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Bible Commentaries
1 Chronicles 13

Poole's English Annotations on the Holy BiblePoole's Annotations



David fetcheth the ark from Kirjath-jearim with great solemnity, 1 Chronicles 13:1-8.

Uzza being smitten, the ark is left at the house of Obed-edom, 1 Chronicles 13:9-14.

Verse 1

Or, governor or elder of the people.

Verse 2

Unto all the congregation of Israel, i.e. unto all the people then assembled with him at Hebron. This story is mentioned in another place, in 2 Samuel 5:0; 2 Samuel 6:0, even after the taking of Jerusalem and the two first fights with the Philistines, whereas here it is placed before the latter, and there is no mention here of the former. The matter may be thus conceived. There being now a great and general concourse of all Israel, and David being now established in his throne with universal consent and applause, he begins with God, and his first thoughts and cares are about religion and the ark, then the great instrument and ornament of it, and takes the opportunity of this assembly to desire their advice and concurrence with him in it, that the ark might be brought either to Hebron, which then was the royal city; or to Jerusalem, which, as probably he told them, he was resolved to besiege, and doubted not, by God’s help, to take. After this was proposed by the king, and accepted by the people, this great assembly was dismissed, only some of them David reserved to go with him against Jerusalem, which accordingly he did, and succeeded in his enterprise, as is related, 1 Samuel 5:0. But before this resolution could be executed, the Philistines came and fought twice with David, as is related, 2 Samuel 5:17, &c., and here, 1 Chronicles 14:8, &c. And after they were repulsed with great loss and shame, David sets upon the execution of that which before he had resolved, and, in order to it, calls another general assembly of the people. And that it be of the Lord our God, i.e. if this translation of the ark be pleasing to God, which I purpose to inquire by the Urim, after the manner, and to act accordingly.

Let us send abroad, Heb. let us break out and send, i.e. let us send messengers speedily and universally to the several tribes. We are now in some sort pent up in a corner of the land in Hebron, but let us break up the assembly, and disperse ourselves, and send far and near about this work. It is a metaphor from the sea or rivers, which, when the banks are broken, do suddenly overflow the whole adjoining country.

That are left; by which word he minds them of the great desolations and destructions which God for their sins had hitherto made among them; and therefore adviseth that remnant whom God had so graciously saved in and from those dreadful ruins, that they would more seriously set themselves to seek God than they had formerly done.

Verse 3

The ark was then neglected; and the generality of the people either lived in the gross neglect of the solemn worship of God, or contented themselves with going to Gibeon, and offering sacrifices there, not caring, though the ark, the soul of the tabernacle, was in another place.

In the days of Saul: so it was in the days of Samuel; but it is rather charged upon Saul than him; partly, because Samuel was exercised with continual wars, or expectation of wars, with the Philistines all the time of his regency, and therefore wanted the opportunity to bring back the ark, which Saul had and neglected; partly, because Samuel took care to stir up and maintain religion among them by other means, and in an extraordinary manner; whereas this was but one branch of Saul’s impiety, and was joined with a contempt of all religion, as the history of his life shews; and partly, because it was more proper to accuse himself and the present generation, who were guilty of this neglect, than to rake into the ashes of their deceased progenitors, and lay his charge against those who were dead and gone some good while since.

Verse 4

Their consciences smiting them for their former negligence and being fully convinced of the piety and reasonableness of this proposition.

Verse 5

All Israel, i.e. all the chosen men of Israel, as it is phrased, 2 Samuel 6:1, their elders and representatives.

Shihor of Egypt; of which see Numbers 34:5; Joshua 13:3; Jeremiah 2:18.

Verse 6

That is, to Kirjath-jearim; which explication is justified by Joshua 15:9,Joshua 15:60, where the same city is called by both names.

Object. They are said to go from this Baale, 2 Samuel 6:2.

Answ. 1. Some learned men render that place also to Basle, the particle mem being sometimes used for to amongst the Hebrews, and especially amongst the Arabians.

2. Both were true; they first went to Baale for the ark, as is here said, and then went from Baale to bring, or to carry, (for the word signifies either,) or carrying, from thence the ark of God, as is there related. But of this and other difficulties or differences between these two relations, See Poole "2 Samuel 6:1" and following.

Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 1 Chronicles 13". Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/mpc/1-chronicles-13.html. 1685.
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