King David wrote:
‘One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in His temple.’ (Ps 27:24)
The unusual circumstances in which God answered this cry of David’s heart—with the help of a man called Obed Edom —have something to teach us today.
The Day God’s Presence was too Hot to Handle
King David discovered the hard way that God’s Presence is to be honoured as holy.
His intentions were good—bring the Ark of God’s Covenant to Jerusalem, so that God’s Presence, along with praise and worship, could be at the centre of Israel.
Unfortunately, David turned to the ways of the world, not the way of God’s Word, to determine how to transport the Ark.  As a result, one well-intentioned young man on David’s team lost his life.
Deeply disturbed and upset, King David took the Ark of the Covenant aside, to the property of Obed Edom. (Read the full story in 2 Sam 6)
What Happened When Obed Edom Hosted God’s Presence:
Obed Edom opened the gate to his property and King David brought in the Ark of the Covenant, and with it, the glory and manifest Presence of God. What happened as a result is an inspiration for us today:
1. Personal Blessing on his Property and Household
The ark of the Lord remained in the house of Obed-Edom the Gittite for three months, and the Lord blessed him and his entire household. (2 Sam 6:11)
When Obed Edom hosted God’s Presence, everything and everyone in Obed Edom’s life was touched by God and blessed.
The Bible doesn’t tell us that Obed Edom did anything to warrant this blessing.
- No extra praying or fasting
- No hard work to earn God’s favour
- No religious rites.
The only thing he did was host God’s presence.
Jesus has made the way open for us to live continually in God’s Presence. It is not by anything we have done, or can do, but by His blood shed for us.
2. The Rumour of God’s Goodness Gets Out
Now King David was told, “The Lord has blessed the household of Obed-Edom and everything he has, because of the ark of God.” (2 Sam 6:12)
Stories of what God was doing in Obed Edom’s life were being passed around, as people start gossiping the goodness of God.
Maybe it went something like this:
‘Have you heard what happened to Obed Edom since the Ark has been at his place?’
- His crops have doubled in size
- His daughter who was barren has started having babies
- That servant of his, last time I saw him was limping with a deformed leg, but he’s been healed 
When we host God’s Presence, people around us will notice the difference. The word of God’s goodness will get out.
3. Other People get Hungry for God
When King David heard the reports of God’s blessing on Obed Edom’s life and property, he became hungry for the Presence of God. As a result he now studied the scripture, looked into God’s prescribed way to transport the ark. (1 Chron 15:11-15)
You know that you are hosting the Presence of God when people around you become seekers.
When testimonies and stories go out, a chain reaction occurs. People see what is possible for them and they want what you have.
4. Obed Edom and his Family have a Godly Heritage
Obed Edom and his household were changed forever. No doubt his children and grandchildren grew up saying, ‘Can you remember when the Ark stayed with us? Can you remember what God did?’
And Obed Edom and his family have become a part of Israel’s story, recorded in Scripture for all eternity.
Later we see that a man called Obed Edom and his sons were gatekeepers for the Presence of God, for the tabernacle/temple (1 CHRON 15 & 26)
The Bible doesn’t expressly say this was the same Obed Edom, however evidence suggests that it was. Having tasted of the Presence of God, God called the family into a ministry through which they could be close to Him for generations to come.
5. A Nation is Brought to Worship
King David ‘and the entire house of Israel’ brought the Ark out from Obed Edom’s house—and the nation rejoiced.
David prepared a tabernacle for the Ark of God to dwell, and rostered Levite musicians to look after it, in accordance with God’s prescribed order.
And in an open tent, looking upon the glory of God, there was 24/7 worship and prophecy and praise—something that only happened during David’s time.
When you host God’s Presence, a chain reaction occurs that can impact not only your family, but your community, region and nations.
How to Host God’s Presence
Hosting God’s Presence is not about performance. It is not about following prescribed rules, or doing the right things, but about having God at the centre of our lives.
All that Obed Edom did was make room for God’s Presence.
What would happen if we believed ourselves to be living ‘Arks’ of God—containers of His manifest Presence?
What could take place if we saw ourselves as gatekeepers of every place that we occupy? To open the gate to His Presence in our homes, churches, workplaces and every situation we live and move in?
Take some time to pray today and ask, ‘Father, what does this look like for me, for my family, ministry, church, or workplace?’
 20 years before, in 1 Sam 6, God allowed the Philistines to transport the Ark on a new cart, in order to return it to Israel.
 To get an idea of what God’s blessing would have looked like for Obed Edom, read the marks of God’s blessing in Deut 28. These include health, fruitfulness, prosperity, and freedom from oppression. (In 1 Chron 26, lists 8 sons of Obed Edom ‘because God had blessed him!’)
© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching
in the David McCracken Ministries family