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Sam. 6:11. And the ark of the LORD continued in the house of Obededom the Gittite three months : and the LORD blessed Obed-edom, and all his household.

of being thrown off the cart, and was liable to serious injury. To prevent this catastrophe Uzzah, one of the sons of Abinadab who was driving the cart (v. 3), took hold of it. And God smote him. and there he died.

Why This Severity ? (1) It was a direct and double disobedience. (2) Uzzah, who had long had charge of the ark, should have known the law concerning it. (3) What he did was public, in the sight of all the people. It was necessary at the outset to prove to the people the necessity of exact' obedience to God's law, for one neglect leads surely to another.

8. David was displeased. With God ? It does not say so. With the breaking up of his plans and the failure of his hopes. And most of all his conscience smote him that he had not taken pains to learn the right way to do a good thing.

IV. THE ARK IN THE HOUSE OF OBED-EDOM, 2 Sam. 6:10-12. David then decided not to continue the removal of the ark to Jerusalem. He was afraid lest some other mistake might be made, and he thought it best to first learn all about

his duty. Carried it aside to the

house of Obed-edom. Probably one ร {wind

of the Levites of Gath-rimmon.

II. Three months. Long enough for Israel to learn their lesson. The Lord blessed Obed-edom and all his household. This would show to all Israel that the ark itself brought blessing, not death. The death came from disobedience, not from the ark.

The Ark of God in the Home. Consider what religion does for the home; what it brings in, and what it keeps out. It brings God's blessing on all that we do or say ; it prevents the expression of bad passions and actions which mar the happiness of home. Not only every individual, but every nation, is prospered and made powerful by true religion.

“ Have you family worship in your

dwelling ? Try it, and you will find that God will deal well with you through it, as of old he dealt with Obed-edom when the ark was in his house." - W. M. Taylor.

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Return of the Ark.

"The house of Obed-edom

“The line of Obed-edom
Where safe the ark abode,

Is on the earth to-day;
What time were wars and fightings

In the house of Obed-edom
On every mountain road,

Still he may safely stay
What time was pitched the battle

Who, dearer than all treasure
In every valley fair,

For which men toil and plod,
The house of Obed-edom

Shall prize the covenant blessing,
Had peace beyond compare.

The hallowed ark of God.
“And never strife nor clamor

Shall break the tranquil spell
In which our Lord's beloved

Forever safely dwell.
In the house of Obed-edom,

In sunlight or in dark,
Abides the ceaseless blessing..

That rests within the ark.' – Margaret E. Sangster.

V. THE ARK BROUGHT TO JERUSALEM, 2 Sam. 6:11-19 ; Ps. 24 : 7-10. And it was told king David, etc. The fact that God blessed the place where the ark was impressed David with the truth that, while it was dangerous to disobey God, yet it was the greatest blessing possible to have near him the ark of God and his manifest presence. So David went and brought up the ark of God, assembling the 12. And it was told king David, saying, The LORD hath blessed the house of Obed-edom, and all that pertaineth unto him, because of the ark of God. So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obededom into the city of David with gladness.

13. And it was so, that, when they that bare the ark of the LORD had gone six paces, he sacrificed oxen and fatlings.

14. And David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod.

15. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet.

16. And as the ark of the LORD came into the city of David, Michal, Saul's daughter, looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart.

17. And they brought in the ark of the LORD, and set it in his place, in the midst of the tabernacle that David had pitched for it: and David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD.

18. And as soon as David had made an end of offering burnt offerings and

peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the LORD of hosts. 19. And he dealt among all the people, even among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men, to every one a cake of bread, and a good piece of flesh, and a flagon of wine. So all the people departed every one to his house.

Ps. 24:7. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.

tribes once more, the most eminent priests, the flower of the army, the princes and dignitaries.

Most probably the general arrangements for the procession, the music, and the dancing before the ark were practically the same as those made for the first attempt to remove the ark. In one most important matter, however, the change was great: The children of the Levites bare the ark of God upon their shoulders with the staves thereon, as Moses commanded according to the word of the Lord (1 Chron. 15:15).

Into the city of David with gladness. A fuller description of this festival procession is given in 1 Chronicles 15 and 16. Every care was now taken to carry out to the letter all that had been ordered with regard to the removal of the ark. It was done in a splendid manner, and with stately music, and with the proper ordering of the priests and the Levites. The king himself was dressed in a linen ephod, and with a harp in his hands, and with singing and with sacred dancing he led the procession. As they drew near Mt. Zion the women of the city came out to welcome them. Trumpets pealed, there were shouts as of a victorious army, and now all felt that the wanderings of the ark had ended even as the wanderings of the king had on this day of triumph.” — W. J. Knox Little in Temple Series of Bible Characters : David.

