1 Chronicles 15
Plans to Move the Ark to Jerusalem
David built houses for himself in the City of David; and he prepared a place for the ark of God and pitched a tent for it. Then David said, “No one is to carry the ark of God except the Levites; for the Lord chose them to carry the ark of God and to minister to Him forever.” And David assembled all Israel at Jerusalem to bring up the ark of the Lord to the place which he had prepared for it. David gathered together the sons of Aaron and the Levites: of the sons of Kohath, Uriel the chief, with 120 of his relatives; of the sons of Merari, Asaiah the chief, with 220 of his relatives; of the sons of Gershom, Joel the chief, with 130 of his relatives; of the sons of Elizaphan, Shemaiah the chief, with 200 of his relatives; of the sons of Hebron, Eliel the chief, with 80 of his relatives; of the sons of Uzziel, Amminadab the chief, with 112 of his relatives.
Then David called for Zadok and Abiathar the priests, and for the Levites—Uriel, Asaiah, Joel, Shemaiah, Eliel, and Amminadab, and he said to them, “You are the heads of the fathers’ households of the Levites; consecrate yourselves, both you and your relatives, so that you may bring up the ark of the Lord God of Israel, to the place that I have prepared for it. Because you did not [carry it as God directed] the first time, the Lord our God made an [angry] outburst against us, for we did not seek Him in accordance with the ordinance.” So the priests and the Levites consecrated (dedicated) themselves to bring up the ark of the Lord God of Israel. The Levites carried the ark of God on their shoulders with the poles, as Moses commanded in accordance with the word of the Lord.
Then David told the chiefs of the Levites to appoint their relatives as the singers, with instruments of music—harps, lyres, and cymbals—to play loudly and to raise sounds of joy [with their voices]. So the Levites appointed Heman the son of Joel, and from his relatives, Asaph the son of Berechiah; and from the sons of Merari their relatives, Ethan the son of Kushaiah, and with them their relatives of the second rank: Zechariah, Ben, Jaaziel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Unni, Eliab, Benaiah, Maaseiah, Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, and Mikneiah, Obed-edom, and Jeiel, the gatekeepers. So the singers, Heman, Asaph, and Ethan were appointed to sound aloud the bronze cymbals; and Zechariah, Aziel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Unni, Eliab, Maaseiah, and Benaiah [were to play] with [a]harps tuned to Alamoth [that is, a high pitch]; and Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, Mikneiah, Obed-edom, Jeiel, and Azaziah were to lead with lyres set to Sheminith [that is, the eighth string, a low pitch]. Chenaniah, leader of the Levites, was in charge of the singing; he gave instruction in singing because he was skilled. Berechiah and Elkanah were gatekeepers for the ark. Shebaniah, Joshaphat, Nethanel, Amasai, Zechariah, Benaiah, and Eliezer the priests blew the trumpets before the ark of God. Obed-edom and Jehiah (Jeiel) were also gatekeepers for the ark.
So David, with the elders of Israel and the captains over thousands, went to bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord from the house of Obed-edom with joy. Because God was helping the Levites who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord [to do it carefully and safely], they sacrificed seven bulls and seven rams. David was clothed with a robe of fine linen, as were all the Levites who carried the ark, and the singers and Chenaniah, director of the music of the singers. David also wore an ephod (a priestly upper garment) of linen. Thus all Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the Lord with shouting, and with the sound of the horn, with trumpets, with loud-sounding cymbals, with harps and lyres.
It happened that as the ark of the covenant of the Lord came to the City of David, Michal [David’s wife] the daughter of Saul, looking down through a window, saw King David leaping and dancing [in celebration]; and [b]she despised him in her heart.
- 1 Chronicles 15:20 Or harps of maiden-like tone, i.e. soprano. This particular instrument may have resembled a guitar.
- 1 Chronicles 15:29 Michal strongly disapproved of David’s undignified entry into the city wearing the ephod instead of his royal robes (see note 2 Sam 6:20).
1 Chronicles 16:1-36
A Tent for the Ark
So they brought the ark of God and set it inside the tent which David had pitched for it, and they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before God. When David had finished offering the burnt offerings and the peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord. He distributed to everyone in Israel, both man and woman, to everyone a loaf of bread, a portion of meat, and a raisin cake.
He appointed some of the Levites to minister before the ark of the Lord and to profess [God’s name] and to [a]thank and praise the Lord, the God of Israel: Asaph the chief, and second to him Zechariah, then Jeiel (Jaaziel), Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Mattithiah, Eliab, Benaiah, Obed-edom, and Jeiel with musical instruments, harps and lyres; also Asaph played loud-sounding cymbals; and Benaiah and Jahaziel the priests blew trumpets continually before the ark of the covenant of God.
Then on that day David first entrusted to Asaph and his relatives to give thanks to the Lord [as their chief task].
Psalm of Thanksgiving
O give thanks to the Lord, call on His name;
Make His deeds known among the peoples.
Sing to Him, sing praises to Him;
Speak of all His wonders.
Glory in His holy name;
Let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
Seek the Lord and His strength;
Seek His face continually [longing to be in His presence].
Remember [with gratitude] His marvelous deeds which He has done,
His miracles and the judgments from His mouth,
O seed of Israel His servant,
[b]Children of Jacob, His chosen ones!
He is the Lord our God;
His judgments are in all the earth.
Be mindful of His covenant forever,
The promise which He commanded and established to a thousand generations,
The covenant which He made with Abraham,
And His oath (sworn promise) to Isaac.
He confirmed it as a statute to Jacob,
And to Israel as an everlasting covenant,
Saying, “To you I will give the land of Canaan,
As the portion of your possession and inheritance.”
When you were few in number,
Even a very few, and strangers in it,
When they wandered from nation to nation,
And from one kingdom to another people,
He allowed no man to oppress or exploit them,
And, He reproved and punished kings for their sakes, saying,
“Do not touch My anointed ones,
And do My prophets no harm.”
Sing to the Lord, all the earth;
Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day.
Declare His glory among the nations,
His marvelous works among all peoples.
For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;
He is also to be feared [with awe-filled reverence] above all gods.
For all the gods of the peoples are [lifeless] idols,
But the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are [found] in His presence;
Strength and joy are [found] in His place (sanctuary).
Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the peoples,
Ascribe to the Lord glory and honor and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory and honor due His name;
Bring an offering [of thanksgiving], and come before Him;
Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.
Tremble [reverently] before Him, all the earth;
The world is firmly established, it will not be moved.
Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice;
And let them say among the nations, “The Lord reigns.”
Let the sea roar, and all the things that fill it;
Let the field rejoice, and all that is in it.
Then the trees of the forest will sing for joy before the Lord;
For He comes to judge and govern the earth.
O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good;
For His lovingkindness endures forever.
Then say, “Save us, O God of our salvation;
Gather us together and rescue us from the nations,
That we may give thanks to Your holy name,
And glory in Your praise.”
Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,
Forever and ever.
And all the people said, “Amen,” and praised the Lord.
- 1 Chronicles 16:4 Lit praise, a Hebrew word that is the root of the name “Judah.”
- 1 Chronicles 16:13 Lit sons.