God opposes pride. It is about our relationship with Him, not how much we can brag about him or how many wars we think we should win because we have Him on our side.
God Opposes Pride
Bradon: Have you ever seen Indiana Jones?
Jon: I think so, a long time ago?
Bradon: They have a whole movie dedicated to the Ark of The Covenant
Jon: Tune in for our next episode to hear how the bible inspired a Hollywood movie!
About the Story
Bradon: we continue our dive into 1 Samuel today – Picking up in Chapter 4 and going ALL the way to Chapter 7.
Jon: We are covering a lot of ground!
Bradon: We are! So I have a recap ready for the end!
Jon: To start, Samuel has just been solidified as a prophet in our last story after hearing from the Lord and sharing what he had heard with Eli, his half-blind, father-like mentor/ guardian.
Bradon: Chapter 4 then starts with a fight between the Isreal army and the Philistines.
Jon: These two armies had been at war for a long time. They were enemies of each other and were constantly in battle.
Bradon: In this particular battle the Philistines defeated the Israelites. As the Isralite army returned to their camp, the elders asked, “why has the Lord defeated us today before the Philistines?”
Jon: Now, in this conversation, it seems as though they hatched a plan to bring the Ark of The Covenant to the camp. This would be a sign that the Lord is with them and would favour them, or that was the idea.
Bradon: Although it didn’t seem to play out in the way they wanted it to. A quick side note, Exodus describes the Ark of the Covenant in detail. Craftsman built the Ark shortly after the Israelites escaped Egypt under Moses’ guidance.
Jon: Correct, the Ark is said to have contained things like the ten commandment tablets.
Bradon: It was the prized possession of the Israelites and proved, in their mind, that they were God’s favoured people.
Jon: Good point, “they thought” keep this in mind as we continue.
Bradon: So, the Ark is brought to the battlefield in hopes that it helps with the war against the Philistines – It doesn’t
Jon: No, it does not. The Philistines defeated Israel, even though the Isralite army put so much trust in the Ark that was with them.
Bradon: It seems though that they were putting more faith in the actual physical Ark than they were in God.
Jon: Right, Keep that in mind also, they were defeated again, and in this battle, Eli’s, two sons died, just as we saw Samuel predict in our lasEpisodede!
Bradon: This story does cover a lot of ground. Literally, the Ark moves a ton, and figuratively a lot is going on. So Jon, in two sentences, give us the sports highlights!
Jon: In today’s matchup, we have Israel in one corner opposed by the Philistines. Israel arrogantly takes the Ark of the Covenant into battle, thinking that it will provide them with victory. The philistines throw the knockout blow, winning the fight and taking the Ark back home. After the Ark moves from town and the Philistines are devastated by a plague from God, they send the Ark back with an offering in hopes that nothing worse happens to them.
Bradon: Perfect, great, thanks.
Jon: Now, with how much there is going on here, we can certainly learn more than one thing. But I want to focus on the idea “God Opposes Pride.”
Bradon: I see that too. Even though they were God’s people, the Israelites put more faith in the Ark than they did in God.
Jon: Exactly, they brought it down during battle almost as what seems like a scare tactic. They were not relying on their relationship with God; they were bragging about the power of God.
Bradon: And then, on the same note of pride, we see the Philistines take the Ark and place it in a place of the God they were worshiping as if to say the God they were worshiping was greater.
Jon: exactly. And together, we see both nations desiring the status of the Ark of the Covenant – but not the God who it represents. They were using the Ark as a symbol of power, riches, and victory.
Bradon: God responds well by showing them he is much more than simply a wooden and golden crate.
Jon: Once again, God opposes pride. It is about our relationship with Him, not how much we can brag about him or how many wars we think we should win because we have Him on our side.
Bradon: That’s a big thought. The difference between being proud of your relationship with God, something I think I aspire to and being prideful in that relationship.
Jon: I think the difference can come because of why we feel that. Being proud of God is okay; it is something we are happy about or excited to share; being prideful generally means we think we are better than someone or something.
Bradon: It makes sense to me!