It was left unfinished because God was angry with David and with the people on account of this sin, David saw that he had done wickedly, in ordering the count of the people. He prayed to the Lord, and said, "O Lord, I have sinned greatly in doing this. Now, O Lord, forgive this sin, for I have done very foolishly." Then the Lord sent to David, a prophet, a man who heard Gods voice and spoke as Gods messenger. His name was Gad. Gad came to David, and said to him, "Thus saith the Lord, You have sinned in this thing, and now you and your land must suffer for your sin. I will give you the choice of three troubles to come upon the land. Shall I send seven years of famine, in which there shall be no harvest? Or shall your enemies overcome you, and win victories over you for three months? Or shall there be three days when pestilence shall fall upon the land, and the people shall die everywhere?" And David said to the prophet Gad, "This is a hard choice of evils to come upon the land; but let me fall into the hand of the Lord, and not into the hands of men; for Gods mercies are great and many. If we must suffer, let the three days of pestilence come upon the land." Then the Lords angel of death passed through the land, and in three days seventy thousand men died. And when the angel of the Lord stretched out his hand over the city of Jerusalem, the Lord had pity upon the people, and the Lord said to him, "It is enough; now hold back your hand, and cause no more of the people to die." Then the Lord opened Davidís eyes, and he saw the angel standing on Mount Moriah, with a drawn sword in his hand, held out toward the city. Then David prayed to the Lord, and he said: "O Lord, I alone have sinned, and have done this wickedness before thee. These people are like sheep; they have done nothing. Lord, let thy hand fall on me, and not on these poor people." Then the Lord sent the prophet Gad to David, and Gad said to him, "Go, and build an altar to the Lord upon the place where the angel was standing." Then David and the men of his court went out from Mount Zion, where the city was standing, and walked up the side of Mount Morliah. They found the man who owned the rock on the top of the mountain threshing wheat upon it with his sons; for the smooth rock was used as a threshing floor, upon which oxen walked over the heads of grain, beating out the kernels with their feet. This man was not an Israelite, but a foreigner, of the race that had lived on those mountains before the Israelites came. His name was Araunah.
When Araunah saw David and his nobles corning toward him, he bowed down with his face toward the ground, and said, "For what purpose does my lord the king come to his servant?" "I have come," said David, "to buy your threshing floor, and to build upon it an altar to the Lord, that I may pray to God to stop the plague which is destroying the people." And Araunah said to David, "Let my lord the king take it freely as a gift, and with it these oxen for a burnt offering, and the threshing tools and the yokes of the oxen for the wood on the altar. All this, O king, Araunah gives to the king." "No," said King David, "I cannot take it as a gift; but I will pay you the price for it. For I will not make an offering to the Lord my God of that which costs me nothing." So David gave Araunah the full price for the land, and for the oxen, and for the wood. And there, on the rock, he built an altar to the Lord God, and on it he offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. The Lord heard Davidís prayer and took away the plague from the land. And on that rock afterward stood the altar of the temple of the Lord on Mount Moriah. The rock is standing even to this day, and over it a building called "The Dome of the Rock." Those who visit the place can look upon the very spot where David built his altar and called upon the Lord.