change. Also see Nehemiah who prayed against his enemies who were attacking him while trying to follow God's commands.
---Scott1 on 8/13/12

the life lesson it the whole passage and this is trust God

all of the great warriors of Isreal were afraid to face the giant except a a teenager who knew that God would give him victory,
---willow on 8/13/12

I stand corrected,scripture does say he was dead before decapitation (vs.51),but I think it was "shock value" because they ran away after witnessing this decapitation!
---1st_cliff on 8/13/12

I believe David knocked him down with the stone and killed him by decapitation!
---1st_cliff on 8/13/12

You've asked a good question, Geraldine.

Don't for get that the people of the Bible were people of THEIR time, not ours. The Bible just depicts people the way they were, warts and all.

Beheading the dead body of an enemy or otherwise mutilating the corpse was just part of the war practices of the time.

Examples of this can even be found in recent times, alas.

Glory to Jesus Christ!
---Cluny on 8/13/12

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