Morning Light – June 18th, 2015
Today: [2 Samuel Chapter Six]: Ark Before the Cart? In this chapter David attempts to bring the Ark of God to Jerusalem using the same tactics as the Philistines. As a result a death occurs and David becomes very discouraged. He places the ark in the home of a man named Obed-Edom and waits. Over time David sees the blessing on Obed-Edom’s house and brings the ark again – this time using the method prescribed in Moses’ law. David was capable of making mistakes but also willing to correct himself with a whole heart.
[2Sa 6:1-23 KJV] 1 Again, David gathered together all [the] chosen [men] of Israel, thirty thousand. 2 And David arose, and went with all the people that [were] with him from Baale of Judah, to bring up from thence the ark of God, whose name is called by the name of the LORD of hosts that dwelleth [between] the cherubims. 3 And they set the ark of God upon a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab that [was] in Gibeah: and Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, drave the new cart. 4 And they brought it out of the house of Abinadab which [was] at Gibeah, accompanying the ark of God: and Ahio went before the ark. 5 And David and all the house of Israel played before the LORD on all manner of [instruments made of] fir wood, even on harps, and on psalteries, and on timbrels, and on cornets, and on cymbals. 6 And when they came to Nachon’s threshingfloor, Uzzah put forth [his hand] to the ark of God, and took hold of it; for the oxen shook [it]. 7 And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote him there for [his] error; and there he died by the ark of God.
In the previous chapter Hiram the king of Tyre builds David a house on Mount Zion which is now renamed specifically the City of David. David is not content to have his house erected without addressing the location of the ark of the Covenant. The ark has been at Kirjath-Jearim since the days of the Judges in the house of a man named Abinadab. The ark came to Abinadab’s house after being set on a cart and set free by the Philistines after many plagues were visited upon them. When the ark came to Abinadab he appointed his eldest son to superintend its care and maintenance. Apparently the ark rested at Abinadab’s house into a third generation when David now purposes to fetch it to Jerusalem.
It is interesting to note that David moves the ark using the same method of the Philistines. They put the ark on a new cart drawn by oxen upon whom no yoke had been laid. David inexplicably did the same thing. This is the first time in David’s career as king that he fails to ask God what to do. Numbers 4:15 tells us that the ark was designated by God to be boren from place to place on the shoulders of the sons of Kohath. The Philistines when they put the ark on a cart did so after consulting one of their own soothsayers. God’s people get into trouble when they presumptively borrow from the methods of the world in dealing with holy things. You might wonder if this is a common problem today? Surely we are not concerned with the transport of relics and sacred artifacts? Consider the church in areas of it’s own self-government. For the most part government in the church emulates the structure and decision making process from Wall Street and Corporate culture. The pastor is the President of the corporation and there is a board of directors that the deacons and elders sit on to assist in the governance of the church. When important decisions are to be made a voting membership made up of tithe paying families casts a vote and the majority rules. This is all very practical to be sure but is it God’s way? In the early church for example when Saul and Barnabas were chosen it was said in Acts 13:1-3 that the prophets and teachers were ministering to the Lord and the Holy Ghost said “Separate Me Saul and Barnabas for the work whereunto I sent them…” There was no pulpit committee. There was no exploratory committee and Robert’s Rules of Order were not consulted. The church of today as we know it is COMPLETELY UNRECOGNIZABLE in it’s process and structure specifically regarding decision making and governance.
David brings the ark inappropriately and when the oxen stumble a man named Uzzah reaches out to steady the ark and dies before the Lord. Isn’t this always the way of it? We see something go awry in the conduct of the church and we presume to straighten God out. We are going to help Him solve the problem that we created. Death is always the result and the purposes of God are delayed unnecessarily.
8 And David was displeased, because the LORD had made a breach upon Uzzah: and he called the name of the place Perezuzzah to this day. 9 And David was afraid of the LORD that day, and said, How shall the ark of the LORD come to me? 10 So David would not remove the ark of the LORD unto him into the city of David: but David carried it aside into the house of Obededom the Gittite. 11 And the ark of the LORD continued in the house of Obededom the Gittite three months: and the LORD blessed Obededom, and all his household.
