I have a book at home that my wife and I like to have our daily devotions out of. And the other day, I came home and I noticed, some of you can see, that the edges are damaged. And it's because I have a new dog. And I came in, and I saw this thing sitting on the couch. And I saw that the ears were dogged, and I knew my wife didn't chew it. I knew my son probably didn't chew it.
And my wife was hesitant to show it to me. She said, I don't know how you feel about this, but Winston took and started eating this. And I found it, and it's not damaged. It's still readable. We still use it. And I rather like it. I rather like it better than I did before. Because when I see it, it reminds me of something. It's what Jeremiah said. Your words were found, and I did eat them.
And they were to me the joy and the rejoicing of my heart. And I know that my dog was not into the Word of God on that day and taking that scripture-- he didn't meditate on that and then take it literally. But it is a good reminder of the kind of appetite God's people ought to have for his Word. And so, I wanted you to see that tonight and know that sits in my house proudly as I have a dog who found God's word and ate it one day.
Last week, we began a study in 2 Samuel. And I shared my heart with you, my heart that you would love, study, and give yourself to all of the Bible, not just a few psalms, not just the New Testament, but to know the book and to know the people in the Old Testament as well you know those names and those people in the New Testament. In fact, last week, we covered a lot of ground. We covered three whole chapters in 2 Samuel. We studied it for a long time. In fact, I walked away thinking, man, talk about eating a lot of the Word, probably these folks have spiritual indigestion. I hope you did have spiritual indigestion. I hope you walked away filled, and you burped up a few scriptures that night.
And so, tonight, we continue. And we're going to have the Lord's Supper, but we continue in 2 Samuel. And I love teaching through the Bible. I love what it can do. And tonight we have a feast not only in scripture, but then at the Lord's table. Saul has been replaced. And it'd probably be good if you just up the light since people brought bibles to read. You know, my mom wouldn't like it. There you go if-- everybody was straining their eyes to see the book. My eyes are bad enough. But I have lights.
Saul has been replaced. David, his star, is rising. He is the next king. And the first few chapters show us how he became king through all of the intrigue, all of the revenge, even all of the murder and the wrath of man. The Bible says, even the wrath of man will praise the Lord and how God was behind the scenes directing the props so that all the players were right where they needed to be.
David became the second king over Israel. David is-- was-- I can say is because he's with the Lord now-- was a unique individual, a unique mix of personality. He was a musician, creative, a singer-songwriter, poet. So he had an artistic side, a very right-brained kind of activity. The same time, he was a warrior, a soldier, a Marine, one of the best Israel had at the time, a strategist, an administrator and a ruler, a king.
So what a unique mix and blend of personalities. We were also introduced to some new characters, new names, that I hope you become familiar with this last week or two. Abner; Joab; Abishai; his brother, Asahel; Ishbosheth, the son of Saul; Mafibesheth, the son of Jonathan-- names not as familiar as Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John but very important to David, very important to Saul, very important to the kingdom of Israel, and very central to our story here.
We're in the first part of the outline that we gave last week-- the triumphs of David. And as you remember, we divided the book up into three easy sections-- the triumphs of David, the temptations, transgressions of David, and then the troubles of David, which comprise the last section of the book, all of the fallout because of David's own sin. So David, his star is rising. His prominence is rising. But also, his passion will be rising. He had some flaws. He takes many wives to himself. And even though he had lots of women around him, he's still committed adultery. And we'll get to that in Chapters 11 and 12.
Now you ought to know where we are historically because there is a change biblically. There's a change biblically. We're changing in this section of the Bible from theocracy to monarchy, from God ruling over the people to a king, a human king. And so, there's a change now in just the entire economy, the entire landscape politically of the nation of Israel, from theocracy to monarchy.
See, the way God started the nation wasn't Democrats and Republicans or kings. There was no voting process. You didn't vote on laws or library funds or the Water Conservancy Act. God was in charge. He made it easy. I am God. Here's my laws. Do it and live. It's a nice setup. There were no kings. There was God and the prominent figure, human figure, was a priest. And the priest was the go between God and people, offering on behalf of the people the sacrifices, going to God for the people.
But there was a priest who had two boys who were rats. His name was Eli. He was a great guy, but his sons were rats-- Hophni and Phinehas. And they became so corrupt that the priesthood became corrupt, so much so that the nation said, we're sick of the priests. If God's own ministers can't be pure and true and devoted, we don't want the priesthood. We want to be like other nations now. We want a king.
