Time is something we do not have enough of and so how we use our time is so important.
I spent some time with the LORD today combing over the Scriptures trying to understand them, to understand GOD and His ways. For about 3 years now I have been reading the Bible really slowly, trying to understand every word, reading every footnote in my Ryrie Study Bible (NASB) and reading every Scripture reference. Today I read 1 Chronicles 15, the section about when David brought the Ark of the Covenant into Jerusalem.
What stood out to my today were 4 things:
(1) David had made a mistake by bringing the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem in the wrong way (on a cart driven by Oxen instead of having the Levitical Priests carry it by poles – 1 Chron. 13:7-14). The result of brining it in the wrong way was the Ark almost fell off the cart and Uzza stuck out his hand to steady the Ark and the LORD’s anger burned against Uzza and he was struck dead by the LORD. So David was angry, and in 1 Chron. 15 he realized it was his fault for not obeying the LORD about how the Ark was to be brought in, so David repented (1 Chron. 15:13) and assembled the Israelites and commanded the Levites to obey GOD and carry the Ark.
What we can learn from this is that even in the little, seemingly insignificant things, GOD’s way is best and we are called to follow His ways.
(2) The Ark of the Covenant was brought in with praise music and all the people were celebrating and dancing with joy. The music being played was with lyres, harps, and loud-crashing cymbals (1 Chron. 15:16; see also chapter 16).
What we can learn from this is joyous celebration with loud music, even with drums is ok among God’s people.
(3) David took off His royal robes to humble himself and to celebrate with the people. He was like the average Joe, dressed down and celebrating with humility before the LORD (1 Chron. 15:27-28; see also 2 Sam. 6). David was criticized by his wife Michal for taking off the royal robe (1 Chron. 15:29; see also 2 Sam. 6:20-23). Notice in reading 2 Samuel 6:23, his wife’s criticism resulted in the LORD’s punishment of her, as my footnote in Charles Ryrie’s Study Bible explains:
“The Lord condemned Michal to the disgrace of childlessness.” – Ryrie Study Bible, see note on 2 Sam. 6:23
What we can learn from this is humble, loud celebration of the goodness of God is pleasing to the LORD and that when our hearts are right we do not need to worry about what people might say.
(4) Finally, one of the footnotes about the type of music being played pointed to Psalm 6. If you read Psalm 6 it begins with a lament, an appeal to God not to punish David, and calls upon the LORD to purge evil from among GOD’s people. In other words, David’s worship began with a lament for not bringing the Ark in the way the LORD had instructed him to and the end of the song called on GOD to be the one who protects David and Israel from their enemies.
What we can learn from this is that if you take care of your character, GOD will take care of your reputation. So follow the LORD first and let Him take care of you along the way.
So let us praise the LORD and may we do it with humility and may it be a sweet sound, an aroma that is pleasing to our LORD God. The very words I just wrote remind me of Amos 5:23-24. In that passage the LORD calls for justice, especially by the leadership (v. 24) above His call for technically right sounding worship (v. 23). In other words God desires our worship to begin with right relationships and without right relationships the noise of worship is just that, noise. So may we as the Church put off sin, purge evil, put on justice, put on love, and put on mercy.