1 Chronicles 21:22
Then David said to Ornan, Grant me the place of this threshing floor, that I may build an altar therein to the LORD: you shall grant it me for the full price: that the plague may be stayed from the people.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(22) Then (and) David said to Oman, Grant me the place of this threshingfloor, that I may build.—Literally, Pray give me the place of the threshingfloor. Samuel, “And Araunah said Why is my lord the king come to his servant? And David said, To purchase from thee the threshingfloor, to build,” &c.

Grant it me for the full price.—Literally, At a full price give it me. These words are not in Samuel. (Comp. Genesis 23:9—Abraham’s purchase of the Cave of Machpelah.) The recollection of that narrative may have caused the modification of the present. The last clause is word for word as in Samuel.

21:1-30 David's numbering the people. - No mention is made in this book of David's sin in the matter of Uriah, neither of the troubles that followed it: they had no needful connexion with the subjects here noted. But David's sin, in numbering the people, is related: in the atonement made for that sin, there was notice of the place on which the temple should be built. The command to David to build an altar, was a blessed token of reconciliation. God testified his acceptance of David's offerings on this altar. Thus Christ was made sin, and a curse for us; it pleased the Lord to bruise him, that through him, God might be to us, not a consuming Fire, but a reconciled God. It is good to continue attendance on those ordinances in which we have experienced the tokens of God's presence, and have found that he is with us of a truth. Here God graciously met me, therefore I will still expect to meet him.It has been observed that it is only in books of a late period that Angels are brought forward as intermediaries between God and the prophets. This, no doubt, is true; and it is certainly unlikely that the records, from which the author of Chronicles drew, spoke of Gad as receiving his knowledge of God's will from an angel. The touch may be regarded as coming from the writer of Chronicles himself, who expresses the fact related by his authorities in the language of his own day (see Zechariah 1:9, Zechariah 1:14, Zechariah 1:19; Zechariah 2:3; Zechariah 4:1; Zechariah 5:5; etc.); language, however, which we are not to regard as rhetorical, but as strictly in accordance with truth, since Angels were doubtless employed as media between God and the prophet as much in the time of David as in that of Zechariah. 20, 21. Ornan was threshing wheat—If the census was entered upon in autumn, the beginning of the civil year, the nine and a half months it occupied would end at wheat harvest. The common way of threshing corn is by spreading it out on a high level area, and driving backwards and forwards upon it two oxen harnessed to a clumsy sledge with three rollers and some sharp spikes. The driver sits on his knees on the box, while another person is employed in drawing back the straw and separating it from the grain underneath. By this operation the chaff is very much chopped, and the grain threshed out. No text from Poole on this verse. See Chapter Introduction Then David said to Ornan, Grant me the place of this threshingfloor, that I may build an {k} altar therein unto the LORD: thou shalt grant it me for the full price: that the plague may be stayed from the people.

(k) This he did by the command of God, 1Ch 21:18, or else it would have been abominable, unless he had either God's word, or revelation.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
22. the place of this threshing floor] The expression implies perhaps that David bought more than the mere area of the threshingfloor.