Well, Samuel the Prophet was-- he took it badly. He took it personally. He walked around moping, distressed, bummed out to the max. God said, Samuel, they're not rejecting you. They've rejected me from ruling over them. Give them what they want. Give them a king. It'll get them into trouble, but give them a king. Saul became the first king. He was not a man after God's own heart. He was a man after his own heart-- self-centered, self-oriented. David, on the other hand, this young shepherd kid had a heart for God-- not perfect, full of flaws like every one of us are. But he became the leader that God raised up here in this book.
Now in Chapter 4, having said that, there's a couple of things to notice. Some of you weren't here. So let me just say that Saul is dead. Jonathan is dead. Good. Some of you were here and listened. And you remembered that. You read that. Altogether, three of Saul's sons are dead. They're gone. So there's no kid for dynastic succession. No son to become the king after the old king, except for one guy, Isbosheth. A
He was a son of Saul. You don't hear about him much until here really. Abner, the commander in chief of the military, escaped. He's alive after the battle on Mount Gilboa. Instead of recognizing David as the next king, which he should have because he admitted you're the one God chose later on, Abner sets this other son of Saul, Ishbosheth, as the king over the 11 tribes of Israel.
The 12th tribe, Judah, down south is the only tribe that follows David. So for 7 and 1/2 bloody confused years, there is a civil war between Judah and the 11 tribes in the north. David, meanwhile, is down in Hebron. That's the capital. The first capital of his kingdom. He's anointed as king, crowned as king. But he's not ruling over the entire nation until something happens in Chapter 4.
Ishbosheth this remaining son of Saul, is murdered. Now David didn't put a contract out on his life. The wonderful thing about David is he never pushed for a position. He never said, that's mine. God wants me to do it, and push people out of the way. He waited. He waited on the Lord. Those who wait on the Lord will renew their strength. Learn that lesson. Give God room to work. Don't push so hard.
Well, this is what happened. Abner is dead. That's the operative word here. It's easy. These answers are easy. Abner is dead because Joab killed him. Joab is the commander of David's armies. Abner's said, David, I'm going to give you the 11 tribes. Joab saw this, A, as perhaps competition for his own job. And he needed to revenge this guy anyway because this guy killed his brother. So Joab killed Abner. Bad, bad, bad for Ishbosheth because Abner was the military guy, the protector, the bodyguard so to speak, for the king, Ishbosheth in the north. Now Ishbosheth has no protection. And he was a weak kid. He wasn't a warrior. He was a palace boy. He wasn't a battlefield guy.
What happens in Chapter 4 is 2 rogue soldiers, terrorists really, come in with a knife into Ishbosheth's house while he's in his bedroom on his bed, kills them, and cuts his head off. Amazing what you find in the Bible, isn't it? Verse 6 of Chapter 4. By the way, their names in verse 2 are Baanah and Rechab. You may want to remember those two names. Baanah. Rechab. Why? Well, you know, everybody these days is looking for new and novel names for their kids. And they're always looking for Bible names. And we've used up so many of them, overused them. Here's a couple of novel ones. Just kidding.
They came there-- verse 6-- all the way into the house as though to get wheat. And they stabbed him in the stomach. And Rechab and Baanah, his brother, escaped. For when they came into the house, he was lying on his bed in his bedroom. And they struck him and killed and beheaded him-- now watch this-- killed him, beheaded him, and took his head; and were all night escaping through the plane. That's one of the grossest things I've ever heard. They kill the guy, and there all night walking with the head. They crossed the ravine with a head. They go up the hill with a head. They lay down at night, put the head down. This is gross. Maybe somebody said, you know, you guys really need to get ahead.
And they did. And here's the thing. Here's the thing. Honestly, they think they're going to get ahead with David. They think that David is going to reward them for this. We've killed your enemy. Surely, he's going to give us a handsome reward for this. He's going to pay us wonderfully because we have delivered the enemy into David's hands. So they bring the head to David. Now David was used to heads. Right? He killed Goliath and took a big old head, carried it up to Jerusalem. I'm sorry. It's here. It's in the Bible. I know you're going, oph, but-- they brought the head of Ishbosheth-- verse 8-- to David at Hebron.