David was displeased because of what the Lord had done. Why was he not displeased with himself that he failed to consult the books of the law that were readily available to see how they should have brought the ark up. Further we see that David is afraid and decides to set the ark of the Covenant aside at the house of a man named Obed-Edom. The things are God are very unpredictable. The things of God will upset the religious status quo. The things of God do not lend themselves well to what can be printed up on an agenda or a church bulletin. Even in times of great revival in our day looking back over the last few decades we see that when God was moving mightily in the church the signs, wonders and miracles were relegated to an “after-glow” service or to the “prayer room” so as not to upset our dead, dry and predictable order of service.
The ark is sent to the house of Obed-Edom. Obed-Edom’s name means “passionate servant”. Whatever we know of how this man received the ark we know that when the ark of God’s presence came there was great blessing and benefit. Remember that you are the temple of God. Your heart is the ark of God in the New Covenant. The presence of God rests in your heart and you are free and encouraged to expect blessing and benefit and goodness to find you all the days of your life. I have prayed consistently for years “God make my house as the house of Obed-Edom”. Not only was Obed-Edom blessed but all of his household was blessed. Anyone that came under his roof experienced and felt the touch of God in measurable and very real ways that changed their lives. This is the portion of everyone who gives God’s presence a place of rest in their lives.
12 And it was told king David, saying, The LORD hath blessed the house of Obededom, and all that [pertaineth] unto him, because of the ark of God. So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obededom into the city of David with gladness. 13 And it was [so], that when they that bare the ark of the LORD had gone six paces, he sacrificed oxen and fatlings. 14 And David danced before the LORD with all [his] might; and David [was] girded with a linen ephod. 15 So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet.
We can never forget the epitaph of history over David – he was a man after God’s own heart. Obstinacy never gripped him to the point he was unwilling to change. When your life is turned in an unproductive and disappointing direction remember that things are the way they are because of what you are doing. If you want something different you must do something different. Do not fall into the error of insisting like King Saul did that you have done everything you know to do and now God must act. This is a Saul mentality that will not produce for your life anymore than it did for Saul. David not only makes a course correction – he does so with all of his heart. He moves forward every few paces and sacrifices and then another few feet and sacrifices again. He forgets the disappointments of three months before and dances before the Lord with all of his might. He didn’t necessarily have all of the answers but we do know that he didn’t use a cart this time. The passage refers to “those that bare the ark…” In our day we rely on one man to carry the glory. God ordains that four men carry the ark with one man leading. This is a type of the five-fold ministry. God does not intend for his purposes to move forward with a “one man show” but with a plurality of functions and anointings in an atmosphere of joy and celebration.
16 And as the ark of the LORD came into the city of David, Michal Saul’s daughter looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart. 17 And they brought in the ark of the LORD, and set it in his place, in the midst of the tabernacle that David had pitched for it: and David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. 18 And as soon as David had made an end of offering burnt offerings and peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the LORD of hosts. 19 And he dealt among all the people, [even] among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men, to every one a cake of bread, and a good piece [of flesh], and a flagon [of wine]. So all the people departed every one to his house. 20 Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, How glorious was the king of Israel to day, who uncovered himself to day in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself! 21 And David said unto Michal, [It was] before the LORD, which chose me before thy father, and before all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the LORD, over Israel: therefore will I play before the LORD. 22 And I will yet be more vile than thus, and will be base in mine own sight: and of the maidservants which thou hast spoken of, of them shall I be had in honour. 23 Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death.
As David dances before the Lord his wife the daughter of king Saul mocks and disrespects him. The person with a Saul mentality will always be offended at the jubilation of the saints. They will rejoice and shout themselves hoarse at a sporting event but cannot find the motivation to express praise and glory to God. We must be willing to make ourselves vile and base if need be to those who mock the things of God. The world says such activity is a private matter because they are full of pride. David publically and openly worshipped with an unashamed heart. When we do likewise we honor the Lord and we ourselves become carriers of the very glory that brings breakthrough in our life as it did in David’s reign.
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