David Moved the Ark 1 Chronicles 13
1 Chronicles 13:1-14 NLTse (1) David consulted with all his officials, including the generals and captains of his army. (2) Then he addressed the entire assembly of Israel as follows: “If you approve and if it is the will of the LORD our God, let us send messages to all the Israelites throughout the land, including the priests and Levites in their towns and pasturelands. Let us invite them to come and join us. (3) It is time to bring back the Ark of our God, for we neglected it during the reign of Saul.” (4) The whole assembly agreed to this, for the people could see it was the right thing to do. (5) So David summoned all Israel, from the Shihor Brook of Egypt in the south all the way to the town of Lebo-hamath in the north, to join in bringing the Ark of God from Kiriath-jearim. (6) Then David and all Israel went to Baalah of Judah (also called Kiriath-jearim) to bring back the Ark of God, which bears the name of the LORD who is enthroned between the cherubim. (7) They placed the Ark of God on a new cart and brought it from Abinadab’s house. Uzzah and Ahio were guiding the cart. (8) David and all Israel were celebrating before God with all their might, singing songs and playing all kinds of musical instruments–lyres, harps, tambourines, cymbals, and trumpets. (9) But when they arrived at the threshing floor of Nacon, the oxen stumbled, and Uzzah reached out his hand to steady the Ark. (10) Then the LORD’s anger was aroused against Uzzah, and he struck him dead because he had laid his hand on the Ark. So Uzzah died there in the presence of God. (11) David was angry because the LORD’s anger had burst out against Uzzah. He named that place Perez-uzzah (which means “to burst out against Uzzah”), as it is still called today. (12) David was now afraid of God, and he asked, “How can I ever bring the Ark of God back into my care?” (13) So David did not move the Ark into the City of David. Instead, he took it to the house of Obed-edom of Gath. (14) The Ark of God remained there in Obed-edom’s house for three months, and the LORD blessed the household of Obed-edom and everything he owned.
I never noticed how quickly Chronicles moved through events and the order recorded until I looked at the subject of the temple and when it appears in the Bible. I have no idea why the return from Babylon is followed by David moving the Ark. If nothing else, that is a strange sequence. What is even stranger is what 1 Chronicles 13 followed.
All these men came in battle array to Hebron with the single purpose of making David the king over all Israel. In fact, everyone in Israel agreed that David should be their king. They feasted and drank with David for three days, for preparations had been made by their relatives for their arrival. And people from as far away as Issachar, Zebulun, and Naphtali brought food on donkeys, camels, mules, and oxen. Vast supplies of flour, fig cakes, clusters of raisins, wine, olive oil, cattle, sheep, and goats were brought to the celebration. There was great joy throughout the land of Israel. (1 Chronicles 12:38-40 NLTse).
Chronicles quickly moved from men fighting to make David king to David moving the Ark. That raises a few questions by placing the relocation of the Ark in the hands of a king rather than God’s direction. We can see how David consulted his officials, and placed the decision in God’s hands, but we don’t see God’s answer. We don’t see how God communicated with David or any of those people.
It seems David placed the responsibility on the people like he wanted to wash his hands of the act in case something went wrong. Chronicles continued its own style of writing by leaving out a lot of details. Where were they bringing the Ark back from? Scripture mentioned Kiriath-jearim which takes us back to another story.
So the men of Kiriath-jearim came to get the Ark of the LORD. They took it to the hillside home of Abinadab and ordained Eleazar, his son, to be in charge of it. The Ark remained in Kiriath-jearim for a long time–twenty years in all. During that time all Israel mourned because it seemed the LORD had abandoned them. Then Samuel said to all the people of Israel, “If you are really serious about wanting to return to the LORD, get rid of your foreign gods and your images of Ashtoreth. Determine to obey only the LORD; then he will rescue you from the Philistines.” So the Israelites got rid of their images of Baal and Ashtoreth and worshiped only the LORD. (1 Samuel 7:1-4 NLTse).
It seems that after the Philistines returned the Ark, no one took it back to the Tabernacle. Eli’s sons removed the Ark from the Tabernacle and lost it in a war against the Philistines. Eli’s sons thought the Ark had some kind of magical power to help them in a war. Or they were trying to force God into helping them.
What happened to the Tabernacle? One of the last places the Tabernacle was mentioned was in a story about Solomon during the early part of his reign.