for the full price] Genesis 23:9 (R.V.).Verse 22. - The place of this threshing-floor; i.e. the place on which the threshing-floor was made. It was the level summit of the middle elevated ground of the eastern ridge on which Jerusalem was situate (1 Chronicles 11:4-7). The account of David's repentant beseeching of the Lord to turn away the primitive judgment, and the word of the Lord proclaimed to him by the prophet, commanding him to build an altar to the Lord in the place where the destroying angel visibly appeared, together with the carrying out of this divine command by the purchase of Araunah's threshing-floor, the erection of an altar, and the offering of burnt-offering, is given more at length in the Chronicle than in 2 Samuel 24:17-25, where only David's negotiation with Araunah is more circumstantially narrated than in the Chronicle. In substance both accounts perfectly correspond, except that in the Chronicle several subordinate circumstances are preserved, which, as being minor points, are passed over in Samuel. In 1 Chronicles 21:16, the description of the angel's appearance, that he had a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem, and the statement that David and the elders, clad in sackcloth (garments indicating repentance), fell down before the Lord; in 1 Chronicles 21:20, the mention of Ornan's (Araunah's) sons, who hid themselves on beholding the angel, and of the fact that Ornan was engaged in threshing wheat when David came to him; and the statement in 1 Chronicles 21:26, that fire came down from heaven upon the altar-are examples of such minor points. We have already commented on this section in our remarks on 2 Samuel 24:17-25, and the account in the Chronicle is throughout correct and easily understood. Notwithstanding this, however, Bertheau, following Thenius and Bttcher, conjectures that the text is in several verses corrupt, and wishes to correct them by 2nd Samuel. But these critics are misled by the erroneous presumption with which they entered upon the interpretation of the Chronicle, that the author of it used as his authority, and revised, our Masoretic text of the second book of Samuel. Under the influence of this prejudice, emendations are proposed which are stamped with their own unlikelihood, and rest in part even on misunderstandings of the narrative in the book of Samuel. Of this one or two illustrations will be sufficient. Any one who compares 2 Samuel 24:17 (Sam.) with 1 Chronicles 21:16 and 1 Chronicles 21:17 of the Chronicle, without any pre-formed opinions, will see that what is there (Sam.) concisely expressed is more clearly narrated in the Chronicle. The beginning of 1 Chronicles 21:17, "And David spake unto Jahve," is entirely without connection, as the thought which forms the transition from 1 Chronicles 21:16 to 1 Chronicles 21:17, viz., that David was moved by the sight of the destroying angel to pray to God that the destruction might be turned away, is only brought in afterwards in the subordinate clause, "on seeing the angel." This abrupt form of expression is got rid of in the Chronicle by the clause: "And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel ... and fell ... upon his face; and David spake to God." That which in Samuel is crushed away into an infinitive clause subordinate to the principle sentence, precedes in the Chronicle, and is circumstantially narrated. Under these circumstances, of course, the author of the Chronicle could not afterwards in 1 Chronicles 21:17 make use of the clause, "on seeing the angel who smote the people," without tautology. Berth., on the contrary, maintains that 1 Chronicles 21:16 is an interpolation of the chronicler, and proposes then to cull out from the words and letters בעם המכה המלאך את בראתו (Sam.), the words בעם למנותי אמרתי בראתו (1 Chronicles 21:17), great use being made in the process of the ever ready auxiliaries, mistakes, and a text which has become obscure. This is one example out of many. 1 Chronicles 21:16 of the Chronicle is not an addition which the Chronicle has interpolated between 2 Samuel 24:16-17 of Samuel, but a more detailed representation of the historical course of things. No mention is made in 2nd Samuel of the drawn sword in the angel's hand, because there the whole story is very concisely narrated. This detail need not have been borrowed from Numbers 22:23, for the drawn sword is a sensible sign that the angle's mission is punitive; and the angel, who is said to have visibly appeared in 2nd Samuel also, could be recognised as the bearer of the judicial pestilence only by this emblem, such recognition being plainly the object of his appearance. The mention of the elders along with David as falling on their faces in prayer, clad in sackcloth, will not surprise any reader or critic who considers that in the case of so fearful a pestilence the king would not be alone in praying God to turn away the judgment. Besides, from the mention of the עבדים of the king who went with David to Ornan (2 Samuel 24:20), we learn that the king did not by himself take steps to turn away the plague, but did so along with his servants. In the narrative in 2nd Samuel, which confines itself to the main point, the elders are not mentioned, because only of David was it recorded that his confession of sin brought about the removal of the plague. Just as little can we be surprised that David calls his command to number the people the delictum by which he had brought the judgment of the plague upon himself. - To alter בּדבר, 1 Chronicles 21:19, into כּדבר, as Berth. wishes, would show little intelligence. בּדבר, at Gad's word David went up, is proved by Numbers 31:16 to be good Hebrew, and is perfectly suitable.
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