1 Chronicles
Introduction 1-4 David Wants to Bring the Ark to Jerusalem 5-8 The Ark on a New Cart 9-10 The Death of Uzza 11-14 The Ark in the House of Obed-edom
Introduction

1 Chronicles 11-12 can be considered as an introduction to the next chapters, in which the main subjects are the ark and the temple service. In view of this, God has helped David in confirming his kingship and has brought the people to David.

In Deuteronomy we read about a place that God has chosen (Deu 12:55But you shall seek [the LORD] at the place which the LORD your God will choose from all your tribes, to establish His name there for His dwelling, and there you shall come.) and a king that God has chosen (Deu 17:14-1514“When you enter the land which the LORD your God gives you, and you possess it and live in it, and you say, ‘I will set a king over me like all the nations who are around me,’15you shall surely set a king over you whom the LORD your God chooses, [one] from among your countrymen you shall set as king over yourselves; you may not put a foreigner over yourselves who is not your countryman.). When Saul was king, it was not sought for that place, and Saul himself is not God’s choice, but the choice of the people (1Sam 12:1313Now therefore, here is the king whom you have chosen, whom you have asked for, and behold, the LORD has set a king over you.). Of David we read that God has chosen him (Psa 78:7070He also chose David His servant
And took him from the sheepfolds;
). Only when Saul, chosen by the people to satisfy their carnal desires, is set aside can David, chosen by God, ascend the throne.

When David is in power, he goes in search of the place God has chosen for His name to dwell there. In Psalm 132 he expresses his longing for it (Psa 132:3-53“Surely I will not enter my house,
Nor lie on my bed;
4I will not give sleep to my eyes
Or slumber to my eyelids,
5Until I find a place for the LORD,
A dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob.”
). There we also read that Sion is that place (Psa 132:13-1413For the LORD has chosen Zion;
He has desired it for His habitation.
14“This is My resting place forever;
Here I will dwell, for I have desired it.
). Sion is the mountain Moria (2Chr 3:11Then Solomon began to build the house of the LORD in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where [the LORD] had appeared to his father David, at the place that David had prepared on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite.). On that mountain Abraham offered Isaac on the altar (Gen 22:1-141Now it came about after these things, that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.”2He said, “Take now your son, your only son, whom you love, Isaac, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will tell you.”3So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him and Isaac his son; and he split wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him.4On the third day Abraham raised his eyes and saw the place from a distance.5Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey, and I and the lad will go over there; and we will worship and return to you.”6Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son, and he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So the two of them walked on together.7Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, “My father!” And he said, “Here I am, my son.” And he said, “Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?”8Abraham said, “God will provide for Himself the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” So the two of them walked on together.9Then they came to the place of which God had told him; and Abraham built the altar there and arranged the wood, and bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood.10Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.11But the angel of the LORD called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.”12He said, “Do not stretch out your hand against the lad, and do nothing to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.”13Then Abraham raised his eyes and looked, and behold, behind [him] a ram caught in the thicket by his horns; and Abraham went and took the ram and offered him up for a burnt offering in the place of his son.14Abraham called the name of that place The LORD Will Provide, as it is said to this day, “In the mount of the LORD it will be provided.”; Jam 2:2121Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar?). In this event we see a picture of the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus (cf. Heb 11:1919He considered that God is able to raise [people] even from the dead, from which he also received him back as a type.). David has conquered Sion (1Chr 11:4-54Then David and all Israel went to Jerusalem (that is, Jebus); and the Jebusites, the inhabitants of the land, [were] there.5The inhabitants of Jebus said to David, “You shall not enter here.” Nevertheless David captured the stronghold of Zion (that is, the city of David).). There the ark will end up, in the temple that will be built there by Solomon.

Before that time that the ark will have its final resting place, a lot has been done with the ark and the tabernacle in which the ark was. It is good to evaluate these events briefly. We can at the same time make an application to the Lord Jesus of Whom the tabernacle and the ark are a picture.

