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|1 Samuel||2 Samuel||1 Kings||1 Kings||2 Kings|
Legend: B.C. dates at top of timeline are approximate. Note that 931 BC marks the division of the Kingdom into Southern Tribes (Judah and Benjamin) and Ten Northern Tribes. To avoid confusion be aware that after the division of the Kingdom in 931 BC, the Southern Kingdom is most often designated in Scripture as "Judah" and the Northern Kingdom as "Israel." Finally, note that 1 Chronicles 1-9 is not identified on the timeline because these chapters are records of genealogy.
THE DOWNWARD SPIRAL
Click to Enlarge
Comparison of 1 Samuel thru 2 Chronicles
|1 Chronicles 1-9:44||1 Chronicles 10:1-39:30|
of David's Reign
of David's Reign
|1000's of Years||Circa 33 Years|
Map of David's Kingdom-ESV Global Map of Cities in 2 Samuel
1 Chronicles 23:1 Now when David reached old age, he made his son Solomon king over Israel.
NET 1 Chronicles 23:1 When David was old and approaching the end of his life, he made his son Solomon king over Israel.
CSB 1 Chronicles 23:1 When David was old and full of days, he installed his son Solomon as king over Israel.
ESV 1 Chronicles 23:1 When David was old and full of days, he made Solomon his son king over Israel.
NIV 1 Chronicles 23:1 When David was old and full of years, he made his son Solomon king over Israel.
NLT 1 Chronicles 23:1 When David was an old man, he appointed his son Solomon to be king over Israel.
- old: 1Ch 29:28 Ge 25:8 35:29 1Ki 1:1 Job 5:26
- he made: 1Ch 28:5 29:22-25 1Ki 1:33-39
1 Kings 1:1 Now King David was old, advanced in age; and they covered him with clothes, but he could not keep warm.
Simple Outline of 1 Chronicles 23:1-32 - David Organizes the Levites and Assigns them Their Duties
1Ch 23:1-2 Solomon Reigns
1Ch 23:3-6 Offices of the Levites
1Ch 23:7-11 Gershonites
1Ch 23:12-20 Kohathites
1Ch 23:21-23 Merarites
1Ch 23:24-32 Duties Revised
AGED DAVID DESCRIBES
ADMINISTRATION OF THE TEMPLE
Now when David reached old age, he made his son Solomon king over Israel - CSB = "old and full of days" or NIV = "old and full of years" David was seventy years old in 970 b.c. (2 Sam 5:4). David is old but still in charge. This is a summary verse because the story of Solomon's succession is taken up in 1 Kings 1. 1 Kings 1:31-40 describes in greater detail how David made sure that Solomon, and not Adonijah, took the throne after his death. Thus this section skips over the rebellion and execution of his other son Adonijah. Adonijah was elder but God had commanded Solomon (not the eldest son) follow David (1Ch 22:9-10). The account of Solomon's succession is resumed in 1Ch 28-29. From 1Ch 28:5 we know it was YHWH's choice, not David's. Solomon's succession is mentioned several times - 1Chr. 22:5,6,9,10; 1Ch 28:5-8; 1Ch 29:1-30. All of the problems associated with Solomon found in 1 Kings 1-2 are omitted. Compare other men who reached a ripe old age - Abraham, Isaac, Job, and faithful priest Jehoiada (Gen. 25:8; 35:29; Job 42:17; 2 Chron. 24:15).
