When the time came for Saul and his son Jonathan to lead the 3000 men of the army of Israel against the Philistines, all of the fighting men took their plowshares (?) and pitchforks and axes and had to go to the philistines to get them sharpened. The Philistines hadn’t allowed the Israelites to have blacksmiths, which would prevent them from having spears or swords.
‚ÄúNot a blacksmith could be found in the whole land of Israel, because the Philistines had said, ‚ÄúOtherwise the Hebrews will make swords or spears!‚Äù So all Israel went down to the Philistines to have their plowshares, mattocks, axes and sickles sharpened.‚Äù
(1Samuel 13.19-20, NIV)
so here we have the philistines, with all kinds of swords and good fighting weapons, and the Israelites with farm equipment. Stuff used to harvest grain, etc. or to goad sheep. None of that stuff was easy to kill with. You wouldn’t want to kill your sheep with a goad, just annoy him into going the right direction. Only two men in the whole nation really had the power to fight and kill. The king, and his son, the heir to the throne.
‚ÄúSo on the day of the battle not a soldier with Saul and Jonathan had a sword or spear in his hand; only Saul and his son Jonathan had them.‚Äù
(1Samuel 13.22, NIV)
So as they all go into battle, word has got to get out among the Philistines: The king is the one with the sword. I know I know, I’m filling stuff in here, but can’t you just imagine a whole army armed with farm equipment, but the man God using the lead them being known by his sword? Jonathan and his armor bearer wiped out 20 men at once at one point and caused the whole army to go into a panic, slaying themselves with their own swords!
So then Saul does things his own way and God regrets making him king. He removes his anointing from him and puts it on David, son of Jesse. But David doesn’t have a sword. That’s alright for now though, because he has yet to be revealed as the king of Israel.
To make a long thought short. Remember where David gets his sword? When he goes out to fight Goliath, Saul gives him his very own sword. So here is David, a boy, not in the bloodline of the thrown, going out with the king’s sword. Nope. He didn’t take it. Just 5 rocks.
‚ÄúSo David triumphed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone; without a sword in his hand he struck down the Philistine and killed him.
David ran and stood over him. He took hold of the Philistine‚Äôs sword and drew it from the scabbard. After he killed him, he cut off his head with the sword.
When the Philistines saw that their hero was dead, they turned and ran.‚Äù
(1Samuel 17.50-51, NIV)
So David gets a sword, but he didn’t keep it. That didn’t matter though, because he got another one.
‚ÄúAnd Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. Jonathan took off the robe he was wearing and gave it to David, along with his tunic, and even his sword, his bow and his belt.‚Äù
(1Samuel 18.3-4, NIV)
Jonathan somehow knew, I think, deep down who David was, and that he should have the sword of the heir of the kingdom.
But then David flees, and where does he go? To Ahimelech the priest, who kept the ephod of God. Behind the ephod was the sword of who else, Goliath, the big dead champion of the Philistines. The Israelites had kept the bronze snake that God used to bring them deliverance from poison snakes during the exodus, and they worshipped it. I wonder if they were planning on doing the same thing with Goliath’s sword sitting behind the ephod. (the priest would wear the ephod once the temple was built whenever he went into the holy of holies).
So there is David, put in place by God, and his authority as the soon to be and reigning king.
Skip ahead to the new kingdom. Here we are,
‚ÄúNow if we are children, then we are heirs‚Äîheirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.‚Äù
(Romans 8.17, NIV)
we are now the heirs of the coming kingdom. We have been marked and sealed as His, so that in the coming ages we will be shown as His children.
‚Äúset his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.‚Äù
(2Corinthians 1.22, NIV)
But check this out. It’s not just a seal, the Spirit is the same symbol that it was 3000 years ago with King David-a sword.
‚ÄúTake the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.‚Äù
(Ephesians 6.17, NIV)
So we are shown here, in the spiritual world, as the heirs because of the Holy Spirit which is the only sword in this kingdom. If the acts of mercy, the good deeds, the philanthropic doo-dads that we do are by our flesh, we are fighting a war with pitchforks and shovels. When we walk by the Spirit, we use the tool that God ordained us to use-the weapon we were designed to fight with.
Of course many people remember that the book of Revelation is full of swords and battles etc. But when I looked at it, there are really only 2 key players that have swords. One is in the hands of a horseman. He takes peace from the earth and makes men slay each other. The greek word for what he has is a knife, judicial punishment, or war. So to say he has a sword in his hand would be ok, but it looks more appropriate that he would be given a large”judgement” or a large “killing knife”.
You guessed it. The only person with an actual sword in the book of Revelation at the Last Battle is the heir. Jesus comes with a double edged sword. And the greek word for it means ‘sword’. He is unstoppable and strikes down all of the nations. Everyone left behind after all of the plagues, battles, and scourges is wiped out by the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Evil is conquered and the Lord rules forever.
The disciples recognized Jesus by His wounds. In the soon to come end of time, all creation will recognize the King in the same way as the Philistines did 3000 years ago, by the power of His sword – which is the Word of God.