Solomon son of David took firm control of his kingdom, for the LORD his God was with him and made him very powerful. Solomon called together all the leaders of Israel–the generals and captains of the army, the judges, and all the political and clan leaders. Then he led the entire assembly to the place of worship in Gibeon, for God’s Tabernacle was located there. (This was the Tabernacle that Moses, the LORD’s servant, had made in the wilderness.) David had already moved the Ark of God from Kiriath-jearim to the tent he had prepared for it in Jerusalem. But the bronze altar made by Bezalel son of Uri and grandson of Hur was there at Gibeon in front of the Tabernacle of the LORD. So Solomon and the people gathered in front of it to consult the LORD. There in front of the Tabernacle, Solomon went up to the bronze altar in the LORD’s presence and sacrificed 1,000 burnt offerings on it. That night God appeared to Solomon and said, “What do you want? Ask, and I will give it to you!” (2 Chronicles 1:1-7 NLTse).
What happened to the Tabernacle after that is guesswork at best. Another question came up in 2 Chronicles chapter 1. Why was Solomon sacrificing sheep? Solomon may not have been doing all the work, but when were kings given authority to write new laws about sacrifices?
The sequence centering on the temple is something we have to consider. Why is God leading us into something that is lost? Why is God leading us into a question no one can answer? This is telling us how important prayer is, and why we need God’s guidance to study. I had to pray about this one and ask God why He had His authors arrange such a strange sequence of events about the temple in an order obviously out of the natural order of a timeline. Whenever we see anything unusual, it is time to pray.
After a few days of prayer, I saw the connecting factor. God always set up links to draw our attention. Details the stories have in common. What do the three stories have in common? Nebuchadnezzar took all the articles out of the temple. The priests returned to rebuild the temple. The third story is about David moving the Ark to Jerusalem. What do those three stories have in common? All three of those stories involved a king.
2 Kings 25:8-10 NLTse On August 14 of that year, which was the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar’s reign, Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard and an official of the Babylonian king, arrived in Jerusalem. (9) He burned down the Temple of the LORD, the royal palace, and all the houses of Jerusalem. He destroyed all the important buildings in the city. (10) Then he supervised the entire Babylonian army as they tore down the walls of Jerusalem on every side.
Ezra 1:1-3 NLTse In the first year of King Cyrus of Persia, the LORD fulfilled the prophecy he had given through Jeremiah. He stirred the heart of Cyrus to put this proclamation in writing and to send it throughout his kingdom: (2) “This is what King Cyrus of Persia says: “The LORD, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth. He has appointed me to build him a Temple at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. (3) Any of you who are his people may go to Jerusalem in Judah to rebuild this Temple of the LORD, the God of Israel, who lives in Jerusalem. And may your God be with you!
1 Chronicles 13:1-3 NLTse (1) David consulted with all his officials, including the generals and captains of his army. (2) Then he addressed the entire assembly of Israel as follows: “If you approve and if it is the will of the LORD our God, let us send messages to all the Israelites throughout the land, including the priests and Levites in their towns and pasturelands. Let us invite them to come and join us. (3) It is time to bring back the Ark of our God, for we neglected it during the reign of Saul.”
We see how this story draws on more books to study. This shows how stories are linked to other sections of scripture. We see how difficult it would be for anyone to interpret the spiritual meaning of messages God placed in scripture. We do see how God uses His recorded Word to lead us to the proper interpretation. This is nothing short of the evidence every Christian needs to prove beyond any shadow of doubt. No person, or collection of people could have written the Bible. There had to be a creative hand and mind behind the planning and arrangement of the Bible.
What is the message hidden within the stories of those three kings? The first story is about Nebuchadnezzar, who may be one of the most familiar kings, and the easiest to figure out.
2 Kings 25:18-21 NLTse Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, took with him as prisoners Seraiah the high priest, Zephaniah the priest of the second rank, and the three chief gatekeepers. (19) And from among the people still hiding in the city, he took an officer who had been in charge of the Judean army; five of the king’s personal advisers; the army commander’s chief secretary, who was in charge of recruitment; and sixty other citizens. (20) Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, took them all to the king of Babylon at Riblah. (21) And there at Riblah, in the land of Hamath, the king of Babylon had them all put to death. So the people of Judah were sent into exile from their land.
