He was talented in the ways of warfare and gained a reputation for himself in battle and for his music. When Saul was oppressed by an evil spirit, Saul called for someone to play the harp in order to soothe his spirit.
2. Goliath is powerless.
He had recently been anointed as future king, and he was definitely over the age of 20 to be counted as a soldier. Numbers is clear that someone must be over the age of 20 to be counted as a member of the army. Now for some controversy: I have been brought up in the Protestant tradition that the King James Version of the Bible is the only one that is authoritative.
Many books have been written on the subject, and it seems that to suggest otherwise is tantamount to heresy. At the risk of being labelled a heretic, my position is that I am more interested in finding the truth than I am in following a belief that may be nothing more than tradition. The oldest manuscripts that are available are nearly 1, years older than that and are known as the Septuagint [first translated in the early 3rd century BCE[.
What manuscripts did Jesus, His Disciples, Paul and the church fathers rely on?
Research has been done to identify the source of many hundreds of quotes from the Old Testament that are used in the New Testament. The Church fathers were openly critical of the Jewish texts, claiming that they had been corrupted. The story of David and Goliath is one significant example. In the Septuagint, the verses from 1 Samuel — 31 are not to be found. Those verses, when included in the MT, have created some anomalous and disturbing scenarios.
Gone is the narrative of a young shepherd boy bringing food for his brothers, and of Saul forgetting who David and his family were. In the MT, the story is full of holes and questions. In the Septuagint, the story makes perfect sense. How big was Goliath? According to the MT, Goliath was 6 cubits and a span about 9 feet 9 inches , while in the Septuagint, the Dead Sea Scrolls and Josephus, he was 4 cubits and a span about 6 feet 9 inches. Whatever the actual dimensions, he was a lot bigger than David.
If David weighed in at pounds, even the shorter recording of Goliath may have been pounds. He was also incredibly strong as his armour of mail weighed pounds and the iron head of his spear weighed 15 pounds. The death of Goliath: David, who was perhaps 23 or 24 years old, dispatched Goliath with a stone from a sling. There is an interesting possibility. David may have been the original inventor of the staff sling.
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The Romans used it much later and called it a fustibalus. They used to practice for an effective range of about feet with a good degree of accuracy. One end of the sling was attached to the staff. The other end had a loop that hooked over the staff end so that it can release at the correct moment. Such a device can deliver quite a heavy stone with great force and velocity. If David had used a piece of granite the size of a billiard ball, it would have weighed about 11 ounces. Baseball players wear helmets to protect from errant near m.
Now imagine having something solid that is twice as heavy as a baseball hitting a person in the head at a much greater speed. A brass helmet may even have transmitted the energy straight through to the skull, fracturing it. The Bible is specific about these three items. In conclusion: In the search for the truth, it is sometimes necessary to bring into question things that we thought were settled and absolute. This article opens up aspects of a well-known story that most readers have never considered.
My hope is that it leads to reasoned debate, resulting in a greater understanding of the how we interpret the events. For example, I Sam. Saul, a tall athletic man considered that his personal armour would fit David. If he really had been a little boy, that offer would never have been made. The story has turned out to be much more nuanced than anybody has believed. Furthermore, the opinion of an Israelite warrior seems to indicate that at least by some he was accepted as mighty valiant man and a man of war at that time A description which suggests some level of maturity not typical for a young teenager.
Here's one other clue that would support the idea that he's older than 15 years old. In the previous chapter, one of Saul's attendants describes David this way:. He is a brave man and a warrior. He speaks well and is a fine-looking man. And the Lord is with him. It says that Saul reigned for 2 years, during which David started to reign in Hebron. David was 30 when he became a king in Hebron, and the battle with Philistines was during Saul's reign; within 2 years period before David was Am I missing something? Home Questions Tags Users Unanswered.
How old was David when he fought Goliath? Ask Question. John Martin 2, 3 3 gold badges 17 17 silver badges 51 51 bronze badges. Jon P Jon P 1 1 gold badge 1 1 silver badge 7 7 bronze badges. Thanks for you first question on BH. However, you may get some answers that give even more biblical evidence to pinpoint a good approximation of age for David. Welcome to Biblical Hermeneutics Stack Exchange! Be sure to take our site tour to learn more about us. We're a little different from other sites. Be sure to properly cite the text you're asking about.
Bible Gateway 1 Samuel 17 :: NIV
The chapter and verse numbers do not always line up between the Hebrew, Greek, and English texts. I've edited your post in line with ScottS's helpful comment. I also added the claim from the link into the question, as Internet links change. Num from twenty years old and upward, whoever is able to go out to war in Israel, you and Aaron shall number them by their armies. Joshua Wilson Joshua Wilson 3 3 silver badges 6 6 bronze badges. PaulVargas, I have made another update. Is this better or do I still need more? JoshuaWilson I can follow your logic here. Looks good. JoshuaWilson Very well explanation.
Thanks with this! Some other Facts David was 30 years old when he became king, having just moved from Ziklag 2 Sam , and settled in Hebron 2 Sam Some Logical Conclusions All the above is stated for the following reason—right after David's victory over Goliath, we have three things indicating something about his maturity that would point toward the higher end range of David was mature enough to be put in a command position immediately 1 Sam , and upon returning from defeating Goliath vv. That is not a responsibility likely to fall upon someone too young i. David may have been old enough to be of marriageable age 1 Sam , though there is an undetermined time gap with 1 Sam Still, given , 3 is likely true, David was old enough to be given a wife based off his slaying of Goliath.
The Inconclusiveness of David's Birth Order to Determine Age There are problems with placing too much weight on David's birth order for determining his age. This is because: We do not know if any of his older brothers were twins or triplets. First , 1 Chr gives a listing of David's family by birth order from Jesse: 1st Eliab 2nd Abinadab 3rd Shimea a. He states emphasis added : Kimchi mentions a Midrash Final Concluding Thoughts Based off the time frame of David marrying Abigail, there has to be some years time for his fleeing Saul prior to that, as well as his brief marriage to Michal that occurred relatively soon after the Goliath incident.
ScottS ScottS Your answer had a good coverage based on the logical conclusions which were not discussed by Joshua Wilson. But, still, this makes a missing link on how and when he was born being the youngest in the 8 brothers. Plus, can you give your view on the "boy" factor of David as what the other characters said in the time being. Learned a lot myself from the study as well. Don't forget that 1 Chr. If so, this could reduce the estimate of David's age by as much as 2 years or 1 year and 8 months if using 10 month gaps. Mark: I have to admit I did not consider the sisters in my initial calculations.
I do not know how you are deriving your "chance" numbers, but I can state this much: Zeruiah is certainly not a factor, but Abigail may be see my updated answer for my revised analysis taking them into consideration. I didn't look into the ages of their kids as you have--nice.
All in all, both you and Joshua Wilson have done an excellent analysis. John Ferris John Ferris 9 2 2 bronze badges. This is a great first answer, but is a little bit lengthy, and doesn't really answer the question as such - it could be improved by putting a clearer short summary either at the beginning or the end with some title text , so users don't have to read two thousand words just to know your conclusion! Thanks for contributing.
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David Battles Goliath: Is There Evidence?
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