By Patrick Omukhango
The Power Behind A Book
I will read from 1 Samuel 17:1-58 The Story of David and Goliath
This is one of my favourite Bible passages and we can glean so much truth from this story to help us as authors. From this story, we see that Israel is gathered to battle against the Philistines, who had a champion, Goliath. Goliath had fought many battles and won. He comes out and dares Israel to battle.
Vs 8 “Goliath stood and shouted to the battle lines of Israel, saying to them, “Why have you come out to draw up for battle? Am I not the Philistine and are you not servants of Saul? Choose a man for yourselves and have him come down to me.”
Goliath calls them servants of Saul. If you pass through quickly, there seems to be no problem with that statement. But contrast Goliath’s statement with David’s perspective.
Vs 26 “Then David spoke to the men who were standing by him, “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and removes the disgrace [of his taunting] from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he has taunted and defied the armies of the living God?”
In this verse, David calls Israel armies of the living God. Goliath had reduced Israel’s perception of themselves and made them to be slaves or servants of Saul. But David says they are the armies of the living God.
HOW DO YOU SEE YOURSELF AS A WRITER/AUTHOR?
Now the question to you is, how have you allowed the world, your circumstances or the book industry to define you? Are you just a local writer? Or an ordinary writer? Or have you seen yourself as part of what God is doing on the earth using His armies today.
We should be careful not to allow our circumstances or even sales of our books to reduce or demean our book ministries. We should be conscious of who we are based on who has called us and what He is doing through us. This is an important perspective.
Goliath reduced Israel’s battle to a physical one though we know that Israel always fought spiritual battles where God fought for them. He brought them from the spirit to the flesh – the platform that Goliath knew because he was big, he was skilled to use the sword, he had past experiences etc. All these were physical strengths that Goliath had over Israel.
In vs 26 we see David’s response, “For who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he has taunted and defied the armies of the living God?” He did not see all these seemingly strong physical strengths that Goliath had. He saw him as an uncircumcised Philistine who had no covenant with the living God. It’s so clear that David is conscious of this fact. It’s not Goliath’s size, experience or what he is carrying that mattered. Goliath did not have God on his side and we see David using this.
We can apply this same truth in who we are as writers or authors. Is it clear in our minds that we have a partnership with God? This partnership should make a great difference for us because we are not doing these books alone. We have God on our side and we are writing for Him so His power is backing us.
WHAT FIGHT ARE YOU FIGHTING? WHO IS DEFINING THE PARAMETERS OF THE FIGHT?
The story continues. In vs 32 David is taken to Saul and he tells Saul, “Do not be afraid, I am going to fight him.” Then Saul brings David back to physical reality, “You are a youth, and Goliath has been a warrior from his youth, he is far experienced than you.” But David testifies to Saul about his life that he had fought a lion and a bear and God delivered him from these animals. He says this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of the animals he had killed before. He also adds that the victory will be for Israel because Goliath had defied the armies of the living God. So Goliath is not coming against Israel but against the God of Israel.
David brought God to the battle. It stopped being Israel’s battle. It stopped being David’s battle. It became God’s fight.
HOW CONSCIOUS ARE YOU OF GOD’S INVOLVEMENT IN YOUR BOOK?
When you face battles and obstacles in your book project, are you bringing God into the fight? Do these obstacles know that they are coming against God’s plans and He (not just you) will fight them?
Vs 38-40 we see that Saul gives David his armour but David says no because he had not proven that armour. The perception here is that David had not proven Saul’s armour but he had proven his sling and stones. But this is not correct because when we see David now facing Goliath, this is what he says to him in vs 45, “You come to me with a sword, a spear, and a [n]javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have taunted.” We see that what David had proved was the name of the Lord (not the stones and sling).
So what have you proven as a writer or author? What are you facing your challenges with? Prove the name of the living God (not even the number of books you have written, or the reach of your books, or the connections you may have, or the sales you have made etc). It has to be the name of the Lord because He is the one who sent you and that book is His message to the world. You are part of the modern day armies of the living God.
EVERYONE HAS SPIRITUAL BACKING (GODLY OR SATANIC)
In vs 43 we see that the Philistine cursed David by his gods. Now Goliath has been moved from the physical realm to the spiritual realm. He did not just call David bad names but used his gods to call David those bad names.
David also makes his spiritual pronouncements. Not just his words as David but he insists on what God will do and how the situation will draw men to know God in vs 45-47. The heart of our books, our book programs, authors collaboration and everything else we are doing should be so that God may be glorified. The end product should be that God will be glorified. This should shape the focus of our book ministries. That God will be enthroned in the hearts of the people/readers (not just sales, fame, success etc).
So in the above verses, we see that even Goliath had spiritual backing – his Philistine gods. It’s either you are backed by God’s power or by other gods.
Power of life and death is in our tongues (Proverbs 18:21). We should make spiritual declarations and speak God’s life in everything we do through our books. If we are conscious of God’s backing we will be advantaged.
When Moses went to meet Pharaoh, what we see of Egypt was the civilization and prowess of the empire. But when Moses did the first sign, we also see Pharaoh calling his magicians who were able to do some miracles also. Pharaoh evoked the spiritual realm also (to his gods) just as Moses had evoked the power of the living God.
We have to evoke the spiritual realm and allow God to work through our books for His glory. There are spiritual resources and blessings that are dedicated to us as writers and authors (Ephesians 1:3) but if we do not evoke them, then we will continue to live a difficult life as writers not enjoying better things that are already given to us.
God bless you all.