John Sailhamer has an interesting comment on 1Ch 23:1-2 - First Chronicles 23:1–2 provides the outline for the remaining chapters of 1 Chronicles: “Now when David reached old age, he made his son Solomon king over Israel. And he gathered together [organized] all the leaders of Israel with the priests and the Levites.” In reverse order, that summary is the basis for the account of David’s organization of the Levites (1Ch 23:1–32; 24:20–31), the priests (1Ch 24:1–19), the musicians and doorkeepers (1Ch 25:1–26:32), and the princes of Israel (1Ch 27:1–34). The enthronement of Solomon, noted first in this passage, is the concern of the third account of the promise to David (1Ch 28:1–29:30). (Everyman's Bible Commentary - Chronicles)
Warren Wiersbe - David knew that the ministers of the temple also had to be organized and prepared if God was to be glorified. Too often local church building programs concentrate so much on the financial and the material that they ignore the spiritual, and then a backslidden and divided congregation meets to dedicate the new edifice! A gifted administrator, David organized the Levites (chap. 23), the priests (chap. 24), the temple singers (chap. 25), and the temple officers (chap. 26). David wanted to be sure that everything in God's house would be done "decently and in order" (1 Cor. 14:40 nkjv)! (Borrow Be restored : trusting God to see us through : OT commentary, 2 Samuel & 1 Chronicles)
Jack Hay - A new section of 1 Chronicles commences here. The ark had been brought to Jerusalem and a site for the temple had been procured. Workmen had been marshalled and materials for the construction had been accumulated. Solomon and the princes of Israel had been commanded to build. Now chapters 23-27 take proceedings a stage further as David anticipates the day when the building will be completed, and when temple service will commence. In preparation for that, he arranges various courses of Levites, priests, singers and doorkeepers who would operate a shift system to ensure the smooth functioning of divine service. Chapter 27 rounds off the section with details of those in the military and in the civil service of the nation. Such particulars may seem superfluous to the overall theme of the book, but the security of the nation and its political stability would facilitate the building of the house of God and the subsequent religious activity connected with it....When the temple was built and Solomon adopted the system of courses, the comment is made, "so had David the man of God commanded" (2 Chr 8:14). Similarly, in Hezekiah's reign there is reference to the way things operated in the temple, and it was "according to the commandment of David, and of Gad the king's seer, and Nathan the prophet: for so was the commandment of the Lord by his prophets" (2 Chr 29:25). So, then, the system was not invented by David, but was put in place by divine decree. What David had been given "by the spirit" (1 Chr. 28:12) was what he implemented. It would be good for us all to be equally obedient to what the Spirit of God has dictated.(What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles)
The Wycliffe Bible Commentary - One of David's most lastingly significant contributions to posterity lay in the arrangements that he made for the ministry of the tribe of Levi. The genius he displayed in the organization of the Levites helped preserve the Levitical services under his successors, provided the administrative force for the revival of the Mosaic theocracy under Ezra, and continued to serve as the basis for Israel's religious organization on into NT times.
Here is a simple outline:
Levitical Families, 23:1–24:31
Officers and Judges, 26:20–32
1 Chronicles 23:2 And he gathered together all the leaders of Israel with the priests and the Levites.
- he gathered: 1Ch 13:1 28:1 Jos 23:2 24:1 2Ch 34:29,30
1 Chronicles 22:17 David also commanded all the leaders of Israel to help his son Solomon, saying,
1 Chronicles 28:1 Now David assembled at Jerusalem all the officials of Israel, the princes of the tribes, and the commanders of the divisions that served the king, and the commanders of thousands, and the commanders of hundreds, and the overseers of all the property and livestock belonging to the king and his sons, with the officials and the mighty men, even all the valiant men.
DAVID BEGINS WITH
Life Application Study Bible (borrow) Bible makes an excellent point that "The original readers of Chronicles were rebuilding the Temple after it had been destroyed by invading armies, and this information about its procedures was invaluable to them. The next five chapters demonstrate that organization is essential for smooth and effective service. (ED: RECALL CHRONICLES WAS WRITTEN AFTER THE 70 YEAR EXILE IN BABYLON AND AFTER THE DESTRUCTION OF SOLOMON'S TEMPLE.)
While we have alluded to this in the previous chapter, it bears repeating, so that we can understand that David's orders for organizing the Levites were not a matter of his own will but a matter of carrying out the will of Jehovah. And so we read...
He (DAVID) then stationed the Levites in the house of the LORD with cymbals, with harps and with lyres, according to the command of David and of Gad the king’s seer, and of Nathan the prophet; for the command was from the LORD through His prophets. (2 Chronicles 29:25)
Comment - Note the chain of communication: Yahweh to Gad/Nathan to David to the leaders, priests and Levites. David sought to do God's will on earth as it is in Heaven!
