Let us bring this ark of the Lord's covenant from Shiloh, so that He may go with us and save us from the hand of our enemies.
1 Samuel 4:3
In some strange way, the Ark of the Covenant symbolized all that God was and all that He intended to do for His people. But bad things happened when the Israelites substituted the Ark, a symbol of God's presence, for God Himself.
When the Philistines sent the Israelites home with their tails between their legs, the Israelites sent for the ark. When the ark came into the camp, all Israel raised such a great shout that the ground shook. The Philistines wrongly thought identifying the ark as a god, and more specifically the god responsible for Israel's past victories and int the next battle, the Israelites not only suffered an even greater defeat, but the Ark of the Covenant was captured by the Philistines.
The Israelites lost this batter. Instead of recognizing that their hope and help was rooted in God, they substituted the ark for God Himself and declared that it would save them when only God could.
The moment we substitute God with even a legitimate means by which He works, God moves out. Anything God may bless as an expression of Himself, He curses when it becomes a substitute for Himself.
When we prioritize the advice of a friend or our expectation for worship over meeting with God directly, it hinders our walk with God.
The symbol of God's presence had come home, but no one was praising the ark. Their worship was directed at God Himself, the true source of our hope and help, for whom there is no substitute.
Sovereign Lord, thank You for being the source of our hope and help, and forgive us for when we have tried to substitute something in Your place. In Jesus's name.
Thank you Spark Friends for coming to my blog and posting your comments. Sending God's richest blessings to you and your families so He will show you His love and comfort in your good times and in your times of trouble. God will never leave you nor forsake you and walk with you leading you down the paths of righteousness until you come to be with Him in heaven. God bless you. Amen