Nebuchadnezzar had a reputation of dealing with a problem or issue by killing the people involved. We see this throughout the most concise book about his reign in Babylon. But the king said to the astrologers, “I am serious about this. If you don’t tell me what my dream was and what it means, you will be torn limb from limb, and your houses will be turned into heaps of rubble! (Daniel 2:5 NLTse).
We’d have to read a number of books to learn as much as we can about Nebuchadnezzar’s personality. We can’t judge a person by a single proof text. Daniel also told us how God worked so hard to bring Nebuchadnezzar back into a personal relationship with Himself. King Nebuchadnezzar sent this message to the people of every race and nation and language throughout the world: “Peace and prosperity to you! “I want you all to know about the miraculous signs and wonders the Most High God has performed for me. How great are his signs, how powerful his wonders! His kingdom will last forever, his rule through all generations. (Daniel 4:1-3 NLTse).
It seems every chapter in Daniel contains the good and bad aspects of king Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel had to be an inspired writer to cover both sides of king Nebuchadnezzar. In Ancient times, writers or scribes could face the same fate Nebuchadnezzar threatened his court with if they ever recorded the wrong thing, anything negative about the king. When a nation was conquered, the new king would replace all the former king’s achievements with his own. That is why history is so one sided. No modern historian was there to verify exactly what happened. Historians gather what little information they find, then write volumes to fill in details they way they imagined it happened. The Bible is one of the few reliable sources of ancient history telling two sides of the story, the good and bad ways kings acted and conducted business. The fact those scriptures survived is only the tip of the ice burg.
God had to scatter those stories around to protect the stories themselves as well as His prophets. That opened the door to spiritual interpretations some people can see, and most people miss. Like this story about the three kings, and their personalities.
We are only going to take a brief look at those kings. An in depth study would take another series of books. Finding that information on your own is what God really wanted all those generations. Can you imagine the facts and details God has shown people over the past 2000 years that was never recorded, or may have been recorded, but read by so few people it disappeared for a time, only to be rediscovered generations later.
Our brief look at those kings will be like flying over the landscape at 50,000 feet where we see some of the major features, but we experience nothing when it comes to the personalities of the people living on the land, little about the environment, and almost nothing about the little details that make up day to day life, or the hidden beauty of the land. To find that out, we have to come down to earth to walk among the people, smell the flowers, and watch the sunset. We have to be there to experience what life was really like.
How do we do that with the Bible? There is no other way than to take Nebuchadnezzar’s advice. “I want you all to know about the miraculous signs and wonders the Most High God has performed for me. How great are his signs, how powerful his wonders! His kingdom will last forever, his rule through all generations.” We have to be in God’s presence. God was there watching the entire scene. All you need is enough faith to know He was there, remembers every detail, and can’t wait to tell you every detail. Some people describe Jesus as the great story teller as He walked this earth. Do you think anything has changed? This will be nothing more than the cold, clinical look people are used to seeing, and accepting as, shall we say, the total truth, or story. But once we see how each of those stories are connected, and how each of those stories are derived from a collection of stories, we’ll begin to understand how we can look deeper into God’s Word when we make that connection with God, He tried to teach to Nebuchadnezzar, and other kings.
Nebuchadnezzar is one of the most abrasive personalities in scripture. The author of Kings showed us a small part of how Nebuchadnezzar chose to deal with situations. He was the king, judge, and jury. No one stood in his way, and his decision was final, and decisive. But one man stood up to Nebuchadnezzar. There was only one reason Daniel could and did stand up to Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel had God on his side. Daniel’s bravery stemmed from a close relationship with God. A relationship we see God tried to establish with king Nebuchadnezzar.
King Cyrus of Persia is the most difficult king to study. Bible authors had this habit of recording the king’s name in some stories, then his title in other stories. I had trouble figuring that out until I took time to gather all the information about Persia’s kings, then looked at the names in the Concordance. That told me when authors used names, or titles. Dates recorded in the stories laid the foundation of a timeline. That allows us to place names on the titles.
After I posted my study, of course I received a lot of flack. Scholars had the habit of reading only a small portion of a study, then making negative comments without checking scripture to verify their thoughts. In other words, scholars from all walks of life decided the things they’ve been taught by the world were more reliable than God’s Word, or getting together with God to go over the details.
King Cyrus is one of the most interesting characters to study in scripture. Once the timeline recorded by God’s prophets was arranged, it opened the door to a view of books including Daniel, Esther, Kings, Chronicles, Ezra, and Nehemiah in a whole new light.
