This is Episode #127 and today we’ll read 1 Chronicles chapters 18-21 together. Day 2 of All About David – his incredible military conquests, his sin, his humanness, and his love of God.
Joy: You’re listening to Season 2 of the Lifting Her Voice podcast. This is Episode #127 and today we’ll read 1 Chronicles chapters 18-21 together. Day 2 of All About David – his incredible military conquests, his sin, his humanness, and his love of God.
Welcome to the Lifting Her Voice podcast, Season 2! I’m your host, Joy Miller, and I invite you to grab your Bible and join me – from the beginning – simply reading God’s word together. We built some spiritual muscles in 2020 with just the New Testament. But this year we’re going all out, cover-to-cover, Old Testament and New. So, whether with your first cup in the morning, your commute to work, or as the last thing on your mind before sleep, God’s Word will equip you for every good work. I’m really glad you’re here!
1 Chronicles Chapter 18
David’s Military Campaigns
After this, David defeated the Philistines, subdued them, and took Gath and its surrounding villages from Philistine control. He also defeated the Moabites, and they became David’s subjects and brought tribute.
David also defeated King Hadadezer of Zobah at Hamath when he went to establish his control at the Euphrates River. David captured one thousand chariots, seven thousand horsemen, and twenty thousand foot soldiers from him, hamstrung all the horses, and kept a hundred chariots.
When the Arameans of Damascus came to assist King Hadadezer of Zobah, David struck down twenty-two thousand Aramean men. Then he placed garrisons in Aram of Damascus, and the Arameans became David’s subjects and brought tribute. The Lord made David victorious wherever he went.
David took the gold shields carried by Hadadezer’s officers and brought them to Jerusalem. From Tibhath and Cun, Hadadezer’s cities, David also took huge quantities of bronze, from which Solomon made the bronze basin, the pillars, and the bronze articles.
When King Tou of Hamath heard that David had defeated the entire army of King Hadadezer of Zobah, he sent his son Hadoram to King David to greet him and to congratulate him because David had fought against Hadadezer and defeated him, for Tou and Hadadezer had fought many wars. Hadoram brought all kinds of gold, silver, and bronze items. King David also dedicated these to the Lord, along with the silver and gold he had carried off from all the nations — from Edom, Moab, the Ammonites, the Philistines, and the Amalekites.
Abishai son of Zeruiah struck down eighteen thousand Edomites in the Salt Valley. He put garrisons in Edom, and all the Edomites were subject to David. The Lord made David victorious wherever he went.
So David reigned over all Israel, administering justice and righteousness for all his people.
Joab son of Zeruiah was over the army;
Jehoshaphat son of Ahilud was court historian;
Zadok son of Ahitub and Ahimelech son of Abiathar were priests;
Shavsha was court secretary;
Benaiah son of Jehoiada was over the Cherethites and the Pelethites;
and David’s sons were the chief officials at the king’s side.
1 Chronicles Chapter 19
War with the Ammonites
Some time later, King Nahash of the Ammonites died, and his son became king in his place. Then David said, “I’ll show kindness to Hanun son of Nahash, because his father showed kindness to me.”
So David sent messengers to console him concerning his father. However, when David’s emissaries arrived in the land of the Ammonites to console him, the Ammonite leaders said to Hanun, “Just because David has sent men with condolences for you, do you really believe he’s showing respect for your father? Instead, haven’t his emissaries come in order to scout out, overthrow, and spy on the land?” So Hanun took David’s emissaries, shaved them, cut their clothes in half at the hips, and sent them away.
It was reported to David about his men, so he sent messengers to meet them, since the men were deeply humiliated. The king said, “Stay in Jericho until your beards grow back; then return.”
When the Ammonites realized they had made themselves repulsive to David, Hanun and the Ammonites sent thirty-eight tons of silver to hire chariots and horsemen from Aram-naharaim, Aram-maacah, and Zobah. They hired thirty-two thousand chariots and the king of Maacah with his army, who came and camped near Medeba. The Ammonites also came together from their cities for the battle.
