Regular nibbles from the Bible. . .come for a bite, leave with an appetite

May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight. (Psalm 19:14, MSG)

Saturday, April 20, 2013

David the Priest?

Today I arrived at the story of David bringing the ark of the covenant back to Jerusalem.

I already knew that when the oxen stumbled, Uzzah reached out an arm to steady the ark, and died as a result of mishandling the Ark. David left the ark right where it happened, with Obed-Edom. Three months later, David tried again.

Only somehow I thought that the second time, David had done it the right way, with the Levites placing poles through the rings on the Ark and carrying it on the shoulders.

No, they carried it in a cart again. What did change was that they stopped every six feet to offer prime animals. David dressed in a linen ephod, like a priest--a fact the Message emphasized which had never gotten through to me before. (Perhaps I have Michael's reaction to blame for that, but I'm not discussing Michal today.)

Whoa there. David dressed like a priest? And later, in chapter 8, we're told that David's sons were priests?

Didn't Saul lose the kingdom for offering the sacrifice before going into battle, a job that belonged to the priest?

So why did God bless David and dismiss Saul?

I would guess is has to do with God looking at what at the heart of a man.  One of my favorite hymns is "Himself" by A.B. Simpson.  In it, Simpson wrote, "Once it was the blessing, now it is the Lord. Once it was the feeling, now it is His word. Once the gift I wanted, now the Giver own. Once I sought for healing, now Himself alone."

Saul wanted the blessing, the gift of military victory--and found neither on a regular basis.

David wanted God first and God alone--and the others things came with it.

Saul wanted things in his time.

David waited for God's timing.

Saul was all about himself.

David was all about God.

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