[2-Samuel 6:1] AGAIN, DAVID GATHERED TOGETHER ALL THE CHOSEN MEN OF ISRAEL,
[2-Samuel 6: AND DAVID AROSE, AND WENT WITH ALL THE PEOPLE THAT WERE WITH
HIM FROM BAALE OF JUDAH, TO BRING UP FROM THENCE THE ARK OF GOD, WHOSE
NAME IS CALLED BY THE NAME OF THE LORD OF HOSTS THAT DWELLETH BETWEEN THE
Shimeon ben Ephrat ("Mikra LeYisrael") points out that this chapter may
be considered to concern one of the most important events of history, i.e.
the confirmation of Jerusalem as a religious center. Everything in a
sense leads on from David bringing the Ark into Jerusalem. This also
concerns later Christian and Islamic history, the Crusades, and important
factors of the present power struggle. In cases anyone doubts this why not
consult the United Nations Organization? This august body representing all
recognized countries in the world with all their problems has decided that
it has nothing more important to occupy itself with other the Israeli
treatment of the poor Palestinians and sundry offences including the
"occupation" of Jerusalem. I probably sound like I am joking but a large
proportion of all UN discussions and decisions revolve around Israel and
Item #2. Israel, the UN, and Kofi Anan
<<BAALE OF JUDAH>>: "Baaley-Yehudah". Yehudah Kiel (Daat Mikra) says that
this was either another name for "BAALAH, WHICH IS KIRJATHJEARIM" (15:9).
So too we find that from this place the ark was brought:
" SO DAVID GATHERED ALL ISRAEL TOGETHER, FROM SHIHOR OF EGYPT EVEN UNTO THE
ENTERING OF HEMATH, TO BRING THE ARK OF GOD FROM KIRJATHJEARIM.
"AND DAVID WENT UP, AND ALL ISRAEL, TO BAALAH, THAT IS, TO KIRJATHJEARIM,
WHICH BELONGED TO JUDAH, TO BRING UP THENCE THE ARK OF GOD THE LORD, THAT
DWELLETH BETWEEN THE CHERUBIMS, WHOSE NAME IS CALLED ON IT" [1-Chronicles
13:5-6]. Baaley-Yehudah can also imply the important people or the
property-owners ("baaley-") of Judah and perhaps both meanings are intended
as we find elsewhere in Scripture. The area spoken of is just to the north
of the Modern City of Jerusalem by the road to Tel Aviv and the Coast.
[2-Samuel 6:3] AND THEY SET THE ARK OF GOD UPON A NEW CART, AND BROUGHT IT
OUT OF THE HOUSE OF ABINADAB THAT WAS IN GIBEAH: AND UZZAH AND AHIO, THE
SONS OF ABINADAB, DRAVE THE NEW CART.
[2-Samuel 6:4] AND THEY BROUGHT IT OUT OF THE HOUSE OF ABINADAB WHICH WAS
AT GIBEAH, ACCOMPANYING THE ARK OF GOD: AND AHIO WENT BEFORE THE ARK.
[2-Samuel 6:5] AND DAVID AND ALL THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL PLAYED BEFORE THE LORD
ON ALL MANNER OF INSTRUMENTS MADE OF FIR WOOD, EVEN ON HARPS, AND ON
PSALTERIES, AND ON TIMBRELS, AND ON CORNETS, AND ON
[2-Samuel 6:6] AND WHEN THEY CAME TO NACHON'S THRESHINGFLOOR, UZZAH PUT
FORTH HIS HAND TO THE ARK OF GOD, AND TOOK HOLD OF IT; FOR THE OXEN SHOOK IT.
[2-Samuel 6:7] AND THE ANGER OF THE LORD WAS KINDLED AGAINST UZZAH; AND GOD
SMOTE HIM THERE FOR HIS ERROR; AND THERE HE DIED BY THE ARK OF GOD.
[2-Samuel 6:8] AND DAVID WAS DISPLEASED, BECAUSE THE LORD HAD MADE A BREACH
UPON UZZAH: AND HE CALLED THE NAME OF THE PLACE PEREZUZZAH TO THIS DAY.
<<PEREZUZZAH>>: In Hebrew "PEREZ-UZZAH". Perets connotes a "breaking
forth"> We encountered this word-root in the last chapter where David
gained a victory at BAAL-PERAZIM (2-Samuel 5:20). There could be a
connection suggested in the use of this same word-root on the two
occasions. The Almighty had burst forth (or out) at the Philistines who
came against His people at Baal-Perazim and so too He bursts forth (strikes
against) even the most honorable and revered if HIS people when they fail
to sanctify HIS Name as they should.