Joab and Abishai
David heard about this and sent Joab and all the elite troops. The Ammonites marched out and lined up in battle formation at the entrance of the city while the kings who had come were in the field by themselves. When Joab saw that there was a battle line in front of him and another behind him, he chose some of Israel’s finest young men and lined up in formation to engage the Arameans. He placed the rest of the forces under the command of his brother Abishai. They lined up in formation to engage the Ammonites.
“If the Arameans are too strong for me,” Joab said, “then you’ll be my help. However, if the Ammonites are too strong for you, I’ll help you. Be strong! Let’s prove ourselves strong for our people and for the cities of our God. May the Lord’s will be done.”
Joab and the people with him approached the Arameans for battle, and they fled before him. When the Ammonites saw that the Arameans had fled, they likewise fled before Joab’s brother Abishai and entered the city. Then Joab went to Jerusalem.
When the Arameans realized that they had been defeated by Israel, they sent messengers to summon the Arameans who were beyond the Euphrates River. They were led by Shophach, the commander of Hadadezer’s army.
The Arameans Fled
When this was reported to David, he gathered all Israel and crossed the Jordan. He came up to the Arameans and lined up against them. When David lined up to engage them, they fought against him. But the Arameans fled before Israel, and David killed seven thousand of their charioteers and forty thousand foot soldiers. He also killed Shophach, commander of the army. When Hadadezer’s subjects saw that they had been defeated by Israel, they made peace with David and became his subjects. After this, the Arameans were never willing to help the Ammonites again.
1 Chronicles Chapter 20
Capture of the City of Rabbah
In the spring when kings march out to war, Joab led the army and destroyed the Ammonites’ land. He came to Rabbah and besieged it, but David remained in Jerusalem. Joab attacked Rabbah and demolished it. Then David took the crown from the head of their king, and it was placed on David’s head. He found that the crown weighed seventy-five pounds of gold, and there was a precious stone in it. In addition, David took away a large quantity of plunder from the city. He brought out the people who were in it and put them to work with saws, iron picks, and axes. David did the same to all the Ammonite cities. Then he and all his troops returned to Jerusalem.
The Philistine Giants
After this, a war broke out with the Philistines at Gezer. At that time Sibbecai the Hushathite killed Sippai, a descendant of the Rephaim, and the Philistines were subdued.
Once again there was a battle with the Philistines, and Elhanan son of Jair killed Lahmi the brother of Goliath of Gath. The shaft of his spear was like a weaver’s beam.
There was still another battle at Gath where there was a man of extraordinary stature with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot — twenty-four in all. He, too, was descended from the giant. When he taunted Israel, Jonathan son of David’s brother Shimei killed him.
These were the descendants of the giant in Gath killed by David and his soldiers.
1 Chronicles Chapter 21
David’s Military Census
Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to count the people of Israel. So David said to Joab and the commanders of the troops, “Go and count Israel from Beer-sheba to Dan and bring a report to me so I can know their number.”
Joab replied, “May the Lord multiply the number of his people a hundred times over! My lord the king, aren’t they all my lord’s servants? Why does my lord want to do this? Why should he bring guilt on Israel?”
Yet the king’s order prevailed over Joab. So Joab left and traveled throughout Israel and then returned to Jerusalem. Joab gave the total troop registration to David. In all Israel there were one million one hundred thousand armed men and in Judah itself four hundred seventy thousand armed men. But he did not include Levi and Benjamin in the count because the king’s command was detestable to him. This command was also evil in God’s sight, so he afflicted Israel.
David said to God, “I have sinned greatly because I have done this thing. Now, please take away your servant’s guilt, for I’ve been very foolish.”
Then the Lord instructed Gad, David’s seer, “Go and say to David, ‘This is what the Lord says: I am offering you three choices. Choose one of them for yourself, and I will do it to you.’”
So Gad went to David and said to him, “This is what the Lord says: ‘Take your choice: three years of famine, or three months of devastation by your foes with the sword of your enemy overtaking you, or three days of the sword of the Lord — a plague on the land, the angel of the Lord bringing destruction to the whole territory of Israel.’ Now decide what answer I should take back to the one who sent me.”