And he gathered together all the leaders of Israel with the priests and the Levites - David is gathering all the leaders with the express purpose of instructing them in how they are to assist Solomon in the construction of the Temple. David's priorities are right, for he begins with the worship leaders and not until 1Ch 27 does he describe the military leaders. Worship of God should always precede our work for God. Our being is more critical than our doing. If Jesus is our priority, rivers of living water will come forth from our innermost being to do things that glorify our Lord and King. The danger in Christianity is falling into the trap of "doing" to the neglect of the "being." I fear that there is much doing in Christianity that is not based on the firm foundation of abiding in Jesus. Jesus gave us His pattern for "doing" declaring "“I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides (present tense - continually - see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to accomplish this as our habitual practice) in Me and I in him, he bears (present tense - continually) much fruit (WHAT AN INCREDIBLE PROMISE TO WE WHO WERE ONCE HIS ENEMIES!), for (TERM OF EXPLANATION - EXPLAINING WHY JESUS' PATTERN FOR MINISTRY IS TO CRITICAL) apart from Me you can do (ABSOLUTELY) nothing." (John 15:5).
All the servants at the temple were descendants of Aaron (except the Nethinim, Ezra 2:43,58,70; 7:7; 8:17,20).
1 Chronicles 23:3 The Levites were numbered from thirty years old and upward, and their number by census of men was 38,000.
- the Levites: Nu 4:2-3,23,30,35,43,47
- 38,000: Nu 4:48
TOTAL NUMBER OF
In 1 Chronicles 23:2-32 we see the organization of the Levites. "The arrangement of chapter 23 is simple and straightforward. The names of the heads of the family of Levi are listed (1Ch 23:3–24), and then the duties specified by David are enumerated (1Ch 23:25–32)." (Sailhamer)
The Levites were numbered from thirty years old and upward, and their number by census of men was 38,000 - In 1Ch 21:6 it is specifically mentioned that Joab did not count the Levites. Here, they only the Levites are counted with no negative remarks. This census has a markedly different motivation and unlike the census in 1Ch 21 is not about David's pride, but is now about God's glory, for the Levites were set apart ultimately to serve Yahweh! This census recalls God's word to Moses' in Nu 4:1-3+ which says "Then the LORD spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying, “Take a census of the descendants of Kohath from among the sons of Levi, by their families, by their fathers’ households, from thirty years and upward, even to fifty years old, all who enter the service to do the work in the tent of meeting. It appears that David lowered this to 20 years in 1Ch 23:24, 27. No upper limit of the age of fifty is mentioned here, possibly because the new duties were less strenuous than formerly as discussed more below.
1 Chronicles 23:4 Of these, 24,000 were to oversee the work of the house of the LORD; and 6,000 were officers and judges,
BGT 1 Chronicles 23:4 ἀπὸ τούτων ἐργοδιῶκται ἐπὶ τὰ ἔργα οἴκου κυρίου εἴκοσι τέσσαρες χιλιάδες καὶ γραμματεῖς καὶ κριταὶ ἑξακισχίλιοι
LXE 1 Chronicles 23:4 Of the overseers over the works of the house of the Lord there were twenty-four thousand, and there were six thousand scribes and judges;
KJV 1 Chronicles 23:4 Of which, twenty and four thousand were to set forward the work of the house of the LORD; and six thousand were officers and judges:
NET 1 Chronicles 23:4 David said, "Of these, 24,000 are to direct the work of the LORD's temple; 6,000 are to be officials and judges;
CSB 1 Chronicles 23:4 "Of these," David said, "24,000 are to be in charge of the work on the LORD's temple, 6,000 are to be officers and judges,
ESV 1 Chronicles 23:4 "Twenty-four thousand of these," David said, "shall have charge of the work in the house of the LORD, 6,000 shall be officers and judges,
NIV 1 Chronicles 23:4 David said, "Of these, twenty-four thousand are to supervise the work of the temple of the LORD and six thousand are to be officials and judges.
NLT 1 Chronicles 23:4 Then David said, "From all the Levites, 24,000 will supervise the work at the Temple of the LORD. Another 6,000 will serve as officials and judges.