[2-Samuel 6:9] AND DAVID WAS AFRAID OF THE LORD THAT DAY, AND SAID, HOW
SHALL THE ARK OF THE LORD COME TO ME?
[2-Samuel 6:10] SO DAVID WOULD NOT REMOVE THE ARK OF THE LORD UNTO HIM INTO
THE CITY OF DAVID: BUT DAVID CARRIED IT ASIDE INTO THE HOUSE OF OBEDEDOM
<<WOULD NOT>>: Hebrew "LO [Not]-OVEH[would]" i.e. would not. OVEH means
agree to or be prepared to. Its letters are the equivalent of OBeH and
could be pronounced in the same way. We have the English word "obey" from
Middle English "obeien" and the Old French "obeir", said to come from the
Latin "obedire "to listen to". We could therefore say that the Hebrew OBEH
and the English "obey" being similar in sound and meaning are linguistic
curioisities, and mere coincidence, and may be they are. If such is the
case, however, why is that such flukes of chance seem to happen all the time?
[2-Samuel 6:11] AND THE ARK OF THE LORD CONTINUED IN THE HOUSE OF OBEDEDOM
THE GITTITE THREE MONTHS: AND THE LORD BLESSED OBEDEDOM, AND ALL HIS HOUSEHOLD.
"OBEDEDOM": He is identified as a Levite and a ceremonial gatekeeper in the
Tabernacle whose name is recalled in 1-Chronicles 15:18. "Obed-Edom" is a
name that connotes "A Sevant of Edom" or an "Edomite-Servant". Several
other meanings however are possible. This comes to show us that we should
take the apparent meaning of names with caution. He was called "The
Gittite" probably after his place of origin.
[2-Samuel 6:12} AND IT WAS TOLD KING DAVID, SAYING, THE LORD HATH BLESSED
THE HOUSE OF OBEDEDOM, AND ALL THAT PERTAINETH UNTO HIM, BECAUSE OF THE ARK
OF GOD. SO DAVID WENT AND BROUGHT UP THE ARK OF GOD FROM THE HOUSE OF
OBEDEDOM INTO THE CITY OF DAVID WITH GLADNESS.
[2-Samuel 6:13] AND IT WAS SO, THAT WHEN THEY THAT BARE THE ARK OF THE LORD
HAD GONE SIX PACES, HE SACRIFICED OXEN AND FATLINGS.
[2-Samuel 6:14] AND DAVID DANCED BEFORE THE LORD WITH ALL HIS MIGHT; AND
DAVID WAS GIRDED WITH A LINEN EPHOD.
[2-Samuel 6:15] SO DAVID AND ALL THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL BROUGHT UP THE ARK OF
THE LORD WITH SHOUTING, AND WITH THE SOUND OF THE TRUMPET.
<<TRUMPET>>: Hebrew "Shofar" meaning the horn of an animal.
[2-Samuel 6:16] AND AS THE ARK OF THE LORD CAME INTO THE CITY OF DAVID,
MICHAL SAUL'S DAUGHTER LOOKED THROUGH A WINDOW, AND SAW KING DAVID LEAPING
AND DANCING BEFORE THE LORD; AND SHE DESPISED HIM IN HER HEART.
Such misunderstandings happen to the worse and the best of people. Michal
had been raised as the daughter of the King of Israel and we have already
noted the nepotism and aristocratic inclinations of the House of Saul. She
was undoubtedly a virtuous and brave woman and had risked her life for
David the beloved husband of her youth, AND MICHAL SAUL'S DAUGHTER LOVED
DAVID (1-Samuel 18:20). David was also a good man with the best of
intentions. Did she just look out the window one day and despises him?
Maybe this event merely brought to a head a host of irritations and
dissatisfactions about David that had been simmering in the heart of Michal
for a long time. They had been separated for years with Michal living in
relative ease and high prestige while David was hiding out in caves and
assuaging his manly needs with other women he picked up and married in the
course of his peregrinations. [I know it was not like that and that I am in
danger of making the trials and experiences of the greatest man who ever
lived sound like those of a much lower type but Michal in her feminine
frustration may in moments of exasperation have been tempted to see things
that way]. Formerly Michal had saved the life of David by lowering him
through a window:
SO MICHAL LET DAVID DOWN THROUGH A WINDOW: AND HE WENT, AND FLED, AND
ESCAPED [1-Samuel 19:12]. Here, she looks through a window and despises him.
Anyway we see from this incident that the common complaint, "My wife does
not understand me!" is not a recent phenomenon.