And they said to the king, here is the head of Ishbosheth, the son of Saul, your enemy who sought your life. And the Lord has avenged my lord, the king, this day of Saul and his descendants. David answered Rechab and Baanah, his brother, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite and said to them, as the Lord lives who has redeemed my life from all adversity, when someone told me saying, look, Saul is dead thinking to have brought good news, I arrested him and had him executed in Ziklag-- the one who thought I would give him a reward for his news.
How much more when wicked men have killed a righteous man in his bed? Therefore, I shall now require his blood at your hand and remove you from the earth. Capital punishment. So David commanded his young men. And they executed them, cut off their hands and feet, and hang them by the pool in Hebron. But they took the head of Ishbosheth and buried it in the tomb of Abner in Hebron.
David was an interesting guy. He's the guy who refused to kill Saul, refused to kill Saul's son, because this was the Lord's anointed. However he became king even if he was the people's choice, even though God promised me through the prophet I would be the king, I'm not going to force nor assert my way. I'm going to let the Lord do it in his time and have his way. He's sovereign. He's providential. Watch him work. That was David's motto. And so, it is here.
David's example-- and I can't help but draw the analogy, again, to that greater son of David, whose death we are celebrating tonight in communion-- Jesus Christ, who is also awaiting the kingdom from his Father. He's waiting the reign. One day, he will reign. The Bible says, the Father has put all things under his feet. But we don't yet see all things put under his feet yet.
Jesus isn't reigning fully on the earth. It's not a theocracy. It will be one day again. But it's not right now. And even Jesus said concerning his coming that, of the day and the hour knows no man, not even the angels in heaven nor the Son but only the Father. So the Father will one day give the kingdoms of the world to his Son to rule and to reign over. But until then, Jesus isn't up there going, come on, Father, now, now! I want it now! He has put all of that in the Father's hands.
Now let me ask you a question. Are you pushing for a position? Are you wishing people at work or your friends or people around you in the body of Christ would recognize you? After all, you are so gifted and so wonderful. And shame on them for not noticing. You know, Psalm 75 is right. Promotion cometh not from the east nor from the west nor from the south, it comes from the Lord. And so, he waited. And all this came about.
And in Chapter 5, this is where he is now, crowned the king over all of Israel. Then all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron and spoke saying, indeed, we are your bone and your flesh. Also, when time passed, when Saul was king over us, you are the one who led Israel out and brought them in. And the Lord said to you, you shall shepherd my people Israel and be ruler over Israel. It is true what they spoke.
We're your flesh and blood, David. That's why civil war is so bad. That's why the civil war in Israel against the 11 northern tribes and the southern 1 tribe of Judah was so horrible a period in their history. Because they were brothers. They were God's people. They were Israelites fighting one another. One of the darkest periods in American history was the Civil War. It was unnecessary. Slavery was wrong. Slavery is wrong. But actually, because of special interest groups pushing and pushing and pushing, they forced the leaders like Lee and Lincoln into this bloody conflagration. Instead of unity there was Civil War. It was a bad period of time. Flesh and blood. Same country.
It's also as horrible to see it among God's people today in the church. Our enemy is not one another. Our enemy is the Enemy, Satan. Let's fight the real enemy. Let's not fight one another. It is Satan's ploy to get us to pull out our swords and start nipping and chopping at each other. Because what'll happen is we'll get so tuckered out, so tired out, so worn out, we won't have enough energy to fight the real enemy. But how many-- it's the history of the church. How many churches and movements have been split by stupid petty little things? It's ridiculous. And half the stuff that we make an issue, we should just go, oh, forget about it. Forget about it. It's not worth it.
Somebody once said concerning the church that the church is a lot like Noah's ark. If it weren't for the storm on the outside, you couldn't stand the stench on the inside. And so often we have to put up with the stench, don't we? Each other's stench, the stuff, the messes that we make, fighting one another. So they come. They're now reunited under David's authority. And they recognize something. Notice they are acknowledging the hand of God upon David in verse 2. And they acknowledge that he will have two roles. Look at them. The Lord said to you, first of all, you will shepherd my people. It's a beautiful term.
David was a shepherd boy. Now he's going to shepherd people. He's going to love them. He's going to nurture them. He's going to watch over them like a shepherd would protect innocent sheep and be ruler over Israel-- shepherd and ruler. And the best rulers are always shepherds. Those that have a shepherd's heart, a loving heart, a protective heart, a nurturing heart-- servant-leader, shepherd-king. That was David.
