Summary: A sermon that looks at David and the Covenant box to explore the reality of worship.

Worship – A new reality

2 Samuel 6 New International Version (NIV)

The Ark Brought to Jerusalem 6 -23

Worship a new reality

What is Worship?

You might find all kinds of answers.

We might pick the wings off this butterfly of a word and get declaring God worthy = sounds all right to me.

Or if we are dining out on this word we might decide to go Greek most often translated “worship” (proskuneo) is “to fall down before” or “bow down before.”

But what is worship and how do we find a new reality?

worship is not about being pitch perfect – in tune toneally cranked up or electronically smart– it is as Jesus says….

John 4:21-24

23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth."

Ever since Abel offered a better sacrifice than Cain the importance of worship has been on the table.

It has occupied the minds and hearts of true followers of God for centuries.

Spirit and Truth.

That’s the answer but do we know how to get there?

King David is one of the great examples of a worshipper of God in the Old Testament and in his life we find vital clues for worship both in his successes and his failures. He like us had to engage in the worship of his Godly ancestors and yet help freshen it up for his generation.

The covenant box was critical As a sign of His covenant God had the Israelites make a box according to His own design, in which to place the stone tablets containing the Ten Commandments. This box, or chest, was called an “ark” and was made of acacia wood overlaid with gold. The Ark was kept in the tabernacle in the desert.

The real significance of the Ark of the Covenant was what took place involving the lid of the box, known as the "Mercy Seat." It was here that the high priest, only once a year (Leviticus 16), entered the Holy of Holies where the Ark was kept and atoned for his sins and the sins of the Israelites. The priest sprinkled blood of a sacrificed animal onto the Mercy Seat to appease for past sins committed. This was the only place in the world where this atonement could take place.

. The Apostle Paul, wrote about Christ being our covering for sin - Romans 3:24-25: "…There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement,[i] through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished" Just as there was only one place for atonement of sins in the Old Testament—the Mercy Seat of the Ark of the Covenant—so there is also only one place for atonement in the New Testament and current times—the cross of Jesus Christ. We come to worship through the mercy and the grace of God made possible through the blood of Jesus Christ our saviour.

When God had established the ark in Israel as the centre of worship he lay out very careful instructions. It was the place where his presence dwelt and it was to be respected greatly.

Aarons sons died when they got it wrong. The charge of carrying the Ark and the rest of the holy utensils was given to the family of Kohath, of the tribe of Levi(Num. iv. 2-15).

The tribe of Levi were a people set apart for God.

They were covered by grace and it was God’s plan for them to carry the covenant box the place where God’s presence fell. David revered God and he longed to have him worshipped in Israel. He wanted God not himself to be at the centre of attention for Israel and he desired great worship

We see this in how he confronted Goliath - 1 Samuel chapter 17 . David was offended by the arrogance of Goliath and his unwillingness to acknowledge the greatness of the God he worshipped

We last heard of of the ark of God when it came back from the land of the Philistines in 1 Samuel 7:1. It sat at the house of Abinadab for some 70 years. David had a great motive - to emphasize the presence and glory of God in Israel by moving the ark of God to Jerusalem/

2 Samuel 6 New International Version (NIV)

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