¶ AND again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he incited David against them and said to him, Go, number Israel and Judah.
So the king said to Joab the commander of the army who was with him.
Go now through all the tribes of Israel, from Dan to Beer-sheba and number the people, and bring to me the sum of the number of the people.
And Joab said to the king, May the LORD your God add to the people a hundredfold, howsoever many they be, so that the eyes of my lord the king may see it;
but why does my lord the king delight in this thing?
Notwithstanding the king’s word prevailed against Joab and against the commanders of the army.
And Joab and the commanders of the army went out from the presence of the king to number the people of Israel.
And they crossed the Jordan and came to Sharob, which is on the right side of the city that lies in the midst of the valley of Gad and toward Eleazer;
Then they came to Tyre and Zidon, to the land of the Canaanites and the land of the Hittites and the land of the Jebusites,
And when they had gone through the whole land, they came to the land of Judah in thirty-eight days.
Then they came to Dan, and circled Zidon.
And when they had gone through all the land, they came to Jerusalem at the end of nine months and twenty days.
And Joab brought the sum of the number of the people to the king;
and there were in Israel eight hundred thousand valiant men who drew the sword;
and the men of Judah were five hundred thousand men.
¶ But David’s heart smote him after he had numbered the people.
And David said to the LORD, I have sinned greatly in what I have done;
and now, I beseech thee, O LORD, for I have done very foolishly.
When David arose in the morning, the word of the LORD came to the prophet Gad, saying,
Go and say to David, Thus says the LORD: I will bring upon you one of three calamities;
choose one of them, that I may do it to you.
So the prophet Gad came to David and said to him, These are the calamities which may come upon you: there shall seven years of famine come in your land, or you shall flee three months before your enemies while they pursue you, or there shall be three days of pestilence in your land.
Now therefore say what answer I shall return to him who sent me to you.
Then David answered and said to the prophet Gad, I am greatly distressed;
it is better for me to be punished by the hand of the LORD our God;
for his mercies are great: let us not be punished by the hand of men.
So the LORD sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning until the evening;
and there died of the people from Dan to Beer-sheba seventy thousand men.
And when the angel stretched out his hand toward Jerusalem to destroy it, the LORD restrained the angel of death who was destroying the people, and said to him, You have destroyed enough, stay now your hand.
And the angel of the LORD was standing by the threshing floor of Aran the Jebusite.
Then David spoke to the LORD when he saw the angel who smote the people, and said to the angel, I have sinned and I have given provocation;
but these innocent sheep, what have they done?
Let thy hand be against me, and against my father’s house.
¶ And Gad the prophet came that day to David and said to him, Go up and build an altar to the LORD in the threshing floor of Aran the Jebusite.
And David went up, according to the word of Gad, as the LORD had commanded him.
And when Aran the Jebusite turned back and saw the king and his servants coming toward him, Aran fell down and did obeisance to the king with his face to the ground.
And Aran said, Why has my lord the king come to his servant?
And David said to him, To buy the threshing floor from you, to build an altar to the LORD, that the plague may be stayed from the people.
Then Aran said to David, Let my lord the king take what seems good to him;
behold, here are the oxen for the burnt offering, and the ploughshare and the yokes for fuel.
All these things did Aran give to King David.
And Aran said to the king, May the LORD your God bless you.
And the king said to Aran, No, but I will surely buy it from you for a price;
and I will not offer burnt offerings to the LORD my God of that which cost me nothing.
So David bought the threshing floor by the garden and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver.
And David built there an altar to the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings.
So the LORD was entreated for the land, and the plague was stayed from Israel.