When the people have come into the land, the tabernacle is placed in Shiloh (Jos 18:11Then the whole congregation of the sons of Israel assembled themselves at Shiloh, and set up the tent of meeting there; and the land was subdued before them.). There it is until the birth of Samuel, which is a period of hundreds of years. In this we can see in picture the time of the life of the Lord Jesus on earth.

Then the ark is taken by Hofni and Pinehas in the fight against the Philistines (1Sam 4:3-43When the people came into the camp, the elders of Israel said, “Why has the LORD defeated us today before the Philistines? Let us take to ourselves from Shiloh the ark of the covenant of the LORD, that it may come among us and deliver us from the power of our enemies.”4So the people sent to Shiloh, and from there they carried the ark of the covenant of the LORD of hosts who sits [above] the cherubim; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, [were] there with the ark of the covenant of God.). But God does not allow these wicked priests to abuse the symbol of His presence. “So that He abandoned the dwelling place at Shiloh, … And gave up His strength to captivity And His glory into the hand of the adversary” (Psa 78:60-6160So that He abandoned the dwelling place at Shiloh,
The tent which He had pitched among men,
61And gave up His strength to captivity
And His glory into the hand of the adversary.
). He has let the ark captured by the Philistines (1Sam 4:10-1110So the Philistines fought and Israel was defeated, and every man fled to his tent; and the slaughter was very great, for there fell of Israel thirty thousand foot soldiers.11And the ark of God was taken; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, died.; 5:11Now the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod.). Here we can see a picture of the surrender of the Lord Jesus into death by God (cf. Acts 2:2323this [Man], delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put [Him] to death.).

The ark is seven months in the land of the Philistines, but then returns to the land of the LORD (1Sam 6:1-2,11-131Now the ark of the LORD had been in the country of the Philistines seven months.2And the Philistines called for the priests and the diviners, saying, “What shall we do with the ark of the LORD? Tell us how we shall send it to its place.”11They put the ark of the LORD on the cart, and the box with the golden mice and the likenesses of their tumors.12And the cows took the straight way in the direction of Beth-shemesh; they went along the highway, lowing as they went, and did not turn aside to the right or to the left. And the lords of the Philistines followed them to the border of Beth-shemesh.13Now [the people of] Beth-shemesh were reaping their wheat harvest in the valley, and they raised their eyes and saw the ark and were glad to see [it].). This can be seen as a picture of the stay of the Lord Jesus in death, who could not keep Him (Acts 2:24-2824But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.25For David says of Him,
‘I SAW THE LORD ALWAYS IN MY PRESENCE;
FOR HE IS AT MY RIGHT HAND, SO THAT I WILL NOT BE SHAKEN.
26‘THEREFORE MY HEART WAS GLAD AND MY TONGUE EXULTED;
MOREOVER MY FLESH ALSO WILL LIVE IN HOPE;
27BECAUSE YOU WILL NOT ABANDON MY SOUL TO HADES,
NOR ALLOW YOUR HOLY ONE TO UNDERGO DECAY.
28‘YOU HAVE MADE KNOWN TO ME THE WAYS OF LIFE;
YOU WILL MAKE ME FULL OF GLADNESS WITH YOUR PRESENCE.’
). The ark returns to Israel, but not to Shiloh, but to Abinadab’s house in Kiriath-jearim (1Sam 7:11And the men of Kiriath-jearim came and took the ark of the LORD and brought it into the house of Abinadab on the hill, and consecrated Eleazar his son to keep the ark of the LORD.). In this we can see a picture of the risen Lord, Who is no longer seen by all the people, but only in secret by his own.

