Break it Down Like David!

 

I’m fairly certain I’m never shopping at Walmart Grocery again. I say this often, but I mean it.

I’ve watched a grown man beat the pulp out of female security guard, though she did hold her own for the most part.

I’ve been cornered by a man asking how to make sloppy joes in the Manwich aisle. 

I’ve been hit on by a man in the dog food aisle. He literally asked if I was married. I thought, “Dude, you must be desperate for one and two, if you think you’re hitting on an animal person, know that I’m buying regular sized dry dog food for an 8 lb mutt with no teeth. I do not plan to water it down either.” 

And today, I was barracaded in the chip aisle by a random dude asking where I go to church because it’s the last days. If he only knew just how right he was at that moment. I was hot, hungry, and in a hurry.

While going to church means nada in the sense that it won’t save your tail from hell, I appreciate his concern. Okay, not really. Well a little. I suppose he thinks he’s doing what he can to spread the gospel, though, that wasn’t at all what he was doing. I sort of wish I’d have said no to hear what he might have said next. Maybe he would have started with, “Hey random lady, have you broken the 10 commandments because that makes you a sinner going to hell. And it’s the last days. Get saved.”

I don’t know. I suppose I get the “Do something!” mentality. I love that people are in love with Jesus and want others to know about Him, His saving grace, His love and mercy. But scaring the literal hell out them isn’t exactly the right approach in my opinion, or cornering them in a market to ask where they go to church. Church doesn’t save people. Jesus does. Granted, you could meet Jesus at church. 

I believe that God can ask you to do something out of the ordinary concerning Him–like praying for a random stranger in McDonald’s, buying the coffee for the car behind you in a Starbucks line, or even speaking a word to someone in the grocery aisle (if you are most certain it is the Lord and you are supposed to) however, there are things that I think happen out of zealousness but they backfire and sometimes do more harm than good.

A youth pastor (not our rocking youth pastor) once told the kids to be radical in their faith. I agree. Be passionate. Then he told a story about a boy so on fire for God he jumped up on the cafeteria tables and started preaching.

 

I had to explain to my daughter that the Bible says to obey earthly authority (not if they tell you to go against what you know is biblical authority). Drive the speed limit, etc…Authority at the school says not to jump on cafeteria tables. It will get you detention. Is it right to break the rules God tells us not to, to preach Christ? Why can’t that boy just live his life out loud, love the people he encounters and preach through his daily living? He could. 

Now, I know that boy was excited about his faith. But his still-on-milk-mentality drove him to break rules that ultimately led to detention and not a revival. I explained while the youth pastor had good intentions, he got it wrong. 

Radical faith isn’t preaching from cafeteria tables or cornering folks at the store with pointed questions that ultimately don’t matter. You can die in your sin and go to church every Sunday.

Radical faith is saying, “No, I won’t go to that movie because I know they take the Lord’s name in vain and show nudity.” “No, I won’t go to that party because there is drinking involved.” It takes bigger faith to look peers in the eye and draw a line than it does to stop a stranger and scare them half to death. (There are always exceptions.)

It’s like that commercial from the 70’s. Hey Koolaid. What is up with
that? Remember those commercials? Did I date myself? As a kid, Kool Aid running
through the wall to save the day was pretty kool.

 

 
He was passionate
about his drink and helping others. Passionate about the right thing. Kool Aid
had lots of zeal.
 
However, did he
really need to bust through a wall? Was that really the right way to go about
being passionate? Is impulsiveness the answer?
  
Look with me at 2
Samuel Chapter 6. David is king and he’s bringing back the ark. The presence of
God! The Philistines had captured it, then they were plagued with rats and
tumors until they sent it away and at this point it was in the home of
Abinadab, and David was ready for it to be back in his city.
 
He was zealous.
Passionate. And so were the people.
 
They busted out the
harps, lyres and wooden instruments and played music. It was a joyous occasion.
 
They loaded the ark
of God, whose name is called by the Name, the LORD of Hosts, who dwells between
the cherubim onto a new cart and Abinadab’s sons pushed the cart. The people and
David went ahead of the cart, rejoicing. Dancing. Singing. Breaking it down.
 
And the cart hit a
bump.
 
And Uzzah, one of
the sons, reached out to steady it.
 
And he dropped dead.
 
That last party horn
gave a sorry “hrrrrngh” and everyone stopped. The singing halted.
That woman near the end carried her note maybe 30 seconds longer than the rest
until it died off in a weak echo.
 
