24:1 The Lord’s anger again raged against Israel, and he incited David against them, saying, “Go count Israel and Judah.” 1 24:2 The king told Joab, the general in command of his army, “Go through all the tribes of Israel from Dan to Beer Sheba and muster the army, so I may know the size of the army.”
24:3 Joab replied to the king, “May the Lord your God make the army a hundred times larger right before the eyes of my lord the king! But why does my master the king want to do this?”
24:5 They crossed the Jordan and camped at Aroer, on the south side of the city, at 3 the wadi of Gad, near Jazer. 24:6 Then they went on to Gilead and to the region of Tahtim Hodshi, coming to Dan Jaan and on around to Sidon. 4 24:7 Then they went to the fortress of Tyre 5 and all the cities of the Hivites and the Canaanites. Then they went on to the Negev of Judah, to Beer Sheba. 24:8 They went through all the land and after nine months and twenty days came back to Jerusalem. 6
1 sn The parallel text in 1 Chr 21:1 says, “An adversary opposed Israel, inciting David to count how many warriors Israel had.” The Samuel version gives an underlying theological perspective, while the Chronicler simply describes what happened from a human perspective. The adversary in 1 Chr 21:1 is likely a human enemy, probably a nearby nation whose hostility against Israel pressured David into numbering the people so he could assess his military strength. See the note at 1 Chr 21:1.
2 tn Heb “and the word of the king was stronger than.”
3 tn Heb “in the middle of.”
7 tn Heb “and Joab gave the number of the numbering of the people.”