2 Samuel 6
5 And David and all the house of Israel were celebrating before the Lord, with songs and lyres and harps and tambourines and castanets and cymbals. 6 And when they came to the threshing floor of Nacon, Uzzah put out his hand to the ark of God and took hold of it, for the oxen stumbled. 7 And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah, and God struck him down there because of his error, and he died there beside the ark of God. 8 And David was angry because the Lord had broken out against Uzzah. And that place is called Perez-uzzah to this day. 9 And David was afraid of the Lord that day, and he said, “How can the ark of the Lord come to me?” 10 So David was not willing to take the ark of the Lord into the city of David. But David took it aside to the house of Obed-edom the Gittite. 11 And the ark of the Lord remained in the house of Obed-edom the Gittite three months, and the Lord blessed Obed-edom and all his household.
12 And it was told King David, “The Lord has blessed the household of Obed-edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God.” So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obed-edom to the city of David with rejoicing. 13 And when those who bore the ark of the Lord had gone six steps, he sacrificed an ox and a fattened animal. 14 And David danced before the Lord with all his might. And David was wearing 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 horn.
16 As the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal the daughter of Saul looked out of the 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 its place, inside the tent that David had pitched for it. And David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the Lord. 18 And when David had finished offering the burnt offerings and the peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord of hosts 19 and distributed among all the people, the whole multitude of Israel, both men and women, a cake of bread, a portion of meat, and a cake of raisins to each one. Then all the people departed, each to his house.
20 And David returned to bless his household. But Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David and said, “How the king of Israel honored himself today, uncovering himself today before the eyes of his servants' female servants, as one of the vulgar fellows shamelessly uncovers himself!” 21 And David said to Michal, “It was before the Lord, who chose me above your father and above all his house, to appoint me as prince over Israel, the people of the Lord—and I will celebrate before the Lord. 22 I will make myself yet more contemptible than this, and I will be abased in your eyes. But by the female servants of whom you have spoken, by them I shall be held in honor.” 23 And Michal the daughter of Saul had no child to the day of her death.We studied this yesterday in our Ladies Bible Study. I love David. Matter of fact, and God knows, I'd like to Be almost, pretty much, just like David. Of course, this is a combination of religious and holy longing to be all that in being a Child of God and a bit of jealousy. This particular passage of Scripture has always been fascinating to me. One fine day, and this is overwhelming to me, I am going to meet David. I hope he likes me and Jesus has gone ahead to pave that particular path. I hope we will be good friends.
(I rather like to picture David as a child, sitting in the hot sun of Israel, remembering all his families evening conversations, by the fire, of the acts of God and David sitting and picturing them in the fields of Jerusalem, as he watches over the Flock.)
Why is this passage Amazing to me. It is. David, we all remember, got into more trouble than I ever hope to with Bathsheba. (Have you ever thought about Solomon and his friend Sheba, there is an analogy only in myth there.) David was just about to and did leave the Ark behind. Why? It was easier for him. I don't know about you, but if I'd been the Ark (God's wristwatch, wallet, hand bag or disc golf bag) I'd have Hurt Feelings. Which acknowledges, the Ark is not God, but it is His Mercy Seat. And David. Amazing David, was parking it and going on without it. Now, how could David be David in all of God's plans without the Ark?
Put this in perspective of your life. If you were on Mount Nebo and you found the physical Ark hidden, would you leave it behind? As a Child of God, as a scientist, you would want to let it be a Light to the World.
So Uzzah dies. He tried to .... help God. And God is Angry. What do we know about the anger of God???
For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime! Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.
My friends. Uzzah is a friend to God. God does not see leaving this life as a punishment. If there are, and we know Jesus spoke of Banquets in Heaven, you know Uzzah is having a Banquet in Heaven. Who knows? Maybe there are Heavenly banners with Uzzah's name on it. They all Knew exactly what the Ark was and it's Power. Uzzah wanted and wants to lift God Up.
David. Our hero David saw things from a uniquely human viewpoint. Which makes David human. And God still Loves him.
Which brings us to our title for today "So David went and brought up the Ark of God" it is a noble title, but it has a very human nature component to it and it is - "I want the blessing too! And I waited to see if there was a blessing before I put action into it = lack of faith." Man, how human is that. David had 22 years of believing an anointing was already there and the promise was coming to him. And he just about fumbled the ball. And the Forgiveness. David gets to dance after he goes back to have God's promises.
So really. The whole story is a parable of Jesus, because the whole Bible is about Jesus as Lord and we as His Sheep. Every word.
The parable of David, Uzzah, the Ark and Faith. It is our story every day when we say, forgive us our sins, the things we have done, the things we have left undone. Forgive us for not Loving You with our whole heart. Forgive us for not loving our neighbor as ourselves.
And who in the world loves our neighbor as ourselves. Only John. Only Jonathan. Notice it doesn't say if David was standing really close to the Ark. And only us very rarely. Because there is only one who is Good. And He calls us daily to love our neighbors as ourselves.
He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
Which brings me to an analogy I have been working on and actually growing to love.
Picture a cruise ship. And I don't mean like the photo. A cruise ship that is incredibly White. Huge. Gigantic. You are standing on the pier. Look UP. The day is blue. So blue. The people getting on the ship are so happy. It's like winning the lottery. Now you are on the deck of the ship. The water is so blue. The sky another shade of blue. The clouds going by are as white as the ship.
On the deck of this enormous ship. Surrounded by people excited and please to look and see as well. People are talking in excited tones to their families about what they see and the voyage ahead. This is much better than the Love Boat or going to Cancun by way of Galveston! Better than being on the Statendam going to New York City from France in winter. This day is perfectly warm. It is going some where beautiful. It is important where the ship is headed.
And, this is important, you can see into the Captain's viewpoint. The windows are clean and there are so many of them. How immaculate the Captain's deck is. People are free to see what He is doing. “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.” 1 Timothy 2:5-6
And on this voyage. There is a Cruise Director. He is a good friend to the captain. A bit like David. A handsome man. In college, this is the man who brought the beer. People have always liked him. And everyone likes this man, and soon it becomes apparent to the passengers, the cruise director Likes one of the passengers. And people get to know each other by telling each of their lives, their opinions from the things that have shaped them. This is where the word fellow ship comes from. People on a ship make friends. Fellowship.
Soon people on the ship know each other, sometimes well and sometimes not so well, just supposition. But the people on the ship notice the Cruise Director's friendship with this woman. Is she a gossip. Is she a hep cat. An adulteress. Is the Cruise Director married. Is this a healthy friendship. Where is this headed. People form ideas and opinions - will the people's opinions advance this ship and the friendship.
By now reading this - you have an opinion. Yet really. This is a Biblical analogy. The Cruise Director's friend - is - you.
“So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets."
"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.
Do to others as you would have them do to you.
Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.
And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.