The Man With God In His House

Bible Book: 2 Samuel  6 : 6-16
Subject: Christian Living; Walking with God; Home, The Christian Home; Father

In the Old Testament days, the Ark of the Covenant was understood to be the presence of God among His people. When the Ark was present, the people knew God was with them. A day came, however, when the Philistines captured the Ark and carried it away. The Ark was with the Philistines but they had no place in their hearts for the true God. Great tribulation came upon them because they had taken the Ark of the Covenant from God's people, so they eventually sent it back to the Israelites.

When the Ark was returned, it ended up being kept in the home of a man named Obed-Edom. This happened because the first attempt to move the Ark to Jerusalem ended in death for one of the Israelites. You see, God had given exact instructions on how the Ark was to be handled, yet when the Ark came back to God’s people they had attempted to move it in an inappropriate way. A man named Uzzah touched the Ark and he died. Now you can be sure of this, death will get everyone’s attention and it did so when Uzzah dropped dead after touching the Ark. David decided it might be best to wait a while and move the Ark in a proper manner to a preferred place. So, the Ark was taken to the home of a man named Obed-Edom.

The Bible tells us that Obed-Edom was blessed by this experience. We aren’t told how he was blessed, but he was blessed. It may have been in his health, or through his wife and children, or perhaps his own health – we just don’t know. It is likely he was blessed in every way by the presence of the Ark, and more importantly the God of the Ark, being present with Him and his family.

Let’s look at the experience of Obed-Edom and learn some things today.

I. The Open Home

Is your home open to the Lord? This is an important question, for it is one thing to worship God in church on Sunday and another thing altogether to serve Him in your everyday affairs at home.

Note in this incident we are considering...

A. A Powerful Lesson

You have to go back and picture what happened near the home of Obed-Edom. The Ark had been sent back to the Israelites, but what were they going to do with it? David decided to take it to his headquarters. As he led the procession, the Ark of the Covenant followed in a wagon, and 30,000 soldiers came along behind. Just then the wagon carrying the Ark hit a rock or hole in the road and it tipped over. It was about to fall to the ground when a man named Uzzah jumped up to stop it from falling completely out of the cart or wagon. He touched the Ark and immediately he is dead! David was stunned, the soldiers were in shock and everyone was trying to figure out what to do next.

Just up the road from the incident was the home of a man named Obed-Edom. So, David went up this man’s house and spoke to him. You can imagine that this home was way out in the country and is likely some type of farm. Obed-Edom heard and saw the commotion and then came face to face with the King of Israel - David.

David explained what had happened and then told Obed-Edom that he wanted to leave the Ark in Obed-Edom’s house. Now, think about this for a moment. Let say it is your house they come to in this story. You hear that a man has just been killed for touching the Ark of the Covenant, but the King of Israel is asking you to take this Ark into your house for an unknown period of time. Can you imagine what your wife would say to this idea? I can just hear Jayne saying, “I don’t want you touching that thing and dropping dead, besides it doesn’t go with our furniture or drapes at all. Besides, what if one of the children gets near it!"

Note the importance of what comes next...

B. A Personal Choice

Obed-Edom makes the decision. He will keep the Ark of the Covenant in his house. Now, listen to me on this issue. Obed-Edom is inviting the presence of God into his house. He is opening the door of his home to the Lord - for the Lord to be there 24-7. No place on earth is as private as your own home and the rooms in which you live. Obed-Edom knew this fact, but he said yes to the presence of God in the corners and closets of his family home and personal life.

It is so important to have a faith that goes beyond the church-house door. A faith that is only visible when you are in public is a false faith. Real faith begins in the heart and lives in your home. Obed-Edom had a place for God in his home and he made a choice - a personal choice. No one could make it for him. How wonderful that he made the choice to welcome God into His life and home.

II. The Opportune Time

Life is filled with opportunities. I read some years ago about a company with a research center in Texas that received a request to allow two young computer geeks to visit the place. The lady executive at the lab was not going to allow them in without permission from someone higher up in the company. She contacted the vice-president over their division, who was at the headquarters in another city. He sent her a written confirmation to allow the young men into the research center. His reason for allowing them in was that the work at the research center had nothing to do with their major product. Two young men went in and history was changed forever. You see, that research center was owned by Xerox, and it was a place where young, sharp people were working on something new at the time - personal computers. The two men who visited were Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft and Steve Jobs, founder of Apple. They learned that day about the use of something called a "mouse" to operate the cursor on the computer screen. Well, you know the rest of the story. Xerox lost millions, and probably billions, of dollars because of that one mistake. Gates and Jobs, however, had acted at just the right time and in just the right way.

It is even more important to make your decisions for God when He calls you to make them.

A. The Opportune Time for the Light of the Lord

It is hard to imagine what life was like in the home of Obed-Edom and his family during the three months that the Ark was in their house. Surely they looked upon the presence of God with them as something remarkable and amazing. The Ark of the Covenant was covered in gold and glittered with every flash of light that fell upon it. In that day and time, light was something rare. Of course they had the sun, but they didn’t have electric lights or the brilliant glittering lights that we have today. Why, even your smart phone or flat screen television puts out more light in your home in one night than some of the farmers in the Bible days would have seen in a life time. But, here at the Obed-Edom home things were different.

Let me tell you that no light in the world is a beautiful and helpful as the light of God in your heart and in your home. Jesus said, “I am the light of the world,” and indeed He is. No artificial light of man can ever light the way for the individual or the family the way God’s Son and God’s Word can. Don’t you see this fact when you watch the news or look at some family situations today. You can see that many people and families are just wandering around in a dark world and dark home?

