1 CHRONICLES CHAPTER 15
The Ark Removed to Jerusalem.
LIST OF THE CHIEF MEN PARTAKING. V. 1. And David made him houses in the City of David, the various buildings belonging to the royal palace, and prepared a place for the ark of God, set aside a suitable, smooth surface, and pitched for it a tent, evidently after the model of the Tabernacle, which was still at Gibeon and continued to be used as a sanctuary, the altar of burnt offering remaining there till the time of Solomon, chap. 16, 39. 40; 21, 29. V. 2. Then David, having meanwhile received information concerning the reason for his failure, said, None ought to carry the ark of God but the Levites, as the Law prescribed, Num. 4, 5. 15; 7, 9; 10, 17; for them hath the Lord chosen to carry the ark of God, and to minister unto Him forever. David thereby acknowledged that it had been unlawful for him to carry the ark on a wagon, chap. 13, 7. V. 3. And David gathered all Israel together to Jerusalem, for the second time. to bring up the ark of the Lord unto his place, which he had prepared for it, in the new Tabernacle in the capital. chap. 13, 3. V. 4. And David assembled the children of Aaron, the two chief priests, Zadok and Abiathar, and all the members of the priesthood. and the Levites, all those who assisted in the offices of divine worship; v. 5. of the sons of Kohath: Uriel, the chief, and his brethren, that is, the near relatives in his group, an hundred and twenty; v. 6. of the sons of Merari: Asaiah, the chief, and his brethren, two hundred and twenty; v. 7. of the sons of Gershom: Joel, the chief, and his brethren, an hundred and thirty; v. 8. of the sons of Elizaphan: Shemaiah, the chief, and his brethren, two hundred; v. 9. of the sons of Hebron: Eliel, the chief, and his brethren, fourscore: v. 10. of the sons of Uzziel: Amminadab, the chief, and his brethren, an hundred and twelve. The four chiefs of the father-houses, Uriel, Shemaiah, Hebron, and Amminadab, Ex. 6, 18. 22, were to bear the ark on their shoulders, their assistants being kept busy with the various vessels of the Sanctuary and the sacred vestments. V. 11. And David called for Zadok, the high priest of the house of Eleazar, and Abiathar, holding the same office in the line of Ithamar, the priests, and for the Levites, for Uriel, Asaiah, and Joel, Shemaiah, and Eliel, and Amminadab, v. 12. and said unto them, Ye are the chief of the fathers of the Levites, the leaders in these divisions of their tribes; sanctify yourselves, in the usual manner of setting themselves apart for a sacred duty, Ex. 19, 10. 15, both ye and your brethren, that ye may bring up the ark of the Lord God of Israel unto the place that I have prepared for it. He did not want his efforts to come to naught a second time on amount of non-observance of any prescribed forms. V. 13. For because ye did it not at the first, they had not carried the ark at the first attempt to remove it, three months before, the Lord, our God, made a breach upon us, in killing Uzza, for that we sought Him not after the due order. V. 14. So the priests and the Levites sanctified themselves to bring up the ark of the Lord God of Israel, in observing the rules governing its removal in every detail. V. 15. And the children of the Levites bare the ark of God upon their shoulders with the staves thereon, as Moses commanded according to the word of the Lord. V. 16. And David spake to the chief of the Levites to appoint their brethren to be the singers with instruments of music, to train musicians for the liturgical part of the services, psalteries and harps and cymbals, sounding, by lifting up the voice with joy. V. 17. So the Levites appointed Heman, the son of Joel; and of his brethren, Asaph, the son of Berechiah; and of the sons of Merari, their brethren, Ethan (or Jeduthun), the son of Kushaiah (or Kishi); v. 18. and with them their brethren of the second degree, that is, of the second rank, Zechariah, Ben, and Jaaziel, and Shemiramoth, and Jehiel, and Unni, Eliab, and Benaiah, and Maaseiah, and Mattithiah, and Elipheleh, and Mikneiah, and Obed-edom, and Jeiel, the porters. Now the entire band set aside for the liturgical worship was divided into sections. V. 19. So the singers, Heman, Asaph, and Ethan, were appointed to sound with cymbals of brass, the loudest-sounding instruments, fine for beating time; v. 20. and Zechariah, and Aziel (or Jaaziel), and Shemiramoth, and Jehiel, and Unni, and Eliab, and Maaseiah, and Benaiah, with psalteries on Alamoth, for the music for these guitarlike instruments was set in the treble clef; v. 21. and Mattithiah, and Elipheleh, and Mikneiah, and Obed-edom, and Jeiel, and Azaziah, with harps on the Sheminith to excel, literally, on the octave to lead, for these harps or lutes carried the melody. V. 22. And Chenaniah, chief of the Levites, was for song, literally, for bearing, since he seems to have held some office in connection with carrying the ark: he instructed about the song, because he was skilful; he was acquainted with the ritual, he knew in just what manner the bearing of the ark and the liturgical songs had to be executed. V. 23. And Berechiah and Elkanah were doorkeepers for the ark; they marched immediately in front, while Obed-edom and Jeiel marched in the rear of the ark. V. 24. And Shebaniah, and Jehoshaphat, and Nethaneel, and Amasai, and Zechariah, and Benaiah, and Eliezer, the priests, did blow with the trumpets, those especially prepared for that purpose, Num. 10, 8, before the ark of God; and Obededom and Jehiah were doorkeepers for the ark. Thus special festivals of the New Testament Church, particularly those connected with the worship of the Lord, may well be prepared elaborately, if only with all reverence.
THE REMOVAL EFFECTED. V. 25. So David and the elders of Israel and the captains over thousands, all the foremost men of the kingdom, went to bring up the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord out of the house of Obed-edom with joy. The pomp and solemnity of the occasion, together with its evident joyous aspect, were bound to make a deep impression on the minds of all who participated and thus fill them with veneration for the ark and all it stood for. V. 26. And it came to pass, when God helped the Levites that bare the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord, so that they did not share the fate of Uzza, that they offered seven bullocks and seven rams. Cp. 2 Sam. 6, 13. V. 27. And David was clothed with a robe of fine linen, with a white ephod of fine byssus such as the priests wore, and all the Levites that bare the ark, and the singers, and Chenaniah, the master of the song, with the singers, he who directed the bearing of the ark. David also had upon him an ephod of linen, as the king of a priestly people. V. 28. Thus all Israel brought up the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord with shouting, and with sound of the cornet, and with trumpets, and with cymbals, making a noise with psalteries and harps, all the various instruments being pressed into service upon this momentous occasion. V. 29. And it came to pass, as the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord came to the City of David, the upper city of Jerusalem, that Michal, the daughter of Saul, the wife of David, looking out at a window, saw King David dancing, in a slow and solemn individual dance, and playing; and she despised him in her heart, thinking that his behavior could not be reconciled with the dignity ordinarily shown by kings. This showed the smallness of her soul; it was punished by the Lord accordingly, 2 Sam. 6, 16. The true children of God sing and play to the Lord both in their hearts and in their anthems, being one heart and one soul, and are therefore not dissuaded by the mockery of the world.