Last week Pastor Josiah announced our new children’s pastor, Michel Espinoza, and new assistant to pastor, Jennifer Segura. This week he shared that our new worship pastors are Erick and Alyssa Aguilar. We thank the LORD for the team He has assembled for FC.
Also last week we learned about preparation and power for the beloved. You are His beloved, and He is radically in love with you. This week the sermon is entitled “Beloved-A Giant Problem.” The nine foot tall Goliath is a very familiar biblical figure, who was a fierce, Philistine warrior.
In 1 Samuel 17, it describes what Goliath, the champion from Gath, wore for battle. Verse five explains that he wore a bronze helmet and “his bronze coat of mail weighed 125 pounds.” Goliath taunted the Israelites because he wanted to fight a representative Israelite warrior. The winner affected the fate of the loser’s army, and the Israelites shook in fear since no one was brave enough to fight Goliath.
However, in 1 Samuel 17:14, we learn of David, the one Samuel anointed to be the next king of Israel. For his training he herded sheep and ran errands for his father, Jesse. What humble jobs for the future king. “Beloved Identity honors fathers whether they deserve it or not and stays faithful to responsibilities.” Jesse did not honor David when Samuel asked to see his sons. David was left out in the fields until Samuel called for him. Jesse did not think David was king material apparently. But Jesse’s disrespect did not deter David from honoring his father, and he did as he ran between duties-shepherding and seeing his three brothers who were stationed in the valley of Elah in Saul’s army. “Beloved ones are willing to serve in humility and let God make a way.” DavId was content serving his father. Pastor Josiah reminded us, ”If the Lord doesn’t open the door, do not go through it. You can ask Him,’LORD, is this what you want for me?’”
“As he was talking with them, Goliath, the Philistine champion from Gath, came out from the
Philistine ranks. Then David heard him shout his usual taunt to the army of Israel.”1 Samuel 17:23 (NLT) Frightened the Israelite warriors ran away. Forty days Goliath challenged the Israelites. When they heard Goliath, they ran for cover in contrast to David’s shock. David asked,”…Who is this pagan Philistine anyway, that he is allowed to defy the armies of the living God?” 1 Samuel 17:26 (NLT)
“But when David’s oldest brother, Eliab, heard David
talking to the men, he was angry. ‘What are you doing
around here anyway?’ he demanded. ‘What about those
few sheep you’re supposed to be taking care of? I know
about your pride and deceit. You just want to see the
battle.’” 1 Samuel 17:28 (NLT)
The eldest brother belittled David the youngest brother. Jesse did not even consider David for the king line up, and Eliab followed his father’s example but took it farther. He had a mocking spirit and spoke bitterly.
David responded in his Beloved Identity which fortified him from offense. When you are the beloved of the LORD, you can rest in your identity. The odds make no difference to the one whose identity is beloved because “Your identity fortifies you from offense.” The LORD, Creator of the Universe, loves you, and you are secure in Him. You should think like what you are, beloved. Then let your mind tell your spirit, soul, heart and body to get in line with that fact. If you are not grounded in the Beloved Identity, you are easily offended. Are you easily offended? Perhaps knowing who you are will break that loop. “As beloved, it does not shake me,” said Pastor Josiah. “I am here to honor Him. He defines me.”
What assurance it gives when you let beloved define who you are. Instead of scrolling through Facebook tirelessly to see how many likes your posts receive, why not turn to His Word and see what direction He wants to send you. Isn’t the Creator of the World more in tune with you than all your Facebook acquaintances? He has known you even before you were formed in your mother’s womb. Jeremiah 1:5
Also “Beloved ones don’t stand idly by when God is mocked.” So in 1 Samuel17:32, David volunteers to fight Goliath. Saul was concerned because of David’s age and size, but David while tending the sheep had killed both a lion and a bear. Goliath’s disrespect for the LORD appalled David who was determined to defend the LORD’s honor. May we not tolerate the devil and his tricks.
“Who we are, our identity, shapes everything we stand for.” This point is evident when David said, “The LORD delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear. He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” 1 Samuel 17:37 (NKJV) That is confidence in his LORD. David expected God to be with him, and Saul recognized the LORD’s Spirit on David. The Beloved Identity overflowed and fought for him.
At that point Saul offered adolescent David his own armor of mail and bronze helmut. 1 Samuel 17:38 Saul’s armor did not fit the young sheepherder. He could not even walk in it. Also Saul’s armor was reminiscent of Goliath’s with the bronze helmut and mail. “You can’t defeat the giants that look just like you.”
David needed the weapons he used to kill the lion and bear. “When Beloved Identity takes on his giants, he takes his history with him.” 1 Samuel 17:40 (NKJV) explained what David did. “Then he took his staff in his hand; and he chose five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag….!” He had had success with his sling shot and the right stones. He was not shackled to his past, but David could see that Saul’s warrior equipment was not for him. It fit Saul and his needs. We need to use the right weapons during spiritual warfare for us. I need the Word of the LORD; I need to “Be still and know” that He is the LORD. I need to pray, cry out, write to Him my concerns, fears, and
confusion. When I lay it all at His feet, I can rest in my Beloved Identity.
“Your history can either be a stain on you or a testimony of Him.” David acted on his faith in the LORD.
“Then David said to the Philistine,’You come to me with a
sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in
the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of
Israel, whom you have defied.”I Samuel 17:45 (NKJV)
“Those resting in Beloved Identity slay giants not because they’re experts on giants, but because they’re experts on loving and being loved by God.” How often has the LORD used you to slay a giant in your life. You knew you could not slay it on your own, but your Abba Father could, and He used you. Remember, the battle belongs to the LORD, the Maker of Heaven and Earth. Thus we are to “Pay attention to who He says you are; it should be ringing in your ears like an alarm in your spirit.” Then you and I can be salt and light in this dark, despair-ridden world.
9/22-LB potluck, worship, and Meet to Swap
9/29-Men’s CORE meeting
Larry and Annette Linthicum