The ark stays for a long time in Kiriath-jearim, until here the thread of the history of the ark is taken up again. It starts here with the observation that there is unanimity to pick up the ark (verses 1-41Then David consulted with the captains of the thousands and the hundreds, even with every leader.2David said to all the assembly of Israel, “If it seems good to you, and if it is from the LORD our God, let us send everywhere to our kinsmen who remain in all the land of Israel, also to the priests and Levites who are with them in their cities with pasture lands, that they may meet with us;3and let us bring back the ark of our God to us, for we did not seek it in the days of Saul.”4Then all the assembly said that they would do so, for the thing was right in the eyes of all the people.), without one wondering how to do so and where to go.

It is important how the ark is transported. This leads to the first judgment on the new government, which leads to fear of God on the one hand and domestic blessing on the other (verses 12-1412David was afraid of God that day, saying, “How can I bring the ark of God [home] to me?”13So David did not take the ark with him to the city of David, but took it aside to the house of Obed-edom the Gittite.14Thus the ark of God remained with the family of Obed-edom in his house three months; and the LORD blessed the family of Obed-edom with all that he had.). Later, in 1 Chronicles 15, the ark is in the correct way brought to Jerusalem. This can be seen as a picture of the ascension of Christ. The proof of this is the quotation by Paul in Ephesians 4 of Psalm 68 in connection with the ascension (Eph 4:8-108Therefore it says, “When He ascended on high, He led captive a host of captives, And He gave gifts to men.”9(Now this [expression], “He ascended,” what does it mean except that He also had descended into the lower parts of the earth?10He who descended is Himself also He who ascended far above all the heavens, so that He might fill all things.); Psa 68:1919Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears our burden,
The God [who] is our salvation. Selah.
).

Finally, the ark is brought into the house that Solomon built. Then the glory of the LORD descends into the temple and fills the temple (2Chr 5:1414so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the LORD filled the house of God.). This event we can bring into connection with the coming down of the Holy Spirit, through which the church is formed to the house of the living God (Acts 2:1-41When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place.2And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.3And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them.4And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.; 1Tim 3:1515but in case I am delayed, [I write] so that you will know how one ought to conduct himself in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth.). This happened after the Lord Jesus is glorified in heaven (Jn 7:3939But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet [given], because Jesus was not yet glorified.).


David Wants to Bring the Ark to Jerusalem

1Then David consulted with the captains of the thousands and the hundreds, even with every leader. 2David said to all the assembly of Israel, “If it seems good to you, and if it is from the LORD our God, let us send everywhere to our kinsmen who remain in all the land of Israel, also to the priests and Levites who are with them in their cities with pasture lands, that they may meet with us; 3and let us bring back the ark of our God to us, for we did not seek it in the days of Saul.” 4Then all the assembly said that they would do so, for the thing was right in the eyes of all the people.

The first thing David’s heart goes out to when he is king is the ark. He does not seek his ease, but the symbol of the presence of God. The ark is the throne of God. God dwells thereon among His people. The ark is in the heart of David. It has always been there. God has indicated a place where He will make His Name dwell, a central place of worship. His Name is His glory. They have to find that place. By bringing the ark to that place, the royal city becomes the holy city, the center of service to God.

That also applies to us. For us, this is not about a geographical place or a visible building, but about the spiritual characteristics of the church meeting together. If our hearts are open to it, we will look for the place where the Lord Jesus dwells, where He is the center of His New Testament people, the church (Mt 18:2020For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.”).

The exercise concerning the search for a dwelling place for the ark is present with only one man, David (verse 11Then David consulted with the captains of the thousands and the hundreds, even with every leader.; 1Chr 17:11And it came about, when David dwelt in his house, that David said to Nathan the prophet, “Behold, I am dwelling in a house of cedar, but the ark of the covenant of the LORD is under curtains.”). David is not managed or dictated by others, although he is confirmed by others (verse 22David said to all the assembly of Israel, “If it seems good to you, and if it is from the LORD our God, let us send everywhere to our kinsmen who remain in all the land of Israel, also to the priests and Levites who are with them in their cities with pasture lands, that they may meet with us;). His heart goes out to the ark, realizing that the ark is of the whole people. A heart that goes out to the Lord Jesus also goes out to all the people of God.

