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2 Samuel 24 Tree of Life Version (TLV)

David’s Unauthorized Census

24 Now the anger of Adonai again flared up against Israel, so He incited David against them saying, “Go, number Israel and Judah.” The king said to Joab the commander of the army who was with him, “Go about now through all the tribes of Israel, from Dan to Beersheba, and number the people, so that I may know the sum of the people.”

But Joab said to the king, “May Adonai your God add to the people a hundred times as many as they are, while the eyes of my lord the king looks on! But why does my lord the king desire such a thing?”

Nevertheless, the king’s command to Joab and the army generals remained firm. So Joab and the army generals went out from the king’s presence to number the people of Israel. They crossed over the Jordan and camped in Aroer, on the right side of the town that is in the middle of the valley of Gad, and toward Jazer. Then they went to Gilead and to the land of Tahtim-hodshi. Then they came to Dan-jaan and round about to Sidon, and came to the stronghold of Tyre, to all the cities of the Hivites and the Canaanites. Then they went out to the south of Judah, to Beersheba. So when they had gone throughout all the land, they came back to Jerusalem at the end of nine months and 20 days. Joab reported the sum of the numbering of the people to the king: there were in Israel 800,000 valiant men who drew the sword and the men of Judah were 500,000 men.

10 But David’s heart troubled him after he had numbered the people. So David prayed to Adonai, “I have sinned greatly in what I have done! But now, Adonai, please take away the iniquity of Your servant, for I have acted very foolishly.”

11 When David rose up in the morning, the word of Adonai came to the prophet Gad, David’s seer, saying: 12 “Go and speak to David, thus says Adonai: ‘Three things I am proposing to you—choose one of them and I will bring it upon you.’” 13 So Gad came to David and told him, saying to him, “Shall seven years of famine come on you in your land? Or will you flee from your adversary for three months while he is pursuing you? Or shall there be three days of pestilence in your land? Now consider and see what answer I should return to Him who sent me.”

14 Then David said to Gad, “I am in a great distress. Let us now fall into the hand of Adonai, for His mercies are great, and let me not fall into the hand of man.” 15 So Adonai sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning until the appointed time, so that 70,000 men of the people died from Dan to Beersheba. 16 When the angel stretched out his hand toward Jerusalem to destroy it, Adonai relented from the calamity and said to the angel who was destroying the people, “Enough! Now withdraw your hand.” The angel of Adonai was then by the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite.

17 When David saw the angel that was striking down the people, he spoke to Adonai saying, “Behold, it is I who have sinned, and it is I who have done wrong! But these sheep, what have they done? Please, let Your hand be against me and against my father’s house.”

18 On that day Gad came to David and said to him, “Go up, set up an altar to Adonai on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite.” 19 So David went up according to the word of Gad, as Adonai had commanded. 20 Now when Araunah looked down and saw the king and his courtiers crossing over toward him, Araunah went out and bowed down before the king with his face to the ground. 21 Then Araunah said, “Why has my lord the king come to his servant?”

David said, “To buy the threshing floor from you in order to build an altar to Adonai, so that the plague may be held back from the people.”

22 Then Araunah said to David, “Let my lord the king take and offer up what seems good in his eyes. Look here, the oxen for the burnt offering, as well as the threshing sledges and the ox yokes for the wood. 23 All this Araunah gives to the king.” Araunah said further to the king, “May Adonai your God accept you.”

24 But the king said to Araunah, “No, but I will surely buy it from you at a price. I will not offer burnt offerings to Adonai my God that cost me nothing.” So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen for 50 shekels of silver. 25 Then David built there an altar to Adonai, and offered burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. So Adonai was moved by prayer of entreaty for the land, and restrained the plague from Israel.

Tree of Life Version (TLV)

Tree of Life (TLV) Translation of the Bible. Copyright © 2015 by The Messianic Jewish Family Bible Society.

2 Samuel 24 New International Version (NIV)

David Enrolls the Fighting Men

24 Again the anger of the Lord burned against Israel, and he incited David against them, saying, “Go and take a census of Israel and Judah.”

