Handle with Care (2 Samuel 6)
Tabernacle Video Intro:
The curtain is torn. That which would keep us from God (our sin debt) has been satisfied by Jesus. All who would call of the name of Jesus… now have access to the very presence of God. In fact, through the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit (the power and presence of God in our lives) we become the tabernacle (dwelling place) of God.
In the reality of the presence of God, how do we respond?
How do we handle something so precious as- not only access- but relationship with a Holy God? (once unattainable, but now so wonderfully available)
Sometimes we get in trouble when we don’t treat things that are precious with care:
– Bobby’s phone (broken iPhone)
– BCS Coaches’ Trophy (broken trophy)
– Ill. Holding a baby during football season (touchdown)
I want to share a story today from the life of David (OT), that gives us some valuable insights as we live in relationship with and in the presence of God. 2 Samuel 6.
Background: David was anointed by the prophet Samuel to be the future king of Israel in his early pre-teen / teen years. In choosing David as the future King, God reminded the prophet Samuel “The Lord does not see as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7) David purposed in his heart to honor God. As a teenager, David saw the power of God demonstrated through him as he chose to live in obedience to God. Standing before a giant faced with impossible worldly odds, David declared “I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts” and accomplished the unthinkable. When David took the throne as an adult, he had to choose if he would continue to honor God.
After establishing a united kingdom, David desired that Jerusalem become not only the center of his government, but also the center of worship. During the previous forty year reign of Saul, there was no mention of the Ark of the Covenant (the symbol of the Lord’s presence) being in the midst of Israel. [Explain Ark of Covenant] David realized that a successful reign as king of God’s chosen people was dependent upon his obedience to the King of kings. Therefore, David decided to bring the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem.
2 Samuel 6:1-5
Description of scene… (Vss. 3-5)
– 30,000 men
– Celebration, dancing, orchestra… worshiping w/ all their might
– Night of worship x 50!… this is the scene.
In the midst of this incredible worship service, a terrible mistake was made. In all the excitement of moving the ark (with good intentions to honor God), they failed to do it God’s way!
Numbers 4:15, 7:9
David made a new cart. (world’s way vs. God’s way)
Throughout this whole scene, David was disobeying God.
First “Handle with Care” principle…
1) Excitement and zeal for God does not replace obedience to God. (Vs. 3-5)
Does God want our worship? YES!
Does God want us to be excited about him? ABSOLUTELY!
Is there something that God desires more than our excitement and zeal???
Samuel confronting Saul, David’s predecessor, whom God rejected as king because of his disobedience… 1 Samuel 15:22
1 Samuel 15:22…“But Samuel replied, “What is more pleasing to the LORD: your burnt offerings and sacrifices or your obedience to his voice? Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice, and submission is better than offering the fat of rams.” (NLT)
The only offering God was interested in that day was of a fully devoted heart; one committed completely to honoring and obeying His word.
It’s not about ‘getting it right’ with respect to our performance. It never has been. It is about being right with God in our hearts!
It is not religion that God seeks of His children- it is relationship.
Our “offerings” to Him mean little if they aren’t motivated by a heart filled with love. And, yes, if we truly love Him we will indeed do as He commands.”
John 14:15 “If you love me, you will obey what I command.”
With great intentions, David & crew failed to do it God’s way.
They made the plan about them, and not God
There are many people who are not experiencing harmony, fulfillment, and victory in their lives because they are trying to do it their way and have refused simple obedience to the creator.
I talk to students all the time… “how did I end up here” (not happy, not satisfied) I tell them…
“As soon as you quit calling the shots…”
But we often disobey, and then blame God for the mess we find ourselves in… “God has a plan” “Everything happens for a reason”
Ill. – Pinterest Slide “Everything happens for a reason, but sometimes things happen because you are dumb and make bad decisions.”
God’s plan is not easier. It is better.
– Obedience is not always easy, but as David is about to learn…
“The cost of obedience is nothing compared with the cost of disobedience.”
We see the cost of disobedience in vss. 6 & 7…
2) A casual approach to God does not change God’s holiness.(Vs.6)
Uzzah’s familiarity with the ark…. (son of Abinidab, his brother caretaker)
Abinidab’s house was blessed. No doubt Uzzah had a great love for the ark, but perhaps had become a little too comfortable around it.
*Uzzah had good intentions…. But forgot the holiness of God. In that moment, he made the biggest mistake of his life.
I wonder if the things of God become too familiar to us? Is it possible to become too comfortable???
Have we become so familiar with the things of God that we’ve lost perspective on His holiness?
Ps. 111:10 “ The fear of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom, a good understanding have all those who do His commandments.”
Maybe we like the idea of “Jesus is my homeboy” vs. Fearing God.
Proverbs 19:23 “The fear of the Lord leads to life, and whoever has it rests satisfied.”
Without the fear of the Lord, it would be easy to forget why you should really follow Jesus.
People ask, “Are you big on sin or are you big on grace?” (We preach big grace because we understand the problem of sin is big.)
Let’s not minimize the bigness & holiness of God.
God invites us to experience the “bigness” of him. Let’s not minimize the significance of that.
Lastly, in vs. 7 we see the 3rd “Handle with Care” principle…
3) Intentions do not prevent consequences of actions. (Vs. 7)
Our intentions do not excuse us from the consequences of our actions.
Ill. Speeding ticket (Judge)
“It’s the thought that counts” – That’s a lie.
Imagine what would happen… Ill. Anniversary Present /Christmas
We wouldn’t do either of these, but we do it when it comes to God.
We try to drill into our students. *Direction, not intentions, determines your destination.
We have these intentions to honor God in our family.
(family devotions) (love for church)
We get “lulled” into security by our intentions. The enemy would say “as long as you MEAN to do that”, how about “TOMORROW” And so these good intentions never turn into actions, and we are left with regret, remorse, and sometimes wishing that we had handled opportunities with better care.
Conclusion: Let’s finish the story. (vss. 8-15)
David’s anger was righteous… It led him to repentance.
David moved from a good plan to a God plan. His realization of God’s presence drove him to humility, obedience, & worship. (every 6 steps)
Only as he did it God’s way, was the blessing and power of God experienced in his life.
How do we respond to the presence of God??
The reality of God’s presence should drive us to humility, obedience, & worship.