Chapter 12

  1. And again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them, to say, Go number Israel and Judah. For the king said to Joab, the captain of the host who was with him, Go now through all the tribes of Israel, from Dan even to Beersheba, and number the people, that I may know the number of the people. And Joab said unto the king, Now the Lord your God add unto the people, however many they be, a hundredfold, and that the eyes of my lord the king may see it; but why does my lord the king delight in this thing? Notwithstanding, the king’s word prevailed against Joab and against the captains of the host. And Joab and the captains of the host went out from the presence of the king to number the people of Israel.
  2. And they passed over Jordan and pitched in Aroer, on the right side of the city that lies in the midst of the river of Gad, and toward Jazer. Then they came to Gilead, and to the land of Tahtim-Hodshi. And they came to Danjaan, and about to Sidon, and came to the stronghold of Tyre, and to all the cities of the Hivites and of the Canaanites. And they went out to the south of Judah, even to Beersheba. So when they had gone through all the land, they came to Jerusalem at the end of nine months and twenty days. And Joab gave up the sum of the number of the people unto the king. And there were in Israel eight hundred thousand valiant men that drew the sword, and the men of Judah were five hundred thousand men.
  3. And David’s heart smote him after he had numbered the people. And David said unto the Lord, I have sinned greatly in that I have done. And now I implore you, O Lord, take away the iniquity of your servant, for I have done very foolishly. For when David was up in the morning, the word of the Lord came unto the prophet Gad, David’s seer, saying, Go and say unto David, Thus says the Lord: I offer you three things; choose one of them, that I may do it unto you. So Gad came to David and told him, and said unto him, Shall seven years of famine come unto you in your land? Or will you flee three months before your enemies while they pursue you? Or that there be three days’ pestilence in your land? Now advise, and see what answer I shall return to him that sent me. And David said unto Gad, I am in a very tight place. Let us fall now into the hand of the Lord, for his mercies are great, and let me not fall into the hand of man.
  4. So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning even to the time appointed. And there died of the people from Dan even to Beersheba seventy thousand men. And when the angel stretched out his hand upon Jerusalem to destroy it, the Lord said unto him, Stop now your hand, it is enough; for the people repented, and the Lord stopped the hand of the angel, that he destroyed not the people; and the angel of the Lord was by the threshing place of Araunah the Jebusite. For David spoke unto the Lord when he saw the angel that smote the people, and said, Behold, I have sinned and I have done wickedly; but these sheep, what have they done? Let your hand, I pray you, be against me and against my father’s house.
  5. And Gad came that day to David and said unto him, Go up, rear an altar unto the Lord in the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite. And David, according to the saying of Gad, went up as the Lord commanded. And Araunah looked, and saw the king and his servants coming on toward him. And Araunah went out and bowed himself before the king, on his face upon the ground. And Araunah said, Why is my lord the king come to his servant? And David said, To buy the threshing floor of you, to build an altar unto the Lord, that the plague may be stopped among the people.
  6. And Araunah said unto David, Let my lord the king take and offer up what seems good unto him. Behold, here are oxen for burnt sacrifice, and threshing instruments and other instruments of the oxen for wood. All these things did Araunah, as a king, give unto the king. And Araunah said unto the king, The Lord your God accepts you.
  7. And the king said unto Araunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it from you at a price, neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the Lord my God of that which does cost me nothing. So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver. And David built there an altar unto the Lord, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. So the Lord was entreated for the land, and the plague was stopped among Israel.