First Samuel 16:18 goes on to give us the next clue to David’s character. It says that he was “a mighty valiant man.”
If you haven’t discovered it yet, you will soon discover that it takes great courage to do God’s will. Most often God’s orders don’t come at a convenient moment or during an easy time. Voices of opposition — including the devil, your friends, and even your family — will tell you to back up, slow down, and reconsider your plan of action.
That’s why if you’re going to obey God, you need courage.
Courage is having the guts to do what needs to be done, regardless of the fear you may feel or the questions that remain unanswered.
Courage is having the guts to do what needs to be done, regardless of the fear you may feel or the questions that remain unanswered. When you walk in courage, you have the endurance, firmness, and fortitude to take a stand and do what is right, no matter what opposition you encounter. In short, courage is having the nerve to do what you know God has called you to do.
Consider Noah. He was ordered by God to build an ark for a flood that wouldn’t come for another 100 years. The laughter, scorn, and ridicule of society against his ark must have been overwhelming at times. To do what God commanded him to do, Noah had to have courage.
Consider Moses. The Red Sea lay before him while the chariots of Pharaoh pursued from behind. At that moment, Moses’ flesh may have been tempted to scream out, “GOD! What have you gotten me into?” He had to look into the fearful faces of the Israelites, who were staring at him and asking, “Moses, what are you going to do to get us out of this mess?”
I am certain Moses had to push fear aside in order to lift the rod of God high into the sky above his head! To stand in that precarious place and forge ahead with God’s orders, Moses had to have courage.
Consider Joshua. Joshua had to follow in the steps of Moses, who was a very hard act to follow. Moses was the greatest prophet who ever lived. He was the only person to see God and live to tell of it. He was the only person who ever spent time on the holy mountain with God. Moses received the Ten Commandments from the Lord. Moses was the instrument God used to destroy the mighty Egyptian army and to part the Red Sea. Moses was truly one of a kind.
But when Moses died, the spotlight shifted to Joshua. Now it was Joshua’s turn to step into the limelight as God’s new leader.
I am certain it was a terrifying sight for Joshua when he first stood before millions of Israelites and saw a sea of faces looking expectantly at him. It would have been normal for the people to question whether or not Joshua had what it took to be the kind of leader Moses had been. Joshua may have been tempted to give way to fear and take off running for some place to hide. If Joshua was going to take the job as the chief leader of this massive group of people, he needed courage!
In fact, Joshua needed so much courage that God ordered him to have courage three different times in Joshua chapter 1 (Joshua 1:6,7,9). Joshua had accepted the call to be Israel’s leader; now he stood before the men of Israel for the first time. And what did they demand of him? Courage!
Hebrews 11 names others who accomplished great things for God. This chapter mentions Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, and Rahab. Then it goes on to say, “And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets” (Hebrews 11:32,33).
Notice that David is also mentioned in this verse. David had already proven he had courage by the actions he had taken earlier in his life. Think of it! It was very bold and courageous of David at his young age to go out into the wilderness and shepherd an entire flock of sheep by himself. The very fact that David was given this kind of responsibility at such an early age tells us he was an exceptionally bold, courageous young man. How many boys in today’s world could handle this kind of responsibility?
David had to fight a lion and a bear to protect his sheep. Even a full-grown man would be tempted to flee under similar conditions. But David took his responsibility to protect those sheep deep into his heart and soul. It was his job. He was committed to do it regardless of the risk or opposition he encountered.
God needed a king who would be willing to stand up for right and wrong. He sought for one who would be willing to lay his life on the line to do what was right in God’s eyes. A weak man would never do. This job required someone who cared for God’s people more than he cared for himself. David demonstrated courage to do what was right when he killed the lion and the bear. If David would do this for sheep, God knew he would do it for the Israelite people!
If you know God wants to use you but you lack courage, ask God to touch you with His power and give you a dose of His might. Remember that God didn’t give you a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7).
If you lack courage, you’ll be tempted to throw in the towel and quit the first time you run into a challenge. Courage will give you the inward fortitude to push those dissenting voices out of the way so you can keep going until the job is executed as the Lord wants it done.
If you are choosing people to work at your side, be careful to select people who are willing to lay their lives on the line for the message, mission, and team. Look for people who are strong enough to stand up against the opinions of the world and who can resist the voices of opposition that always come against a step of faith.
As you search for someone to help you do big things for God and take steps that will shake the foundations of hell, remember this: It’s not a job for the weak-willed and opinion- driven person. You need someone who is strong and courageous enough to stand by you and walk with you into the future!
In regard to the responsibilities entrusted to him, David was all these things. From his youngest years, he had proven that he had the strength of will and character to do his job, no matter how difficult the task. David had courage.