Among other things, Cyrus was touched by God and opened the door to rebuild the temple and walls around Jerusalem. He assigned people to the task, funded the projects, and kept Ezra, and Nehemiah’s enemies at bay.
Many people think they know king David. But how well? What fascinated me about David is his growth in God, which began at a very young age. David met, and learned about God when he was alone tending his father’s sheep. David had little more than the clothes on his back, and a place to sleep whenever he returned home. Solitude in the fields was God’s choice of a classroom. We can only imagine the lessons God shared with David.
Those sheep and the responsibilities his father trusted him with taught David a great deal about trust and dedication. David learned to trust God, and respect king Saul, who was famous for making mistakes. David was anointed king of Israel at a very young age, and never forgot that day Samuel came to visit. David had opportunities to kill Saul and take the kingdom, but he would rather place his trust in God.
Finally, David was crowned king. That was when he made some major mistakes. He married a lot of women, had a lot of sons and daughters, and went as far as killing one of his best friends to take his wife. Each of those stories explained what God had to do to call David back.
David also recorded the book we refer to as Psalms. Some of that book is what David wrote about his history, other parts focus on prayers, and praising God. David’s personality runs deep in scripture. The fact it is scattered over many books in the Bible tells us, the same is true for the other two kings. So we have our assignment from God. Study every detail on each of those kings. Drink deep from the well of knowledge and be satisfied.
Now that we reviewed a little about each king, what do we do with the information? While I was praying, the LORD told me to look at those personalities. Each was different. What did they point to? They pointed to three major groups of Christians today. Nebuchadnezzar pointed to a group I refer to as the squeaky wheel. People who have to get their way at any cost. Like Nebuchadnezzar, some people make a decision, and I’ve seen this, if you don’t go their way, they pull out the burn in hell card. It doesn’t matter what the subject is, some people decided they have the only answer, and [f you don’t agree, it doesn’t matter what other aspects you have, what you accomplished, or what your relationship with God is, those Nebuchadnezzar type personalities will condemn you. Nebuchadnezzar sent people to take Daniel to his execution, and threw three of his most trusted advisers in an oven because they decided following God was more Important than satisfying a whim.
We have to also remember how God set up a number of circumstances to reach Nebuchadnezzar. God also worked with where Nebuchadnezzar was to reach him. And of course, God took Nebuchadnezzar out of his comfortable environment to reach him. In other words, we can’t even judge the squeaky wheels, no matter how abrasive they appear.
Since many people like to associate with king David, we can look at his personality next. David grew up in God’s grace. God protected David. God taught David how to communicate directly with Him. Once in a while David showed his human side by slipping away, or forgetting about God. Sometimes David thought he could get away with something behind God’s back. David spent a great deal of time looking back on his life. That was the only way he could have written those Psalms. That is also something all of us has to learn to do.
David had the type of personality difficult to place a finger on, or sum up in a few words. That is what made David, David. That may be one of the reasons God loved David. It was one of the reasons David loved God. David could mess his life up, and God still loved him. David is one of the few people in the Bible, and the world able to define a real relationship with God. Not in a few words, but in the life he lived. Maybe that is why people like to associate with David.
Now we get to the difficult king to analyze, Cyrus. Like I mentioned before, his story largely remains a mystery based on the fact, he is often hidden in scripture, meaning, not as easy to find as Nebuchadnezzar and David. Cyrus represents all those Christians difficult to figure out. Cyrus shows us how people are difficult to define until we take time to do a little in depth study.
Many Christians carry themselves far different than the world. There is something about them the world can’t figure out, or place their finger on. So the world looks at one detail, and writes its own assumption. Little may be true, but that is just how the world works.
We now have three basic personalities to look at. The abrasive personality. The personality that wants to follow God, but finds ways to fail. And the elusive, hard to define personality. People are made up of combinations of all three. Being a Christian means you want to find and follow God., but that is not always consistent. The degrees vary with every person. Everyone is abrasive to one degree or another. And we should all know, everyone has a private side to them that takes time to know.
God didn’t set up that sequence of stories to tell us something new about the temple. And maybe He did. That’s for others to find out. I can only follow the direction God gave me when He gave it to me. God wanted us to see those personalities to see where our lives lie in the mixture. Which king are you more like, and which of those qualities do you need to work on? Of course, you can’t go far on the brief explanations I gave here. All I can do is suggest a new spiritual journey.
