A little while back I was reading the story of David and Goliath to my son like I have many times before, but this time something jumped out at me. Why did David take five stones when he went to fight Goliath? Did he think he would miss four times or needed five shots to knock this huge guy down?
Then to my astonishment, I learned that there was more to the story of David and Goliath than what ended at Goliath’s death. In 2 Samuel 21:15-22, we read that Goliath had four sons: Ishbi-benob, Saph, Goliath the Gittite, and an unnamed son. These four sons of Goliath were all giants themselves. One is even described as having six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot, twenty-four fingers in all. These men wanted revenge against David for the killing of their father. During the battles between Israel and the Philistines, each of these giants are taken down one by one by David’s servants until there were no more.
Now let’s go back to the scene years earlier when David picked up those five stones at the babbling brook. One stone would easily have done the job to take Goliath out and I have no doubt that David believed the same, but here we see him picking up another four stones. I am inclined to believe that David was ready to fight any other giants among the Philistine army that day, any who would dare to challenge him.