A Legendary Passion for God
by Jacob Hudgins
“Behold, we heard of it in Ephrathah; we found it in the fields of Jaar”(Psalm 132:6).
The ark of the LORD has languished in Kiriath-Jearim (1 Sam 7:1) for years when David makes a decision. He “swore to the LORD and vowed to the Mighty One of Jacob, ‘I will not enter my house or get into my bed, I will not give sleep to my eyes or slumber to my eyelids, until I find a place for the LORD, a dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob’”(Psa 132:2-5). David wants to bring the ark to Jerusalem and build a house for it. Yet it is his intensity that is noteworthy: he (probably figuratively) refuses to even sleep until the transition is complete.
Psalm 132 describes the impact his passion for God’s honor has on the people. “Behold, we heard of it in Ephrathah; we found it in the fields of Jaar. ‘Let us go to his dwelling place; let us worship at his footstool!’”(Psalm 132:6-7). These are the people of Kiriath-Jearim, where the ark is. They are not angry that the ark will be taken away from them. Instead, they are inspired by David’s enthusiasm and prompted to follow the ark and worship God in Jerusalem. They happily declare, “Arise, O LORD, and go to your resting place, you and the ark of your might”(Psalm 132:8).
David’s passion inspires a nation. The people rejoice that the ark is brought to Jerusalem. Not only that, but this psalm becomes one of the “songs of ascent,” the set of psalms that Israel sings each year as they approach Jerusalem for their feasts. David’s passion inspires generation after generation of God’s people. He becomes a legend.
All people wrestle with thoughts of their own insignificance. What difference do I make? Will I be remembered? Do people even notice me? David’s example reminds us that our attitudes and approach have an impact on others. We can inspire others. We can renew people’s devotion to God. We can be remembered long after we are gone as an example of devotion to God. Perhaps we will be blessed to have that memory extend around the region we have lived. Perhaps it will be limited to the people in our community. Perhaps it is only our family and close friends. But our passion for God will have an impact on others, probably in ways we never see.