Ark of God
A container of indeterminate size, variously called the Ark of Yahweh or the Ark of God, the Ark of the Covenant, and the Ark of the testimony. According to biblical tradition, the Ark contained the two tablets of the law (Deut 10:2; Deut 10:5); the NT Letter to the Hebrews records a later Jewish tradition that it also contained a jar of manna and Aaron’s miraculous rod (Heb 9:3-5). The Israelite Ark led the people in the desert (Num 10:33), was carried around the walls of Jericho (Josh 6), and was brought into the camp during military operations (1Sam 4:2-4). A narrative sometimes called the “history of the Ark” (1Sam 4:1-7:2) tells of its capture by the Philistines. David installed the Ark in his new capital, Jerusalem (2Sam 6), and it was later transferred into the Holy of Holies of Solomon’s new Temple (1Kgs 8:4-7). From this time onward, the Ark would remain stationary and be viewed as a throne, on which God sat as an invisible deity above the two guardian cherubim (2Kgs 19:15). It was also conceived as the place where atonement was made, supremely by the sprinkling of blood on the Day of Atonement (Lev 16:14-16).