And so, it ought to be today in leadership-- shepherd-leader, servant-leaders, churches should be filled with servant-leaders. People are inspired by leaders who are confident, but nobody needs little despots running around with a power trip but serving one another in love. So all the elders of Israel came to King David in Hebron. And King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the Lord. And they anointed David the King over Israel. And it says that he reigned altogether about 40 years-- 33 years in all of Israel, 7 years down only in Hebron.
Now let me just tell you what's going on in verse 6. Here's the shift. David has been in Hebron. He's now the guy. He's the ruler. He's the king over all of Israel. So he does something that was dear to his heart. He moves the capital, which is in Hebron, 20 miles south of Jerusalem. And he moves it up to Jerusalem. Now interestingly, Jerusalem has never really settled by the children of Israel until this time.
Remember when Joshua and the children of Israel crossed the Jordan? Nobody really went down and settled Jerusalem. It was left a Canaanite-Jebusite stronghold. In fact, it is known as Jebuse here. And it will become Jerusalem. It was first Salem then Jebus because the Jebusites lived there. And then it will be Jerusalem. So David moves his capital from Hebron to Jerusalem. It was strategic. It was very important.
Well, first of all, David loved the area. And I'm going to read you a psalm. Psalm 125. Some of you know this. You may want to mark it down. You may want to turn to it but probably by the time you do, I'll have read it. So here, listen. Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be removed but abides forever. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people from this time forth and forevermore.
We get insight into why Jerusalem was so strategic, because of the mountains that surrounded it. It was a great fortification from attack. You could build walls on a slope around a town. The walls would then empty out into a steep ravine valley. And then there'd be mounds on the other side. So if an enemy is coming, you can stand on the wall and watch them on the other hill. And if they're coming, they have to go down the valley and then up the valley toward you. Strategic place was Jerusalem.
David loved the city. In fact, he writes in psalms, the Lord loves the gates of Zion. It's God's favorite place. It was David's favorite place. Some, today, traveling to Jerusalem might look at it and go, I don't get it. I mean, OK, it's cool but of all the places on earth, this is God's favorite place? That's what Pontius Pilate thought. He hated Jerusalem. David loved it. Pilate had to maintain a palace presence in Jerusalem to quell the riots at the festivals, the three main Jewish feast days. But Pilate loved Caesarea. That's a beach town. The soft ocean breezes, the waves are great there. That's where he wanted to hang out. He had to go to Jerusalem a few times a year, and he hated it.
And that's sort of the difference between the sacred, spiritual man and the secular man. The secular man hates the place where God hangs out. The spiritual person loves it. David loved it. It was a strategic place because of the mountains. Number two. It was strategic because of the water source. You see, Israel is sort of like around here. They needed rain. They didn't get rain, they didn't replenish their water supply. But at Jerusalem, there was an underwater spring called the Gihon Spring-- still flows to this day. Go to Jerusalem. Go to the Gihon. You can look at it coming right out of the ground, cool fresh water. That was the water source for Jerusalem.
The Jebusites sites prided themselves, saying, our city, Jebus, Jerusalem, is invincible. It's so strategic, it's so invincible, we don't even need soldiers to guard it. We can have blind people, lame people, sitting on the walls. They'll guard it for us. So David comes to the city because the city walls are here, and the water source is down here. They had to build a tunnel all the way down into the ground to lower their buckets down. That's what the lame and the blind did. They were at the gate lowering the buckets down, grabbing the water.
David came to the city, saw that it was well-protected. But he saw there's a weak point. The weak point is the water shaft, this well, where it goes down into the Gihon Spring. And it's tough not to be there with you, but if we can ever go back to Israel and take a tour, let me show you the Gihon Spring. And let me show you the actual shaft that Joab climbed up to get into the city. It's all there, still preserved.
So David looked at that and said, we can get into the city if somebody climbs up the shaft. Whoever does, he's the chief guy. He's going to be like-- it's like a contest. Whoever gets in is my number one guy. Joab does it. Well, look at it. Verse 6. The King and his men went to Jerusalem against the Jebusites, the inhabitants of the land who spoke to David saying, you shall not come in here. But put the blind and the lame will repel you, thinking, David can't come in here.
