The House of O-bed-e-dom



2 Sam.6:12, ‘ Now it was told King David, saying, “The Lord has blessed the house of Obed-Edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God. So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obed-Edom to the City of David with gladness.”’

 The ark of the Lord which contained the stone tablets with the Word of God  was taken away from the Israelites. 1 Sam.7:2,So it was that the ark remained in Kirjath Jearim a long time; it was there twenty years. And all the house of Israel lamented after the Lord.’  Israelites lamented over the absence of the ark for it was like absence of God’s presence from them. The Lord had allowed it to be taken away as a step of judgement for being unfaithful towards the Lord. David who was anointed to be the 2nd King of Israel took charge of his throne soon after King Saul’s death. He was thirty years old when he began to reign. Soon after he began to reign, he gathered 30,000 chosen men of Israel to bring back the ark of the Lord. He went with great rejoicing but the way the ark was handled invited God’s wrath upon Uzzah, who died by the ark of God (2 Sam.6:6-7). King David was afraid of the Lord and refused to carry back the ark. Instead, he kept it in the house of O-bede-dom, the Gittite. The ark remained in the house of Obededom for 3 months and during this time, the Lord blessed the entire household.

The ark of the Lord did not witness any special blessings in the house of Abinadab where it was kept for 20 long years and where his son Eleazer was sanctified to keep the ark. But the family of Obededom, with whom the ark remained for 3 months were blessed in all that they had. It’s not the span of time period for which we read the Word of God that determines our blessings. Instead, it’s the attitude with which we read, meditate and obey His Word that causes blessings to come upon our lives. The house of Abinadab intended to just keep the ark safe. But the house of O-bed-edom received the ark of God not only into their house, but also into their hearts. Are we performing religious duties by reading the word of God or do we intend to be renewed every day through its meditation?

“The Lord has blessed the house of Obed-Edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God.’ The blessings upon the house of Obededom has been given emphasis here in the scriptures. Hence, let’s have a look at those blessings. 1 Chronicles 16:37-38, ‘So he left Asaph and his brothers there before the ark of the covenant of the Lord to minister before the ark regularly, as every day’s work required; 38 and Obed-Edom with his sixty-eight brethren, including Obed-Edom the son of Jeduthun, and Hosah, to be gatekeepers.’  Obededom and his 68 brothers together were sanctified to be the gatekeepers of the house of the Lord. 1 Chronicles 26:8, ‘All these were of the sons of Obed-Edom, they and their sons and their brethren, able men with strength for the work: sixty-two of Obed-Edom.Obed-edom had eight sons. Moreover, the children and grandchildren of Obed-edom together were 62 in number and all of them without a single exception were appointed to be gatekeepers of the house of the Lord. This is a very unusual blessing, rarely seen. ‘The Lord has blessed the house of Obed-Edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God.’  Here, ‘all that belong to Obed-edom’ clearly refers to the entire family, including all brothers, all children and all grandchildren.

And all of them were men of valor, strong and able men (1 Chron.26:6-8). They received this strength from the Lord and His ark, and they used their strength for serving the Lord as faithful gatekeepers. It’s the power of the Holy Spirit that strengthens us to minister. Let’s be reminded that all that we have is from the Lord for His service and glory, be it our children, family, health, wealth or positions. All these are gifts from the Lord for which we are accountable. 68 brothers and 62 children and grandchildren of Obed-edom together served the Lord as gatekeepers of the house of the Lord.  What a great privilege & blessing! Gift of salvation is like a strong virus which spreads fast to the family and friends around. A saved person can never sit idle. He always targets his family and friends to be brought into the light. The house of Obed-e-dom received this great blessing within 3 months after the ark of the Lord was brought into their house. An entire household being touched, reformed and sanctified for the great service of the Lord in such a short span of time was indeed not a small thing. This news soon reached the ears of King David which inspired and encouraged him to bring the ark back to Jerusalem at the earliest. The news of blessings received through the Word of God finds its way to the palaces to be testified before kings and queens for His glory. And there is no greater blessing on this earth than to be chosen, sanctified and appointed to serve the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords.

 2 Chronicles 23:19, ‘And he set the gatekeepers at the gates of the house of the Lord, so that no one who was in any way unclean should enter.’  The gatekeepers guarded the house of the Lord. They would discern the clean and the unclean ones and allow only the clean ones to enter the house of the Lord. Jn.10:2-3,But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.’ Here, we get a clearer picture about the gate keeper or the door keeper. He is a person who recognizes the true shepherd of the sheep and who opens the door only for him. A gatekeeper takes up spiritual responsibility of the sheep and takes efforts to protect the sheep or God’s children from all ways of deception. This was a highly responsible role which Obed-edom and his family was entrusted with. The more faithful and trustworthy one proves to be, the more heavy and responsible tasks are one entrusted with. The entire house of Obed-edom proved to be both trust worthy and faithful.

 The Lord has blessed the house of Obed-Edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God.’  There is only one reason seen here which caused all the great blessings in the house of Obed-edom i.e the ark of the Lord. The ark contained the stone tablets with the inscribed Words of God. Ex.25: 21-22, ‘You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the Testimony that I will give you. 22 And there I will meet with you, and I will speak with you from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are on the ark of the Testimony, about everything which I will give you in commandment to the children of Israel.’ This ark of the Lord was also called as the ark of the covenant, which refers to an agreement between two parties. Here, the Lord and man agreed on an agreement that if the man would keep the commandments of the Lord as written on the stone tablets, the Lord would enter into a relation and fellowship with man. In other words, there is no communication or fellowship between God and man without this ark or Gods’ word. The ark was placed in the most holy place of the temple of God, where only the high priest had the access. But when this ark was in the house of Obed-edom, who were not high priests by designation and appointment, they accessed the presence of the Lord through complete submission to the Word of God. Their house and the entire household got transformed to be more like the most holy place of the temple, where the fear of His holiness ruled the entire family. Soon the blessings of the Lord were upon the entire household of Obed-edom in an amazing way which caused it to be recorded in Scriptures for people to read and be blessed till this day.

Dear friends, there is only one way to see our children and family being blessed by the Lord. And that’s only through our complete submission to meditate and obey His word day and night. Our lives become testimonies first within the four walls of our house which influences the lives of our life partners and children. And no man or power can ever keep away the great divine blessings that comes from the Lord.  Joshua was yet another person who prospered through continuous word meditation. And he too like Obededom served the Lord as a family. There is no greater privilege than serving the Lord as a family. Joshua 1:8, ‘ This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you[c] shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.’ May our homes be like the house of Obededom, not just aiming at guarding the ark of God but instead guard our hearts through the ark of God i.e. His Word. May our families be of great spiritual strength to serve the Lord. In the New Testament, where our bodies are the temple of God, may His Word be inscribed in our hearts and pondered by our mind day in and day out. May the fear of His holiness rule us and His presence guide, transform and strengthen us till we reach our eternal destination in Christ.

 God bless us all

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