Moving the Ark – Uzzah, Obededom and Michal

2 Sam 6:1-23

As David arranged for the ark of God to be moved from Gibeah to Jerusalem, we read of three different experiences from Uzzah to Obededom and finally Michal – Saul’s daughter, who was also David’s wife. We ask the question of what we could learn from these three experiences.

The first experience was that of Uzzah, who was with the cart in which the ark was placed when moving  from Gibeah. As David and all Israel were praising God on the way, when they got to Nachon’s threshingfloor, Uzzah stretch forth his hand and held the ark to stable it when the oxen shook it. Right and there the Lord smote him in anger and he died by the ark of God. The immediate question would be what had he done wrong, as it seemed he was trying to help to prevent the ark from falling. I will borrow from Matthew Henry’s explanation to show this. First, Uzzah was a levite and by God’s command, only priests were allowed to touch the ark and not levites (Numbers 4:15). Secondly, as God knows the intentions of the hearts beyond what we see, a question was raised of Uzzah’s pride or haughtiness in trying to rescue “God” and show the people he could do that, which is presumptuous and irreverent to God. In the light of this we could get a bit of understanding of the severity of his Judgment.
 
David was afraid of the incidence himself, even up to the point of being displeased. He asked, ” how would the ark of God come to me”? So, the left the ark in the house of Obededom, which leads us to the second experience in the passage. The same ark that brought judgement upon Uzzah, brought blessings upon the house of Obededom within three months of staying there. Isn’t it amazing? The benevolence of the presence of God in a man’s house! It was possible that others had rejected having the ark in their houses based on the previous incidence, but Obededom took it in, and I beleieved also revered the ark and the God of the ark, no wonder he was blessed.
 
Lastly we move on to the third experience in this passage. Having heard of God’s prosperity on the house of Obededom, David decided to bring back the ark to the city of David. This he did with dancing and rejoicing before the Lord, as sacrifices were made after every six paces. Also, David was clad in just an ephod linen round his waist as he danced before God. When Michal his wife saw this, she despised him, thinking to herself, “how could the whole king of Israel dance shamelessly like this before maidens”? We could immediately see a parallel here between Michal’s action and that of her father – Saul. The problem was that of ego, or “what others think of me”? Exactly what led to the downfall of Saul.
 
After David returned to bless his own household after blessing the people once the ark had been delivered, Michal approached him and spoke of his shameless dancing before the maidens. However David made it clear that he was dancing before the Lord, his own concern was not what people thought but what God thought, it was God who chose him over Saul and his house, and will even exalt him before the so called maidens Michal was talking about. We learnt that Michal was barren all the days of her life for what she did. Whether that was because David never slept with her again or directly from the Lord, we are not certain, however we are sure she was judged for despising David’s action in praising God.
 
What will your experience be before God’s presence. Do you have reverence and fear for the almighty. He is a loving God, but also a consuming fire. It is terrible to fall into his judgement, but also very pleasant to have his favour. Walk with him diligently with reverence and blessings shall be yours.
 
Some verses to remember
 
vs 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.vs 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.vs 23:  Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death.

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