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David's Census

1 Chronicles 21:1-22:1
1 Chronicles 21:1-22:1
1 Chronicles 21:1-22:1
1 Chronicles 21:1-22:1

1 Chronicles 21:1-22:1

21:1 Then Satan stood against Israel and incited David to number Israel. So David said to Joab and the commanders of the army, “Go, number Israel, from Beersheba to Dan, and bring me a report, that I may know their number.” But Joab said, “May the Lord add to his people a hundred times as many as they are! Are they not, my lord the king, all of them my lord's servants? Why then should my lord require this? Why should it be a cause of guilt for Israel?” But the king's word prevailed against Joab. So Joab departed and went throughout all Israel and came back to Jerusalem. And Joab gave the sum of the numbering of the people to David. In all Israel there were 1,100,000 men who drew the sword, and in Judah 470,000 who drew the sword. But he did not include Levi and Benjamin in the numbering, for the king's command was abhorrent to Joab.

But God was displeased with this thing, and he struck Israel. And David said to God, “I have sinned greatly in that I have done this thing. But now, please take away the iniquity of your servant, for I have acted very foolishly.” And the Lord spoke to Gad, David's seer, saying, 10 “Go and say to David, ‘Thus says the Lord, Three things I offer you; choose one of them, that I may do it to you.’” 11 So Gad came to David and said to him, “Thus says the Lord, ‘Choose what you will: 12 either three years of famine, or three months of devastation by your foes while the sword of your enemies overtakes you, or else three days of the sword of the Lord, pestilence on the land, with the angel of the Lord destroying throughout all the territory of Israel.’ Now decide what answer I shall return to him who sent me.” 13 Then David said to Gad, “I am in great distress. Let me fall into the hand of the Lord, for his mercy is very great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man.”

14 So the Lord sent a pestilence on Israel, and 70,000 men of Israel fell. 15 And God sent the angel to Jerusalem to destroy it, but as he was about to destroy it, the Lord saw, and he relented from the calamity. And he said to the angel who was working destruction, “It is enough; now stay your hand.” And the angel of the Lord was standing by the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. 16 And David lifted his eyes and saw the angel of the Lord standing between earth and heaven, and in his hand a drawn sword stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces. 17 And David said to God, “Was it not I who gave command to number the people? It is I who have sinned and done great evil. But these sheep, what have they done? Please let your hand, O Lord my God, be against me and against my father's house. But do not let the plague be on your people.”

18 Now the angel of the Lord had commanded Gad to say to David that David should go up and raise an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. 19 So David went up at Gad's word, which he had spoken in the name of the Lord. 20 Now Ornan was threshing wheat. He turned and saw the angel, and his four sons who were with him hid themselves. 21 As David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David and went out from the threshing floor and paid homage to David with his face to the ground. 22 And David said to Ornan, “Give me the site of the threshing floor that I may build on it an altar to the Lord—give it to me at its full price—that the plague may be averted from the people.” 23 Then Ornan said to David, “Take it, and let my lord the king do what seems good to him. See, I give the oxen for burnt offerings and the threshing sledges for the wood and the wheat for a grain offering; I give it all.” 24 But King David said to Ornan, “No, but I will buy them for the full price. I will not take for the Lord what is yours, nor offer burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” 25 So David paid Ornan 600 shekels of gold by weight for the site. 26 And David built there an altar to the Lord and presented burnt offerings and peace offerings and called on the Lord, and the Lord answered him with fire from heaven upon the altar of burnt offering. 27 Then the Lord commanded the angel, and he put his sword back into its sheath.

28 At that time, when David saw that the Lord had answered him at the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite, he sacrificed there. 29 For the tabernacle of the Lord, which Moses had made in the wilderness, and the altar of burnt offering were at that time in the high place at Gibeon, 30 but David could not go before it to inquire of God, for he was afraid of the sword of the angel of the Lord.

22:1 Then David said, “Here shall be the house of the Lord God and here the altar of burnt offering for Israel.”

David Counts the People

(2 Samuel 24.1-9)

1 Satan decided to cause trouble for Israel by making David think it was a good idea to find out how many people there were in Israel and Judah. 2 David told Joab and the army commanders, “Count everyone in Israel, from the town of Beersheba in the south all the way north to Dan. Then I will know how many people can serve in my army.”

3 Joab answered, “Your Majesty, even if the Lord made your kingdom a hundred times larger, you would still rule everyone in it. Why do you need to know how many soldiers there are? Don't you think that would make the whole nation angry?”

