Seek God according to His commandments
„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.”
It is clear why Uzzah died. He touched what he shouldn't have touched. God commanded that the ark of the covenant be carried by the poles. He also ordered that the poles never be removed:
„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.
Uzzah was most likely a Cohenite, as he was a child of Abinabad, like Eleazar, who was sanctified for 20 years to keep the ark of the covenant. And this could strictly only be done by Aaron's descendant. But God did not allow the Cohenites to touch the ark of the covenant. Moreover, according to the law, the ark of the covenant was not allowed to be seen, so the ark of the covenant had to be covered when it was carried (Numbers 4,5). We also read in the Bible that the priests did not carry the ark of the covenant on their shoulders, but put it on a cart. So we understand that the ark of the covenant was not carried in the manner prescribed by God, and therefore God expressed his displeasure. David later understood this:
„Because you did not carry it the first time, the LORD our God broke out against us, because we did not seek him according to the rule."”
God said David was a man of His heart. So God loved David very much. God chose David to be king over His people. David, with a pure heart and joy, sought to restore order in Israel as soon as possible, which Saul had corrupted or neglected. But haste doesn’t always lead to good, there’s a way to get closer to God. We read in the former verse that:
„because we did not seek him according to the rule.”
It is not God who needs us, we need Him. That is why our efforts are not enough, we must do well! If God did this to David, we may think that God will not discriminate with us either.
God has always been and will be the holiest. The more sacred we are, the closer we can come to Him. But the concept of holiness is also fatally simplified by many Christians. It is said that we have become holy by accepting Jesus, that now the Father sees Jesus in us, blah blah blah…
Indeed, the Father can see Jesus in us if we live the way Jesus lived. Otherwise, how could the Father see Jesus in us?
„And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says "I know him" but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked. Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard.”
There is a way to worship Him. We can only worship Him in the way God has given us. There are no new ways of doing this, there are no new teachings of the Holy Spirit on this, for just as Jesus said that the Holy Spirit does not speak his own, but what Jesus said (John 16:13).
Let's look at Jesus' words how He taught us about the worship of the Father:
„And he who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him.”
Alas, is the Lord with me now or not? I do not feel His presence…
Jesus did not approach this from an emotional point of view either, but in a concise and clear way, so that He does what is pleasing to the Father, so Jesus is sure about that He is with Him! And what shall we do to do the will of the Father? What is the act by which we can be sure that the Father is with us?
„But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth."”
What does it mean to worship God in spirit and in truth? I do not think it is necessary to explain this in detail, for to worship in spirit means to live spiritually and not physically, and the truth is to live according to the Word (John 17:17).
We could talk a lot about it, we could bring a lot of quotes from the Bible, we could explain what is already completely understandable, the point is: do what God says. Not what our hearts dictate (for, as we read in Jeremiah, is more deceitful than all things), but let us do what God commanded in the commandments.
Author: Antal Farkas