“Moreover the Philistines had yet war against Israel and David went down, and his servants with him and fought against the Philistines”.
The Philistine people are the descendants of Ham the son of Noah. They are in the same lineage as Cush, Nimrod ‘the mighty hunter before Jehovah’ whose kingdom began with Babel, Asshur (the step) who built Nineveh, that city of great wickedness, and Rehoboth, the city of wide streets. All of these names are indicative of the nature of the people spoken of and there relationship to the chosen people of the Lord. They are descendants of Egypt, the land of fortification, and they live as ‘immigrants’, sojourners in the land of promise and ‘mourners who wallow in the ashes’.
These have all been established as the opponents and antagonists to the ‘power of God’ (Israel). They envied Isaac because God had blessed him with abundance and contended with him for the wells he dug (Gen. 26). They opposed Joshua as he conquered the land of inheritance (Josh. 13) and warred with the Judges of Israel (Jud. 10) yet Jehovah did not remove them from the land. Hostilities continued through the years and when David was anointed King over Israel, the Philistines set the battle array in the valley of the Rephaims (giants). These were the same Rephaims that Chedor-laomer smote at the well of justice in the appointed place (Gen. 14:7) and now once again, near the end of David’s life, the Philistines had yet war with Israel.
These ‘giants’ are ones who have been ‘much healed’ and they represent those who think themselves whole and have no need for the Great Physician (Mk. 2:17). They are strangers and foreigners to the household of the ‘first born’ yet they are of the land and they co-inhabit with them. Adam did not think himself in need of a healer as he stood before Jehovah in the garden clothed in his aprons of fig leaves and his attitude has not changed.
Now there appeared before David and his servants with him, four giants just as Goliath had stood before him many years earlier. The first one was Ish-bibenob. He is ‘the man who dwells in high places’. He is just like his father who said; “I will ascend above the heights of the clouds and I will be like the most High” (Is. 14:14) and is that which the children of grace wrestle with, “spiritual wickedness in high places” (Eph. 6:12). But before the ‘Beloved’ gave up the ghost and delivered the kingdom unto the king of peace (Solomon), he smote this giant and put him under his feet. He sent forth Abi-shai the son of Zeruiah who succored (helped) David and smote the Philistine. Some would like to say that this is an example of the cooperation between the flock and the shepherd but they miss the fact that Abi-shai means “My Father is the offering”. The Anointed Servant of God needed no help to defeat the enemies of His kingdom for as He told Abraham on the mount with Isaac, “My son, God will provide Himself a Lamb for the burnt offering” (Gen. 22:8). So here, Abi-shai the son of the ‘balm’ of healing (Zeruiah), stood forth and defeated the enemy that was stronger than man.
The next giant, Saph, is the ‘keeper of the threshold’. He is an impostor who masquerades as the one who keeps the door of the flock trying to present himself as the appointed porter who opens the door as the shepherd leads the sheep (John 10:3). He drew out the army of Israel to the vineyard where he poses as the husbandman (Gob) in attempt to lord over them as another master (Belial). But again the servant of the Beloved, Sibbechai the Hushathite, stood in the breach and subdued the enemy. This servant is the ‘weaver’ who has interwoven all time, event, circumstances and conditions into the fabric of creation for the purpose of demonstrating to all the world and specifically the children of the King, that He is not slacked as man would account slackness for he is of haste (Hush) to protect His people. He does not allow the matter to go beyond the boundaries He has set for them to approach and He stays the angry waves at His appointed time and place. He does not call for the flock to arm themselves and combat these inveterate enemies and His purpose, will and plans are not contingent upon the success of the sheep. He has ordained these matters from before time began and He has precisely and exactly placed them in the proper location in the tapestry of His creation for the praise of His glory. He has appointed the trial and has interwoven the means of escape for His elect (II Sam. 14:14)
The next giant is the brother of the giant of spendour, Goliath. This is the beauty that is the pride of Lucifer wherein his heart was lifted up and he corrupted wisdom by reason of his brightness (Ezk. 28:17). This giant is from the ‘wine press’ (Gath) whereby he attempts to bring the cares of this world to bear against the children of grace and cause them to faint and be chocked out. But the ‘grace of God’ (Eli-hanan) is appointed unto His children in the ‘house of bread’ (Beth-lahem) by a ‘forest of weavers’ (Jaare-oregim). Nothing can stay these weavers from setting forth the things of God in their right order and place as the time of this habitation becomes manifest. God feeds His children in the house of bread with the Bread of life which sustains them with both their daily bread and their spiritual sustenance in His body.