So the king said to Joab and the army commanders[a] with him, “Go throughout the tribes of Israel from Dan to Beersheba and enroll the fighting men, so that I may know how many there are.”

But Joab replied to the king, “May the Lord your God multiply the troops a hundred times over, and may the eyes of my lord the king see it. But why does my lord the king want to do such a thing?”

The king’s word, however, overruled Joab and the army commanders; so they left the presence of the king to enroll the fighting men of Israel.

After crossing the Jordan, they camped near Aroer, south of the town in the gorge, and then went through Gad and on to Jazer. They went to Gilead and the region of Tahtim Hodshi, and on to Dan Jaan and around toward Sidon. Then they went toward the fortress of Tyre and all the towns of the Hivites and Canaanites. Finally, they went on to Beersheba in the Negev of Judah.

After they had gone through the entire land, they came back to Jerusalem at the end of nine months and twenty days.

Joab reported the number of the fighting men to the king: In Israel there were eight hundred thousand able-bodied men who could handle a sword, and in Judah five hundred thousand.

10 David was conscience-stricken after he had counted the fighting men, and he said to the Lord, “I have sinned greatly in what I have done. Now, Lord, I beg you, take away the guilt of your servant. I have done a very foolish thing.

11 Before David got up the next morning, the word of the Lord had come to Gad the prophet, David’s seer: 12 “Go and tell David, ‘This is what the Lord says: I am giving you three options. Choose one of them for me to carry out against you.’”

13 So Gad went to David and said to him, “Shall there come on you three[b] years of famine in your land? Or three months of fleeing from your enemies while they pursue you? Or three days of plague in your land? Now then, think it over and decide how I should answer the one who sent me.”

14 David said to Gad, “I am in deep distress. Let us fall into the hands of the Lord, for his mercy is great; but do not let me fall into human hands.”

15 So the Lord sent a plague on Israel from that morning until the end of the time designated, and seventy thousand of the people from Dan to Beersheba died. 16 When the angel stretched out his hand to destroy Jerusalem, the Lord relented concerning the disaster and said to the angel who was afflicting the people, “Enough! Withdraw your hand.” The angel of the Lord was then at the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite.

17 When David saw the angel who was striking down the people, he said to the Lord, “I have sinned; I, the shepherd,[c] have done wrong. These are but sheep. What have they done? Let your hand fall on me and my family.”

David Builds an Altar

18 On that day Gad went to David and said to him, “Go up and build an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite.” 19 So David went up, as the Lord had commanded through Gad. 20 When Araunah looked and saw the king and his officials coming toward him, he went out and bowed down before the king with his face to the ground.

21 Araunah said, “Why has my lord the king come to his servant?”

“To buy your threshing floor,” David answered, “so I can build an altar to the Lord, that the plague on the people may be stopped.”

22 Araunah said to David, “Let my lord the king take whatever he wishes and offer it up. Here are oxen for the burnt offering, and here are threshing sledges and ox yokes for the wood. 23 Your Majesty, Araunah[d] gives all this to the king.” Araunah also said to him, “May the Lord your God accept you.”

24 But the king replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on paying you for it. I will not sacrifice to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.”

So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen and paid fifty shekels[e] of silver for them. 25 David built an altar to the Lord there and sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. Then the Lord answered his prayer in behalf of the land, and the plague on Israel was stopped.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Samuel 24:2 Septuagint (see also verse 4 and 1 Chron. 21:2); Hebrew Joab the army commander
  2. 2 Samuel 24:13 Septuagint (see also 1 Chron. 21:12); Hebrew seven
  3. 2 Samuel 24:17 Dead Sea Scrolls and Septuagint; Masoretic Text does not have the shepherd.
  4. 2 Samuel 24:23 Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint; most Hebrew manuscripts King Araunah
  5. 2 Samuel 24:24 That is, about 1 1/4 pounds or about 575 grams
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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