4 But David would not change his mind. And so Joab went everywhere in Israel and Judah and counted the people. He returned to Jerusalem 5 and told David that the total number of men who could serve in the army was 1,100,000 in Israel and 470,000 in Judah. 6 Joab refused to include anyone from the tribes of Levi and Benjamin, because he still disagreed with David's orders.

God Punishes Israel

(2 Samuel 24.10-17)

7 David's order to count the people made God angry, and he punished Israel. 8 David prayed, “I am your servant. But what I did was stupid and terribly wrong. Please forgive me.”

9 The Lord said to Gad, one of David's prophets, 10 “Tell David that I will punish him in one of three ways. But he will have to choose which one it will be.”

11 Gad went to David and told him:

You must choose how the Lord will punish you: 12 Will there be three years when the land won't grow enough food for its people? Or will your enemies constantly defeat you for three months? Or will the Lord send a horrible disease to strike your land for three days? Think about it and decide, because I have to give your answer to God who sent me.

13 David was miserable and said, “It's a terrible choice to make! But the Lord is kind, and I'd rather be punished by him than by anyone else.”

14 So the Lord sent a horrible disease on Israel, and 70,000 Israelites died. 15 Then he sent an angel to destroy the city of Jerusalem. But just as the angel was about to do that, the Lord felt sorry for all the suffering he had caused the people, and he told the angel, “Stop! They have suffered enough.” This happened at the threshing place that belonged to Araunah the Jebusite.

16 David saw the Lord's angel in the air, holding a sword over Jerusalem. He and the leaders of Israel, who were all wearing sackcloth, bowed with their faces to the ground, 17 and David prayed, “It's my fault! I sinned by ordering the people to be counted. They have done nothing wrong—they are innocent sheep. Lord God, please punish me and my family. Don't let the disease wipe out your people.”

David Buys Araunah's Threshing Place

(2 Samuel 24.18-25)

18 The Lord's angel told the prophet Gad to tell David that he must go to Araunah's threshing place and build an altar in honor of the Lord. 19 David followed the Lord's instructions.

20 Araunah and his four sons were threshing wheat at the time, and when they saw the angel, the four sons ran to hide. 21 Just then, David arrived, and when Araunah saw him, he stopped his work and bowed down.

22 David said, “Would you sell me your threshing place, so I can build an altar on it to the Lord? Then this disease will stop killing the people. I'm willing to pay whatever you say it's worth.”

23 Araunah answered, “Take it, Your Majesty, and do whatever you want with it. I'll even give you the oxen for the sacrifice and the wheat for the grain sacrifice. And you can use the threshing-boards for the fire. It's all yours!”

24 But David replied, “No! I want to pay you what they're worth. I can't just take something from you and then offer the Lord a sacrifice that cost me nothing.”

25 So David paid Araunah 600 gold coins for his threshing place. 26 David built an altar and offered sacrifices to please the Lord and sacrifices to ask his blessing. David prayed, and the Lord answered him by sending fire down on the altar. 27 Then the Lord commanded the angel to put the sword away.

28 When David saw that the Lord had answered his prayer, he offered more sacrifices there at the threshing place, 29-30 because he was afraid of the angel's sword and did not want to go all the way to Gibeon. That's where the sacred tent that Moses had made in the desert was kept, as well as the altar where sacrifices were offered to the Lord.

1 David said, “The temple of the Lord God must be built right here at this threshing place. And the altar for offering sacrifices will also be here.”

David Takes a Census

(2 Samuel 24.1-25)

1 Satan wanted to bring trouble on the people of Israel, so he made David decide to take a census. 2 David gave orders to Joab and the other officers, “Go through Israel, from one end of the country to the other, and count the people. I want to know how many there are.”

3 Joab answered, “May the Lord make the people of Israel a hundred times more numerous than they are now! Your Majesty, they are all your servants. Why do you want to do this and make the whole nation guilty?” 4 But the king made Joab obey the order. Joab went out, traveled through the whole country of Israel, and then returned to Jerusalem. 5 He reported to King David the total number of men capable of military service: 1,100,000 in Israel and 470,000 in Judah. 6 Because Joab disapproved of the king's command, he did not take any census of the tribes of Levi and Benjamin.

7 God was displeased with what had been done, so he punished Israel. 8 David said to God, “I have committed a terrible sin in doing this! Please forgive me. I have acted foolishly.”

9 Then the Lord said to Gad, David's prophet, 10 “Go and tell David that I am giving him three choices. I will do whichever he chooses.”