For the retrieval of the ark David consults with the captain and the leaders. Consulting others in the case of a spiritual exercise is not weakness, but wisdom (cf. 2Chr 20:2121When he had consulted with the people, he appointed those who sang to the LORD and those who praised [Him] in holy attire, as they went out before the army and said, “Give thanks to the LORD, for His lovingkindness is everlasting.”). Much of the Lord’s work cannot be properly performed without a cordial fellowship with like-minded people. It is also beautiful to see that David speaks about the people as “our … kinsmen”. He is in truth a king “from among your brothers”, a brother with a heart that “does not rise above his brothers” (Deu 17:15,2015you shall surely set a king over you whom the LORD your God chooses, [one] from among your countrymen you shall set as king over yourselves; you may not put a foreigner over yourselves who is not your countryman.20that his heart may not be lifted up above his countrymen and that he may not turn aside from the commandment, to the right or the left, so that he and his sons may continue long in his kingdom in the midst of Israel.).

What David unfortunately lacks here is consultation with the LORD. This leads to a tragic situation if they implement their plan. We can consult with each other, but if we do not involve the Lord and His Word, our plan will not be carried out to the Lord’s glory.

The people did not seek God’s dwelling place “in the days of Saul”. It’s nice to see that David encloses himself by talking about “we”. Although he did look for it himself, he makes himself one with the people here (cf. Dan 9:55we have sinned, committed iniquity, acted wickedly and rebelled, even turning aside from Your commandments and ordinances.). The fact that “in the days of Saul” God’s dwelling place was not sought is a lesson for us that a member of God’s people does not ask for the Lord and His service when he lives according to the flesh.

A revival starts with a single person. We see the single person here in David, the man after God’s heart. He had already sought that place when he was still with the sheep and did not know anything about the kingship. We know that from what he says about it in Psalm 132. He searched tirelessly for that place and found it (Psa 132:4-64I will not give sleep to my eyes
Or slumber to my eyelids,
5Until I find a place for the LORD,
A dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob.”
6Behold, we heard of it in Ephrathah,
We found it in the field of Jaar.
). When he found the ark, he found that place for the ark represents the glory of the LORD. He found it in his heart when he was still in Ephrathah as a shepherd (Psa 132:66Behold, we heard of it in Ephrathah,
We found it in the field of Jaar.
), that is, his heart was convinced that the ark is that dwelling place.

Now he actually goes looking for it and finds the ark. He finds it in the field of Jaär, in the house of Abinadab. There the ark had been for a long time, forgotten by the people, but not by this then still young man. We can now also know where to find the Lord Jesus and see His glory. That is with the two or three who come together as a church in His Name (Mt 18:2020For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.”).


The Ark on a New Cart

5So David assembled all Israel together, from the Shihor of Egypt even to the entrance of Hamath, to bring the ark of God from Kiriath-jearim. 6David and all Israel went up to Baalah, [that is], to Kiriath-jearim, which belongs to Judah, to bring up from there the ark of God, the LORD who is enthroned [above] the cherubim, where His name is called. 7They carried the ark of God on a new cart from the house of Abinadab, and Uzza and Ahio drove the cart. 8David and all Israel were celebrating before God with all [their] might, even with songs and with lyres, harps, tambourines, cymbals and with trumpets.

The whole people agree with David that the ark should be picked up. Is that because of their own conviction or because they see the better leader in David compared to Saul? A leader is followed, especially if he is popular (2Sam 15:1313Then a messenger came to David, saying, “The hearts of the men of Israel are with Absalom.”; 1Kgs 1:55Now Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, “I will be king.” So he prepared for himself chariots and horsemen with fifty men to run before him.; Gal 2:11-1311But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned.12For prior to the coming of certain men from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles; but when they came, he [began] to withdraw and hold himself aloof, fearing the party of the circumcision.13The rest of the Jews joined him in hypocrisy, with the result that even Barnabas was carried away by their hypocrisy.), but on what basis? When the opponents of the Lord Jesus say of Him: “Look, the world has gone after Him” (Jn 12:1919So the Pharisees said to one another, “You see that you are not doing any good; look, the world has gone after Him.”), for many of them that “gone after Him” is nothing more than curiosity.

