And the Philistine drew near morning and evening, and presented himself forty days. -I Samuel 17:16 (KJV)
And David said to Saul, Let no man's heart fail because of him; thy servant will go and fight with this Philistine. -I Samuel 17:32 (KJV)
Last week I received an email which looked suspicious the moment I saw it. The email was allegedly from my Internet provider telling me how there was a problem with the server and unless I took action immediately I would not be able to send or receive email messages. I deleted the message. You have no doubt received these bogus messages too I am sure. Many of them get blatantly obvious in their attempts to deceive. They will pretend to be from banks and credit card companies and they ask for critical information such as social security numbers or bank account numbers. Do not fall for these ruses, for they are being sent out by crooks looking to rob and defraud innocent people like us.
Understand the devil has no principles, morals, scruples, or sense of fair play. He will lie, deceive, distort the truth, and seek to throw us off balance through any means possible. If the devil cannot come up with a new tactic to deceive he is not shy about trying to imitate the ways of the righteous. Even the giant Goliath, the enemy of Israel and himself a godless pagan, resolved to take his stand against God and the Israelites an entire 40 days. Throughout this period the army of Israel waited in fear as their enemy strutted about cursing God and daring anyone to fight him. Goliath reminds me of a schoolyard bully who gives the appearance of being strong, yet can be defeated if someone has the courage to stand up to him.
Consider during the 40 day period of Goliath’s challenge there was someone else who had been faithfully seeking God and preparing himself for battle. No, it wasn’t a seasoned warrior in battle armor. Rather it was a young shepherd boy who was willing to trust God with his very life. David followed God’s leading, relied on God’s strength, and brought down a giant no one else would dare confront. Let me ask you to consider what sorts of Goliaths are challenging you today. Are you losing heart because of these problems? Do your knees shake at the prospect of confronting them? The Lord invites you to take your stand upon Jesus Christ, the Word of God, and the power of the Holy Spirit. Devote yourself to prayer every day, stay in God’s Word, and you will be victorious.
Why not devote yourself to a 40 day period of praying about whatever problem is facing you? Start today. Rise up earlier every day 40 days to pray and seek the Lord. God will give you strength you never knew you had. Victory will be yours in Jesus Christ.