Theme: THE PRACTICE OF GOD'S RIGHTEOUSNESS
Text: “And when they came to Nachon’s threshingfloor, Uzzah put forth his hand to the ark of God, and took hold of it; for the oxen shook it. And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote him therefore his errors; and there he died by the ark of God.” – 2 Samuel 6:6,7.
Comment: When King David was returning with the ark of God after recovering it from the Philistines, the ark of God was placed on a cart driven by oxen. As a result of the galloping movement of the oxen, the cart shook and the ark of God was about to fall off the cart but Uzzah put forth his hand and took hold of the ark of God. For this, he was immediately killed by God because though he was of the tribe of Levi, he was not of the lineage of Kohath (in the tribe of Levi) whom God specifically instructed to be in charge of carrying the ark – Numbers 4:15; 7:9.
King David lamented that if they had kept to God’s order by carrying the ark on their shoulders instead of putting it on a cart, Uzzah would not have made that grave error that led to his death. – 1 Chronicles 15:11-14; Joshua 3:14-17.
The striking lessons here is that a single mistake of personal righteousness can lead to dire consequences, even death. Uzzah obviously wanted to help to steady the ark of God, but he was not among those spiritually assigned such duty by God, hence, he suffered the terrible consequence of his action. King Solomon warned: “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” – Proverbs 16:25.