David Brings the Ark to Jerusalem
II Sam. 1-10
Review Activities for this Lesson
Talking about Saul reminded us of the rule we learned in earlier
lessons, if we obey God he blesses us but if we disobey him we suffer for our
sins. The one who made us knows us better than we know ourselves and whatever he
tells us is for our own good. His way helps us to be happy now and later to live
in heaven with him. Everyone has problems sometimes, but as long as we depend on
him and his way he’ll take care of us. Think about all the ways Saul depended on
himself instead of following God! That’s why the Lord wanted a man after his own
heart to be king in his place. As the new king David would make mistakes but he
always repented and never forgot that God was there to help him.
One of King David’s first acts was to build a capitol city in Jerusalem. The
heathen Jebusites there on Mt. Zion thought no one could capture it, but they
didn’t know David’s God. With his help, David conquered them and built a strong
David also built a beautiful palace in Jerusalem. His friend King Hiram of Tyre
floated cedar logs down the coastline for David’s house so it would be grand and
beautiful. A house made of cedar wood was special in those days; most houses
were made from mud bricks.
After several great battles the Philistines were beaten too badly to bother
God’s people as they had in the past. God helped David defeat his other enemies,
Soon David made his plans to bring the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem. Taking
3,000 of Israel’s best man, he had the ark set on a new cart and brought down
from Abinadad’s house where it had been for twenty years. Abinadad’s sons Uzzah
and Ahio drove the oxen hitched to the cart. David and his men went joyfully
before it, playing on their harps, symbols, and tambourines, What a happy
procession that was!
Suddenly their merrymaking stopped, Abinadad’s son Uzzah was dead! One of the
oxen had stumbled and, maybe without thinking, Uzzah had reached his hand out to
steady the ark. God was so angry to see his command about moving the ark
disobeyed that he struck Uzzah dead on the spot.
How do you think David and his men felt then? Since it had been his idea to move
the ark, Davis seemed to blame himself. He was so upset he left the ark in the
house of Obed, an Israelite who lived nearby, and sorrowfully took his company
back to Jerusalem.
After three months, David decided to move the ark again. This time, however, he
was careful to follow the instructions God gave through Moses. He sent priests
down to bring the ark back on their shoulders with poles, saying, “...the first
time the Lord our God broke out against us because we did not consult him about
the proper order.” To further show their desire to please the Lord, the people
offered sacrifices along the way.
There was great celebration when the ark finally reached Jerusalem David gave
all the people gifts of bread, meat and raisin cakes. Then priests were
appointed so that sacrifices could be offered each morning and evening for the
people, just as God had commanded in the law of Moses.
Now David decided to build a house for God. It did not seem right for him to
have such a beautiful palace while the ark was still in a tent. “See now, I
dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells inside tent curtains,” he
told God’s prophet Nathan. At first Nathan told God to go ahead with his plans.
That night, however, God spoke to Nathan, saying, “Go tell my servant David,
‘You shall build me a house to dwell in.”
God said he would set up David’s kingdom to last forever and someone from his
family would be its king. After David had died, one of his sons would build a
house for the Lord. That was enough for David. With gladness in his heart, he
went before the Lord to praise him for all these wonderful promises.