Nevertheless, David took the stronghold of Zion, that is, the City of David. David said on that day, whoever climbs up by the way of the water shaft and defeats the Jebusites, the lame, and the blind who are hated by David's soul, he shall be chief and captain. Therefore, they said, the blind and the lame shall not come into the house. So David dwelt in the stronghold and called it the City of David. And David built all around from Millo and inward.
Down in verse 17 and the rest of the chapter-- and I'm summing it up because I want to get to Chapter 6 as we get into communion. The Philistines are back, these ornery critters, who sailed from the northern coast of Asia Minor and inhabited the lower coastlands of Israel and those five cities of Gaza, Gath, Ashkelon, Ekron, et cetera. They settled in the south. They defeated Saul in the north. And now, they're mad.
And you know why they're mad. You probably know by now that they thought David was a vassal to them, was one of them, was their guy. Because David defected, didn't he, during Saul's reign? He went over to the Philistine's side. King Achish gave him protection, . He guarded the southern part of the country from Ziklag on downward for the Philistines. Now, they hear David is not only the king in Hebron, he's the king over all of Israel and he took the stronghold of the Jebusites sites in Jerusalem. So their mad. They fight him. David says, Lord what do you wan me to do? You are going to stage an attack? God says, go for it, man. Well, he didn't say man, but
thou shalt do this. And he did it. And he won. And verse 25 gives the summation of the story. David did so as the Lord commanded him, and he drove back the Philistines from Geba as far as Gezer. The old geezer, I guess. I don't know. Now Chapter 6. And as we get into it, we're talking about this little piece here, the Ark of the Covenant. This is what we're dealing with.
We're dealing with doing the right thing with the right motivation but the wrong way. How important is detail? Is sincerity enough? Is it enough to just say, well, you know, I just sort of feel like it and it's in my heart that this and that. So I don't have to care about anything else. That is David's approach in Chapter 6. And in Chapter 6, he's doing the right thing, the right motivation, but in the wrong manner.
And there's a lesson for us here. Ephesians, Paul writes walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time. In other words, when you walk figuratively, so to speak. In this world as a Christian, be very careful where you place your steps. Walk carefully. Walk decisively. Mark your territory. Don't just jump and run around. Walk circumspectly. That's a good lesson for a lot of God's people. The watchword among Christians today is do, go, go! And some of us are ashamed to sit and think before we go. David just went for it. Got everybody into trouble.
Let's look at the good thing that he did the wrong way. They gathered all the choice men of Israel, 30,000. David arose and went with all the people who were with him from Baale-judah to bring up from there the Ark of God, whose name is called by the name, Hashem-- the name, the Lord of Hosts who dwells between the cherubim. You see up here on the ark? That's what it refers to. It's referring to an Old Testament text where God says, build an ark, put a lid of solid gold on it, build these angels, cherubim. God says, in between the cherubim on the lid of the ark, the mercy seat, that's where I will meet with you. That's where I will have fellowship with you, between the cherubim. I'll tell you why in just a moment.
So they set the Ark of God on a new cart. Well, that's good of them. It's not an old cart. It's not an old pickup. It's a new one, new model-- and brought it out of the house of been Abinadab, which was on the hill. And Uzzah and Ahio-- not Ohio, Ahio-- the sons of Abinadab drove the new cart. And they brought it out of the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill, accompanying the Ark of God, and Ahio went before the ark.
David and all the house of Israel played music before the Lord and all kinds of instruments made of firwood harps, stringed instruments, tambourine, sistrums, cymbals. And it was just a hoedown, a shindig, a celebration-- loud, wonderful celebratory music. When they came to Nakon's threshing floor, Uzzah up put out his hand to the Ark of God-- took it, took hold of it-- for the oxen stumbled. And the anger of the Lord was aroused against Uzzah. And God struck him for his error, and he died there by the Ark of God.
Now back to the question we ask. Is sincerity enough? Is it good enough just to be sincere? Don't you hear that all the time? Well, they're so sincere. Don't judge them, because they really are sincere. OK, so is sincerity enough? Why don't you ask the patient, whose doctor was sincere and prescribed the wrong medication and killed the patient? Ask the family. Ask the survivors. And tell them, but it was so sincere, dude. It's good enough, isn't it? He's a good man. OK, but there's death here. It was a bad mistake.
