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1 Chronicles 13-15 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

David Brings Back the Ark

13 David talked with each of his officers. He wanted to get their advice. Some of them were commanders of thousands of men. Others were commanders of hundreds. David spoke to the whole community of Israel. He said, “Let’s send word to the rest of our people no matter how far away they live. They live in all the territories of Israel. Let’s also send word to the priests and Levites who are with them in their towns and on their grasslands. Let’s invite everyone to come and join us. Let’s do it if it seems good to you and if that’s what the Lord our God wants. Let’s bring the ark of our God back here to us. We didn’t use it to ask God for advice during the whole time Saul was king.” So that’s what the whole community agreed to do. It seemed right to them.

David gathered together all the Israelites. They came from the area between the Shihor River in Egypt and Lebo Hamath. They came to bring the ark of God from Kiriath Jearim to Jerusalem. David went to Baalah of Judah. The whole community of Israel went with him. Baalah is also called Kiriath Jearim. All the people went there to get the ark of God the Lord. He sits on his throne between the cherubim. The ark is named after the Lord.

The ark of God was placed on a new cart. Then it was moved from Abinadab’s house. Uzzah and Ahio were guiding it. David was celebrating with all his might in front of God. So was the whole community of Israel. All of them were singing songs. They were also playing harps, lyres, tambourines, cymbals and trumpets.

They came to the threshing floor of Kidon. The oxen nearly fell there. So Uzzah reached out his hand to hold the ark steady. 10 Then the Lord became very angry with Uzzah. The Lord struck him down because he had put his hand on the ark. So Uzzah died there in front of God.

11 David was angry because the Lord’s great anger had broken out against Uzzah. That’s why the place is still called Perez Uzzah to this day.

12 David was afraid of God that day. David asked, “How can I ever bring the ark of God back here to me?” 13 So he didn’t take the ark to be with him in the City of David. Instead, he took it to the house of Obed-Edom. Obed-Edom was from Gath. 14 The ark of God remained with the family of Obed-Edom. It stayed in his house for three months. And the Lord blessed his family. He also blessed everything that belonged to him.

David’s Palace and Family

14 Hiram was king of Tyre. He sent messengers to David. He sent cedar logs along with them. He also sent skilled workers to build a palace for David. They worked with stone and wood. David knew that the Lord had made his position as king secure. He knew that the Lord had made him king over the whole nation of Israel. He knew that the Lord had greatly honored his kingdom. The Lord had done it because the Israelites were his people.

In Jerusalem David married more women. He also became the father of more sons and daughters. Here is a list of the children born to him in Jerusalem. Their names were Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon, Ibhar, Elishua, Elpelet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Beeliada and Eliphelet.

David Wins the Battle Over the Philistines

The Philistines heard that David had been anointed king over the entire nation of Israel. So the whole Philistine army went to look for him. But David heard about it. He went out to where they were. The Philistines had come and attacked the people in the Valley of Rephaim. 10 So David asked God for advice. David asked, “Should I go and attack the Philistines? Will you hand them over to me?”

The Lord answered him, “Go. I will hand them over to you.”

11 So David and his men went up to Baal Perazim. There David won the battle over the Philistines. He said, “God has broken through against my enemies, just as water breaks through a dam.” That’s why the place was called Baal Perazim. 12 The Philistines had left statues of their gods there. So David gave orders to burn them up.

13 Once more the Philistines attacked the people in the valley. 14 So David asked God for advice again. God answered him, “Do not go straight after them. Instead, circle around them. Attack them in front of the poplar trees. 15 Listen for the sound of marching in the tops of the trees. Then move out to fight. The sound will mean that I have gone out in front of you. I will strike down the Philistine army.” 16 So David did just as God had commanded him. He and his men struck down the Philistine army. They struck them down from Gibeon all the way to Gezer.

17 So David became famous in every land. The Lord made all the nations afraid of him.

David Brings the Ark to Jerusalem

15 David constructed buildings for himself in the City of David. Then he prepared a place for the ark of God. He set up a tent for it. He said, “Only Levites can carry the ark of God. That’s because the Lord chose them to carry his ark. He chose them to serve him forever in front of the place where his throne is.”

David gathered the whole community of Israel together in Jerusalem. He wanted to carry up the ark of the Lord to the place he had prepared for it.

He called together the members of the family line of Aaron. He also called the Levites together. Here are the men who came from the families of the Levites.

From the families of Kohath

came the leader Uriel and 120 relatives.

From the families of Merari

came the leader Asaiah and 220 relatives.

From the families of Gershon

came the leader Joel and 130 relatives.

From the families of Elizaphan

came the leader Shemaiah and 200 relatives.

From the families of Hebron

came the leader Eliel and 80 relatives.

10 From the families of Uzziel

came the leader Amminadab and 112 relatives.

11 David sent for Zadok and Abiathar, the priests. He also sent for Uriel, Asaiah, Joel, Shemaiah, Eliel and Amminadab. They were Levites. 12 He said to them, “You are the leaders of the families of Levi. You and the other Levites must set yourselves apart to serve the Lord and his people. You must carry up the ark of the Lord. He is the God of Israel. Put the ark in the place I’ve prepared for it. 13 Remember when the anger of the Lord our God broke out against us? That’s because it wasn’t you Levites who tried to carry up the ark the first time. We didn’t ask the Lord how to do it in the way the law requires.” 14 So the priests and Levites set themselves apart. Then they carried up the ark of the Lord. He is the God of Israel. 15 This time the Levites used the poles to carry on their shoulders the ark of God. That’s what Moses had commanded in keeping with the word of the Lord.

16 David told the Levite leaders to appoint other Levites as musicians. He wanted them to make a joyful sound with lyres, harps and cymbals.

17 So the Levites appointed Heman, the son of Joel. From his relatives they chose Asaph, the son of Berekiah. Other relatives were from the family of Merari. From them they chose Ethan, the son of Kushaiah. 18 Along with them they chose their relatives who were next in rank. Their names were Zechariah, Jaaziel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Unni, Eliab, Benaiah, Maaseiah, Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, Mikneiah, Obed-Edom and Jeiel. They guarded the gates.

19 Heman, Asaph and Ethan played the bronze cymbals. 20 Zechariah, Jaaziel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Unni, Eliab, Maaseiah and Benaiah played the lyres according to alamoth. 21 Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, Mikneiah, Obed-Edom, Jeiel and Azaziah played the harps according to sheminith. 22 Kenaniah was the leader of the Levites. He was in charge of the singing because he was good at it.

23 Berekiah and Elkanah guarded the ark. 24 Some of the priests blew trumpets in front of the ark of God. Their names were Shebaniah, Joshaphat, Nethanel, Amasai, Zechariah, Benaiah and Eliezer. Obed-Edom and Jehiah also helped guard the ark.

25 David and the elders of Israel went to carry up the ark of the covenant of the Lord. So did the commanders of military groups of 1,000 men. With great joy they carried up the ark from the house of Obed-Edom. 26 God had helped the Levites who were carrying the ark of the covenant of the Lord. So seven bulls and seven rams were sacrificed. 27 David was wearing a robe made out of fine linen. So were all the Levites who were carrying the ark. And so were the musicians and the choir director Kenaniah. David was also wearing a sacred linen apron. 28 So the whole community of Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the Lord. They shouted. They blew rams’ horns and trumpets. They played cymbals, lyres and harps.

29 The ark of the covenant of the Lord was brought into the City of David. Saul’s daughter Michal was watching from a window. She saw King David dancing and celebrating. That made her hate him in her heart.

New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

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