1 Samuel 17:50
So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him; but there was no sword in the hand of David.
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(50) But there was no sword in the hand of David.—The story of the daring of the son of Jesse dwells, and with good reason, on the extraordinary valour and skill of the young champion of Israel. Had his heart for one instant failed him—as, indeed, it well might; had he not possessed a confidence which nothing could shake in an unseen Helper—or had his skill as a marksman failed him in the slightest degree, the Philistine with one blow would have laid David lifeless at his feet; or had the active shepherd boy eluded his giant antagonist, it must have been by flight. In any case, the single combat upon which Israel had staked so much would have gone against the chosen people.

17:48-58 See how frail and uncertain life is, even when a man thinks himself best fortified; how quickly, how easily, and by how small a matter, the passage may be opened for life to go out, and death to enter! Let not the strong man glory in his strength, nor the armed man in his armour. God resists the proud, and pours contempt on those who defy him and his people. No one ever hardened his heart against God and prospered. The history is recorded, that all may exert themselves for the honour of God, and the support of his cause, with bold and unshaken reliance on him. There is one conflict in which all the followers of the Lamb are, and must be engaged; one enemy, more formidable than Goliath, still challenges the armies of Israel. But resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Go forth to battle with the faith of David, and the powers of darkness shall not stand against you. But how often is the Christian foiled through an evil heart of unbelief!The Lord saveth not with sword ... - Observe the consistent teaching of such passages as 1 Samuel 14:6; Exodus 14:13-18; Judges 7:2, Judges 7:4,Judges 7:7; Psalm 44:6, etc., and their practical use to the Church as lessons of trust in God, and distrust of ourselves. 49. smote the Philistine in his forehead—At the opening for the eyes—that was the only exposed part of his body. No text from Poole on this verse.

No text from Poole on this verse.

So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone,.... And with them only, without any other warlike weapon:

and smote the Philistine, and slew him; smote him with the stone, which brought him to the ground, and then slew him with his own sword, as afterwards related:

but there was no sword in the hand of David; when he engaged with the Philistine, and smote him, for he had put off all his armour, 1 Samuel 17:39.

So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him; but there was no sword in the hand of David.
50. This verse is not found in the Sept. (B).

Verses 50, 51. - So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone. It is evident that the narrator regarded David's victory as extraordinary; and no doubt it required not only great courage, but also perfect skill, as only the lower portion of the forehead would be exposed, and on no other part of the giant's body would a blow have been of any avail. The narrator also calls attention to the fact that David relied upon his sling alone, for there was no sword in the hand of David. Slings probably were regarded as useful only to harass an enemy, while swords, which they had only lately been able to procure (1 Samuel 13:22), were regarded as the real weapons of offence. David, therefore, completes his victory by killing Goliath with his own sword as he lay stunned upon the ground. As Ahimelech considered it fit for David's own use (1 Samuel 21:9), it was probably not so monstrous in size as Goliath's other weapons. Champion is not the word so rendered in vers. 4, 23, but that used in 1 Samuel 16:18 for "a hero of valour." 1 Samuel 17:501 Samuel 17:50 contains a remark by the historian with reference to the result of the conflict: "Thus was David stronger than the Philistine, with a sling and stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him without a sword in his hand." And then in 1 Samuel 17:51 the details are given, namely, that David cut off the head of the fallen giant with his own sword. Upon the downfall of their hero the Philistines were terrified and fled; whereupon the Israelites rose up with a cry to pursue the flying foe, and pursued them "to a valley, and to the gates of Ekron." The first place mentioned is a very striking one. The "valley" cannot mean the one which divided the two armies, according to 1 Samuel 17:3, not only because the article is wanting, but still more from the facts themselves. For it is neither stated, nor really probable, that the Philistines had crossed that valley, so as to make it possible to pursue them into it again. But if the word refers to some other valley, it seems very strange that nothing further should be said about it. Both these circumstances render the reading itself, ניא, suspicious, and give great probability to the conjecture that ניא is only a copyist's error for Gath, which is the rendering given by the lxx, especially when taken in connection with the following clause, "to Gath and to Ekron" (1 Samuel 17:52).
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