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October 27, 2023

Goliath and Lyaios

Goliath and Lyaios

By Archimandrite Vasilios Bakoyiannis

The Holy Great Martyr Demetrios gave his "blessing" to Nestor, and Nestor killed Lyaios. Is it possible for a Saint to give such a "blessing"?

Lyaios was not killed by Nestor, but by God through Nestor, and God is not subject to laws, for whatever He does is always good and holy.

This particular case is similar with David, who killed Goliath. Goliath was a giant, about three meters (!) tall (1 Kings/1 Samuel 17:4), and he was an idolater, a Philistine.

Morning and evening, for forty days (1 Kings/1 Samuel 17:16)), he challenged the Israelites to face him, to prove to them that his gods were the true gods, but no one dared.

God, in order to spoil the faith of Goliath and to strengthen the faith of the Israelites, chose the small and feeble David to face Goliath!

David dressed in the special uniform of a "fighter", but the armor made it difficult for him, and he cast them aside (1 Kings/1 Samuel 17:39).

He already had the "message" from God, that, with His power, he will defeat Goliath, and he declared it while walking towards Goliath: "That all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel" (1 Kings/1 Samuel 17:46). He took out a stone from his bag, and with all the strength he had, he slung it at Goliath, it pierced through Goliath's helmet, and Goliath fell to the ground unconscious (1 Kings/1 Samuel 17:50-51). Little David defeated the giant Goliath so easily! It was a victory of the power of the true God against the false gods that Goliath believed in.

The same thing happened with Nestor. In Thessaloniki, the "duel" match took place. Whoever killed his opponent was considered the winner. The until then undefeated Lyaios also took part in the competition. Being inside the stadium, he challenged the Christians again and again: "I will show you who the true God is."

Nestor, a twenty-year-old lad, left the stadium, went to the prison, received the blessing of Saint Demetrios, entered the arena, fought, and, with the power of God, killed Lyaios, strengthening the faith of the frightened Christians.

It was the death of idolatry and the victory of the power of God.

"For as you brought to naught the boasts of Lyaios, imparting courage to Nestor in the stadium, in like manner, holy one, great Martyr Demetrios, invoke Christ God for us, that He may grant us His great mercy."

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.

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