In this series I am going to look at what can be established through our prayer and worship so that we can be more intentional in what we do. I will start with what David established in Jerusalem after he brought the Ark of the Covenant into the city and set up worship before it. I will then connect this to the New Testament pattern that we can engage in.
The passage below contains a number of important spiritual principles related to worship and prophetic intercession which I will address over a series of posts. However, opening up the implications of this passage requires some history and context.
1Moreover David and the captains of the army separated for the service some of the sons of Asaph, of Heman, and of Jeduthun, who should prophesy with harps, stringed instruments, and cymbals. And the number of the skilled men performing their service was: 2 Of the sons of Asaph: Zaccur, Joseph, Nethaniah, and Asharelah; the sons of Asaph were under the direction of Asaph, who prophesied according to the order of the king. 3 Of Jeduthun, the sons of Jeduthun: Gedaliah, Zeri, Jeshaiah, Shimei, Hashabiah, and Mattithiah, six, under the direction of their father Jeduthun, who prophesied with a harp to give thanks and to praise the Lord. 4 Of Heman, the sons of Heman: Bukkiah, Mattaniah, Uzziel, Shebuel, Jerimoth, Hananiah, Hanani, Eliathah, Giddalti, Romamti-Ezer, Joshbekashah, Mallothi, Hothir, and Mahazioth. 5 All these were the sons of Heman the king’s seer in the words of God, to exalt his horn. For God gave Heman fourteen sons and three daughters.
6 All these were under the direction of their father for the music in the house of the Lord, with cymbals, stringed instruments, and harps, for the service of the house of God. Asaph, Jeduthun, and Heman were under the authority of the king. 1 Chronicles 25:1–6 (NKJV)
Frankly, it isn’t clear in this passage whether they were to prophesy before the Ark of the Covenant, as David had set it up by itself, or were being set apart for the temple Solomon was yet to build. Yet if we look further in scripture there is an answer to our question.
4 And he appointed some of the Levites to minister before the ark of the Lord, to commemorate, to thank, and to praise the Lord God of Israel: 5 Asaph the chief, and next to him Zechariah, then Jeiel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Mattithiah, Eliab, Benaiah, and Obed-Edom: Jeiel with stringed instruments and harps, but Asaph made music with cymbals; 6 Benaiah and Jahaziel the priests regularly blew the trumpets before the ark of the covenant of God.
7 On that day David first delivered this psalm into the hand of Asaph and his brethren, to thank the Lord: 1 Chronicles 16:4–7 (NKJV)
What David was instituting was a continuation of what he began when he brought the ark to Jerusalem. There was open ongoing worship before the ark without the daily sacrifices and other aspects. We know this because the rest of the Tabernacle of Moses was still set up at Gibeon. We see this in the passage below.
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; 39 and Zadok the priest and his brethren the priests, before the tabernacle of the Lord at the high place that was at Gibeon, 40 to offer burnt offerings to the Lord on the altar of burnt offering regularly morning and evening, and to do according to all that is written in the Law of the Lord which He commanded Israel; 1 Chronicles 16:37–40 (NKJV)
So, we have worship before the ark in Jerusalem and sacrifices being offered on the altar at the tabernacle of Moses about 10 kilometers away at Gibeon.
This background sets the stage to see the significance of the Ark of the Covenant as Yahweh’s dwelling place. I will delve into this in my next post so we can begin connecting it to prophetic intercession and worship.