July 13, 2021

MESSAGE – 7th Sunday After Pentecost – 11 July 2021

MESSAGE – 7th Sunday After Pentecost – 11 July 2021

2 Samuel 6
Maroochydore Anglican
11th July 2021.
7:00am service.

By Rev P van’t Spyker of BCA

Big Question:
How does God’s presence affect people?

Big Idea:
God’s Kingdom advances bringing blessing and cursing to how people treat his presence. God’s Ark arrives in Jerusalem with great rejoicing and celebration is at home among his people.

Heavenly Father, we bow in your presence. May your Word be our rule, your spirit our teacher, and your great glory our supreme concern, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Every generation seems to have had their favourite boy bands.
The Beatles,
The Jackson 5,
News Kids on the Block,
Backstreet Boys,
One Direction.
The presence of a boy band usually makes people either cheer with great enthusiasm or groan with frustration.

Same band, same music.
But they affect people differently.

God’s presence will do the exact same thing.

Our Question for today is:
How does God’s presence affect people?

2 Points:
The Ark of God blesses and curses.
God’s presence is celebrated.

2 Samuel 6:3+6
3. 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.
David and all Israel were celebrating with all their might before the Lord, with castanets, harps, lyres, timbrels, sistrums and cymbals.

The Ark of God brings blessing and cursing.

It is now the new Financial year.
Soon people will be doing their taxes.
Then the envelope marked Private will come from tax department.
I’ve never had $0 on it.
I either owe them money and it’s stupid and unfair
Or it’s awesome. I have free money
Never neutral.

The Ark of the covenant will do something similar for the people that are near it.

As you know, God’s people – have grown from a Abraham and Sarah into an enormous nation.
Sadly, they were trapped as Slaves in Egypt.
God sends Moses to rescue them.
While on their rescue journey.
God gives them the Ark of the Covenant.
This ark or box is a gold platted box – roughly a metre long by 70 cm by 70 cm with special rings on the sides for poles to be inserted so that it can be carried.

This is God’s presence among his people.

God’s people are now living in the promised land.
But, as yet, they don’t have God’s Ark in their presence.
They don’t have God in the middle of them.
Final piece of the puzzle is to set up the Ark of God in the right place.

So David goes down with 30,000 men.
They go and collect the Ark.

They set it up on a cart and pull it up towards Jerusalem.
The fact that it’s on a cart should be raising alarm bells for us. This is not right.
If you follow the cross references in your Bible, they will point us to Exodus 25 or Numbers 4.
God gives very clear instructions:
The Ark it should be carried.
– With poles
– By a special group of people.

It had been left in Judah, David wanted it moved to the new capital city – Jerusalem.

There is massive celebration with music as they are bringing the presence and promises of their God home.

This is way more exciting that the screams of 12 year old girls at a boyband Concert.

The music and celebrations are going off.

The oxen pulling the cart stumbles and a man Uzzah reaches out to steady the ark.
Then whoosh.
God’s wrath shot down and killed Uzzah instantly.
He’s dead.

We read in verse 8, the Lord struck him dead because of his error.

We who read this are often in shock. What’s the deal?
What did he do?

He did the wrong thing before God and deserved to die.

The people should have known better
They should have carried the ark covered with special poles.

They didn’t obey God.
Uzzah imaged that he was cleaner that the dirt of the ground and assumed that it was better for him to touch it than for the ark to fall to the ground.

There was this casual attitude before God. As though God’s rules aren’t that important.
As though God’s holiness is just a guideline.

The party is over, The Ark is moved to a local house and everyone goes home.
The Ark is left at that home for 3 months.

Yet, this house where it is left was greatly blessed.

God’s presence even with foreigners was a great blessing for them.

Treat God wrongly and there is cursing.
But God is also more than able to bring great blessing.

The Ark of God brings blessing and cursing.

2 Sam 6:12-15
12 Now King David was told, “The Lord has blessed the household of Obed-Edom and everything he has, because of the ark of God.” So David went to bring up the ark of God from the house of Obed-Edom to the City of David with rejoicing. 13 When those who were carrying the ark of the Lord had taken six steps, he sacrificed a bull and a fattened calf. 14 Wearing a linen ephod, David was dancing before the Lord with all his might,15 while he and all Israel were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts and the sound of trumpets.

2. God’s presence is celebrated.

Sagrada Família is a church building in Barcelona in Spain.
Construction began in 1882.
It reached the halfway point in 2010.
It has it now has heritage listing.
But isn’t due to be completed till around 2026.

Crazy project, but could you image in the partying and celebration when it is completed?

It should be party that is celebrated for years.

King David hears about the blessing to the Family where the Ark is staying. So they go and try again to collect it.
This time, we can see that it was being carried properly.

When they took 6 steps, they sacrificed a bull and a fat calf.
As the Ark arrived and is in it’s place.
David, wearing on the clothes of a servant, an Ephod, takes on the form of a servant. He then danced with all of his might. Again they had shouts of praise and trumpets playing.
He’s not wearing much and he is dancing with all of his might.

God’s presence among his people is finally complete.

God’s people – the whole 12 tribes of Israel are in God’s place – the promised land, living under God’s rule.

God has given them victory on every side from their enemies.
This is almost the best that God’s kingdom can get.

For that reason, David dances, not a fun little dance.
But with all of his might.
He knows that God is there, dwelling among his people.

As David dances, his wife in verse 16, sees this.
She’s described differently – as the daughter of Saul.
She despises David in her heart because of the way he was dancing before the Lord.

In the end, she is still considered the daughter of Saul.
She has no children the rest of her life.

God refuses to allow any more offspring from Saul to live in the house of David the King. She is cursed, by being childless the rest of her life.

God’s presence is celebrated.

I started today by asking:
How does God’s presence affect people?

We can see that God’s Kingdom grows stronger and expands.
We’ve seen the very presence of God come to live among his people.

When people fight against God’s kingdom they lose.
When people treat it casually, they die.
When people despise it’s celebration, they are cursed.

Any power or Kingdom that comes up against it will lose.
The enemies of God’s Kingdom will be destroyed.
Yet it brings blessing even to foreigners.

In the same way that people react to a boy band, everyone will react to the Kingdom of God.

Many will rejoice in it.
Some will try to ignore it.
Some will treat it casually.
Many will reject it.

God’s presence for us, is not represented by The Ark of covenant anymore.
The temple and the Ark have long been destroyed.

God comes near to us in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The way that people respond to Jesus, God’s presence among us will bring either blessing or cursing.
To get closer to God, we come closer to Jesus. Not the holy land or and the front part of a church building.

How are you reacting to God’s presence?
How do you respond to the Lord Jesus Christ?

We glorify him in church on Sundays.
Does this rejoicing in Jesus change your life when the formal part of church is over? Does time talking after church change you? Or Jesus just in the formal part of church?
Do you ignore Jesus?

Are you danger of treating Jesus in causal way?
Allow him into only some bits of your life?

Or have you sadly rejected him?

We live and serve in Yeppoon and across Central Queensland. For far too long the people have treated Jesus causally. As a result, our churches are missing multiple generations in our churches.
In our Role with the Bush Church Aid, we are seeking to share Jesus with the people in Yeppoon, we want them to know Jesus, so that they can know God.

God’s kingdom is a kingdom that cannot be shaken.

Regardless of what happens with Covid.
Regardless of how people treat Jesus.
God rules the world.
Nothing will destroy God’s kingdom.