Or ask the survivors. The parents of the child who was killed by an oncoming car by someone who veered in the wrong lane, maybe not knowing it was the wrong lane, a one way. Sincerity isn't enough. You can be sincerely wrong. Now here's the problem. They made two mistakes. Mistake number one. They put it on a cart. Why'd they do that? Because they want to be like the world, I suppose. That's how the Philistines transported the ark back in 1 Samuel. They put it on a cart. And they went from one city to the next city. The oxen pulled the cart up the hill. They remembered it. They say, put it on a cart.
Now, the bottom of that ark are four rings, gold rings, to accommodate two poles. The two poles are not to put on a cart. The two poles are to have four guys-- two in the front, two in the back-- to bear it on their shoulders. That's how God said you will carry this ark on the shoulders of one tribe, the tribe of Levi, one family of the tribe, the family of Kohath. The Kohathites of the Levites were to transport the ark on their shoulders.
But come on. It's nine miles from Kiriath-jearim all the way up to Jerusalem-- nine miles uphill. Keith, that was so long ago that God gave that commandment. It probably doesn't apply today. Ever heard that? Didn't really apply today anymore. It's uphill, man. These are modern times. Throw it in the pickup. We've got a pickup. It's a new cart. So they put it in the Israeli pickup.
Second mistake. As that thing started bouncing around, remember there's no bilstein shocks back then. No all terrain, multi-belted tires. It's just wood on stone. And that thing starts moving back and forth. And Uzzah, with good intentions, steadies the ark. Now God said, don't, don't touch that box. This isn't just a box. This is the center of worship. This is where I will meet with you and have atonement with you and fellowship with you from between the cherubim. So this guy touches the art with good intentions. And he falls dead. Boom.
David, verse 8, became angry because of the Lord's outbreak against Uzzah, mad at God. And he called the name of the place, Perez-uzzah-- it means outbreak against Uzzah-- to this day. David was afraid of the Lord that day. And he said, how can the Ark of God come to me? So David would not move the Ark of the Lord with him to the City of David. But David took it aside into the house of Obed-edom the Gittite.
We're confused a little bit here. Because what David did and Uzzah did we're both practical gestures. There is a philosophy that some of us have, and we carry it over into the things of God. We say, the end justifies the means. Hey, it's an ark it's. Going up to Jerusalem. Who cares how we get it there? God. I mean, after all, he wrote the book. It's his worship system. He can kind of say what he wants, right? This is not only what you will worship me with but how you will do it. The end justifies the means.
And they forgot about that as did Abraham and Sarah. God said, you're going to have a son. Sarah said, I'm an old woman, Abe. And we've been waiting a long time, and hadn't happened yet. So take Hagar, my handmaid. She's a young woman. And go have a baby with her, and we'll call it my baby. And they had Ishmael. Good intentions. Wrong way to do it. And this is what happens. And we'll close with this and have communion.
David waits three months. He's mad. Ever meet somebody mad at God? I've talked to some of you who are mad at God. And because I'm like God's rep, you'll come and get mad at me. What does God do this or that? Here's my answer. Don't ask me. I'm not God. Be careful being angry at God. David waits three months-- three months out of fellowship, three months out of blessing. God blesses the house of Obed-edom the Gittite because the ark's in his backyard, David waits three months, and he brings it up again.
Verse 12. It was told that God blessed this guy's house. And so, David, in verse 12, went and brought up the Ark of God from the house of Obed-edom to the City of David with gladness. And so it was, when those bearing the ark had gone six paces, they stopped-- sacrificed oxen and fattened sheep. David danced before the Lord with all his might. David was wearing a linen ephod. We'll pick up next time on the rest of that. What I want you to do is turn to one passage of scripture. Would you do that?
Would you turn right and go over to 1 Chronicles 15? One thing is certain. If you come in our midweek Bible studies, you'll learn where the books are in the Bible because you'll turn to them. 1 Chronicles Chapter 15. David built houses for himself in the City of David and prepared a place for the Ark of God and pitched a tent for them. And then David said, noone may carry the Ark of God but the Levites-- this is the second time now-- for the Lord has chosen them to carry the Ark of God and minister before Him forever.
David gathered all of Israel together in Jerusalem to bring up the Ark of the Lord to its place which he had prepared for it. And David assembled-- and all these guys are named here. Verse 12, and he said to them, you are the heads of the fathers, the houses of the Levites. Sanctify yourselves, you and your brethren, that you may bring up the Ark of God of Israel to the place I have prepared for it. For because you did not do it the first time, the Lord, our God, broke out against us because-- notice-- we did not consult him about the proper order.