NRS 1 Chronicles 23:4 "Twenty-four thousand of these," David said, "shall have charge of the work in the house of the LORD, six thousand shall be officers and judges,
NJB 1 Chronicles 23:4 twenty-four thousand were responsible for the service of the House of Yahweh, six thousand were officials and judges,
NAB 1 Chronicles 23:4 Of these, twenty-four thousand were to direct the service of the house of the LORD, six thousand were to be officials and judges,
- twenty: 1Ch 23:28-32 6:48 9:28-32 26:20-27
- oversee, Ne 11:9,22 Ac 20:28
- officers and judges: 1Ch 26:29-31 De 16:18 17:8-10 2Ch 19:8 Mal 2:7
DIVISION OF DUTIES:
FIRST TWO GROUPS OF LEVITES
Of these, 24,000 were to oversee the work of the house of the LORD - NLT = "24,000 will supervise the work at the Temple" Imagine what it takes to care for your own house, and then imagine the work involved in caring for the LORD'S house that was daily having sacrifices and countless visitors seeking to sacrifice and worship Yahweh. This would explain this larger number of Levites (24,000) to assure proper maintenance and functioning of the Temple. "There would be an endless stream of sacrifices with which the priests would require assistance, and there would also be the constant business of carrying out dirt, and maintaining the cleanliness of the vessels of the sanctuary." (Hay)
Wiersbe - The fact that the Levites took care of the sanctuary while the priests served at the altar didn't mean that their work was less important to the ministry or to the Lord. Each servant was important to the Lord and each ministry was necessary.
And 6,000 were officers and judges - (This function is described in 1Ch 26:20-32) These would function as magistrates of the land.
Guzik - The Levites were also the civil servants for the kingdom of Israel. Governmental records, decisions, and administration were all in the hands of the Levites.
Utley summarizes - There are several kinds of Levites.
- those who oversee the work of the house of the Lord
- officers ‒ BDB 1009 (cf. 1 Chr. 26:29; 2 Chr. 19:11; 34:13)
- judges ‒ BDB 1047; there were religious and non-religious judges, cf. Deut. 17:9,12; 19:17
- gatekeepers ‒ BDB 1045; 1 Chr. 15:18; 16:38; 26:13; 2 Chr. 8:14; Ezra 2:42,70; 7:7; Neh. 7:1, 45, 73
- musicians ‒ cf. 1 Chr. 15:16; 16:4-5,42; 25:1-8 (but the priests blew the trumpets, cf. 2 Chr. 29:26)
Since the Levites now helped with the temple, they must be supported by offerings to the temple (cf. Neh. 10:39; 12:47; 13:5,10).
1 Chronicles 23:5 and 4,000 were gatekeepers, and 4,000 were praising the LORD with the instruments which David made for giving praise.
- Am 6:5
- gatekeepers: 1Ch 9:17-27 15:23,24 16:38 26:1-12 2Ch 8:14 35:15 Ezr 7:7 Ne 7:73
- were praising: 1Ch 6:31-48 9:33 15:16-22 16:41,42 25:1-7 2Ch 20:19-21 Ps 87:7
- the instruments: 1Ki 10:12 2Ch 29:25,26
SECOND TWO GROUPS
and 4,000 were gatekeepers - "Security men" who would assure those coming to sacrifice and worship did so in an orderly manner.
and 4,000 were praising the LORD with the instruments which David made for giving praise - This latter was a new ministry for formerly, a fanfare of trumpets would have signalled the start of a special day in Israel's calendar (Num 10:10). These Levites would be akin to our modern worship or song leaders.
Wiersbe - Nothing that the priests and Levites did in the temple was left to chance or human invention, but was ordained by the Lord. Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, the first high priest (24:1-2), were killed by the Lord for devising their own form of worship (Lev. 10:1-4).
1 Chronicles 23:6 David divided them into divisions according to the sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.
