Uzzah Steadies the Ark
Uzzah is a work-related injury not directly attributed to him.
King david, in ignorance about how the arc was to be handled,
put it on a cart. The Arc is to be carried
on the shoulders of men
with poles of acacia wood slipped through the metal rings on the side of the arc.
So yes, God has prescribed how He will be approache
and how we may address Him.
But Uzza’s death was no more “punishment” than an electrician getting zapped for ignorantly handling live wires.
Uzzah did not know, David did not know;
but God is still ‘HIGH voltage’
The arc is a picture of the mercy seat of God and
we will come before God on His terms or we will not make it.
I have heard the argument about man steadying the Arc and
it holds water to a point,
(Pro 10:29 The way of the LORD is a stronghold to the blameless, but destruction to evildoers.)
but I don’t think it is divine retribution against Uzzah.
Many commentaries you find neglect the fact that the arc depends on being carried on the backs of men.
God does nothing for man without the participation of men.
The deal with Uzzah is that the people of Israel were so far from God that their good intentions led them to violate clear instructions from God about how to approach Him.
God maintains a typology for its prophetic consistency
and our education.
This is why Moses could not enter the promised land
He struck the rock once; after that God instructed him
to speak to the rock, but he struck it again.
Jesus was the rock. Smitten once
and now we must merely speak to the rock to know that living water.
Moses messed up the typology and got a heavenly time out.
Uzzah died for our benefit, not for his punishment.
Same with Ananias and Saphira in Acts 5.
The arc needed carrying in an oxcart
because men had previously failed
in stewarding what God had entrusted.
As we decide how we will choose to worship God
(frequently on our own terms)
how often will we choose to just practice whatever manner of good intentioned gesture we like and ask God to put up with it?
All paths do not lead to God, only Christ does.
Not Christ plus something.
Not an oxcart plus a strong steady hand...
There is a way that seems right to a man
but it’s end is the way to death.
Better to follow God more closely and know His ways,
the margin of error between good and Holy is slight
but it is also eternally significant.