In all David’s zeal we do not read that he consults the Word of God. What did he think the poles were for (Exo 25:1414You shall put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark, to carry the ark with them.; 40:2020Then he took the testimony and put [it] into the ark, and attached the poles to the ark, and put the mercy seat on top of the ark.)? And were the sons of Kohath not appointed to carry the ark (Num 4:15a15When Aaron and his sons have finished covering the holy [objects] and all the furnishings of the sanctuary, when the camp is to set out, after that the sons of Kohath shall come to carry [them], so that they will not touch the holy [objects] and die. These are the things in the tent of meeting which the sons of Kohath are to carry.)? David seems to have forgotten it all. A new cart seems to him to be a suitable means of transporting the ark. David’s new cart is his own invention, which seems to be copied from the Philistines (1Sam 6:11a11They put the ark of the LORD on the cart, and the box with the golden mice and the likenesses of their tumors.). In the same way, by Christians to honor Christ, the methods of the (religious) world are adopted, while the precepts of God’s Word are ignored.

About the transport of the ark the LORD said very simply that it must be carried (Num 4:15a15When Aaron and his sons have finished covering the holy [objects] and all the furnishings of the sanctuary, when the camp is to set out, after that the sons of Kohath shall come to carry [them], so that they will not touch the holy [objects] and die. These are the things in the tent of meeting which the sons of Kohath are to carry.). David’s zeal and joy to bring the ark back does not take sufficient account of God’s thoughts. He works in a Philistine manner and, like them, transports the ark on a cart. The fact that the whole parade is attended by enthusiastic people accompanied by a large music band cannot conceal the fact that the way it is done is disobedience to God’s Word. Bringing the ark to Jerusalem is not wrong in itself. Neither is it wrong to do that with enthusiasm. Also the use of musical instruments is not wrong. It is only all wrong because it is done according to one’s own insight, without consulting the LORD and His Word.

Often we are tempted to judge worship by our feelings, how we feel about it. But when we remember that worship is meant for God, we are referred to His Word to know how He wants He is to be worshipped (Jn 4:23-2423But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.24God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”). If we read this history, we see that it is a matter of joy, singing, all kinds of musical instruments, a new cart and cattle. What we miss is the mention of a humble heart that is aware of the holiness of God represented by the ark.

The use of a cart shows that an alternative was sought to the way God had said the ark should be transported. The ark is also ‘held up’ by the cart, just as it is when it is carried on the priests’ shoulders. Why not then in this way, so one could argue?

But ‘the transport on a cart represents in the spiritual application a way of ‘carrying’ which is separate from the spiritual efforts of those ‘who have to carry the ark’. And these efforts and exercises are precious to God, for these efforts and exercises increase with the ‘carriers’ the real spiritual understanding of the Person of Christ, of whom the ark, as we know, is a picture. The use of other means prevents this from happening.

David could have been sure of God’s will if he had acted according to the king’s law, of which he as king should have a copy (Deu 17:18-2018“Now it shall come about when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, he shall write for himself a copy of this law on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests.19It shall be with him and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, by carefully observing all the words of this law and these statutes,20that his heart may not be lifted up above his countrymen and that he may not turn aside from the commandment, to the right or the left, so that he and his sons may continue long in his kingdom in the midst of Israel.). That’s why the punishment he gets is so severe. The Levites and all the people should also have known how God wants the ark to be transported. For the Levites regularly read the law to the whole people (Deu 31:9-139So Moses wrote this law and gave it to the priests, the sons of Levi who carried the ark of the covenant of the LORD, and to all the elders of Israel.10Then Moses commanded them, saying, “At the end of [every] seven years, at the time of the year of remission of debts, at the Feast of Booths,11when all Israel comes to appear before the LORD your God at the place which He will choose, you shall read this law in front of all Israel in their hearing.12Assemble the people, the men and the women and children and the alien who is in your town, so that they may hear and learn and fear the LORD your God, and be careful to observe all the words of this law.13Their children, who have not known, will hear and learn to fear the LORD your God, as long as you live on the land which you are about to cross the Jordan to possess.”).

