A Slow Transition

The United Kingdom Rejected Part 6/9

By Teena Myers

A year after Saul admitted he had played the fool and made a very great mistake, Saul and Jonathan died in battle, and Judah anointed David king of their tribe. Abner tried to salvage Saul’s dynasty by making Saul’s son, Ishbosheth, king of Israel. The long civil war that followed strengthened the house of David, while the house of Saul became weaker. Abner took advantage of Ishbosheth’s weakness to sleep with one of Saul’s concubines. Ishbosheth’s rebuke angered Abner, and he vowed to deliver the kingdom to David. His decision cost Abner and his king their lives. Abner’s death at the hand of Joab emboldened Rechab and Baanah to kill their king, and bring his head to David, thinking they would gain his favor. David had them executed for murder.

Twelve years after Samuel anointed David the next king of Israel, God united Israel and Judah under the reign of a man after his heart, and proved that the best human king God can give still falls far short of having God himself as our King. David did much good for Israel, but he too will end his reign with shame.

David captured Jerusalem and made it the capital of Israel. Then he successfully defeated the Philistine’s challenge to topple him from power. His fame spread, and the surrounding nations feared him. Firmly established as Israel’s king, he turned his attention to the ark of God, that had been abandoned during the reign of Saul.[1]

With the nation’s approval, he pitched a tent to house the Ark of the Covenant in Jerusalem. David’s attempt to relocate the ark reveals the first crack in the humility that had defined David’s life. He arrived at Kirjathjearim with 30,000 of Israel’s elite. They put the ark on a new cart and started the parade toward Jerusalem with an orchestra playing and with singing. Amid this great show of force and joyous celebration, Uzzah touched the ark and God killed him. In the stunned silence that followed, David became angry with God for ruining the glorious day. He sent the ark to Obededom the Gittite. Three months later, he learned God blessed the family of Obededom, and tried again. This time, he consulted his copy of Moses’ law to learn the proper method for moving the ark, and he humbled himself by dancing with the women.[2]

Less than two years after David brought the ark to Jerusalem, he became dissatisfied with the tent he pitched. David lived in a house of cedar and believed God should have better accommodations than he did. David’s desire touched God, who responded with blessings and a rejection. God accepted the house, but David could not build it because he was a man of war who shed much blood.[3] David spent the rest of his life preparing for the temple his son, Solomon, would build, only to be destroyed when the nation failed. Then rebuilt and destroyed again after Judah rejected Jesus.

[1] 1 Chronicles 13:3

[2] 2 Samuel 6:20

[3] 1 Chronicles 28:3

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