The biggest giant I have ever had to face is the voice which seems to be inside my head. That voice that is always quick and ready to tell me I am no good for anything! It can be a condemning voice with convincing words of accusations. Sometimes that voice brings his friends. That voice can come from the “accuser of the brethren” (Satan). They run toward me like a football team ready to tackle me to the ground. They do their damage and then leave me there like a flattened football, thinking they have won. By God’s great grace and strength, I manage to get back up, stagger about, while trying to recover from the many blows. I know the enemy knows my weakness. When those attacking voices think they have already captured my mind, then they aim their arrows at the heart They attack the areas where there may be fear, insecurity, pain, loss, guilt and the tender wounds from previous battle scars. Even when I begin to overcome, the enemy is quick to shut down any confidence or growth.
In public school there was always a bully around each corner. I was a tough kid. I had three brothers who taught me how to fight. Just to clarify, I wasn’t a bully. (A person who uses strength or power or influence, to harm or intimidate those who are weaker.) Thinking back, I usually stood up for the one’s being bullied. Had my fair share of hair pulling, fist punching, kick fights. I have the scars to prove it. There are some terrible memories wrapped in that need to defend. That was the way it was for me in those growing years. While in public school, there was one girl who I actually feared. I could call her one of my childhood giants. When I was a child I had nightmares about her.
Now, I’m an adult. There still seems to be many giants to fight in a battle of a different kind. It is a Spiritual battle because I am a Christian in the Lord’s army now. There is an enemy at work in all of our lives fighting to destroy our souls. When we are on the front lines, it is common to feel the brunt of the attack.
“For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, (2 Corinthians 10:3-5 ESV)
We walk in flesh (earthly bodies). The war being fought is against powers of darkness (Satan). We have the divine power to win the battle. Many of those thoughts are lies of Satan telling me that I’m not really a Christian, not really saved. The liars say, “You don’t really know Jesus. You don’t have the Spirit. You are immoral. You are like Jezebel and God is going to throw you on your deathbed. You don’t have love, joy, peace, therefore you do not have the fruit of the Spirit. You are despicable. You are a bully. You don’t have any friends. You are not loved. You are a trouble maker. There is something terribly wrong with you. You don’t fit in. You are evil. You are a terrible neighbour. You are a terrible person and everyone sees you that way. On and on the the words of destruction swirl in my mind, trying to permeate deep enough that I begin to believe them. Sometimes, he uses other people to attack, using arguments, opinions, sharp words and even scripture (Satan used scripture to tempt Jesus). Most of the lies come in the silence when I am alone. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, The Maker of heaven and earth. I fall on my face before my Saviour. I have to be steadfast and faithful and raise the Sword of His Word and fight that battle. We all must take those thoughts, and whatever ammunition used against us, captive, rather than becoming the one held captive by that giant. We do this by obeying the word of Christ and prayer.
Old Testament – teaches us the old covenant (law of commandments) without Christ in the flesh. There are all kinds of giants in our lives. God sent people to the Promised Land which was inhabited by giants.
1 Chronicles 20:6-8 “Another battle took place at Gath, where there was a giant with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot. He was a descendant of the ancient giants. 7He defied the Israelites, and Jonathan, the son of David’s brother Shammah, killed him. 8 These three, who were killed by David and his men, were descendants of the giants at Gath.
Today, we are at war against giants. They are not seven feet tall with six toes. Sometimes the giant is in giving over our will to be in the Lord’s will. We want to do what we want to do, but the Spirit wants to do something better.
“Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands— remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility.” (Ephesians 2:11-16 ESV)
We see that there was a great battle already won through Christ’s shed blood on that cross. He conquered sin and death reconciling us to God and in the process killed hostility.
Spiritual warfare is a necessity. For God’s children this is what to expect. Ex 3:16-17
“Go and gather the elders of Israel together and say to them, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, has appeared to me, saying, “I have observed you and what has been done to you in Egypt, and I promise that I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, a land flowing with milk and honey.”’ (Exodus 3:16, 17 ESV)
In Exodus we see Israel was promised a land flowing with milk and honey, but there would also be enemies. God promised Joshua the land. God said to Joshua Be strong and courageous” because they would have to face many challenges and battles.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9 ESV)
We also read of David and how he had to fight Goliath: “And there came out from the camp of the Philistines a champion named Goliath of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. He had a helmet of bronze on his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail, and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of bronze. And he had bronze armor on his legs, and a javelin of bronze slung between his shoulders. (1 Samuel 17:4-6 ESV)
Saul’s clothing and armour was too big for David. David was a shepherd boy not used to wearing heavy armour. He took it off and went to fight Goliath with five stones and a sling.
