Read – 2 Samuel 6
Focus on verse 3-4
As I was working on rebuilding a website today, I installed a new plugin. As I was sitting it up, it directed me to change something in the settings, which I did — except I wish I hadn’t — when I hit the save button it made it impossible to log back in to the back of the website! “I hate WordPress!” Was my first inner reaction, but upon reflection, wordpress just did exactly what I told it to do. One of the most infuriating and frustrating situations one can find him or herself in is when the sole person responsible for the predicament one has created is one’s self. In today’s reading, David was finally ready to bring the Ark of God to Jerusalem — except he did it wrong. He should have consulted the manual in regard to how to properly move an Ark of God before he started.
They set the ark of God on a new cart and brought it from the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill. Uzzah and Ahio, sons of Abinadab, were guiding the new cart with the ark of God on it, and Ahio was walking in front of it. (v. 3-4)
The whole event sounds quite impressive, David thought he was doing the right thing, celebrating and bringing the ark into the city, and then it happens… the oxen stumble — the cart is jolted and the ark begins to topple — so Uzzah steps up to steady the ark and WHAM! the Lord strikes him down. Ten verses later it becomes evident that David apparently learned from this mistake, for in verse 13 the ark is now being carried as the Lord had instructed Moses it should always be. The priests were to carry the ark on gold plated poles that fit through the rings on the its corners – this time all goes well and the ark comes into the city.
David was angry because in his own mind, Uzzah had done nothing wrong, yet he had been struck down by God for touching the ark. The text says David was afraid of the Lord that day…he had been reminded that God is not “safe”. God was also not someone or something David could control.
Have you ever been where David was? Have you ever found yourself angry and fearful because in your heart you know that you did it wrong, and now because of your careless mistake someone is hurt. David was angry why? Because the Lord struck down Uzzah?…or because he knew he should have known better? I suspect David knew God well enough to know that God was not wrong in His action. The fact that he gets it right the second time further supports that hypothesis. David also knew God well enough to know He is a God of second chances, a God who’s lovingkindness and mercy is greater than our stubbornness and stupidity.