The Lord had struck
Uzzah down. In his passion. His zeal. Why?
 
Because though their
motives and passion was pure, they did not follow the proper order.
 
God was specific
about that ark and how to carry it. He had them make poles that slipped into
the four grooves on the ark. And the sons of Kohath were designated to carry
it. No carts.
 
This was the very
presence of God. A holy God. As if man could just reach out and touch Him
(then–before Christ came and made a way so we could). 
 
RC Sproul says, “The presumptous sin of Uzzah was this…He assumed that his hands were less polluted than the dirt.” 
 
They got caught up
in being passionate that they forgot order. God is God of order.
 
David was angry. Not
the same Hebrew word for angry that God was. He had no reason to be angry. He’d
disobeyed. But God’s anger was righteous.
 
David left the ark
at Obed-Edom. Everyone went home, solemn. Probably confused. Some ticked–like
David.
 
But David was a man
who took his emotions to the Lord. He had a teachable spirit. And three months
later, David did it right.
 
He went to the Lord in his passion and consulted God. This time (verse 13) those bearing the
ark, with the poles carried it about six paces and no one died so they stopped
to sacrifice an offering to the Lord.
 
And then they danced
before the Lord and David was in nothing but a linen ephod, making merry. Full
of passion and joy. Not caring what others thought.
 
He’d done it right.
 
His wife, however
wasn’t so happy about it. “How dare you dance around like a fool, half
naked. You. Are. King.” (my paraphrase)
 
And David said,
“In God’s presence I’ll dance all I
want! He chose me over your father and the rest of our family and made me
prince over God’s people, over Israel. Oh
yes, I’ll dance to God’s glory—more
recklessly even than this. And as far as I’m concerned . . .
I’ll gladly look like a fool . . . but among these maids you’re
so worried about, I’ll be honored no end.” 2 Samuel 6:21-22 MSG
 
Some translations
say, “I’ll be even more undignified than this!”
 
I love it.
 
Passion plus order.
Then you can dance recklessly!
It’s important that we go about things God’s
way. We consult Him first with the steps. The fact is, David knew the steps,
but he got so caught up in his excitement, he left the most important part out.
 
Obedience in all
areas. God wants us to delight in Him and be full of joy. But He also expects
us to follow each step accordingly. And to follow man-made authority that doesn’t directly go against what He says.
 
Be radical. Be passionate. Be full of zeal. 
 
But be smart.

 

What makes you want to dance before the Lord?

 

8 thoughts on “Break it Down Like David!

  1. ORDER. Such an important word. I"m all on-board with passion. God'a passionate God and I can get all crazy dancing over him. But I need to keep my feet on the ground and remember he orders my steps…and to follow them while crazy dancing:) Which, btw, that story is one of my favorites in the Bible.

     
     
  2. That was great, Jessica! Every time I read that Uzzah story, I'm like, "But…but…" LOL
    But you're right. God was very specific and RC Sproul's take on it is excellent.

     
     
  3. Oh my gosh, oh my gosh…I had to pause my reading to let you know I was totally hit on once by a guy in the dog food aisle at wal-mart too! No joke…my sister was with me and the guy looked between us and I could hear his wheels turning as if he was thinking, "Hey, either one will do." Only he didn't ask if we were married. He said, and I quote, "Either of you two got a man?" Uh yeah, I gave him a lame brush-off and we escaped. Okay, now back to read the rest of the post…

     
     
  4. Okay, now I've read the whole post. Love it! A coworker and I had this exact conversation the other day. She was arguing for structure and I was arguing that sometimes God breaks through our structure to get our attention (aka Pentecost…people looking like they were drunk…etc) But I love how your post ties both sides together…order and radical passion can co-exist. At the end of the day, it's about following God's lead, isn't it? Love it!

     
     
  5. Jessica, I love how you say the radical is the small everyday stuff! That is so true!

    Great post!

     
     
  6. The next time you are invited to speak for some young folks, this totally needs to be your topic. It's something they need to get a handle on early, before the "radicals" around them turn them (and everyone else) off to Christianity. Yes, God is a God of order!

     
     
  7. It's so easy to feel guilty because we aren't the Kool-Aid guy, busting through the wall, preaching about Cherry drinks. But you are soooo right. It's the small things. Living a godly life. Praying. Trusting. Being a good example. Giving honest answers to questions about God. We don't need to be big shots to make a difference!

     
     
  8. Wonderful post. The story of Uzzah has always intrigued me, and I appreciate your perspective. Thanks for posting, and I'll definitely share it.

     
     

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