Obed-Edom had the light of God in His house. Now, just think about this for a moment. This man, husband, father, farmer, and citizens of Israel, had one chance to make the decision to have God in his house. It was an opportune time and he grasped it.

Someone in this very service today is standing at the door of an opportunity. The Lord is speaking to you by knocking on the door of your heart, and perhaps the door of your home. He wants residence there. He desires to come in and make things right in your heart, in your home, among your family and in every area of your life. No matter who you are, where you’ve been, or how small you feel in this big world, God cares about you individually. This is your opportune time to invite Him in.

Note also....

B. The Opportune Time for the Word of the Lord

You probably remember that the Ark of the Covenant had within it a copy of the Ten Commandments – God’s Law. That was God’s Word during those Old Testament days. In essence, Obed-Edom had welcomed the Word of God into His house.

There are some Christians who know the Lord but don’t live by the Word. You wonder why you are unhappy and don’t feel blessed at times. You are a Christian and you know you ought to be enjoying life but something seems to be missing in your heart and mind. For many the reason for our emptiness is the fact that we only hear the Word of God at church - and we don't even pay attention to the Word in our worship half the time. To walk with God, you need God’s Word in your house - in your heart - in your mind - on a daily basis. What a blessing it was for Obed-Edom to have God’s Word in His house. We are told that He was blessed, and surely one reason for this blessing was the fact that the Word of God was present in his home, with his family, every day.

Furthermore, we need to see...

C. An Opportune Time for the Peace of the Lord

In the Ark of the Covenant was the Aaron’s rod. The Rod of Aaron stretched back to a time when God’s people were complaining about those who led them. It pointed back to a time when strife and discord was in the camp of God’s people. I won't go into the entire story today, but in essence God revealed to the people that He wanted them to walk in unity, to follow leadership and to work together. Obed-Edom’s house, no doubt, became a place of peace and tranquility when the Ark of God was present. There are many homes and churches where there is a need for unity and the practice of working together under God’s leadership. So many people and so many families need peace – a peace that can only come when God is present with you and you know that He is in your home with you each day.

There is hardly anything more difficult to deal with than a home where there is discord, bitterness, hateful conversation, and a lack of true love. Working together, in affection and devotion brings peace, but it also brings prosperity. Unified home-life improves relationships, health, and your ability to be successful in your work. Just think of how much better life is for children when mom and dad are living and leading in harmony.

Let me say this to fathers today, you can have a greater peace in your home if you live there as a devoted Christian. A lot of strife comes from not being the praying, godly men we ought to be in our daily lives - in the secret place of the home. No one knows us better than our families - let us recommit ourselves to making our homes places of peace because the Prince of Peace lives there and directs us as husbands and fathers.

What happens when a husband - a father - truly lives for the Lord in his home and beyond? That leads us to ...

III. The Outstanding Results

Now, what happened to Obed-Edom as a result of welcoming God into his house – on to his home? It is truly amazing to see the results as we follow the story.

A. A Singer for the Lord

If you look at this story in 1 Chronicles 15, you discover that David decided to get the Ark from Obed-Edom's home and to bring it to Jerusalem. David had learned an important lesson from the death of Uzzah who touched the Ark and died, so this time when he moved the Ark he allowed the Levites to carry the Ark as God had originally designed.

David searched for some singers to help lead in singing as the Ark of the Covenant was to be moved. One name pops up in the scripture that will get your attention - it is the name Obed-Edom! Look at 1 Chronicles 16:4-36. There you see that Obed-Edom is mentioned as one of those who participated in the Psalm that David had written for the moving of the Ark to Jerusalem.

When you and I invite the Lord into our heart and home, He puts a song in our hearts. He leads us to have joy unspeakable and full of glory. He takes away our mourning and grants us joy.

Note also...

B. A Servant for the Lord

It is easy to see in the verses we are considering that Obed-Edom was a servant of the Lord. He had become a gate-keeper, we are told, in the house of the Lord. Obed-Edom only learned how to really serve God when he made God the Lord of His life. He only had the doors of full opportunity to serve opened to him when he fully opened the doors of his house to the Lord. Listen carefully! Christianity is not just a public thing, but must be paramount in our minds, hearts and the daily life we live at home. When we trust the Lord and serve Him at all times, not just when people are looking, He opens the door for us to serve Him – and what joy that brings.

But, there is more to this story. We see next ...

C. A Soul-Winner for the Lord

Look at 1 Chronicles 16:37-38 and note that the Bible says,

“37 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…”.

How about that! Obed-Edom’s commitment had led 68 of his relatives to become followers and servants of God. Surely, not all of them had been true followers of God before Obed-Edom had opened his house to the Lord. When you and I live for God as we should, it doesn’t just affect us – it touches those around us – especially our families. What better testimony can a person leave than one revealing an influence upon his entire family. One husband, father or man can leave a legacy of serving God and leading others to Him that will have eternal consequences!


Obed-Edom was just a simple farmer, living out in the country in Israel. He had an opportunity to receive the Lord and he did so. He left behind a testimony that we are still reading about today. Listen to this testimony and just think of how we can do the same.

  • He left behind a testimony of how wonderful it is to have God in your heart and home

  • He left behind a testimony of how important it is to really love God.
  • He left behind a testimony how joyful it is to serve God.

  • He left behind a testimony that faithfulness to God can touch your immediate and extended family for eternity.

It all begins with a commitment to let Jesus into your heart and then into your house – the place where you live every day.