The Marching Choruses. One psalm written for this occasion is given in 1 Chron. 16 : 8–36. But especially the 24th Psalm is supposed to have been sung as they wound up the hill and entered Jerusalem, where David had prepared a tabernacle for the ark. Seven choirs of singers and musicians, so Josephus tells us, preceded the ark on this occasion," says Perowne, who supposes the psalm to have been sung antiphonally in this way. The whole congregation as they wind up the hill,

“The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof; the world and they that dwell therein.
For he hath founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods."

One choir, or a single voice,

“Who shall ascend into the hill of Jehovah?
Or who shall stand in his holy place?"

8. Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle.

9. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.

10. Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory. Selah.

Answered by another choir or voice,

“He that hath clean hands and a pure heart;

Who hath not listed up his soul unto falsehood, nor sworn deceitfully." Both choirs,

"He shall receive a blessing from Jehovah,

And righteousness from the God of his salvation." “This is the generation that seek after him,

That seek thy face, even Jacob.” (Selah, an interlude, when only the orchestra is heard. Then a band of priests and Levites, heading the procession, pass ough the gates.) The vast assembly without,

“Lift up your heads, O) ye gates,
And be ye listed up, ye everlasting doors,

And the King of glory shall come in.
The company within,

“Who is the King of glory?" (Who thus demands admillance ?) The assembly without reply,

“Jehovah strong and mighty,
Jehovah mighty in battle.
Jehovah of hosts,

He is the King of glory." The ark was then put into its tent; the people feasted and returned home with great joy.

The King of Glory. This Psalm is most often associated in our minds with Christ's resurrection.

“Lift up your heads, ye everlasting gates! "And did he rise?

And give the King of glory to come in. Hear, O ye nations! hear it, () ye dead!

Who is the King of glory? He who slew He rose! He rose ! He burst the bars of death. The ravenous foe who gorged all human race. Lift up your heads, ye everlasting gates!

The King of glory, he whose glory filled And give the King of glory to come in.

Heaven with amazement at his love to man, Who is the King of glory? He who left

And with divine complacency beheld His throne of glory for the paths of death.

Powers most illumined 'wildered in the theme."

- Edward Young What More Did David Do for the Religious Life of Israel ? It was the desire of his heart to build a glorious temple for the ark of God, but the privilege was refused to him (2 Sam. 7; 1 Chron. 17). It was told him, however, that his son should accomplish what he himself had wished to do. The work of David, therefore, in this connection, was the accumulation of vast treasure to be used in the building (1 Chron. 18 : 7-11 ; 22 ; 28); and the establishment of the regular “ courses of the priests, and of choirs of Levites, etc., for the worship in the temple, when it was built (1 Chron. 24-26). As a great poet himself he composed a great number of psalms which were intended to be used in the service, and in fact were so used. And he gave the weight of his influence to aid the building, by telling the leaders of Israel of his wish, and God's answer ; and enlisting in the matter not only their interest, but their gifts.

VI. MAKING RELIGION CENTRAL. The ark was the centre of the religion of Israel ; they had not progressed far enough toward a spiritual worship to render some visible sign unnecessary to a full degree of religious activities. The neglect of the ark brought irreligion in its train. So long as it was kept near the border of the land, where the proximity to their enemies made it dangerous to visit frequently, it was naturally neglected. And the fact of its being so hidden away seems to have taken from the blessing which it might bring. We hear of no such blessing to the household of Abinadab in Kirjath-jearim as came to the house of Obed-edom. The very fact of the neglect of Uzzah, and most probably of the others also, to learn the law about the treatment of the ark indicates some difference in the spirit with which the ark was regarded in the two homes. It was in the house of Abinadab seventy years, and we do not read of any particular benediction falling on that house ; it was in the house of Obed-edom three months, and the blessing made itself known throughout Palestine.

In New England colonial days the church was the centre of the life of the town. Some, at least, of the early charters make as one of the chief conditions of incorporation of a town that a meeting-house " be erected there within a certain specified time, and regular worship instituted. In some villages to-day the same is true. Other places are of quite a different sort, the saloon, perhaps, is the central gathering place; the gambling den ; the dance hall ; the cheap hotel. Contrast the character of the entire town in the two cases. The establishment of religion as the central point in the place where you are to live is the surest way to maintain morality, order, and prosperity for the people.

“ There is no failure more heart-breaking and disastrous than success which leaves God out of the bargain. If you are simply setting out in life to amass mere material success, fame created or position gained, then success will be the most dismal and disastrous failure." — G. Campbell Morgan.

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GOLDEN TEXT. - 2 SAM. 8:15.

David executed justice and righteousness unto all his people.