- divided: 2Ch 8:14 29:25 31:2 35:10 Ezr 6:18
- divisions, 1Ch 24:1 26:1
- Gershon: Ex 6:16-24 Nu 26:57,58
Numbers 4:22-26+ “Take a census of the sons of Gershon also, by their fathers’ households, by their families; 23 from thirty years and upward to fifty years old, you shall number them; all who enter to perform the service to do the work in the tent of meeting. 24 “This is the service of the families of the Gershonites, in serving and in carrying: 25 they shall carry the curtains of the tabernacle and the tent of meeting with its covering and the covering of porpoise skin that is on top of it, and the screen for the doorway of the tent of meeting, 26 and the hangings of the court, and the screen for the doorway of the gate of the court which is around the tabernacle and the altar, and their cords and all the equipment for their service; and all that is to be done, they shall perform.
Numbers 4:1-3; 15+ Then the LORD spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying, 2 “Take a census of the descendants of Kohath from among the sons of Levi, by their families, by their fathers’ households, 3 from thirty years and upward, even to fifty years old, all who enter the service to do the work in the tent of meeting. (4:15) “When Aaron and his sons have finished covering the holy objects and all the furnishings of the sanctuary, when the camp is to set out, after that the sons of Kohath shall come to carry them, so that they will not touch the holy objects and die. These are the things in the tent of meeting which the sons of Kohath are to carry.
Numbers 4:29-32+ “As for the sons of Merari, you shall number them by their families, by their fathers’ households; 30 from thirty years and upward even to fifty years old, you shall number them, everyone who enters the service to do the work of the tent of meeting. 31 “Now this is the duty of their loads, for all their service in the tent of meeting: the boards of the tabernacle and its bars and its pillars and its sockets, 32 and the pillars around the court and their sockets and their pegs and their cords, with all their equipment and with all their service; and you shall assign each man by name the items he is to carry.
TRIBE OF LEVI
Source: Thomas Constable
SONS OF LEVI
David divided them into divisions according to the sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.
Hay - The "courses" or "divisions" (AV margin), were groupings of Levites who operated a shift system, each group functioning for a scheduled period, guaranteeing that there were always enough of them on duty to ensure the smooth functioning of temple service in its various aspects. The courses were divided in keeping with the three branches of the Levitical family. With such vast numbers available for temple service, it was imperative that they were organised in an orderly fashion, for God never operates in a haphazard way. Each shift would consist of the correct number, without anyone being either overburdened or crowded out. (What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles)
Gershon ("exile" or "foreigner") - the eldest of Levi's three sons born before the descent of Jacob?s family into Egypt. (Ge. 46:11; Ex. 6:16). In the wilderness the sons of Gershon had charge of the fabrics of the tabernacle when it was moved from place to place, the curtains, veils, tent-hangings (Num. 3: 21-26). Thirteen Levitical cities fell to the lot of the Gershonites (Josh. 21:27-33). But, though the eldest born, the families of Gershon were outstripped in fame by their younger brethren of Kohath, from whom sprang Moses and the priestly line of Aaron. Numbers 4:22-26
Kohath ("assembly") - second son of Levi, father of Amram (Ge. 46:11) who came down to Egypt with Jacob, and lived to the age of one hundred and thirty-three years (Ex. 6:18). Father of the Kohathites (see diagram above for offspring) from whom the three principal divisions of the Levites derived their origin (Ex. 6:18; Nu 3:19, 27). In the journeyings of the tabernacle of the sons of Kohath (Kohathites) had charge of the most holy portions of the vessels. (Numbers 4:1)
Merari ("bitter") - the youngest son of Levi, born before the descent of Jacob into Egypt, and one of the seventy who accompanied him thither (Gen. 46:11; Ex. 6:16). He became the head of one of the Gershonites who had to carry from place to place (Num. 3:20, 33-37; 4:29-33). In the distribution of the oxen and waggons offered by the princes (Num. 7), Moses gave twice as many to the Merarites (four waggons and eight oxen) as he gave to the Gershonites, because the latter had to carry only the lighter furniture of the tabernacle, such as the curtains, hangings, etc., while the former had to carry the heavier portion, as the boards, bars, sockets, pillars, etc., and consequently needed a greater supply of oxen and waggons. Twelve cities with their suburbs were assigned to them (Josh. 21:7, 34-40).