This is also an important lesson for us. The longing for the place where the Lord Jesus is in the midst is one thing. It is something else to put this desire into practice in a good way. While we may know exactly God’s thoughts and where He dwells, we remain dependent on Him for all the steps we take. Good intentions, zeal, enthusiasm and joy are not enough. We must also act in accordance with the Scriptures, also when it comes to the center and the way of meeting. Obedience is better than the sacrifice of diligence.

Others can act according to the faith they have in a God Whom they do not know personally. We see this in the Philistines, who send the ark back on a cart. However, the people of God must be led by God’s Word.


The Death of Uzza

9When they came to the threshing floor of Chidon, Uzza put out his hand to hold the ark, because the oxen nearly upset [it]. 10The anger of the LORD burned against Uzza, so He struck him down because he put out his hand to the ark; and he died there before God.

When the procession comes to “the threshing floor of Chidon”, what no one foresaw or even expected happens. The threshing floor is the place where the corn is gathered to separate the chaff from the corn. There is a lot of chaff in this whole parade and God is going to blow it away. The own method chosen for the transport of the ark is chaff. This method may seem more certain than the shoulders of the Levites, but that's just appearance.

We can apply this to all kinds of man-made forms of religion with the intention of protecting the honor of Christ. All these forms have proven to be no guarantee for securing that honor. Confessional writings have taken the place of the Bible and have led the people away from the Scriptures. This opens the door to thoughts about Christ and His work that are against God’s thoughts and that lead the Christian to spiritual death.

Such methods must then be judged by God, no matter how well-intentioned the intentions are. Methods of the flesh do not fit with spiritual things. God must judge Uzza’s well-intentioned attempt to seize the ark with his hand and thereby save it from falling. It is an unauthorized touch of the ark.

For those who are not spiritual, Uzza’s blocking of the ark seems logical and recommended. But what goes against the Scriptures cannot please God. “Which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God” (Lk 16:1515And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men, but God knows your hearts; for that which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God.). The glorified Christ should not be touched by strange teachings and traditions of men.

This is the first judgment during David’s government, right from the start. We also see this judgment at the beginning of the priesthood and at the beginning of the church. Just as Nadab and Abihu and Ananias and Sapphira die before God (Lev 10:1-21Now Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took their respective firepans, and after putting fire in them, placed incense on it and offered strange fire before the LORD, which He had not commanded them.2And fire came out from the presence of the LORD and consumed them, and they died before the LORD.; Acts 5:1-111But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property,2and kept back [some] of the price for himself, with his wife’s full knowledge, and bringing a portion of it, he laid it at the apostles’ feet.3But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back [some] of the price of the land?4While it remained [unsold], did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not under your control? Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.”5And as he heard these words, Ananias fell down and breathed his last; and great fear came over all who heard of it.6The young men got up and covered him up, and after carrying him out, they buried him.7Now there elapsed an interval of about three hours, and his wife came in, not knowing what had happened.8And Peter responded to her, “Tell me whether you sold the land for such and such a price?” And she said, “Yes, that was the price.”9Then Peter [said] to her, “Why is it that you have agreed together to put the Spirit of the Lord to the test? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out [as well].”10And immediately she fell at his feet and breathed her last, and the young men came in and found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her beside her husband.11And great fear came over the whole church, and over all who heard of these things.), so here Uzza dies before God.


