Tuesday, July 19, 2011

A Statewide Call to Pray - Day Thirty-Two!

The following is a portion of my book, Return of the Priest*.  You can read all of it by going to Return of the Priest.
“So David would not move the ark of the LORD with him into the City of David; but David took it aside into the house of Obed-Edom the Gittite. The ark of the LORD remained in the house of Obed-Edom the Gittite three months. And the LORD blessed Obed-Edom and all his household. Now it was told King David, saying, "The LORD has blessed the house of Obed-Edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God." (2 Samuel 6:10-12a).


Who is Obed-Edom?   We don’t know much about him.  He was probably a farmer.  He might have been a shepherd.  He might have been a small business owner.  We don’t know. The Bible doesn’t tell us. All we are told is that he is a Gittite.  The Gittites were people from the town of Gath.  We’ll find out later that Obed-Edom was also a son of Korah. The Korahites were of the tribe of Levi and would be given the responsibility of being the gatekeepers of the Ark of the Covenant.  The gatekeepers guarded the entrance to the temple and protected the Ark.  We have to remember that. It is going to be very significant later in showing us what God does with this very common man.

Here is Obed-Edom sitting in his living room watching “Monday Night Football.”  All of a sudden there is a knock at the door.  And there is King David at his door backed up with 30,000 military troops.  And the king says, “Could we keep the Ark of the Covenant in your living room for a while?”

Imagine being asked, “Can the Ark of God stay in your home for a while?”
    “Well, yeah, I guess.”
I don’t know what I would have said if I had been Obed-Edom.  Possibly he had already heard what had happened to Uzzah outside. 
Why would I want that thing in my house?
My kids play in this living room.
If one of them touches it, he’s gone?
Why would anyone want the Ark in his home when the king, himself, doesn’t want it in his city?  But, we know that the Ark stayed at Obed-Edom’s house.  We know that it stayed there for three months.  And we know that during that time everything in Obed-Edom’s life was blessed. 

Everything.  The Scripture says it twice. 

Everything that belonged to Obed-Edom was blessed.

Imagine everything that belongs to you being blessed.  Start listing it off. . 
your family. 
your finances. 
your business. 
your house. 
your oxcart out parked out front.

Every aspect of your life.  All the relationships in your life.  God is blessing everything that relates to you. 

Nothing entered into Obed-Edom’s house as a curse or as a lack of blessing for three months.  Imagine what his health was like.  Imagine what his crops were like.  Everything was going right for this man.  All that belonged to him was blessed.

For a good Hebrew man and a good Hebrew woman, what was the greatest sign of blessing in life?  Children.  Hold onto that.  We’ll come back to it.

So, here is a farmer or a shepherd, a Gittite, a common man – and he has the Ark of God, the Ark of God’s presence in his house for three months.

Here is Tom’s paraphrase of verse 12, “Now they told King David, ‘Hey, Obed-Edom is getting his socks blessed off.’”  So, David went and brought up the Ark of God from the house of Obed-Edom to the City of David.

We just need to linger here for a moment.  Consider the commonness of this man.

What would YOU do if God’s Ark and God’s presence was in your home for three months and everything about you was blessed, and then a knock comes on your door again and they say, “We’re taking the ark into Jerusalem.”

What would you do?  Everything in your life has been blessed by God’s presence, and now that presence is leaving.  What grief must have been in Obed-Edom’s heart!  But, I have a sensing that Obed-Edom didn’t wait long before he had his family packed up and ready to go after the procession to Jerusalem. 

“We’re not going to stay where we are,” Obed-Edom’s family must have said. 
“We’re going after the Ark.  All of our family, all of our household, we’re going to pursue the Ark of God.”
Why?  Because Obed-Edom had been forever changed by God’s presence.
We have to realize that the issue here is NOT…
Oh, God, I could use a changed life or
        Oh, God, I could use everything in my house being blessed.
The issue is “Oh, Lord, what I need is You.”
Leave the rest up to Him.
Why Obed-Edom?  The story of this simple man is woven into a bigger story which describes King David's wrong plan for bringing the Ark into the city versus the right answer.  I believe with all my heart that our walk (wilderness journey) to Houston and The Response is "THE RIGHT WAY."  We are gathering for a solemn assembly to meet before our God on behalf of our state and nation.  Let us heed the call to gather - whether in person or by internet.  With all our heart - LET US PURSUE GOD AND HIS PRESENCE!

*Used by permission by author and publisher.
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