The Journey

The Journey Readings: Week 125… and rattled by His ways…

I find myself a little rattled by His ways… after reading the account of the failed attempt to return the ark of the covenant to the center of the nation of Israel…

So David assembled all Israel… to bring the ark of God from Kiriath-jearim. And David and all Israel went up to Baalah, that is to Kiriath-jearim that belongs to Judah, to bring up from there the ark of God, which is called by the name of the Lord who sits enthroned above the cherubim. And they carried the ark of God on a new cart, from the house of Abinadab, and Uzzah and Ahio were driving the cart. And David and all Israel were rejoicing before God with all their might, with song and lyres and harps and tambourines and cymbals and trumpets.

And when they came to the threshing floor of Chidon, Uzzah put out his hand to take hold of the ark, for the oxen stumbled. And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah, and he struck him down because he put out his hand to the ark, and he died there before God.

1 Chronicles 13:5-10 ESV

God’s people were rejoicing… thinking they were in the right… doing something great for God… when suddenly… He strikes down one in charge of His ark… one trying to protect it…

God didn’t think what they were doing was great… they left Him out of the planning…

…for the thing was right in the eyes of all the people.
1 Chronicles 13:4 ESV

They neglected to search His law for instruction… apparently they had somehow misplaced the law… no one objected to the cart plan… when the law clearly stated…

They shall make an ark of acacia wood. Two cubits and a half shall be its length,
a cubit and a half its breadth, and a cubit and a half its height. You shall overlay
it with pure gold, inside and outside shall you overlay it, and you shall make on
it a molding of gold around it. You shall cast four rings of gold for it and put them
on its four feet, two rings on the one side of it, and two rings on the other side of it.
You shall make poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold. And you shall
put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark to carry the ark by them.
The poles shall remain in the rings of the ark; they shall not be taken from it.
Exodus 25:9 ESV

Poles were to be used to carry the ark… and only the tribe of Levi was to transport the ark… they weren’t doing things right…

So… why does this rattle…?

Because I know God looks at the heart… and I believe His people were acting with a heart for God… they thought they were doing right…

When I’ve thought motive was all… it’s not…

They broke the law they had been given…
yes… it might have been lost… or neglected…
but still they were responsible for it…

Jesus came not to abolish the law… but to fulfill it…

“Do not think I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets;
I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you,
until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot will pass from the Law…”
Matthew 5:17-18 ESV

The heart of the law still stands…
it’s the heart of the law that matters…
not the heart of the people…

There are consequences for breaking the law…
even if our intentions are good…
even when we think we’re doing right…
if we haven’t done things His way…
we’re wrong…

So motive isn’t everything…
there is grace when we obey… but don’t get it quite right…
but when we do what we think is right… without consulting Him…
well… it’s just wrong…
and praise Him… there’s grace for that too…

Get to know His Way… don’t neglect His Word… get into it…

This week’s readings…
Monday                   1 Chronicles 19:1 – 21:17
Tuesday                  1 Chronicles 21:18 – 22:19
Wednesday              1 Chronicles 23
Thursday                 1 Chronicles 24-25
Friday                      1 Chronicles 26

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