Devotional Reading : Col. 3 : 12–17.
Additional Material for Teachers : Deut. 28:1-14 ; Psalm 79 : 70–72.
Primary Topic : DAVID KIND TO A CRIPPLE.

Lesson Material : 2 Sam. 9:1-13.

Memory Verse : Through love be servants one to another. Gal. 5:13. Junior Topic : DAVID's KINDNESS to Jonathan's Son.

Lesson Material : 2 Sam. 9:1-13.

Memory Verse: Matt. 25 : 40.
Intermediate and Senior Topic : DAVID SHOWING HIMSELF KINGLY.
Topic for Young People and Adults : ELEMENTS OF STRENGTH IN DAVID's CHAR-

ACTER.
Additional Material : 1 Sam. 24:1-7; 2 Sam. 1 :17-27 ; 7:1, 2.

THE TEACHER AND HIS CLASS.

the difference between the usual methods

taken by a new king toward other possible President Wilson once said : “ He heirs of the throne, and that taken by alone can rule his own spirit, who puts David. One proof of his strength of charhimself under the command of the Spirit acter can also be found in his application of God.”

of the proverb: “Greater is he that ruleth Interest will be found in developing his spirit, than he that taketh a city.”

acter?

In the Younger Grades the story can

THE ROUND TABLE. be told in such a way as to bring out the

FOR RESEARCH AND DISCUSSION. fact that just as soon as David was truly prosperous he began to look around for Tell the story of Mephibosheth up to this time. some one to be kind to ; and the applica- Why did David summon him to his court?

What was the ordinary method of treating possible tion to their own lives of being ready and heirs to the throne? quick to share their happiness with what advantages would come from his presence at another.

David's court? The Intermediate and Senior classes Ziba and his later relations with Mephibosheth.

How did David show himself kingly in this act? will add to this a study of the kingly What were the elements of strength in David's charqualities of such kindness as David showed. Show how kindness to all, especially to those in trouble, has made THE TEACHER'S LIBRARY. many a king more beloved, and strengthened his throne, even while those who Commentaries on 2 Samuel, and Lives treat their subjects without kindness are of David mentioned in previous lessons. passing into the discard.

Representative Men of the Bible, The Young People and Adults can Mephibosheth, by Dr. George Matheson. begin to-day a searching analysis of Dean George Hodges' The Heresy of David's character, discussing to-day only Cain, which heresy is the denial that his strong points, and the good qualities we are our brothers' keepers. The Social he showed in his career.

Influence of Christianity, by David J.
Hill, LL.D.

THE LESSON IN ITS SETTING.

PLAN OF THE LESSON. Time. Not far from the middle of SUBJECT : The Kingly Kindness of David's reign, about the time of the close

David. of his wars.

According to Prof. Willis R. Beecher in his Dated Events of the Old I. THE CONDITION OF DAVID's KINGTestament, “ it was subsequent to David's

DOM. great sin, and was probably one of the II. THE STORY OF MEPHIBOSHETH, earliest fruits of his repentance.”

2 Sam. 4 :4. Place. David at Jerusalem. III. David's KINDNESS TO MEPHIBOMephibosheth lived Mahanaim,

SHETH, 2 Sam. 9:1-13. east of the Jordan, about halfway be- | IV. THE VALUE OF KINDNESS. tween the Dead Sea and the Sea of V. ELEMENTS OF STRENGTH IN David's Galilee.

CHARACTER.

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I. THE CONDITION OF DAVID'S KINGDOM. The first part of the reign of David was filled with wars against the Philistines and the other surrounding nations. As we have seen, the Philistines left him alone when they thought him merely king of Hebron, but launched a great attack against him when he assumed the throne of all Israel. Other neighbors either attacked him, or showed their willingness to do

The long wars with the Philistines, and the civil war of more than seven years, had totally disorganized the kingdom, in both its government and its religion. David did not war for conquest, but for peace ; but he was essentially “ a man of war from the necessities of the case.

At the time of our lesson the kingdom was fairly launched, with favoring wind and tide, to move on to its fulness of usefulness and glory. Its enemies were subdued, its borders widely extended, its people prosperous and united, its commerce extended — although the Jews were never a commercial people — the sacred ark was on Mount Zion, religious services were organized. David was living in a splendid palace made of cedar, the finest wood from the noblest tree of the country.

He had found the kingdom a chaos, and had made it an orderly, well-arranged government. He had found it small, and had made it large. He had found it divided, and had made it a unity. He had found it sorely pressed by enemies, and he had made it victorious over them. He had found religion at a low ebb, and had brought it to a full, flowing tide.

He had organized the army, with 600 heroes at its head, and with at least 300,000 men in 12 brigades.

The organization of the government was well constructed. It is probable that the local governments remained as they were in the time of the Judges ; but

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