1 Chronicles 23:7 Of the Gershonites were Ladan and Shimei.
- Gershonites: 1Ch 6:17-20 15:7 26:21
- Laadan: Laadan and Libni, seem to have been two distinct names of this person; but the variation of Shimi and Shimei exists only in the translation, the original being uniformly [Shim'iy <Strong's H8096>.] Ex 6:17, Libni, Shimi
Three major groups of Levites
- Gershonites (1Ch 23:7–11)
- Kohathites (1Ch 23:12–20)
- Merarites (1Ch 23:21–23).
DAVID ADDRESSES THE
THREE MAJOR DIVISIONS
Of the Gershonites were Ladan ("put in order") and Shimei ("fame") - This Shimei is not the Benjamite of the house of Saul, who stoned and cursed David when he reached Bahurim in his flight from Jerusalem on the occasion of the rebellion of Absalom (2Sa 16:5-13).
1 Chronicles 23:8 The sons of Ladan were Jehiel the first and Zetham and Joel, three.
- Jehiel: 1Ch 15:18,20,21
- Joel: 1Ch 6:33,34 15:7,11,17
The sons of Ladan were Jehiel the first and Zetham and Joel, three.
1 Chronicles 23:9 The sons of Shimei were Shelomoth and Haziel and Haran, three. These were the heads of the fathers' households of Ladan.
The sons of Shimei were Shelomoth and Haziel ("vision of God") and Haran ("mountaineer"), three. These were the heads of the fathers' households of Ladan.
1 Chronicles 23:10 The sons of Shimei were Jahath, Zina, Jeush and Beriah. These four were the sons of Shimei.
- Zina: Zina seems to be a mistake for Zizah; for both the LXX. and Vulgate read uniformly [Ziza,] Ziza. 1Ch 23:11, Zizah
The sons of Shimei were Jahath ("He will snatch up"), Zina ("well-fed"), Jeush ("assembler") and Beriah ("with a friend"). These four were the sons of Shimei
Utley - "Zina" In the next verse it is spelled "Zizah." The Chronicler is obviously using different lists.
- Notice that there are two lists of the sons of Shimei; 1 Chr. 23:9 and 10 differ.
- The name of Eliezer's son is spelled differently between 1 Chr. 23:17a and 17b.
- 1 Chr. 23:16 has "sons" but lists only one called "the first."
- The same as 1 Chr. 23:16, 23:17 has "sons" but only one named, called "the first."
- Same for 1 Chr. 23:18.
- The list of 1 Chr. 23:16-23 is repeated with variations in 24:26-30.
- The age of Levites in 1 Chr. 23:3 is changed in 23:27.
1 Chronicles 23:11 Jahath was the first and Zizah the second; but Jeush and Beriah did not have many sons, so they became a father's household, one class.
- Zizah: 1Ch 23:10
- had not many sons: Heb. did not multiply sons
Jahath was the first and Zizah the second; but Jeush and Beriah did not have many sons, so they became a father's household, one class.
1 Chronicles 23:12 The sons of Kohath were four: Amram, Izhar, Hebron and Uzziel.
- sons of Kohath: 1Ch 6:2 Ex 6:18 Nu 3:27 26:58
SONS OF KOHATH
Source: Thomas Constable
The sons of Kohath were four: Amram ("exalted people"), Izhar ("shining oil"), Hebron ("association") and Uzziel ("my strength is God")
Amram ("exalted people") The son of Kohath, the son of Levi. He married Jochebed, "his father's sister," and was the father of Aaron, Miriam, and Moses (Ex. 6:18, 20; Num. 3:19). He died in Egypt at the age of 137 years (Ex. 6:20). His descendants were called Amramites (Num. 3:27; 1 Chr. 26:23).
Izhar ("shining oil") The father of Korah (Nu 16:1), descended from a Kohathite Levite of this name, whose descendants formed a family, in the tribe of Levi (Ex 6:18,21; Nu 3:19,27; 1 Ch 6:18,38).
Hebron ("association") The third son of Kohath the Levite (Ex. 6:18; 1 Chr. 6:2, 18).