Getting back to the story, we see David consulted his cabinet, and the entire community. David was concerned about the Ark, he felt Saul neglected. David had his own way of honoring God. His only mistake may have been to consult people, and not God. This reminds us to always turn to God. Popular belief and what people think is right may not always lead to the best decision.
Where did David get the idea of using a new cart to transport the Ark? Long before David was crowned king, during the days he was on the run from Saul, David spent a great deal of time living among the Philistines. David may have heard a story about the Ark during that time.
The Ark of the LORD remained in Philistine territory seven months in all. Then the Philistines called in their priests and diviners and asked them, “What should we do about the Ark of the LORD? Tell us how to return it to its own country.” “Send the Ark of the God of Israel back with a gift,” they were told. “Send a guilt offering so the plague will stop. Then, if you are healed, you will know it was his hand that caused the plague.” “What sort of guilt offering should we send?” they asked. And they were told, “Since the plague has struck both you and your five rulers, make five gold tumors and five gold rats, just like those that have ravaged your land. Make these things to show honor to the God of Israel. Perhaps then he will stop afflicting you, your gods, and your land. Don’t be stubborn and rebellious as Pharaoh and the Egyptians were. By the time God was finished with them, they were eager to let Israel go. “Now build a new cart, and find two cows that have just given birth to calves. Make sure the cows have never been yoked to a cart. Hitch the cows to the cart, but shut their calves away from them in a pen. Put the Ark of the LORD on the cart, and beside it place a chest containing the gold rats and gold tumors you are sending as a guilt offering. Then let the cows go wherever they want. If they cross the border of our land and go to Beth-shemesh, we will know it was the LORD who brought this great disaster upon us. If they don’t, we will know it was not his hand that caused the plague. It came simply by chance.” (1 Samuel 6:1-9 NLTse).
Did David copy something that worked for the Philistines without seeing the difference between himself, the Levites, and priests? Didn’t David know, God holds us responsible for what we know, or are supposed to know. It turned out bad for David. The plan didn’t work, and that cost Uzzah his life. It was a shock to David and everyone there. Now what were they going to do?
The first question was, “is God angry with us, and why?” It should have been a time to search the heart. It was also a time to search scripture. That story showed us how they go hand in hand. Do we search our hearts based on scripture, or the world? David learned what happens when you rely on popular belief.
Some people stop at the obvious, or shall we say the worldly way of looking at that story about Uzzah. He touched the Ark, God was angry, and killed him. That seems rather simple, but what does that teach us about God? And what is God telling us about Himself?
We do know, David used the wrong process to move the Ark.
When the camp moves, Aaron and his sons must enter the Tabernacle first to take down the inner curtain and cover the Ark of the Covenant with it. Then they must cover the inner curtain with fine goatskin leather and spread over that a single piece of blue cloth. Finally, they must put the carrying poles of the Ark in place. “Next they must spread a blue cloth over the table where the Bread of the Presence is displayed, and on the cloth they will place the bowls, pans, jars, pitchers, and the special bread. (Numbers 4:5-7 NLTse).
At that time the LORD set apart the tribe of Levi to carry the Ark of the LORD’s Covenant, and to stand before the LORD as his ministers, and to pronounce blessings in his name. These are their duties to this day. That is why the Levites have no share of property or possession of land among the other Israelite tribes. The LORD himself is their special possession, as the LORD your God told them.) (Deuteronomy 10:8-9 NLTse).
Not only was the Ark to be carried by Levites, it was to be covered by the inner curtain, and a blue cloth. Neither item is mentioned in 1 Chronicles chapter 13. David missed a lot of details. Did everyone miss them, or were they afraid to speak up? What about Uzzah? Did Uzzah know something was wrong, but was afraid to point out the mistake because he didn’t know all the details?
What we have here is a story about one of David’s most trusted men. David appointed Uzzah a position close to the Ark. A place Uzzah was within everyone’s sight. Out of all the men positioned around the Ark to protect it, only one man stepped up when the cart began to tilt. Only one man acted when he saw something was going wrong.
Did other people die by touching the Ark? What about those people who looked in the Ark when the Philistines returned it to Israel? The LORD killed seventy men from Beth-shemesh because they looked into the Ark of the LORD. And the people mourned greatly because of what the LORD had done. (1 Samuel 6:19 NLTse). God didn’t kill those people the second they touched the Ark. God killed seventy men after they looked inside the Ark.
