Goliath goes to Heaven?

My 5 year old posed an interesting question to me when we were reading up on David and Goliath. I wanted to see if any one had an intelligible reply for her. She asked if Goliath went to heaven since he died. I really couldn’t give her an answer, we know nothing else
about this giant aside from the fact that his size
was being exploited for war gains or tactic. Ideas?

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There’s no way to know.

However, the Philistine history is interesting.


It is not for the living to know who goes to heaven and who doesn’t. Only God is all knowing.


Goliath was a Philistine and the Philistines did not worship the One, True God but worshipped false gods, such as is told in this passage from 1 Samuel:

Meanwhile the Philistines had carried off the ark of God, taking it from the Rock of Deliverance to Azotus; 2 and when it reached Azotus it was carried into the temple of Dagon and set down there in front of Dagon’s statue. 3 Next morning, the men of Azotus woke to find Dagon lying face downwards in front of the ark; and although they put the statue back in its place, 4 the second day shewed a worse sight still; Dagon was face downwards in front of the ark, and there in the door-way lay his head and both hands, severed from the trunk

This is David’s description of Saul in 1 Samuel 5:

who is this uncircumcised Philistine, who hath dared to curse the army of the living God?

Even though as others have said, we do not know who is in heaven or who is in hell, we do know that it is faith and obedience to God that leads us to heaven. Goliath died but that does not mean he is in heaven because everyone who dies does not go to heaven.

A little hard to explain to a 5 year old but perhaps choosing words that speak of the importance of obedience might help.

God bless

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Tell her we don’t know, and while Goliath perhaps didn’t behave perfectly on earth, God may have had mercy on him. Suggest that you both pray for his soul, and pray with your daughter.


What can we say about King David; he committed adultery and had the husband killed.

And afterwards King David says in Psalm 51 -

3 Have mercy on me, God, in accord with your merciful love;
in your abundant compassion blot out my transgressions.
4 Thoroughly wash away my guilt;
and from my sin cleanse me.
5 For I know my transgressions;
my sin is always before me.
6 Against you, you alone have I sinned;
I have done what is evil in your eyes

None of us can judge others.


The Orthodox usually say: “Mind your own business” (i.e. it’s not for us to know, but let’s work on our salvation) :grin:

Captivating stuff.

It truly is.

Oh my goodness, I Love this idea! Thank you, great thinking!


Very good stuff to share with her, also introduces the idea of our mistakes and how God still loves and has mercy on us.

Touche, very true.

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Yes. It is true it is not our place to know who goes to heaven and who does not.
We can not judge people but we can judge an action, whether it is right or wrong. We also know that King David repented of his sins and returned to God as seen in the psalm in your post.
Is it possible that Goliath repented split seconds just before he died and God had mercy on him, yes, all things are possible with God.

We also know that there is a heaven and a hell and those who reject God and who refuse His mercy can end up in hell.

St. Paul says in 1Corinthians, speaking of the OT, “Now these things happened to them as a warning, but they were written down for our instruction, upon whom the end of the ages has come.”

The story of Goliath was passed down and written to help future generations understand what can happen when God is mocked and rejected, how our lives can be taken just that quick.

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Since Judaism is not a proselytizing Faith, what evidence is there to think that Goliath would even have been exposed to knowledge of the one true God? He cannot he held responsible for ignorance not his fault.

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We do not know what Goliath knew, so we can not claim he was ignorant of the True God. Throughout the book of Judges the Philistines are attacking and oppressing the Israelites, certainly they had some idea of who they were oppressing and that they worshipped a different God. Plus David told Goliath before throwing his stones that he was coming in the name of Almighty God whom Goliath had defied.

We also see in scripture during the conquest of Jericho that word of the workings of God had spread to other nations. The Israelites were known as being different, a nation set apart, worshipping a different God, not doing the things other nations did because they were instructed by Him not to participate in the evils of other nations around them…

It is not our place to judge a person. We can not know where any ones goes in their judgment but we also know that a soul that dies in a state of mocking and rejecting God is in danger and that we do all face judgement at our death and that there is a heaven and a hell.

One thing we can do, since God is not bound by time, is pray for Goliath that God granted him final repentance

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Interesting thought

Sometimes I am afraid to pray for grave sinners, not the literal grave, but seriously evil people as I imagine Goliath was, I could be wrong again. I am scared of the price I will have to pay. There is a suffering to undergo when praying for souls. This is mentioned in the divine mercy in my soul book.

You shouldn’t be.

I think it’s a mistake to assume that everyone who engaged in conflicts against the Israelites were evil.

If that was the case, why would any of us pray for people? Why would God penalize us?

That’s a Private Revelation.

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Just think of it, we can combine our sufferings with the sufferings of Christ for the conversion of sinners, is a concept most Catholics know about, it is the same idea, not really a penalty.
I am actually helping myself here by answering my own question. I should see it more as suffering from, by, for love of that person just as Christ did. Thank you Holy Spirit, gave me a revelation there.

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We’re going to suffer every day anyway, even if it’s just a minor little thing.
We might as well put it to good use for the souls.
God isn’t going to give you extra suffering just because you’re doing the good deed of praying for someone. If that were the case, we would not be encouraging young children to pray for souls because who wants to see a five-year-old suffer?

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