The Ark in the House of Obed-edom

11Then David became angry because of the LORD’s outburst against Uzza; and he called that place Perez-uzza to this day. 12David was afraid of God that day, saying, “How can I bring the ark of God [home] to me?” 13So David did not take the ark with him to the city of David, but took it aside to the house of Obed-edom the Gittite. 14Thus the ark of God remained with the family of Obed-edom in his house three months; and the LORD blessed the family of Obed-edom with all that he had.

David does not readily agree with this judgment, but is displeased, he is angry. It is the anger of powerlessness. He feels his own powerlessness to bring the ark to Jerusalem. He also doesn’t feel worthy that the ark comes to him. Perez means ‘breakthrough’, because what has happened is a breakthrough, an outburst of God’s wrath. It is precisely in such a noble pursuit as bringing the ark to where it belongs that it is important to follow the instructions of God’s Word. The LORD says: “By those who come near Me I will be treated as holy” (Lk 10:33Go; behold, I send you out as lambs in the midst of wolves.; cf. Est 9:4-64Indeed, Mordecai was great in the king’s house, and his fame spread throughout all the provinces; for the man Mordecai became greater and greater.5Thus the Jews struck all their enemies with the sword, killing and destroying; and they did what they pleased to those who hated them.6At the citadel in Susa the Jews killed and destroyed five hundred men,). Then the ark gets a home with Obed-edom, that means ‘servant of Edom’.

We may wonder who or what David’s anger is directed at. David may not understand the reason for Uzza’s death. His anger then can be called frustration because the ark does not get the place he desires. Perhaps David should learn that it is not the main thing to bring the ark of God “to me”, as he says in verse 1212David was afraid of God that day, saying, “How can I bring the ark of God [home] to me?”. It is the place that the LORD has chosen and all attention must have been drawn to it. It takes some time to discover that, but then it will be all right. He understands that he should have consulted the LORD as it should have been, for then he would have discovered in God’s light what was lacking.

The house of Obed-edom is blessed, as is later done with Aquila and Priscilla when they open their house for the church and the service of the Word (Acts 18:24-2824Now a Jew named Apollos, an Alexandrian by birth, an eloquent man, came to Ephesus; and he was mighty in the Scriptures.25This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he was speaking and teaching accurately the things concerning Jesus, being acquainted only with the baptism of John;26and he began to speak out boldly in the synagogue. But when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately.27And when he wanted to go across to Achaia, the brethren encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him; and when he had arrived, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace,28for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, demonstrating by the Scriptures that Jesus was the Christ.; Rom 16:3-53Greet Prisca and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus,4who for my life risked their own necks, to whom not only do I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles;5also [greet] the church that is in their house. Greet Epaenetus, my beloved, who is the first convert to Christ from Asia.). Obed-edom is later rewarded for his faithfulness. He becomes a gatekeeper with a harp (1Chr 15:18,2118and with them their relatives of the second rank, Zechariah, Ben, Jaaziel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Unni, Eliab, Benaiah, Maaseiah, Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, Mikneiah, Obed-edom and Jeiel, the gatekeepers.21and Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, Mikneiah, Obed-edom, Jeiel and Azaziah, to lead with lyres tuned to the sheminith.; 16:3838and Obed-edom with his 68 relatives; Obed-edom, also the son of Jeduthun, and Hosah as gatekeepers.). He doesn’t lose anything when the ark leaves his house, but he gets more and more. This is always the case when we share what we ourselves have received with others. Obed-edom does this by not keeping the ark to himself, but by sharing it with all of Israel. What a blessing David missed just because he did not ask the LORD how He wanted everything to go. In the next chapter he restored and does so (1Chr 14:10,1410David inquired of God, saying, “Shall I go up against the Philistines? And will You give them into my hand?” Then the LORD said to him, “Go up, for I will give them into your hand.”14David inquired again of God, and God said to him, “You shall not go up after them; circle around behind them and come at them in front of the balsam trees.).


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