In The Courts of YHWH

When I was a younger man, I used to imagine what it would have been like to be in King David’s royal court. Actually, my imaginings more often put me in David’s place, King of Jerusalem, leader of Israel, God’s Holy People. The significance of position was lost on me, but one thing was clear, David spent a lot of time before his God.

Around the time I was thinking up the name for this blog, there was a band, Kutless, who covered a song called Better is One Day. They may have put their own spin on it, but this song is ancient. Kutless was singing directly from an old Hebrew text known as the Psalms. Specifically, Psalm 84:10

A single day in your courts is better than a thousand anywhere else! I would rather be a gatekeeper in the house of my God than live the good life in the homes of the wicked.

Often, I find that spending even a single moment is His presence is difficult. Yet, David and the son’s of rebellious Korah seemed to think it a wondrous place, one they would refuse to leave should they be given the chance. How can they, sinners all, be so enthralled with God that they should want to stay there forever in humility while all their friends partied and had a good time in the city? Scripture tells us that the Word of the Lord is sharper than any two edged sword, dividing soul and spirit, bone and marrow. Elsewhere, it tells us it is a light in the darkness, revealing things done in darkness intended to be hidden from the light.

If the word of the All Righteous Judge is humbling enough, surely his presence should be too much to bear? Isaiah said, “Woe is me for I am unmade!” when he encountered the Lord face to face. The soldiers sent to take Jesus captive fell as if knocked down when he said, “I Am he”. Moses shown with divine glory after having only seen the Lords passing, and yet, Better. Is. One. Day.

There is no shortage of men in the Bible, or throughout history, who have wished to spend just one more day in those courts. If these men, having wept at seeing that their own tainted goodness being revealed as nothing short of garbage, can still find His presence wonderful, surely they have seen more than just their demise. Surely, God is more than the All Righteous Judge. Maybe, if I just spend one more day in His courts…

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