We began the Book of Samuel with the story of the Prophet Samuel being
promised before his birth to the service of Tabernacle of the Almighty in
Shiloh. Shiloh was destroyed, the Tabernacle was rebuilt in Nob (1-Samuel
21:1), but the ark was stationed on the property of Abinadab in Kiryat
Yearim (1-Samuel 7:1) for twenty years. Now David brought the ark to
Jerusalem where we learn the Tabernacle had also been removed to. This
event in recalled Psalm 132:
[Psalms 132:1] LORD, REMEMBER DAVID, AND ALL HIS
[Psalms 132:2] HOW HE SWARE UNTO THE LORD, AND VOWED UNTO THE MIGHTY GOD OF
[Psalms 132:3] SURELY I WILL NOT COME INTO THE TABERNACLE OF MY HOUSE,
NOR GO UP INTO MY BED;
[Psalms 132:4] I WILL NOT GIVE SLEEP TO MINE EYES, OR SLUMBER TO MINE
[Psalms 132:5] UNTIL I FIND OUT A PLACE FOR THE LORD, AN HABITATION FOR THE
MIGHTY GOD OF JACOB.
[Psalms 132:6] LO, WE HEARD OF IT AT EPHRATAH: WE FOUND IT IN THE FIELDS
OF THE WOOD.
[Psalms 132:7] WE WILL GO INTO HIS TABERNACLES: WE WILL WORSHIP AT HIS
[Psalms 132:8] ARISE, O LORD, INTO THY REST; THOU, AND THE ARK OF THY
[Psalms 132:9] LET THY PRIESTS BE CLOTHED WITH RIGHTEOUSNESS; AND LET THY
SAINTS SHOUT FOR JOY.
[Psalms 132:10] FOR THY SERVANT DAVID'S SAKE TURN NOT AWAY THE FACE OF
From this Psalm we see that David had had a revelation and vowed to
transfer the Ark and Tabernacle to Jerusalem and that from then onwards the
ONLY suitable place of sanctification for the House of the Almighty would
be in Jerusalem.
[2-Samuel 6:17] AND THEY BROUGHT IN THE ARK OF THE LORD, AND SET IT IN HIS PLACE, IN THE MIDST OF THE TABERNACLE THAT DAVID HAD PITCHED FOR IT: AND DAVID OFFERED BURNT OFFERINGS AND PEACE OFFERINGS BEFORE THE LORD.
[2-Samuel 6:18] AND AS SOON AS DAVID HAD MADE AN END OF OFFERING BURNT OFFERINGS AND PEACE OFFERINGS, HE BLESSED THE PEOPLE IN THE NAME OF THE LORD OF HOSTS.
[2-Samuel 6:19] AND HE DEALT AMONG ALL THE PEOPLE, EVEN AMONG THE WHOLE MULTITUDE OF ISRAEL, AS WELL TO THE WOMEN AS MEN, TO EVERY ONE A CAKE OF BREAD, AND A GOOD PIECE OF FLESH, AND A FLAGON OF WINE. SO ALL THE PEOPLE DEPARTED EVERY ONE TO HIS HOUSE.
<<A FLAGON OF WINE>>: Hebrew "Ashishah". Most Commentaries seem to agree that it refers to wine but there are those who interpret it to mean a kind of cake made out of pressed raisins.
[2-Samuel 6:20] THEN DAVID RETURNED TO BLESS HIS HOUSEHOLD. AND MICHAL THE DAUGHTER OF SAUL CAME OUT TO MEET DAVID, AND SAID, HOW GLORIOUS WAS THE KING OF ISRAEL TO DAY, WHO UNCOVERED HIMSELF TO DAY IN THE EYES OF THE HANDMAIDS OF HIS SERVANTS, AS ONE OF THE VAIN FELLOWS SHAMELESSLY UNCOVERETH HIMSELF!
<<BLESS HIS HOUSEHOLD>>: He went to Michal who was his chief wife even though he had other wives and children by them Michal was still "his household".
<<MICHAL THE DAUGHTER OF SAUL>>: Scripture emphasizes the fact that she was acting as the daughter of Saul with all the attributes associated with Saul. At this point she acted more as the daughter of her father than the wife of her husband. This is a common fault with married couples. Once someone marries their primary orientation should be to their spouses even though they are still bound to honor their parents.
The obligation to emotionally leave ones parents is especially applicable to the man but the woman also should take it to heart:
THEREFORE SHALL A MAN LEAVE HIS FATHER AND HIS MOTHER, AND SHALL CLEAVE UNTO HIS WIFE: AND THEY SHALL BE ONE FLESH [Genesis 2:24].
In Biblical Law the husband takes the place of the father (Numbers 30:5-6).
Many marital problems result when these principles are not taken to heart.
<<UNCOVERED HIMSELF>>: This is relative. It does not mean that anything serious was exposed. He wore a kind of coat and in dancing his undergarments were exposed. It was not according to his station. In Modern Western Society for centuries we, especially the males, have become used to uncovering most of our bodies in swimming, sport, etc. It is hard for us to understand that in the East such exposure could be considered a mark of what the English call "poor breeding".
