Daily Tanach Thursday Shmuel 1 Chapter 17 Part 4-Dovid and Goliath

* The article below is an excerpt from the above Sefer

1.      Dovid is prepared to battle Goliath:

  • Dovid puts on armor but takes off his sword: Shaul dressed Dovid with his armor [miraculously, as it fit the size of Dovid despite Shaul being taller than any other man[1]] and placed a copper helmet on his head, and a protective shield. Dovid wore his sword above his armor and hesitated to go to battle as he was inexperienced [with the use of a sword]. Dovid said to Shaul: I am unable to go to battle in these, as I am inexperienced in using them. So Dovid removed them from him.
  • Dovid prepares a sling with stones: Dovid took a stick in his hands and chose five smooth stones from the water channel, and placed them in his shepherd vessel which he had with him, and in his bag. He took his sling shot with him, and approached the Philistine.

2.      The battle:

  • Goliath approaches Dovid and belittles him: The Philistine began approaching Dovid, and the man who was holding the armor walked in front of him. The Philistine looked and saw Dovid and began blaspheming him, as he was a mere child, and a redhead with a pleasant appearance. The Philistine said to Dovid: Am I a dog that you come to fight me with sticks? And the Philistine began cursing Dovid with his god [telling Dovid that the Philistine god will kill him[2]]. The Philistine said to Dovid: Come to me and I will feed your flesh to the birds of the heavens and the animals of the field.
  • Dovid replies taunting Goliath: Dovid replied to the Philistine: You come against me with a sword and spear and armor, and I come against you with the name of the G-d of the legions of Israel who you have blasphemed. Today, G-d will hand you into my hands, and I will smite you and remove your head from you. I will leave your corpse in the camp of the Philistines today for the birds of the heavens and the animals of the earth to consume, and the entire land will know that there is a G-d amongst Israel. All this congregation will know that not with a sword and a spear did G-d save us, as to G-d is the war and he has handed you into our hands.
  • They approach each other for the battle: It was when the Philistine got up and went in approximation to greet Dovid that Dovid ran towards the battle, towards the Philistine.
  • Dovid hits Goliath with a slingshot and kills him: Dovid placed his hand into his vessel and took out a rock which he entered into his slingshot and fired and hit the Philistine on his forehead. The rock entered into his forehead, and he fell on his face onto the ground. Dovid overcame the Philistine with his slingshot and stone, and he smote him and killed him.
  • Dovid beheads Goliath: Dovid however did not have a sword with him. Dovid ran and stood over the Philistine, and took his sword, removed it from its sheath, and killed him and chopped off his head. When the Philistines saw that their warrior was killed, they fled.

3.      The Jewish people kill the Philistines:

  • The people of Israel and Judah shouted and chased after the Philistines until they arrived to Guy and the gates of Akron. The corpses of the Philistines fell until the area of Derech Sharayim, and until Gat and Akron.
  • The Jewish people returned from chasing after the Philistines, and they rampaged their camp.
  • Dovid carries Goliaths head to Jerusalem: Dovid took the head of the Philistine and brought it to Jerusalem [to publicize his death[3]], and his vessels he placed in his tent.

4.      Shaul inquires about Dovid:

  • When Shaul saw Dovid going forward to fight the Philistine he said to Avner, his general: Avner, whose son is this lad [i.e. from which side of the family does he come from, Peretz or Zarach[4]]? Avner replied that he swears by his life that he does not know. The king then replied: Please inquire as to whose son this child is.
  • Dovid is brought to Shaul: When Dovid returned after smiting the Philistine, Avner took him and brought him in front of Shaul, with the head of the Philistine in his hands [prior to him bringing it to Jerusalem[5]]. Shaul asked him: Whose son are you my lad? Dovid replied: I am the son of your servant Yishaiy from Beis Lechem.

[1] Rashi 17:38

[2] Metzudos Dovid 17:43

[3] Metzudos Dovid 17:54

[4] Rashi 17:55; See also Mahariy Karo ibid; Ralbag ibid

[5] Radak 17:54

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