In preparation of God’s Holy Temple, David divides the Levites into their future official duties. Notice, though, how he goes about this task. He follows the pattern and tradition of God’s Word. Aaron was Moses’ brother, and the first anointed high priest of Israel. David is following God’s initial placement of the Levitical priests as he establishes those who will serve in the temple.
David took the descendants in a direct line from Aaron and divided them by lot. These people, uniquely, would serve as “officials of the sanctuary and officials of God.” That is, they serve in a spiritual, rather than secular capacity. The rest of the responsibilities of the Levites were also divided by lot.
While this chapter may not be the most riveting that the Old Testament has to offer, there are some valuable lessons. First, I hope you are noticing the care and concern (fussing over details) associated with God’s Temple. The question that we must ask is, does God deserve our best? The only appropriate answer has to be, “Yes.” However, is that how we really live? The answer to that is unfortunately, “No.” When is the last time you stopped to ask yourself what areas of your life God is not getting your best?
The second lesson is how David went about making his decisions. As mentioned earlier he followed the pattern and tradition of God’s Word. He didn’t just pick Aaron’s descendants because he liked them. Twice the use of lots were mentioned for the purpose of impartiality. Lots are like chucking dice, and while that’s not necessarily the New Testament’s prescribed way to discern God’s will (see Romans 12:1–2 and Ephesians 5:17), it served to prohibit favoritism.
Most Christians want to do things God’s way, but deciding what way is God’s way can be tough. Sometimes, like in David’s instance, there is a clear example from Scripture. Many times, for us when making decisions, the Bible doesn’t say, “Go, therefore, and buy that car.” Instead, we have to pursue biblical wisdom. The Bible has plenty to say about possessions, stewardship, and many other factors that go into the decisions we make on a regular basis.
Likewise, notice that David got help from Zadok (3). If you’re in the middle of making a big decision and your connect group doesn’t know about it, or you haven’t offered the opportunity for them to speak into it, you’re doing life wrong. Especially, if the reason you haven’t asked is because, “I’m afraid they’ll say I shouldn’t do it.” As I repeatedly tell my daughter when she says, “I do it,” I say, “Independence is not the goal.” God has given us several tools to make decisions—His Word, His people, His Spirit, access to His throne in prayer, and a conscious by which we experience His Peace. We get into trouble when we say things like, “Jesus wants me to be happy right?” Yes, but not at the expense of obedience.
The last lesson I’d like to point out is the diversity of roles. Yes, some people were set apart for God’s sanctuary. However, there is no value associated with that responsibility. God uses people in a variety of ways. Sometimes it’s hard to see how your work shapes the landscape of eternity. Yet, if you live in an ongoing, dynamic relationship with the Lord in obedience to His Word, you will be amazed as you look back and realize how God was at work.
By: Tyler Short — Connections Ministry Associate