When people make up stories, or try to explain why something happened in the Bible, they have to collect all the information on the subject. Now look at a few verses then run with whatever seems to sound right. That is interpreting scripture with what sounds good to the world.
And now I make one more appeal, my dear brothers and sisters. Watch out for people who cause divisions and upset people’s faith by teaching things contrary to what you have been taught. Stay away from them. Such people are not serving Christ our Lord; they are serving their own personal interests. By smooth talk and glowing words they deceive innocent people. As for my companion, he betrayed his friends; he broke his promises. His words are as smooth as butter, but in his heart is war. His words are as soothing as lotion, but underneath are daggers! Give your burdens to the LORD, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall. But you, O God, will send the wicked down to the pit of destruction. Murderers and liars will die young, but I am trusting you to save me. (Romans 16:17-18, Psalms 55:20-23 NLTse)
Is it possible God saw Uzzah’s heart, his willingness to help, his concern and love for the Ark and God, then used Uzzah to set an example, open the eyes of everyone present, and send them back to God? Did God use Uzzah’s death to call attention to a mistake? Did Uzzah die serving the LORD like he wanted to assist the Ark? Why doesn’t the world spend enough time on this story to give God a good report rather than a black eye?
The Ark found its way to Kiriath-jearim after Eli’s sons tried to use it as a weapon to defeat the Philistines. The Philistines attacked and defeated the army of Israel, killing 4,000 men. After the battle was over, the troops retreated to their camp, and the elders of Israel asked, “Why did the LORD allow us to be defeated by the Philistines?” Then they said, “Let’s bring the Ark of the Covenant of the LORD from Shiloh. If we carry it into battle with us, it will save us from our enemies.” (1 Samuel 4:2-3 NLTse). God had a new problem to deal with. How was God going to get that belief the Ark was a weapon out of their heads? Israel invented a new idol out of a box of wood covered in gold. That box didn’t have any power. All the power is from God, and all the glory comes from God. Still, people took that lesson and twisted it into a hundred different forms which amount to nothing more than a worldly best guess. People make the same mistake Israel made with the Ark. They gave the glory to an object.
Do people still celebrate when making a decision on their own? How far does God have to go to break people out of that mood? In this case it took a lot to get their attention. This story only showed us one example.
David wanted to place the Ark under his care. Was that another mistake? Could David protect the Ark like God did in the wilderness? On the day the Tabernacle was set up, the cloud covered it. But from evening until morning the cloud over the Tabernacle looked like a pillar of fire. This was the regular pattern–at night the cloud that covered the Tabernacle had the appearance of fire. Whenever the cloud lifted from over the sacred tent, the people of Israel would break camp and follow it. And wherever the cloud settled, the people of Israel would set up camp. In this way, they traveled and camped at the LORD’s command wherever he told them to go. Then they remained in their camp as long as the cloud stayed over the Tabernacle. If the cloud remained over the Tabernacle for a long time, the Israelites stayed and performed their duty to the LORD. Sometimes the cloud would stay over the Tabernacle for only a few days, so the people would stay for only a few days, as the LORD commanded. Then at the LORD’s command they would break camp and move on. Sometimes the cloud stayed only overnight and lifted the next morning. But day or night, when the cloud lifted, the people broke camp and moved on. Whether the cloud stayed above the Tabernacle for two days, a month, or a year, the people of Israel stayed in camp and did not move on. But as soon as it lifted, they broke camp and moved on. So they camped or traveled at the LORD’s command, and they did whatever the LORD told them through Moses. (Numbers 9:15-23 NLTse).
Not only did that cloud and pillar of fire protect the Tabernacle and Ark, it provided light at night, shade during the day, and told Israel when to travel, where to travel, and when to rest. Could David do the same for Israel? Was that the role of the king?
This world has its own way of looking at just about every subject. More often than not, without consulting God, or asking how to do things. What does God have to do to get His view across?
When David changed his plans and left the Ark on Obed-edom’s property, God blessed him. God didn’t direct where He wanted the Ark, but seeing David think about what he did was enough for God. What does that tell us about God? Even when we make mistakes, blessings come when we think about what we did wrong, and how we left God out of the decision. David reestablished communication with God. That was a step in the right direction.