Uzziel ("my strength is God") the 4th son of Kohath and grandson of Levi, uncle of Moses and Aaron
ISBE - KOHATH; KOHATHITES - ko'-hath, ko'-hath-its (qehath, qohathi; Kaath): Second son of Levi, and ancestor of Moses and Aaron (Gen 46:11; Ex 6:16-20; Nu 3:17; 1Ch 6:1, etc.). The Kohathites formed one of the three divisions of the tribe of Levi; the other two being the Gershonites and the Merarites (Nu 3:17ff). The Kohathites consisted of four families, the Amramites, the Izharites, the Hebronites, and the Uzzielites (Nu 3:19,27, etc.). Their place in the wilderness was on the southern side of the tabernacle (Nu 3:29), and their number is given (from a month old) as 8,600 (Nu 3:28). Their special charge was "the ark, and the table, and the candlestick, and the altars, and the vessels of the sanctuary wherewith they minister, and the screen, and all the service thereof" (Nu 3:31; compare Nu 7:9). After the conquest 23 cities were assigned them by lot (Josh 21:4,5ff). In David's time and after, Heman, a Kohathite, and his family had a prominent place in the service of the music of the sanctuary (1Ch 6:33ff; 1Ch 16:41ff; 1Ch 25:1ff); David likewise divided the Levites into courses (the Kohathites, 1Ch 23:12-20; 1Ch 24:20-25). We read of the Kohathites in the reign of Jehoshaphat at Engedi (2Ch 20:19), and in connection with the cleansing of the temple under Hezekiah (2Ch 29:12,14)
1 Chronicles 23:13 The sons of Amram were Aaron and Moses. And Aaron was set apart to sanctify him as most holy, he and his sons forever, to burn incense before the LORD, to minister to Him and to bless in His name forever.
BGT 1 Chronicles 23:13 υἱοὶ Αμβραμ Ααρων καὶ Μωυσῆς καὶ διεστάλη Ααρων τοῦ ἁγιασθῆναι ἅγια ἁγίων αὐτὸς καὶ οἱ υἱοὶ αὐτοῦ ἕως αἰῶνος τοῦ θυμιᾶν ἐναντίον τοῦ κυρίου λειτουργεῖν καὶ ἐπεύχεσθαι ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι αὐτοῦ ἕως αἰῶνος
LXE 1 Chronicles 23:13 The sons of Ambram; Aaron and Moses: and Aaron was appointed for the consecration of the most holy things, he and his sons for ever, to burn incense before the Lord, to minister and bless in his name for ever.
KJV 1 Chronicles 23:13 The sons of Amram; Aaron and Moses: and Aaron was separated, that he should sanctify the most holy things, he and his sons for ever, to burn incense before the LORD, to minister unto him, and to bless in his name for ever.
NET 1 Chronicles 23:13 The sons of Amram: Aaron and Moses. Aaron and his descendants were chosen on a permanent basis to consecrate the most holy items, to offer sacrifices before the LORD, to serve him, and to praise his name.
CSB 1 Chronicles 23:13 Amram's sons: Aaron and Moses. Aaron, along with his descendants, was set apart forever to consecrate the most holy things, to burn incense in the presence of Yahweh, to minister to Him, and to pronounce blessings in His name forever.
ESV 1 Chronicles 23:13 The sons of Amram: Aaron and Moses. Aaron was set apart to dedicate the most holy things, that he and his sons forever should make offerings before the LORD and minister to him and pronounce blessings in his name forever.
NIV 1 Chronicles 23:13 The sons of Amram: Aaron and Moses. Aaron was set apart, he and his descendants forever, to consecrate the most holy things, to offer sacrifices before the LORD, to minister before him and to pronounce blessings in his name forever.
NLT 1 Chronicles 23:13 The sons of Amram were Aaron and Moses. Aaron and his descendants were set apart to dedicate the most holy things, to offer sacrifices in the LORD's presence, to serve the LORD, and to pronounce blessings in his name forever.
