1 And the strong vengeance of the Lord added to be wroth against Israel, and he stirred against them David, saying to Joab, Go thou, and number thou Israel and Judah.
2 And the king said to Joab, the prince of his host, Go thou by all the lineages of Israel, from Dan till to Beersheba, and number thou the people, that I know the number thereof.
3 And Joab said to the king, Thy Lord God increase to this people, how great it is now, and again multiply he it an hundredfold in the sight of my lord the king; but what will or mean my lord the king to himself in such a thing?
4 But the word of the king overcame the words of Joab, and of the princes of the host; and Joab went out, and the princes of the knights, from the face of the king, that they should number the people of Israel.
5 And when they had passed [over] Jordan, they came into Aroer, to the right side of the city that is in the valley of Gad; and they passed forth by Jazer
6 into Gilead, and into the lower land of Hodshi, and they came into the woody places of Dan; and they went about beside Sidon,
7 and passed nigh the walls of Tyre, and nigh all the land of Hivites, and of Canaanites; and they came to the south of Judah, in[to] Beersheba.
8 And when all the land was com-passed, they came after nine months and twenty days into Jerusalem.
9 And so Joab gave the number of [the] describing of the people to the king. And of Israel were found nine hundred thousand of strong men, that drew out sword; and of Judah five hundred thousand of fighters.
10 And the heart of David smote him, that is, his conscience reproved him, after that the people was numbered; and David said to the Lord, I have sinned greatly in this deed; but, Lord, I pray, that thou turn away the wickedness of thy servant, for I have done full follily.
11 Therefore David rose early; and the word of the Lord was made to Gad, the prophet and seer, and said,
12 Go thou, and speak to David, The Lord saith these things, The choice of three things is given to thee; choose thou one, which thou wilt of these, that I do to thee.
13 And when Gad had come to David, he told to him, and said, Either hunger shall come to thee in thy land seven years; either three months thou shalt flee thine adversaries, and they shall pursue thee; either certainly three days pestilence shall be in thy land; now therefore deliver thou, either advise or examine thou, and see, what word I shall answer to him that sent me.
14 And David said to Gad, I am constrained on each side greatly; but it is better that I fall into the hands of the Lord, for his mercies be many, than into the hands of men.
15 And the Lord sent pestilence into Israel from the morrowtide till to the time ordained; and seventy thousand of men were dead of the people from Dan till to Beersheba.
16 And when the angel of the Lord had held forth his hand over Jerusalem, that he should destroy it, the Lord had mercy on the tormenting; and said to the angel smiting the people, It sufficeth now; withhold thine hand. And the angel of the Lord was beside the cornfloor of Araunah the Jebusite.
17 And David said to the Lord, when he had seen the angel slaying the people, I am he that have sinned, and I have done wickedly; what have these [or they] done, that be sheep? I beseech, thine hand be turned against me, and against the house of my father.
18 Forsooth Gad, the prophet, came to David in that day, and said to him, Go thou up, and ordain an altar to the Lord in the cornfloor of Araunah the Jebusite.
19 And David went up, after the word of Gad, which the Lord had commanded to him.
20 And Araunah beheld, and per-ceived, that the king and his servants passed over to him; and he went out, and worshipped the king with low cheer to the earth;
21 and said, What is the cause, that my lord the king cometh to his servant? To whom David said, That I buy of thee the cornfloor, and build an altar to the Lord, and the slaying cease, that is cruel in the people.
22 And Araunah said to David, My lord the king take, and offer, as it pleaseth to him; thou hast oxen into burnt sacrifice, and a wain and yokes of oxen into uses of wood.
23 Araunah gave, that is, would give, all things to the king. And Araunah said to the king, Thy Lord God receive thy vow.
24 To whom the king answered, and said, Not as thou wilt, but I shall buy it of thee for price, and I shall not offer to the Lord my God burnt sacrifices given freely. Therefore David bought the cornfloor for six hundred shekels of gold* As written in the first book of Chronicles, Chapter 21., and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver.
25 And David builded there an altar to the Lord, and offered burnt sacrifices and peaceable sacrifices; and the Lord did mercy to the land, and the vengeance was refrained from Israel.
*CHAPTER 24:24 As written in the first book of Chronicles, Chapter 21.