So it's not just the right intentions. It's not just the right thing. It's doing it in the right manner. As it says here-- the proper order. David's been reading his Bible during those three months. He went back mad. Somebody said, David, go home and read your Bible. It'd probably be a good thing for you to do. Kings are supposed to do that anyway. So he did. And he looked back, and he found, oh, the priests are supposed to do that. And being a man after God's own heart, any godly person will learn not to stay mad at God but learn from the instruction. Rally and go again. And do it right the second time. He's a godly man.
Don't despise the chastening of the Lord nor faint when you are reproved by him. For whom the Lord loves, he chastens. Pay attention to rings and poles and shoulders. Pay attention to the details. If God puts details in there, pay attention to them. Don't just say, oh, I'm just going to go for it. Good intentions, who cares? I see a lot of people today go, who cares about doctrine? Who cares about truth? Who cares about all that little fancy detailed stuff? Isn't just God Jesus and a few scriptures enough? Eh-eh. Care about those details that God writes about.
Number two, and this is where we'll take communion. The ark teaches us the holiness of God, teaches us a combination of two truths. God wants to meet with people over the blood atonement. That's where he met-- over the place blood was sprinkled on the top of this seat. Atonement was made. Inside was the law broken. Inside was a pot of manna from the desert. And inside was a little twig, a rod of Aaron that budded. And it was a reminder of the wilderness, and a reminder of God's law, and a reminder that they had broken God's law. And the angels are looking down on the broken law.
And all heaven is looking down on man's failure. But blood covered man's failure. And so, all of heaven and the angels-- symbolic by the cherubim-- looked down not on the failure but on the blood that covered it. So the ark teaches us that God wants to meet and have fellowship with us. But it also teaches us that we must worship not only in spirit but in truth. Some say, oh, who cares? We'll just worship in spirit. Forget the truth. Some say, we got to worship in truth. Forget the spirit. How about both? Worship in spirit and truth, holiness and fellowship, over atonement.
Heavenly Father-- and I'd ask the communion board to come. Heavenly Father, as we take now these elements, we realize that this isn't just another gathering. This isn't common bread or common juice. This is significant. It signifies atonement. It signifies that you will have fellowship and meet with us on the basis of blood atonement sacrifice. And Lord, you told us to take the Lord's Supper carefully, to examine ourselves, to not take it in a manner that is unholy, to not take it in a flippant fashion, but to examine our hearts and make sure that we're in the Lord, that we have applied ourselves to the truth of the atonement of Christ.
And so Lord, we confess our sins and ask you to cleanse us. And as we think back to a man who died in the Old Testament touching the ark, the place where you would meet over blood Atonement, and then we think to the new covenant-- so different. Someone died for us, shed his own blood for us so that we wouldn't have to die. We wouldn't have to fall by the roadside after coming close to God. Thank you, Father, for the blood of Jesus Christ which cleanses us from all sin. And as we take these elements, we're thankfully reminded of that. In Jesus' name, amen. We're going to pass the elements out. Take just a few minutes. Hold onto it until we all have it, and we'll take together.
As we take the Lord's Supper to night, we realized that we have a model. Just as Uzzah was the fall guy, literally for David, he took the fall because of David's sin. In the new covenant, Jesus Christ is our fall guy. He took our sin. He took the fall for our sin. He took the pain and the punishment. And in the New Testament, Jesus is the ark. He is the mercy seat. For the apostle said Jesus is our propitiation for our sins, or literally, our mercy seat.
Lord, we are holding the elements in our hands-- these physical things that speak to us a message, a message of your love. One representing your body, the other representing your shed blood on a cross, As [? Marsh ?] let us a little while ago singing of the cross and the blood that was shed. You took the fall for us Lord Jesus. And by shedding your blood, we find mercy. So we can now come into the throne boldly any time we sense that need, relying upon your mercy seat. Thank you, Father, for this time. Thank you for your word.
And thank you for the fact, the blessed fact, that our sins-- and they are many-- have been forgiven. May we walk out, Lord, having confessed our faults, our sins, our shortcomings, receiving your forgiveness, walk out lighter, a bit taller. We rejoice. Thank you too for our brothers and sisters around us, and especially those with heavy hearts tonight, Lord, who are troubled and burdened. Be their strong tower. In Jesus' name, amen. Let's take together.