Click here to view this Bible Study.
The ark removed from Kirjath-jearim. (1-5) Parallel Passage 1 Chronicles 13:1-8
The ark signified the Mosaic covenant and was the symbol and location of God’s presence on earth. But it was neglected for over 70 years since the ark was taken into the house of Abinadab after its capture by the Philistines in 1 Samuel 4. Due to his commitment to God and his sincere respect for Israel’s religious foundation since Moses, he wanted to bring the Ark to Jerusalem. In short, David desired to restore the worship of Yahweh in the Capital city.
Vs. 1 & 2: …Baale Judah…: This is a Canaanite name for Kirjath Jearim.
1 Chro. 13:1-4… David consulted the elders of Israel, because David wanted to make it a matter of national unity and popular participation in this issue that touches the nation’s life. 1 Chro. 13:3… For we have not inquired at it since the days of Saul… David way of ruling the nation was through inquiring God regarding any matter.
Vs. 3 & 4 …carried the ark on a new cart…: This is following the way of Philistines. This is contrary to the way God prescribed through Moses.
Uzzah smitten, Obed-edom blessed. (6-11) Parallel passage – 1 Chronicles. 13:9-14
Vs. 6 & 7 Uzzah was struck dead for touching the ark. This resembles the outbreak at Beth-Shemesh (1 Sam 6: 19). Touching the ark was a direct violation of God’s Law found in Numbers 4:15. Even though the intention was right, it worked against him due the earlier mistake of using cart instead of carrying the ark by priests. Had the ark been carried on the shoulders of the priests, as the Law directed, this would not have happened. Philistines may carry the ark in a cart without suffering for it; but if Israelites do so, it is at their peril, because this was not what God appointed.
V. 11 Obed-edom opened his doors without fear, knowing the ark was death unto death to those only who treated it wrong. The same hand that punished Uzzah, rewarded Obed-edom’s humble boldness. So, the presence of the LORD brings much blessing to the household where the Lord is honored.
David brings the ark to Zion. (12-19): Parallel passage for verse 12 is 1 chronicles 15:1- 25.
1 Chronicles inserts part of 2 Samuel 5 between the three months gap (1 Chro. 14). It is probable that the order according to 2 Samuel is correct, because the occasion and the purpose of the book of Chronicles. The occasion was after the return of Jews from Babylonian captivity. The purpose to encourage and exhort to keep the faith of the returned from Jerusalem and the remnant remained in Jerusalem alive. The emphasis of Chronicles was on their spiritual heritage of David, Solomon, the temple, and the priesthood. Also, to motivate God’s people to adhere to the Mosaic covenant and ritual, so that the tragedy of the past would not be repeated.
1 chronicles 15:1 talks about David preparing a place for the ark of God, and pitching a tent for it.
1 chronicles 15: David’s second attempt to bring the ark to Jerusalem is successful due to the clear instructions and organization of the Levites and priests in the right way of transporting (Read 1 Chronicles 15:2,3, 13-15). Chronicles has an expanded account of these preparations and insertion of the list of the Levites involved and descriptions of their musical duties 1 Chro. 15: 17-24.
1 chronicles 15:2-10 – Appointment of Levites (read vs. 2&3)
1 chronicles 15:11-12: Appointing Zadok and Abiathar as priests.
1 chronicles 15:13-14: Sanctified themselves.
1 chronicles 15:15 …As Moses commanded… The Levites bore the Ark of God on their shoulders, by its poles…
1 chronicles 15:16- 24: Appointment of choir and musicians.
Parallel for 2 Samuel 6:13-19 is 1 Chronicles 15:26-29. David’s Hymn of Praise: 1 Chronicles 16: 4-36 Concluding statements: 2 Samuel 6:19b – 23; Parallel 1 Chronicles 16: 37-43