The Ark Moved Around
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They set out from the mountain of the Lord on a three-day journey with the ark of the Lord’s covenant traveling ahead of them for those three days to seek a resting place for them.
Then he said to the priests, “Take the ark of the covenant and go on ahead of the people.” So they carried the ark of the covenant and went ahead of them.
“At that time the Lord set apart the tribe of Levi to carry the ark of the Lord’s covenant, to stand before Yahweh to serve Him, and to pronounce blessings in His name, as it is today.
Moses wrote down this law and gave it to the priests, the sons of Levi, who carried the ark of the Lord’s covenant, and to all the elders of Israel.
Have seven priests carry seven ram’s-horn trumpets in front of the ark. But on the seventh day, march around the city seven times, while the priests blow the trumpets.
Joshua got up early the next morning. The priests took the ark of the Lord, and the seven priests carrying seven trumpets marched in front of the ark of the Lord. While the trumpets were blowing, the armed troops went in front of them, and the rear guard went behind the ark of the Lord.
When the troops returned to the camp, the elders of Israel asked, “Why did the Lord let us be defeated today by the Philistines? Let’s bring the ark of the Lord’s covenant from Shiloh. Then it will go with us and save us from the hand of our enemies.” So the people sent men to Shiloh to bring back the ark of the covenant of the Lord of Hosts, who dwells between the cherubim. Eli’s two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, were there with the ark of the covenant of God. When the ark of the covenant of the Lord entered the camp, all the Israelites raised such a loud shout that the ground shook.read more.
The Philistines heard the sound of the war cry and asked, “What’s this loud shout in the Hebrews’ camp?” When the Philistines discovered that the ark of the Lord had entered the camp,
After the Philistines had captured the ark of God, they took it from Ebenezer to Ashdod, brought it into the temple of Dagon and placed it next to his statue. When the people of Ashdod got up early the next morning, there was Dagon, fallen with his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord. So they took Dagon and returned him to his place. read more.
But when they got up early the next morning, there was Dagon, fallen with his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord. This time, both Dagon’s head and the palms of his hands were broken off and lying on the threshold. Only Dagon’s torso remained. That is why, to this day, the priests of Dagon and everyone who enters the temple of Dagon in Ashdod do not step on Dagon’s threshold. The Lord’s hand was heavy on the people of Ashdod, terrorizing and afflicting the people of Ashdod and its territory with tumors. When the men of Ashdod saw what was happening, they said, “The ark of Israel’s God must not stay here with us, because His hand is strongly against us and our god Dagon.” So they called all the Philistine rulers together and asked, “What should we do with the ark of Israel’s God?”“The ark of Israel’s God should be moved to Gath,” they replied. So the men of Ashdod moved the ark. After they had moved it, the Lord’s hand was against the city of Gath, causing a great panic. He afflicted the men of the city, from the youngest to the oldest, with an outbreak of tumors. The Gittites then sent the ark of God to Ekron, but when it got there, the Ekronites cried out, “They’ve moved the ark of Israel’s God to us to kill us and our people!” The Ekronites called all the Philistine rulers together. They said, “Send the ark of Israel’s God away. It must return to its place so it won’t kill us and our people!” For the fear of death pervaded the city; God’s hand was oppressing them. The men who did not die were afflicted with tumors, and the outcry of the city went up to heaven.
When the ark of the Lord had been in the land of the Philistines for seven months, the Philistines summoned the priests and the diviners and pleaded, “What should we do with the ark of the Lord? Tell us how we can send it back to its place.” They replied, “If you send the ark of Israel’s God away, you must not send it without an offering. You must send back a restitution offering to Him, and you will be healed. Then the reason His hand hasn’t been removed from you will be revealed.”read more.
They asked, “What restitution offering should we send back to Him?”And they answered, “Five gold tumors and five gold mice corresponding to the number of Philistine rulers, since there was one plague for both you and your rulers. Make images of your tumors and of your mice that are destroying the land. Give glory to Israel’s God, and perhaps He will stop oppressing you, your gods, and your land. Why harden your hearts as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened theirs? When He afflicted them, didn’t they send Israel away, and Israel left? “Now then, prepare one new cart and two milk cows that have never been yoked. Hitch the cows to the cart, but take their calves away and pen them up. Take the ark of the Lord, place it on the cart, and put the gold objects that you’re sending Him as a restitution offering in a box beside the ark. Send it off and let it go its way. Then watch: If it goes up the road to its homeland toward Beth-shemesh, it is the Lord who has made this terrible trouble for us. However, if it doesn’t, we will know that it was not His hand that punished us—it was just something that happened to us by chance.” The men did this: They took two milk cows, hitched them to the cart, and confined their calves in the pen. Then they put the ark of the Lord on the cart, along with the box containing the gold mice and the images of their tumors. The cows went straight up the road to Beth-shemesh. They stayed on that one highway, lowing as they went; they never strayed to the right or to the left. The Philistine rulers were walking behind them to the territory of Beth-shemesh. The people of Beth-shemesh were harvesting wheat in the valley, and when they looked up and saw the ark, they were overjoyed to see it. The cart came to the field of Joshua of Beth-shemesh and stopped there near a large rock. The people of the city chopped up the cart and offered the cows as a burnt offering to the Lord. The Levites removed the ark of the Lord, along with the box containing the gold objects, and placed them on the large rock. That day the men of Beth-shemesh offered burnt offerings and made sacrifices to the Lord. When the five Philistine rulers observed this, they returned to Ekron that same day. As a restitution offering to the Lord, the Philistines had sent back one gold tumor for each city: Ashdod, Gaza, Ashkelon, Gath, and Ekron. The number of gold mice also corresponded to the number of Philistine cities of the five rulers, the fortified cities and the outlying villages. The large rock on which the ark of the Lord was placed is in the field of Joshua of Beth-shemesh to this day. God struck down the men of Beth-shemesh because they looked inside the ark of the Lord. He struck down 70 men out of 50,000 men. The people mourned because the Lord struck them with a great slaughter. The men of Beth-shemesh asked, “Who is able to stand in the presence of this holy Lord God? Who should the ark go to from here?” They sent messengers to the residents of Kiriath-jearim, saying, “The Philistines have returned the ark of the Lord. Come down and get it.”
God struck down the men of Beth-shemesh because they looked inside the ark of the Lord. He struck down 70 men out of 50,000 men. The people mourned because the Lord struck them with a great slaughter.
Saul told Ahijah, “Bring the ark of God,” for it was with the Israelites at that time.
So he was not willing to move the ark of the Lord to the city of David; instead, he took it to the house of Obed-edom the Gittite. The ark of the Lord remained in his house three months, and the Lord blessed Obed-edom and his whole family.
So David did not move the ark of God home to the city of David; instead, he took it to the house of Obed-edom the Gittite. The ark of God remained with Obed-edom’s family in his house for three months, and the Lord blessed his family and all that he had.
Uriah answered David, “The ark, Israel, and Judah are dwelling in tents, and my master Joab and his soldiers are camping in the open field. How can I enter my house to eat and drink and sleep with my wife? As surely as you live and by your life, I will not do this!”
When David had settled into his palace, he said to Nathan the prophet, “Look! I am living in a cedar house while the ark of the Lord’s covenant is under tent curtains.”