Let’s read that portion. 1 Chronicles 13:9-14 says, “And when they came unto the threshingfloor of Chidon, Uzza put forth his hand to hold the ark; for the oxen stumbled. And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzza, and he smote him, because he put his hand to the ark: and there he died before God. And David was displeased, because the LORD had made a breach upon Uzza: wherefore that place is called Perezuzza to this day. And David was afraid of God that day, saying, How shall I bring the ark of God home to me? So David brought not the ark home to himself to the city of David, but carried it aside into the house of Obededom the Gittite. And the ark of God remained with the family of Obededom in his house three months. And the LORD blessed the house of Obededom, and all that he had.”

There was so much that had gone wrong in the transportation of the ark of the covenant. Exodus 25:10-22 gives us the instruction from the Lord about how the ark was to be built and transported. We read in verses 12-15, “And thou shalt cast four rings of gold for it, and put them in the four corners thereof; and two rings shall be in the one side of it, and two rings in the other side of it. And thou shalt make staves of shittim wood, and overlay them with gold. And thou shalt put the staves into the rings by the sides of the ark, that the ark may be borne with them. The staves shall be in the rings of the ark: they shall not be taken from it.” The ark was to be carried by poles going through the golden rings on the four corners of the ark.

Numbers 4:1-15 gives instructions about who and how the tabernacle and its articles were to be carried. Verse 15 tells us, “And when Aaron and his sons have made an end of covering the sanctuary, and all the vessels of the sanctuary, as the camp is to set forward; after that, THE SONS OF KOHATH SHALL COME TO BEAR IT: but they shall not touch any holy thing, lest they die. These things are the burden of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation.” ONLY the sons of Kohath were to carry the ark and the other furnishings and there were not to TOUCH any of the ‘holy things’.

David, no matter how sincere he might have been, acted in disobedience in the way that he transported the ark. 1 Chronicles 13:6-7 says, “And David went up, and all Israel, to Baalah, that is, to Kirjathjearim, which belonged to Judah, to bring up thence the ark of God the LORD, that dwelleth between the cherubims, whose name is called on it. And THEY CARRIED THE ARK OF GOD IN A NEW CART out of the house of Abinadab: and Uzza and Ahio drave the cart.” The ark WAS NOT supposed to be carried on a cart and Uzza and Ahio WERE NOT supposed to transport the ark.

Doesn’t that remind you of how we often want to serve and honor the Lord, but we want to do it OUR WAY? We often disregard the Lord’s specific instructions and do what WE THINK is right. We suppose that the Lord will appreciate our efforts even if they are not according to His Word. How presumptuous we can be! We think we know better than God as to how we should serve Him. May He lead our hearts away from such arrogance.

Perhaps David’s men had placed the ark on the cart without touching it, but when it shifted on the cart and began to fall, Uzza reached out to hold it on the cart and was struck dead. We might thing, “At least he was trying to prevent the ark from hitting the ground.” Surely, that was his thought, but Uzza (and the rest of the men) had neglected to obey the Lord from the very moment that they loaded it onto the cart, so the anger of the Lord was manifested when He took Uzza’s life. We see that this ‘displeased’ David and caused him to be ‘afraid of God.’ Perhaps if David had feared the Lord earlier, this incident would have never happened.

As far as those in the house of Obededom, we do not read that they touched it the ark. Rather, because the ark was in his house, the Lord blessed Obededom’s house. (341.4)