WALK ON BY!
“But when David’s oldest brother, Eliab, heard David talking to the men, he was angry. “What are you doing around here anyway?” he demanded. “What about those few sheep you’re supposed to be taking care of? I know about your pride and deceit. You just want to see the battle!” I Samuel 17:28
Eliab, David’s older brother was there the day the prophet Samuel paid a visit to their home in Bethlehem. He had come to inform Jesse, Eliab’s father, that God had sent him to anoint one of his sons as the next king of Israel. Jesse did not even consider David should at all be present. His oldest son, Eliab was an officer in Saul’s army and had the carriage and physical stature of a king. If God wanted a new king, then surely Eliab would be the man. Eliab himself as the first born son, was expecting Samuel to anoint him as the new king.
One look at Eliab, Samuel thought this must be the one, but God stopped Samuel. “Do not look at his appearance or height, for I have rejected him; the Lord does not see as man does.” Eliab faced rejection that day. The prophet passed him over, along with his younger brothers. Then Samuel discovered that Jesse had one more son and a messenger was sent to fetch David from the field. David was just a teenager and not old enough to join the army. He spent all his time singing songs and caring for their father’s sheep. Samuel then anointed David in the presence of his father and brothers.
Sometime later, Israel is facing the giant called Goliath. David arrives on the battle field with food for his brothers and hears Goliath’s taunts. He begins to publicly question why no one was taking up the challenge of fighting Goliath. This was when Eliab exploded in anger and lashed out with hurtful words.
We often have to deal with attacks from those closest to us. Eliab was still angry that it was David who was picked as king and not him. Attacking David publicly, he made it seem like David was being irresponsible, leaving their fathers’ sheep unattended. It was obviously a false accusation. Had David allowed fear and intimidation from Eliab to get the better of him, he would have backed down, run back home and never faced Goliath.
David would have loved to hear his brother say “I believe in you David. Go after Goliath”. What he got instead were his brother’s harsh words. But he didn’t let that deter him. He turned to someone else and asked the same question as to what would be given to the man who killed Goliath. He got the same answer. David was not looking for a different answer, he already knew the answer. He was asking to let Eliab know he was not intimidated by his outburst.
As David ignored his brother and moved on, so must we. We have to learn to move beyond the negative opinion of others.
Never let the voice of your critics prevent you from doing what God has asked you to do.
♬I Know Who I Am by Sinach https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frtZ4XfoXxM