Lost & Found

7/11/2021

Message Title: Lost & Found
Theme: Reruns & Glory Days
Season:  Ordinary Time
Main Text: 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19
Scripture Reading: Ephesians 1:3-14
RCL Scripture: 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19; Amos 7:7-15; Psalm 24; Psalm 85:8-13; Ephesians 1:3-14; Mark 6:14-29
Focus: David moves the Ark of the Covenant into Jerusalem.
Function: To express gratitude for the finding of lost things and the recharging of depleted energy.
Other Notes:

SCRIPTURE READING:  Ephesians 1:3-14 3 Bless the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! He has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing that comes from heaven. 4 God chose us in Christ to be holy and blameless in God’s presence before the creation of the world. 5 God destined us to be his adopted children through Jesus Christ because of his love. This was according to his goodwill and plan 6 and to honor his glorious grace that he has given to us freely through the Son whom he loves. 7 We have been ransomed through his Son’s blood, and we have forgiveness for our failures based on his overflowing grace, 8 which he poured over us with wisdom and understanding. 9 God revealed his hidden design[b] to us, which is according to his goodwill and the plan that he intended to accomplish through his Son. 10 This is what God planned for the climax of all times:[c] to bring all things together in Christ, the things in heaven along with the things on earth. 11 We have also received an inheritance in Christ. We were destined by the plan of God, who accomplishes everything according to his design. 12 We are called to be an honor to God’s glory because we were the first to hope in Christ. 13 You too heard the word of truth in Christ, which is the good news of your salvation. You were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit because you believed in Christ. 14 The Holy Spirit is the down payment on our inheritance, which is applied toward our redemption as God’s own people, resulting in the honor of God’s glory.

RERUNS: It’s good to be back with you all. I’m sure we all can relate: vacations are wonderful but nothing beats sleeping in your own bed! It’s official: Josh got to experience a South Dakota farm. We spent a few days on my aunt and uncle’s farm over 4th of July. Sunsets, baby calf feedings, target practice, and family fish fries were salve to our souls. All with a dose of no cell service or wi-fi. PHOTOS

  1. AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT:
    1. Do you have a place where you can “unplug”?
    2. How do you recharge?

PHOTOS We’re still in our re-run’s series. Being at “the farm” brought back a flood of memories. Because my aunt and uncle’s farm was away from internet and cell service, we had to be in the moment. I learned to move cattle on atvs. I bottle fed calves. I walked through corn fields and picked up cobs that the harvester missed. I wouldn’t have experienced those things if I had every piece of technology in my hands. Being deprived of one thing opened doors to another.

Yet, no matter how glorious life was at the farm, I loved getting cell service and wi-fi back.

TRANSITION: In our text for today, we will see Israel experience a different type of loss and restoration.

Previously on: The story of Israel—Two weeks ago we saw David mourn for Saul and Jonathan. Through David’s experiences, we had a conversation about grief. Since then, David has become king though Israel was conflicted (two camps: Israel vs. Judah) about who should follow Saul as king. TONS of family drama unfolds between 2 Samuel 2 and 6. For a full, Game of thrones meets Bible stories experience, read those chapters.

Eventually David is recognized by all of Israel as king. (Also, David has 7 wives by this time. Bathsheba will be his 8th.)

MAIN TEXT: 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19 David again assembled all the fit young men in Israel: thirty thousand. 2 He and all his troops set out to bring the ark of God from Baale-judah. The ark bears the Name, the name of the Lord of Armies who is enthroned between the cherubim. 3 They set the ark of God on a new cart and transported it from Abinadab’s house, which was on the hill. Uzzah and Ahio, sons of Abinadab, were guiding the cart 4 and brought it with the ark of God from Abinadab’s house on the hill. Ahio walked in front of the ark. 5 David and the whole house of Israel were dancing before the Lord with all kinds of fir wood instruments, lyres, harps, tambourines, sistrums, and cymbals.

Paraphrased Vs 6-11 Uzzah touches the ark & ties bc God is mad. David gets mad at God.

12 It was reported to King David, “The Lord has blessed Obed-edom’s family and all that belongs to him because of the ark of God.” So David went and had the ark of God brought up from Obed-edom’s house to the city of David with rejoicing. 13 When those carrying the ark of the Lord advanced six steps, he sacrificed an ox and a fattened calf. 14 David was dancing with all his might before the Lord wearing a linen ephod. 15 He and the whole house of Israel were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts and the sound of the ram’s horn. 16 As the ark of the Lord was entering the city of David, Saul’s daughter Michal looked down from the window and saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord, and she despised him in her heart. 17 They brought the ark of the Lord and set it in its place inside the tent David had pitched for it. Then David offered burnt offerings and fellowship offerings in the Lord’s presence. 18 When David had finished offering the burnt offering and the fellowship offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord of Armies. 19 Then he distributed a loaf of bread, a date cake, and a raisin cake to each one in the entire Israelite community, both men and women. Then all the people went home.

