Undignified Worship

December 1, 2009 — Leave a comment

“I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes.”

~2 Samuel 6:22

We say we don’t but we do.  We do care what people think about us.  This is true because too often we are more self-conscious than we are God-conscious.  David had an experience that made him more God-conscious.

After Uzzah died because he touched the ark of God, David was afraid to bring it into the city of Jerusalem.  He left the ark near the place where Uzzah had died, at the house of a man named Obed-Edom the Gittite.  It was there for three months and during that time Obed-Edom and his entire household were greatly blessed by the Lord (2 Samuel 6:11).  David heard about the blessings that came to Obed-Edom and realized this was God’s response to the ark’s presence in his home.  David wanted the blessing of the Lord in his own city and so, “David went down and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obed-Edom to the City of David with rejoicing” (2 Samuel 6:12).  It was in a great procession with worship and dancing that David and the people of Israel brought the ark toward Jerusalem.  “When those who were carrying the ark of the Lord had taken six steps, he sacrificed a bull and a fattened calf.  David, wearing a linen ephod, danced before the Lord with all his might, while he and the entire house of Israel brought up the ark of the Lord with shouts and the sound of trumpets” (2 Samuel 6:13-15).

David and the procession entered the city of Jerusalem and he was dancing and leaping for joy.  David was worshiping God with abandon.  He was expressing the joy that was in his heart and his appreciation for the way God had already blessed him and the prospect of further blessing for him and his people.  He loved God and he was willing for all of the people to see him express that love.  But when David’s wife, Michael, saw David dancing and leaping with such joy, she was embarrassed and despised him (2 Samuel 6:16).

When David reached home she said to him with sarcasm, “How the king of Israel has distinguished himself today, disrobing in the sight of the slave girls of his servants as any vulgar fellow would!”  (2 Samuel 6:20).  And here was David’s response:  “”It was before the Lord, who chose me rather than your father or anyone from his house when he appointed me ruler over the Lord’s people Israel – I will celebrate before the Lord.  I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes.  But by these slave girls you spoke of, I will be held in honor” (2 Samuel 6:21-22).  David didn’t really care what the people thought about the way he was expressing his joy in the Lord.  He was willing to make a fool of himself before the people, if that’s what they wanted to think.  It wasn’t the people he was trying to impress nor was it for their benefit that he was dancing and leaping.  What he was doing, he was doing only for the Lord.

A minister from Oregon, Steve Lee, a friend of a member of my church, recently wrote this about Worship, “I wonder, when we worship, do we ever do so with abandon, opening our heart fully to express our love and appreciation to the Lord with the fullness of joy that we feel?  And I wonder, when we worship, do we think more about what God might be thinking of how we are expressing ourselves to Him, or are we thinking about what those around us might think of us if we raise our hands, or sing a little loud, or close our eyes, or move a little?”

Authentic faith is driven more by what God thinks, than by what people think.

Just some thoughts I had on worship today.

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