“Then Saul clothed David with his armor. He put a helmet of bronze on his head and clothed him with a coat of mail, and David strapped his sword over his armor. And he tried in vain to go, for he had not tested them. Then David said to Saul, “I cannot go with these, for I have not tested them.” So David put them off. Then he took his staff in his hand and chose five smooth stones from the brook and put them in his shepherd’s pouch. His sling was in his hand, and he approached the Philistine.” (1 Samuel 17:4-6, 38-40 ESV)
“So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. There was no sword in the hand of David. Then David ran and stood over the Philistine and took his sword and drew it out of its sheath and killed him and cut off his head with it. When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled.” (1 Samuel 17:50, 51 ESV)
Later in David’s life he would have to fight for his life against King Saul and his armies and the many armies to follow.
In the New Testament, Jesus promised tough times for those who followed him and taught His gospel, but He also promised He would be with us. Jesus told us:
“If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.” (John 15:19, 20 ESV)
Our war is not conventional. It is a different kind of war – offensive warfare! Unfortunately, many followers of Christ want to protect themselves rather than go out and make war (as in, stand up for their faith in Christ and the Word of God)
For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. (2 Corinthians 10:4 ESV)
In Ephesus many worshipped Diana and other idols. There was drunkenness and immorality. When Paul preached at Ephesus he was, in essence, making war as he was destroying their business. He was dethroning Diana by spreading the good news. Strongholds and arguments can be pulled down. This is what Paul was doing by spreading the gospel of Christ. A giant is anything that exults itself higher than Jesus. We may think that these battles are too high above us and begin to believe that we can’t take them down. That in itself, is a lie from the enemy. When we trust and obey the Word of God, we have the armour and ammunition wrapped up with faith and with God, to take down that giant.
There are many spiritual giants who seem to know much more than we do. We might even think or be told things like, who are you to question them? A giant is anything that does not give God his righteous place.
Two kinds of weapons:
+ The kind you can’t trust.
+ The kind you can trust.
+ Our weapons are not carnal or fleshly, but of divine power.
+ The weapons of God are not our own man made weapons.
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20 ESV)
+ David used the armour of God not the armour of King Saul.
+ The Word of God is also called “The Sword of the Spirit”.
+ Prayer is a weapon. The prayers of a righteous person are effective.
+ We also have God’s people to go with us in battle.
+ What Giants do you face in your life?
+ Are they coming between you, and people or even God?
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”(Hebrews 12:1, 2 ESV)
Some days there are different giants. We do not need to fear because God is on our side; The Creator of the universe.
What are your Giants:
+ Is the giant Loneliness? This can be a huge giant.
+ Addiction can be a giant.
+ Maybe it is a broken relationship.
+ Financial worries
+ Physical giant
+ A giant that seems so big and in control over you, that you may want to die.
+ When kids are teenagers, they go through stuff, hormones. Sometimes they freak out.
+ What is a giant to someone else, may seem nothing to you.
+ Sometimes the giants can seem overwhelming. Some of us need others to help us.
+ A giant can be someone controlling something in your life you have no control over.
+ A giant can be the wounds inflicted by those you love.
Maybe you are reading this and you feel like you have conquered all your giants. Life is good and you are spinning and twirling (rejoicing) because everything in your life is just hunky-dory? Just keep spinning, just keep swimming, oblivious to the giants attacking those around you. I’m thinking of Dory from the movie “Finding Nemo”. She was constantly being lost in her own short memory. That would be a very short sighted perspective.
This would be a good time to help someone else in their battle. Step out of your ice palace and give an act of love to someone who could really use a little help right now facing their giants. Sometimes, just a little word to encourage someone can help defeat that giant. Sometimes, in reaching out to others, we not only help them with their giants, we are shrinking our giants at the same time. Life can be full of surprises. When you least expect, that giant can come knocking on your door. Maybe, I am a bit of a dreamer, but sometimes when we face the giants, we can learn a lot. We might even be surprised to see how God works in that Giant’s life too. I tend to think that over time, the giants won’t look so big because we can change and grow bigger than any giant.
In closing, about a month ago, while waiting in a line-up, I met that girl (giant) from public school. She was standing right beside me. I was not afraid of her anymore. Of course we are grown women now and have outgrown that violence. I should hope so. She is now shorter than me. I started talking to her like we were the best of friends. We laughed as we reminisced about the school days and about how she tried to beat me up for running through her skipping rope. Good thing for me the teacher intervened that day or who knows how many black eyes I would have gotten!! That girl ended up beating up our teacher instead of me. That was a close call even though we were both sent to the principals office. As we both stood there waiting for the punishment, I leaned against the office wall crying in a repentant kind of way, she leaned against the wall laughing at what she did to the teacher. I’ll never forget it.
It was a big deal to me, but for her, she probably never gave it another thought. She was just like Dory. “Just keep swimming. . . just keep swimming. . .”
Inspired by sermon notes – Pastor Bryan Vaughan
Hope For Today Fellowship – http://www.hopefortoday.ca