EXPLANATION:

  1. Ark of the Covenant crash course: No, this isn’t Noah’s ark from Genesis.
    1. This is an oversimplification of the details around the Ark. Exodus has significant details on the construction and beginning uses of the Ark. Check it out.
    2. Ark or Arc- was an ornate wooden chest holding 3 significant things to the Israelite people: manna, Aaron’s staff that was used in the exodus from Egypt, and the 10 commandments.
    3. When the people traveled in the desert, the Arc travelled with them. It was a symbol of God’s presence with the people.
    4. Until Solomon built the Temple, the Arc lived in the Tabernacle. This movable worship space had specific details filled with symbolism and specific requirements in order for people to enter this worship space.
    5. Taken by the Philistines. Before Solomon was king, the Philistines captured the Arc. They had it for 7 months. Eventually, the Philistines sent it back to the Israelites because God plagued the Philistines. So they put it on a cart, attached some cows, and sent them on their way.  Check out 1 Samuel 5 for more of that story.
    6. Between the Israelites receiving the Ark back in 1 Samuel 5 and our text for today, the Arc was misplaced. Psalm 132 talks about this.
  2. Now, David is finally king! The king has returned the Ark of the Covenant back to the people. This task was not without its own struggles and pain—including spontaneous death, marital, & fertility problems.
  3. This is a big deal the Ark is back! God’s presence is back with the people.

INTERPRETATION:

  1. The Ark was not only symbolic of God’s presence; Israel connected the Ark to the successes and defeats they experienced in battle.
    1. For Americans, the best way to get into the shoes of an Israelite is to imagine someone stealing the Declaration of Independence. Then, the President (perhaps I need to say, imagine your favorite president, in order to make the point). goes out, finds it – people die in the process but they finally bring it home. The leader would be praised and proverbial ‘freedom’ would be restored. There would be parades!
    2. The limitation of this analogy is that the Declaration of Independence is a symbol of freedom not necessarily religion. America and the kingdom of Israel from the OT are not the same. Our history of religion and government have become more convoluted the more time passes.
  2. David’s kingship starts off strong. Every step of the way, David consults God. When he takes steps and experiences defeat, he turns to God for guidance. At this point, David seems like the perfect king. He is the king who can’t make mistakes. He is the king every other king should be measured to.
    1. If you’ve been reading along in the story so far; here is an update on where we’re going:
      1. 1 Samuel 8
      2. 1 Samuel 15-16
      3. 1 Samuel 17-18
      4. 2 Samuel 1
      5. 2 Samuel 5
      6. 2 Samuel 6
      7. 2 Samuel 7 – next week
      8. 2 Samuel 11
      9. 2 Samuel 12
      10. 2 Samuel 18
      11. 1 Kings 2-3
      12. 1 Kings 8

APPLICATION: To express gratitude for the finding of lost things and the recharging of depleted energy.

  1. In today’s passage, David is a righteous king… but that goodness doesn’t last forever. However, we’ll stay in the present-past for the moment. His response to the return of the Ark was unreserved worship. He danced. He played music. He embarrassed his wife (well one of the 7). God was praised.
  2. David sacrificed animals after the Ark moved 6 steps. SIX STEPS. Sometimes I can forget to say thank you for weeks. David said thank you after SIX STEPS.
  3. Two weeks ago, we talked about grief. Today I want to consider joy.
    1. AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT:
      1. What ways do you like to celebrate?
  4. My Lack of gratitude: If I’m honest with you, I don’t always think about saying ‘thank you’ to God when I experience joy or success. I feel like it’s natural to turn to God in grief or when we feel overwhelmed, but sometimes success leads me to forget who is caring for me.
  5. Practice makes perfect: I knew a pastor once who would never take compliments. He would always respond with “praise God” or “to God be the glory.” I used to think he was weird or even a little delusional. Now, I think a practice can be helpful, even when we don’t think or feel that God had anything to do with our success.
    1. Gratitude, praise, & worship aren’t always about a feeling.
      1. Denominations/Churches with formal liturgies:
        1. Lord’s prayer
        2. Doxology
        3. Confession
        4. Apostle’s creed
    2. We need training to be grateful. We need training to give God credit.
      1. Do I think God gives our favorite team victory in a sporting event? No.
      2. Do I think God gives us great parking spots? Not usually.
      3. Do I think God can use anything and everything to point to God’s glory? YES!!! YES!!! YES!!!
  6. I want to read the very last psalm to you as we consider gratitude and then we’re going to do something a little cheesy.
    1. Psalm 150

Praise the Lord!

Praise God in his sanctuary!
    Praise God in his fortress, the sky!
Praise God in his mighty acts!
    Praise God as suits his incredible greatness!
Praise God with the blast of the ram’s horn!
    Praise God with lute and lyre!
Praise God with drum and dance!
    Praise God with strings and pipe!
Praise God with loud cymbals!
    Praise God with clashing cymbals!
Let every living thing praise the Lord!

Praise the Lord!

  • Audience engagement: Think of something you are grateful for. On the count of three, we’re all going to shout “Thank you.”

CONCLUSION: In everything, point to God. In the good. In the bad. In the joy. In the pain. Find ways this week, to start incorporating gratitude into your daily life: maybe an audible ‘thank you,’ maybe you keep a gratitude jar, maybe your family takes time for ‘thank you’ at supper.

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