The last giant is one off great stature. He is also from Gath and he attempts to cover the children like a garment. He presents himself as an angel of light and seeks to emulate the garments of righteousness. He brings works of righteousness and a conformance to the law as the dead flies in the ointment of the apothecary to sooth the tired and heal the sick. In all these things he blasphemes the power of God (defied Israel) lifting himself and the power of Adam up as sufficient to meet the standard of the holiness of God. He is the strongest of these giants and he stands in the field as the champion of the children of the fortification.
But Jehovah God has sent forth glad tidings (Shineah) of great joy that He has overcome the world. He has sent forth the ‘gift of Jehovah’ (Jo-nathan) of life to His elect according to grace because they are brother to the Beloved. He protects His own for they are bone of His bone and flesh of His flesh. He has purchased them with His precious blood and He has rescued them from the house of the fortification. He has translated them from that kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of His dear Son and He has placed all the enemies under His footstool. These brethren are one with the Son as He is one with the Father; therefore, He loves them with the same love of the Father and the Son. This is an eternal love that cannot be diminished or interrupted in any way and although these giants, ‘the sin and weight which so easily beset us’, may appear from time to time in defiance of the power of God, His promise is that His called out assemble is more than conquerors through the Anointed Salvation of Jehovah, who loved His Bride and gave Himself for Her.
The children face these opponents every moment of their journey through the time of this habitation. They are formidable and the flesh fears them lest they should be overcome. But God has not given His brethren carnal weapons to combat these nemeses for they are not a carnal foe. They are imagination and every high thing that exalts itself against God (II Cor. 10:4) and the inability in Adam to keep the commandments of God. They are principalities and power, rulers of the darkness of this world and spiritual wickedness in high places (Eph. 6:12). But dear brethren fear not for He has overcome this world and His children overcome by faith, and that not of themselves it is the gift of God. He has vanquished the accuser of the brethren and overcome him by His blood. He has clothed His children in the whole armour of God wherewith they are able to stand, in the power of God, against the wiles of the devil. He has given them the shield of faith wherewith they quench the fiery darts of the devil. He will never leave nor forsake those whom He has purchased with His own blood and no man can pluck them out of His hands. He has broken the authority of the serpent in the waters and crushed the power of the Leviathan and given him for meat to the inhabitants of the wilderness (Ps. 74:13f). He has ordained ALL things to work together for good to the elect according to grace, that Love Him, according to His purpose.
Jehovah has fought the battles and has won the victory. He is seated upon His throne and all the enemies have been defeated. He sits in heaven and rules over the inhabitants of this world and He gives the kingdoms of this world to the basest of men. Therefore Beloved of the Lord, “Fear ye not, stand still and see the salvation of Jehovah which He will shew you this day for the Egyptians (and their descendants the Philistines in the valley of the giants) whom ye see today, ye shall see them again no more for ever. Jehovah shall fight for you and ye shall hold your peace” (Ex. 14:13f). The Beloved has fought and won and now the King of our Peace reigns on high and the justified have peace with Him.
“These four were born to the giant in Gath and fell by the hand of David and by the hands of His servants” (II Sam. 21:22).
Your servant in Christ,
(Elder) Chet Dirkes
April 7, 2013