David answered Gad, “I’m in anguish. Please, let me fall into the Lord’s hands because his mercies are very great, but don’t let me fall into human hands.”
So the Lord sent a plague on Israel, and seventy thousand Israelite men died. Then God sent an angel to Jerusalem to destroy it, but when the angel was about to destroy the city, the Lord looked, relented concerning the destruction, and said to the angel who was destroying the people, “Enough, withdraw your hand now!” The angel of the Lord was then standing at the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite.
Let Your Hand be Against Me
When David looked up and saw the angel of the Lord standing between earth and heaven, with his drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem, David and the elders, covered in sackcloth, fell facedown. David said to God, “Wasn’t I the one who gave the order to count the people? I am the one who has sinned and acted very wickedly. But these sheep, what have they done? Lord my God, please let your hand be against me and against my father’s family, but don’t let the plague be against your people.”
So the angel of the Lord ordered Gad to tell David to go and set up an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. David went up at Gad’s command spoken in the name of the Lord.
Ornan was threshing wheat when he turned and saw the angel. His four sons, who were with him, hid. David came to Ornan, and when Ornan looked and saw David, he left the threshing floor and bowed to David with his face to the ground.
Then David said to Ornan, “Give me this threshing-floor plot so that I may build an altar to the Lord on it. Give it to me for the full price, so the plague on the people may be stopped.”
Ornan said to David, “Take it! My lord the king may do whatever he wants. See, I give the oxen for the burnt offerings, the threshing sledges for the wood, and the wheat for the grain offering — I give it all.”
King David answered Ornan, “No, I insist on paying the full price, for I will not take for the Lord what belongs to you or offer burnt offerings that cost me nothing.”
So David gave Ornan fifteen pounds of gold for the plot. He built an altar to the Lord there and offered burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. He called on the Lord, and he answered him with fire from heaven on the altar of burnt offering.
The Plague Stopped
Then the Lord spoke to the angel, and he put his sword back into its sheath. At that time, David offered sacrifices there when he saw that the Lord answered him at the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. The tabernacle of the Lord, which Moses made in the wilderness, and the altar of burnt offering were at the high place in Gibeon, but David could not go before it to inquire of God, because he was terrified of the sword of the Lord’s angel.
Woahh…Hanun blew it. Have you ever taken a big swing and realized you were just so wrong? Hanun awakened the giant and he knew it. But then all of those kings found out it wasn’t David they were fighting against; it was God.
I think it’s really interesting that Ezra – or whoever wrote the Chronicles – decided not to even mention David’s sin with Bathsheba. Did you notice that the only hint we got was that Joab and the armies were out doing battle and this time, David stayed at home? The wording is so close to 2 Samuel’s that it sounds like it’s gonna be a repeat of that eleventh chapter.
But apparently the chronicler did decide that David’s pride and subsequent punishment was good for teaching future generations of God’s people. This is a classic how-to on humbling oneself before God when you know you’ve messed up. What do you think? Let me know at Lifting Her Voice.com, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
Thank you for joining me here today. I pray that by spending time in His Word every day, you will by changed. Visit me at Lifting Her Voice.com with your comments and questions. And don’t forget to visit the Blog page while you’re there. If you like the podcast, it would be great if you’d give it a five-star review and share it with everyone you know. Don’t forget to subscribe wherever you get your podcasts. See you tomorrow!
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Christian Standard Bible(r), Copyright (c) 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible(r) and CSB(r) are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.
Awesome Video of Solomon’s Temple
These will help! Overview videos of all books of the Bible
Bible Study Resources
- Every Bible You Could Ever Want!
- The Bible Hub – Free!
- Bible Study Tools – Free!
- The Bible Project– Free!
- Want to use your tablet for Bible reading? Consider Kindle .
- I love Audible! Try it for free!
- Want it? FaithGear has it!
- Wear your faith! Christian Strong
- Bet Hannon Business Websites designed and maintains my website.
- Title of song used in the podcast is 3 Joys & the Truth, by Daniel O’Connor
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. That means if you purchase anything, I may get a small commission. This does not cost you anything and it helps offset the costs of the podcast. Thank you in advance.
View my Broadcast License.