Goliath [Gōlī'ath]—the exile or soothsayer. The famous giant of Gath, who defied the armies of Israel (1 Sam. 17:4, 23; 21:9; 22:10; 2 Sam. 21:19).
The story of David and Goliath has thrilled our hearts from childhood days. How spectacular it must have been to see a stripling like David slay a massive man some ten feet high with only a pebble from the stream. Saul’s proffered armor was of no use against Goliath. David had to meet the giant with the weapon he was used to. A ready-made suit was of no avail for the son of Jesse.
The religious character of the duel between Goliath and David should not be lost sight of. The giant cursed David by his gods. David went out to meet Goliath “in the name of the Lord of Hosts.” But why did David take five stones, if his God was able to direct a single one into the forehead? Did he want to make sure that if one pebble failed, he would have four more to swing? Going over the passages we discover that Goliath had four sons, all of whom were giants, and five pebbles were needed to slay the lot of them. Thus the choice of five was an act of faith. Through God, only one pebble was needed. David went forth to meet Goliath with five pebbles and he came back with five—four in his hand and the other in Goliath’s massive forehead. How God delights to use the insignificant things of life to accomplish His purpose!