If David is a type, or foreshadow of Jesus, then is Goliath a type of Satan?
Goliath of Gath — literally, “the splendor” of “the winepress” — was an imposing figure. He stood over 9 feet tall and was massive enough to carry over 125 pounds of armor on his frame. He wielded a spear as thick as a fence post, the spearhead alone weighing in at over 15 pounds (1Sam. 4-7). And his over-sized appearance was only matched, and then some, by his over-sized ego.
Arrogantly, he goes rogue, stomps onto the battle field, and issues a challenge (there’s no indication it had been sanctioned by his commanders in chief, but really, no one even in his own ranks was big enough to stand up to him).
And the Philistine said, “Choose a man for yourselves, and let him come down to me. If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will be your servants. But if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall be our servants and serve us. I defy the ranks of Israel this day. Give me a man, that we may fight together.”
(1Samuel 17:8b-10 ESV)
Give me a man. Sounds like Satan.
Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
(1Peter 5:8 ESV)
But in his arrogance, while he’d delight in chewing on any man, Goliath wanted the man. Israel’s best man. The man who was above all men. The strongest and bravest and most accomplished of all Israel’s army. For when the giant defeated that man there would be no disputing his unmatched power.
That’s why he was so ticked when David walked out towards him with a sack of rocks and sling.
And the Philistine said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.
(1Samuel 17:43 ESV)
I’m a lion, not a dog. I am power, not some powder puff. He was insulted. Enraged. So belittled by this apparent boy who walked onto the battlefield, that he couldn’t see straight. But soon, he wouldn’t see at all.
Was the prince of darkness also confused when the Command of the Lord’s Army entered the battlefield of earth as a human infant? Did he feel disrespected as his demonic minions were later cast aside by a Rabbi of unimpressive stature, one having no form or majesty that anyone should take note of Him (Isa. 53:2)? Was the cross the ultimate insult? “This?” thinks the enemy, “this is what you come to battle a lion with? I said, ‘Give me a man, ‘and now you come to me with these Roman sticks? Am I a dog?” No, Satan, you are done!
And the son of Jesse approaches, a foreshadow of the Son of God entering the arena to do battle with the enemy once and for all, and he speaks,
“You come to me with a sword and 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. . . . that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, and that all this assembly may know that the LORD saves not with sword and spear.”
(1Samuel 17:45, 46b-47a ESV)
I hover over David’s victory. Resisting any temptation to place myself in the story in his sandals. I’m not David in the story, I’m in the ranks of those who were oppressed by the enemy, in fear of the enemy, and needed another to provide deliverance from the enemy. I’m to resist the devil (James 4:7), not run onto the battlefield seeking to confront him. I am to put on the whole armor of God so that I can stand firm against his schemes and weather his assaults (Eph. 6:11), not seek to engage him so that I might slay him. For he has already been defeated. The greater David, Jesus Christ the Lord, the Son of David, the Son of God, has fought the fight, defeated the enemy, and won the battle. And that, not with a bag of rocks, but through a wooden Roman cross.
Satan said, Give me a man. And he got more than he could handle.
And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This He set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in Him.
(Colossians 2:13-15 ESV)
A Man by God’s grace. The Man, Christ Jesus, for God’s glory.