Easter Thoughts and a Whirling Dervish

It’s Easter, the day Christians celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus who willingly gave Himself over to death. Although He had the power to call thousands of angels, He chose to submit to death so His perfect blood would atone for the sins of all.

Whether you agree with what Christians call sin, you have to admit that mankind has historically required rules and guidelines to permit orderly governance. When rules are broken, there need to be consequences, or there would be no point to rules.

In Christianity, sin is breaking Father God’s rules. He is so perfect and just that despite all the love He has for us, His perfection cannot let even one dram of sin, one little white lie, one little cuss word, stand in His presence. Hence, the concept of Hell.

To overcome the eternal death sentence, faith in the power of Christ’s death is all that is required. To believe that His grace is sufficient to cover sin is the only requirement to avoid Hell, and then in appreciation of His grace a sincere effort to follow the Word alone is an outpouring of this belief.

This great, fathomless, bottomless grace and love should bring most Christians to a great feeling of joy. The joy should be so great that the response to it should be more than an “Amen,” more than a “Praise the Lord! Love ya, Sister Jones.”

It should be an all-over, exuberant outpouring. A lot like King David had in 2 Samuel, chapter.

As usual, Israel lost the Ark of the Covenant through pride and disobedience. The Ark of the Covenant at that time was more than just a pretty jewelry box. It represented the place where the LORD God Almighty chose to put his mojo so that He could be with His people.

King David earlier in the book had recovered it and was preparing to bring it back to Jerusalem, the capital city of Israel. There was a mishap (the Ark started to fall, a man touched it in an unauthorized fashion, the LORD zapped him dead) so the Ark stalled out for a while on the threshing floor of Nashon in the care of Obed-Edom.

Over time, Nashon and Obed-Edom were getting so blessed that David decided after three months to try one more time to bring the Ark to Jerusalem. Jerusalem threw the biggest block party you could imagine, and King David felt such delight that the seat of the LORD’s presence was returning to his town and country that he started to dance.

Contrary to sensational rumors (and his wife Michal’s perception at the end of the chapter), he was not naked or half-naked. He was wearing a linen ephod. That was a piece of clothing worn by priests in those days. I guess the closest modern equivalent would be a tunic.

Back to the story… Most texts say he was dancing and leaping. This isn’t the waltz with a bunny hop thrown in. The Contemporary Jewish Bible actually describes it as “leaping and spinning.” This is a vigorous combination of step dancing and wild twirling, the ancient Israeli precursor for break dancing if you will.

In the presence of the LORD, David chose an exuberant, wild physical show of love and affection and joy for the LORD who loved him, saved him physically, and raised him to follow the call on his life (in this case, lead all Israel).

In light of all that Christ did on the Cross for eternal salvation and demolishing sin’s hold on us, how can we modern Christians deny our Lord any less than our own wild, exuberant love, adoration, and worship?

PS–You are free to see something else in this passage. To you I say, “I will play and become even more undignified for Father God.” Oh, and if you’re prone to contempt or criticism, you might want to pay attention to Michal at the end of the story. There are truly physical consequences for living in a state of criticism and contempt, even in modern times.

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