11 Gad went to David, told him what the Lord had said, and asked, “Which is it to be? 12 Three years of famine? Or three months of running away from the armies of your enemies? Or three days during which the Lord attacks you with his sword and sends an epidemic on your land, using his angel to bring death throughout Israel? What answer shall I give the Lord?”

13 David replied to Gad, “I am in a desperate situation! But I don't want to be punished by people. Let the Lord himself be the one to punish me, because he is merciful.”

14 So the Lord sent an epidemic on the people of Israel, and seventy thousand of them died. 15 Then he sent an angel to destroy Jerusalem, but he changed his mind and said to the angel, “Stop! That's enough!” The angel was standing by the threshing place of Araunah, a Jebusite.

16 David saw the angel standing in midair, holding his sword in his hand, ready to destroy Jerusalem. Then David and the leaders of the people—all of whom were wearing sackcloth—bowed low, with their faces touching the ground. 17 David prayed, “O God, I am the one who did wrong. I am the one who ordered the census. What have these poor people done? Lord, my God, punish me and my family, and spare your people.”

18 The angel of the Lord told Gad to command David to go and build an altar to the Lord at Araunah's threshing place. 19 David obeyed the Lord's command and went, as Gad had told him to. 20 There at the threshing place Araunah and his four sons were threshing wheat, and when they saw the angel, the sons ran and hid. 21 As soon as Araunah saw King David approaching, he left the threshing place and bowed low, with his face touching the ground. 22 David said to him, “Sell me your threshing place, so that I can build an altar to the Lord, to stop the epidemic. I'll give you the full price.”

23 “Take it, Your Majesty,” Araunah said, “and do whatever you wish. Here are these oxen to burn as an offering on the altar, and here are the threshing boards to use as fuel, and wheat to give as an offering. I give it all to you.”

24 But the king answered, “No, I will pay you the full price. I will not give as an offering to the Lord something that belongs to you, something that costs me nothing.” 25 And he paid Araunah six hundred gold coins for the threshing place. 26 He built an altar to the Lord there and offered burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. He prayed, and the Lord answered him by sending fire from heaven to burn the sacrifices on the altar.

27 The Lord told the angel to put his sword away, and the angel obeyed. 28 David saw by this that the Lord had answered his prayer, so he offered sacrifices on the altar at Araunah's threshing place. 29 The Tent of the Lord's presence which Moses had made in the wilderness, and the altar on which sacrifices were burned were still at the place of worship at Gibeon at this time; 30 but David was not able to go there to worship God, because he was afraid of the sword of the Lord's angel.

1 So David said, “This is where the Temple of the Lord God will be. Here is the altar where the people of Israel are to offer burnt offerings.”

The Lord Sends a Plague against Israel

21:1 An adversary opposed Israel, inciting David to count how many warriors Israel had. 2 David told Joab and the leaders of the army, “Go, count the number of warriors from Beer Sheba to Dan. Then bring back a report to me so I may know how many we have.” 3 Joab replied, “May the Lord make his army a hundred times larger! My master, O king, do not all of them serve my master? Why does my master want to do this? Why bring judgment on Israel?”

4 But the king’s edict stood, despite Joab’s objections. So Joab left and traveled throughout Israel before returning to Jerusalem. 5 Joab reported to David the number of warriors. In all Israel there were 1,100,000 sword-wielding soldiers; Judah alone had 470,000 sword-wielding soldiers. 6 Now Joab did not number Levi and Benjamin, for the king’s edict disgusted him. 7 God was also offended by it, so he attacked Israel.

8 David said to God, “I have sinned greatly by doing this! Now, please remove the guilt of your servant, for I have acted very foolishly.” 9 The Lord told Gad, David’s prophet, 10 “Go, tell David, ‘This is what the Lord says: “I am offering you three forms of judgment from which to choose. Pick one of them.”’” 11 Gad went to David and told him, “This is what the Lord says: ‘Pick one of these: 12 three years of famine, or three months being chased by your enemies and struck down by their swords, or three days being struck down by the Lord, during which a plague will invade the land and the Lord’s messenger will destroy throughout Israel’s territory.’ Now, decide what I should tell the one who sent me.” 13 David said to Gad, “I am very upset! I prefer to be attacked by the Lord, for his mercy is very great; I do not want to be attacked by men!” 14 So the Lord sent a plague through Israel, and 70,000 Israelite men died.

15 God sent an angel to ravage Jerusalem. As he was doing so, the Lord watched and relented from his judgment. He told the angel who was destroying, “That’s enough! Stop now!”

