Useful Bible Studies > 2 Samuel Commentary > chapter 6

David dances in front of the ark

2 Samuel 6:14-15

Sometimes it is difficult to know whether a special event to give honour to God should be joyful, or very serious (Ezra 3:10-13). On some occasions, we may be able to choose; at other times, nothing can stop the joy of God’s people.

The procession to bring the sacred box, called the ark, to Jerusalem was a very joyful event. It became like the procession for a bride on her wedding day. People shouted for joy; they played all kinds of musical instruments (1 Chronicles 15:28), including the trumpets, their loudest instruments.

Israel’s people believed that they should give special honour to a bride. For that reason, a man would dance in front of the bride. He may be an important man; but at the wedding, he was happy for people to laugh with him. On that day, he desired no honour for himself, he desired only that the bride should receive honour.

Since the time of Moses, perhaps 400 years previously, the ark had no permanent place. Now, at last, it reached Jerusalem, the place where God intended for it to remain (Deuteronomy chapter 12). There was no limit to David’s joy. He was Israel’s king - but in simple, white clothes, he danced in front of the ark with great energy. He only wanted to give honour to God. David claimed no honour whatever for himself, when he thought about the honour due to God.

Next part: Michal, David's first wife (2 Samuel 6:16)


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