Thje expression could also be understood to have a figurative intent, i.e. behaved with overdue exuberant spontaneity in the public eye.
[2-Samuel 6:21] AND DAVID SAID UNTO MICHAL, IT WAS BEFORE THE LORD, WHICH CHOSE ME BEFORE THY FATHER, AND BEFORE ALL HIS HOUSE, TO APPOINT ME RULER OVER THE PEOPLE OF THE LORD, OVER ISRAEL: THEREFORE WILL I PLAY BEFORE THE LORD.
David had completed the bringing of the Ark to Jerusalem. This had very great Spiritual, Religious, and Geo-Political implications that David was aware of and so in a way were most of those who had participated. It was the culmination of a great national event at which representatives of all the Tribes and dignitaries of Israel along with masses of the common people were present. David had officiated as the Monarch of all the people at this event whose effects were just as important as any great military victory. He must have felt justifiably elated but when he came home his wife (whom he had related to with greater honor than all his other womenfolk) "threw cold water in his face", as if to say.
David was offended. We see from his reply that he felt as if his whole ruling style and personal characteristics were being called into question so he replied by pointing out that he himself had been chosen while the House of Saul was rejected.
[2-Samuel 6:22] AND I WILL YET BE MORE VILE THAN THUS, AND WILL BE BASE IN MINE OWN SIGHT: AND OF THE MAIDSERVANTS WHICH THOU HAST SPOKEN OF, OF THEM SHALL I BE HAD IN HONOUR.
Again this event and encounter was not an isolated incident but brought to a head a long simmering implied conflict of outlook between the aristocratic approach of the House of Saul and the more populist attitude of David. This difference was to continue throughout history.
In Traditional Law Kings descended from the House of David may participate in legal proceedings since they are prepared (and psychologically able) if necessary to take a loss in Court dealings whereas Kings of Israel not descended from David cannot since they do not know how to deal with legal defeat. We should learn from this that one should be prepared to admit mistakes and learn how to deal with them and keep going.
OF THEM SHALL I BE HAD IN HONOUR: Kings of the House of David were "Servants of the People." The British beaurocracy and Public Employ has a worldwide reputation for being a "Civil Service" and inculcating in its members that their duty is to serve the public. All over the world they are envied for this and possibly for exaggerated reasons. Nevertheless someone who works for the public should be brought to realize that he is supposed to work for, rather than merely placed over, them.
[2-Samuel 6:23] THEREFORE MICHAL THE DAUGHTER OF SAUL HAD NO CHILD UNTO THE DAY OF HER DEATH.
This is often interpreted to mean that David in anger separated himself from Michal and therefore she had no children until she died. Or that from heaven she was punished with no children.
UNTO THE DAY OF HER DEATH: "Unto" in Hebrew "ad" from which word we have the English "add", and "odd" (also found in Hebrew "OD" and pronounced in the same way as the English "odd" but in Hebrew meaning more "additional").
The Sages said the words "HAD NO CHILD UNTO THE DAY OF HER DEATH" meant that she had no children "up unto" the day that she died and that she died in Childbirth and gave birth to "Yithream"
"AND THE SIXTH, ITHREAM, BY EGLAH DAVID'S WIFE. THESE WERE BORN TO DAVID IN HEBRON" [2-Samuel 3:5].
<<EGLAH>>: The Sages said that this was another name for Michal. There is the famous story of Michal later despising David when she saw him dancing in public (1-Chronicles 15:29 2-Samuel 6:16) and of not having any children until she died (2-Samuel 6:23). The Hebrew can also be understood that she had no child until the day that she died, i.e. she died in childbirth.
EGLAH DAVID'S WIFE: Eglah is here called "David's wife" and also as Yehudah Kiel points out this title is repeated in 1-Chronicles 3:3: "THE FIFTH, SHEPHATIAH OF ABITAL: THE SIXTH, ITHREAM BY EGLAH HIS WIFE".
Michal is also referred to as the Wife of David (1-Samuel 25:44) and out of all of David's numerous consorts only these two (Michal and Eglah) are given this title thus strengthening the case that they were one and the same.
Other explanations exist.
Amos Chocham said that after Michal had been returned from the possession of Palti (2-Samuel 3:13-16) David had remained separated from her in the same way as he later remained separate from his concubines after they had been raped by Absalom (2-Samuel 20: 3).
I prefer the explanation of the Sages which to my understanding also is consistent with an inner logic of the Hebrew.
One day we will all know the truth. In the meantime we only have to believe as a general principle and to do our duty as it is made clear to us. We may chose those explanations that speak most truthfully to our understanding while those bound by the Law must obey as commanded.
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