Now the Lord’s angel was standing near the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. 16 David looked up and saw the Lord’s messenger standing between the earth and sky with his sword drawn and in his hand, stretched out over Jerusalem. David and the leaders, covered with sackcloth, threw themselves down with their faces to the ground. 17 David said to God, “Was I not the one who decided to number the army? I am the one who sinned and committed this awful deed! As for these sheep – what have they done? O Lord my God, attack me and my family, but remove the plague from your people!”

18 So the Lord’s messenger told Gad to instruct David to go up and build an altar for the Lord on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. 19 So David went up as Gad instructed him to do in the name of the Lord. 20 While Ornan was threshing wheat, he turned and saw the messenger, and he and his four sons hid themselves. 21 When David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David; he came out from the threshing floor and bowed to David with his face to the ground. 22 David said to Ornan, “Sell me the threshing floor so I can build on it an altar for the Lord – I’ll pay top price – so that the plague may be removed from the people.” 23 Ornan told David, “You can have it! My master, the king, may do what he wants. Look, I am giving you the oxen for burnt sacrifices, the threshing sledges for wood, and the wheat for an offering. I give it all to you.” 24 King David replied to Ornan, “No, I insist on buying it for top price. I will not offer to the Lord what belongs to you or offer a burnt sacrifice that cost me nothing. 25 So David bought the place from Ornan for 600 pieces of gold. 26 David built there an altar to the Lord and offered burnt sacrifices and peace offerings. He called out to the Lord, and the Lord responded by sending fire from the sky and consuming the burnt sacrifice on the altar. 27 The Lord ordered the messenger to put his sword back into its sheath.

28 At that time, when David saw that the Lord responded to him at the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite, he sacrificed there. 29 Now the Lord’s tabernacle (which Moses had made in the wilderness) and the altar for burnt sacrifices were at that time at the worship center in Gibeon. 30 But David could not go before it to seek God’s will, for he was afraid of the sword of the Lord’s messenger. 22:1 David then said, “This is the place where the temple of the Lord God will be, along with the altar for burnt sacrifices for Israel.”

The Creation
Adam and Eve
Cain and Abel
The Great Flood
The Tower of Babel
God Calls Abraham
Sodom and Gomorrah
Abraham's Obedience
Isaac Marries Rebekah
Esau's Birthright
Isaac Blesses Jacob
Jacob and Laban
Jacob Wrestles
Revenge against Shechem
Joseph in Prison
Joseph as a Ruler
Family Reunion
Moses' Birth
The Burning Bush
The Ten Plagues
The Exodus
The Red Sea
The Gold Calf
Exploring the Land
Rebellion in the Ranks
Balak and Balaam
Rahab and the Spies
Jericho Falls
Gibeon's Con Artists
Deborah and Barak
Gideon as Judge
Abimelech's Ambition
Samson as Judge
Ruth, Naomi and Boaz
Samuel is Born
Samuel the Prophet
Saul Becomes King
Jonathan's Bravery
Saul's Disobedience
David Kills Goliath
David and Jonathan
Nabal and Abigail
Saul's Death
David's Success
David and Bathsheba
Amnon and Tamar
Absalom
Solomon's Wisdom
Jeroboam and Rehoboam
Elijah's Challenge
God Speaks to Elijah
Micaiah the Prophet
Chariot of Fire
Elisha Heals Naaman
Famine and Unbelief
Joash and Jehoiada
Hezekiah Trusts God
Josiah's Reign
Fall of Jerusalem
David's Power
David's Census
Jehoshaphat and Ahab
Ezra Rebuilds the Altar
Nehemiah Builds the Wall
Enemy Opposition
Nehemiah's Justice
Esther Saves the Jews
Job is Tested
Ezekiel's Vision
The Fiery Furnace
The Lions' Den
Jonah
Jesus is Born
Wise Men and King Herod
Jesus is Tempted
Jesus Feeds 5,000
The Bread of Life
Jesus Walks on Water
The Good Samaritan
The Lost Son
Jesus Raises Lazarus
Jesus and Zacchaeus
The Triumphal Entry
The Last Supper
Jesus' Trial
Jesus' Crucifixion
Jesus' Resurrection
Jesus' Ascension
The Holy Spirit Comes
The Apostles' Courage
Ananias and Sapphira
Philip and the Eunuch
Saul Encounters Jesus
Peter and Cornelius
Paul in Corinth
Paul in Ephesus
Paul Goes to Rome