The Life of King David
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David, whose name means well beloved, was born the eighth and youngest son of Jesse, a resident of Bethlehem. He was the great grandson of Ruth (who wrote the book of Ruth) and Boaz (Ruth 4:22). At a young age he tended his father's sheep, a job usually reserved for the LEAST esteemed of the family or its servants. The prophet Samuel makes a special trip to Bethlehem and anoints him the next king of Israel. God chose him to replace King Saul who was starting to depart from His ways.
A few years after his anointing, David fights and overcomes Goliath the giant, who was a Philistine living in Gath. His basic faith led the future king to conclude that God would ultimately defend those who are his, something the entire Israelite army lacked the faith to accept. Their focus was on how experienced and physically powerful was the enemy's champion Goliath.
24 When the Israelites saw Goliath, they ran away in terror . . . 32 David said to Saul, 'Your Majesty, no one should be afraid of this Philistine! I will go and fight him.' (1Samuel 17)
From a human standpoint, Goliath had the size and strength to defeat almost anyone. He stood roughly 9 feet, 3 inches (2.8 meters) tall. His protective battle coat, conservatively, was 78 U.S. pounds (35.4 kilograms) heavy! The spear he used in battle was likely 26 feet (7.9 meters) long, with its head alone weighing 17 U.S. pounds (7.7 kilograms). Without faith, it would have been nearly impossible to defeat such a foe!
Because of a contention over the throne, David ruled only the tribe of Judah after the death of Saul. His rule over one tribe, which began when he was about 30, lasted seven and one-half years. After this time, all the elders of Israel acknowledge him as the sole King over all the tribes.