Where Real Courage Comes From

Where does courage come from? And how do you get it when you need it, when some fear towers over you and threatens you, and you feel like cowering and fleeing into some cave of protection? For an answer, let’s look at one of the most famous stories of all time in 1 Samuel 17 — and one of the most misunderstood stories in the Bible.

David and Goliath

Three thousand years ago, in the Valley of Elah, a massive man named Goliath of Gath stepped out of the Philistine ranks to defy and taunt the army of Israel and its God. For forty days, he harangued the Israelite warriors, heaping shame on them, since none dared to accept his fight-to-the-death, winner-takes-all challenge. Every morning when he stepped forward, the men of God shrank back.

Then a teenage Hebrew shepherd boy named David showed up in the camp with some bread and cheese for his soldier big brothers and heard the giant pour out his scorn on the impotent host of his Lord. David was indignant. So he took his shepherd's sling, grabbed a few stones, knocked Goliath on the block, and chopped off his head.

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