2 Samuel 6:12-16 12 It was reported to King David: "The LORD has blessed Obed-edom's family and all that belongs to him because of the ark of God." So David went and had the ark of God brought up from Obed-edom's house to the city of David with rejoicing. 13 When those carrying the ark of the LORD advanced six steps, he sacrificed an ox and a fattened calf. 14 David was dancing with all his might before the LORD wearing a linen ephod. 15 He and the whole house of Israel were bringing up the ark of the LORD with shouts and the sound of the ram's horn. 16 As the ark of the LORD was entering the city of David, Saul's daughter Michal looked down from the window and saw King David leaping and dancing before the LORD, and she despised him in her heart.
Don’t be a spiritual critic. God did not place you in the church to criticize and tear down the spiritual lives of others. He wants you to join in their worship of His name and not stand in superiority over them. II Samuel 6 warns us of the consequences of becoming the spiritual critic. The person who picks at the times people stumble over their prayers or the way that they express their joy in Christ does not help the church. You only serve to dampen the praise of the entire church.
David is overflowing with excitement at this moment in his life, because he has the privilege of bringing the Ark of the Covenant into his newly built capitol city. For the first time the Ark of God will dwell in Jerusalem, and this is a day for celebration. David goes all out in his praise and his sacrifices.
David worships God through sacrifices offered, rejoicing, shouting, dancing, and a fellowship meal. In the midst of this time of worship David gets in trouble with his wife Michal over two parts of his worship. She criticizes his attire and his dancing.
Worship with Childlike Joy
David was twirling with all his might before the Lord. This is what I would not call the dignified actions of a king, and his wife who grew up as the daughter of Israel’s first king can’t stand this childish behavior. Michal is right that we should be respectful and humble before God. Yet she goes too far in her displeasure.
We can’t lose our childlike joy in His presence. We are to run to our heavenly father as a 2-year-old child runs to his parents after they have been gone for the day. Don’t allow a desire by others to be rigid and traditional to stop you from expressing your joy in your heavenly Father. We are to both fear our God and rejoice in our God. Don’t sacrifice one for the other.
Worship with a Servant’s Humility
Michal also attacked David over his clothes. We read that he wore an ephod. If you don’t know what an ephod is – don’t feel bad. Ephod is actually a Hebrew word that we do not possess a good equivalent for in English of Greek. The ephod was the attire of the priests and the Levites. The High Priest was given a majestic and illustrative ephod as described in the Law, and the rest of the Levities wore an ephod that was a standard linen garment complete with undergarments.
David was criticized by his wife for wearing the modest attire of a servant as opposed to the regal clothes of a king. When the Bible speaks of modesty attire for worship, the main goal is not to force women into long dresses and big hats. Modest attire is clothing that does not draw attention to oneself. It is to dress in a way that puts the focus on God and not you.
David was the king, and his wife wanted his clothing to draw attention to that fact. David did not want this day to be about him, so he dressed as a common servant in the Tabernacle. Don’t dress to impress with your Sunday best at worship. Worship with a servant’s heart and wear clothes that will draw the focus to God above all else.