NRS 1 Chronicles 23:13 The sons of Amram: Aaron and Moses. Aaron was set apart to consecrate the most holy things, so that he and his sons forever should make offerings before the LORD, and minister to him and pronounce blessings in his name forever;
- The sons: 1Ch 6:3 Ex 6:20 Nu 3:27 26:59
- set apart: Ex 28:1-14 Nu 18:1 Ps 99:6 106:16 Ac 13:2 Ro 1:1 Ga 1:15 Heb 5:4
- sanctify: Ex 29:33-37,44 40:9-15 Lev 10:10,17,18 16:11-19,32,33 17:2-6 Nu 18:3-8
- to burn incense: Ex 30:6-10,34-38 Lev 10:1,2 16:12,13 Nu 16:16-18,35-40,46,47 1Sa 2:28 2Ch 26:18-21 Lu 1:9 Rev 8:3
- to bless: Lev 9:22,23 Nu 6:23-27 De 21:5
The sons of Amram ("exalted people"), were Aaron and Moses.
And Aaron was set apart (badal; Lxx - diastello) to sanctify (qadash; Lxx - hagiazo) him as most holy (qodesh; Lxx - hagios), he and his sons forever (olam; Lxx - aionios) - NET - "Aaron and his descendants were chosen on a permanent basis to consecrate the most holy items." Aaron and his descendants were to ensure that every accoutrement connected to the service of God was set apart for that purpose. Notice the emphasis of Aaron's holiness, using 3 terms to describe his status - set apart...sanctify...most holy.
Guzik - The priest was to have an active concern for holiness, and to be able to discern between what was holy and what was not. This means that holiness had to touch the life of the priest; he had to represent God before the people.
Jack Hay - "Aaron was separated", separated not only from the nation as a whole, and not only from the tribe of Levi as a whole, but even from the Kohathite branch of the family. Aaron was distinct; Aaron was unique; his role and that of his descendants was more prestigious than even that of his favoured Kohathite brethren.....In every respect, priests had to discern how to "put difference between holy and unholy, between unclean and clean" (Lev 10:10). (What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles)
Utley note on "Aaron. . .most holy. . .and his sons" This designation is a play on the word "sanctify". It was used to show the higher status of priests over Levites, who are only designated as "holy" (cf. 2Ch 23:60)
to burn incense before the LORD, to minister (Lxx - leitourgeo) to Him and to bless (barak) in His Name forever (How long?) - Three descriptions summarize the duties of the Aaronic priests. Incense picturing prayer. Ministry was to be to God Himself. And what a privilege they had to "pronounce blessings in His Name forever." (NRS) This recalls the great Aaronic blessing in Numbers 6:23-27+
“Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying, ‘Thus you shall bless the sons of Israel. You shall say to them:
The LORD bless you, and keep you;
The LORD make His face shine on you,
And be gracious to you;
The LORD lift up His countenance on you,
And give you peace.’
“So they shall invoke My name on the sons of Israel, and I then will bless them.”
THOUGHT - Have you ever prayed this blessing over your family, friends, etc (even over yourself)? As a priest of the LORD (Rev 1:6+; 1Pe 2:9+), you have the privilege of praying this over others! Don't miss out on bestowing this blessing on many people you encounter, and to enable you to do this, take time to commit these priceless words to memory! (Memorizing His Word; Memory Verses by Topic) Play this beautiful song in English and Hebrew based on the Aaronic blessing May the Lord bless you.
Let us pray more, not for ourselves so much as for others.
-- F B Meyer
Guzik on incense - Incense is a picture of intercessory prayer. The priest had to represent the people before the Lord. “The fragrant incense stealing heavenward is a beautiful emblem of intercessory prayer. Let us pray more, not for ourselves so much as for others. This is the sign of growth in grace, when our prayers are fragrant with the names of friend and foe, and mingled with the coals of the golden altar.” (Meyer)
1 Chronicles 23:14 But as for Moses the man of God, his sons were named among the tribe of Levi.
- the man: De 33:1 Ps 90:1
- his sons: 1Ch 26:23-25
Deuteronomy 33:1 Now this is the blessing with which Moses the man of God blessed the sons of Israel before his death.
Psalm 90:1 A Prayer of Moses, the man of God. Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations.
MAN OF GOD
But as for Moses the man of God, his sons were named among the tribe of Levi
THOUGHT - Oh, that God would be able to say that about all of us, that we lived our short time on earth as a man or woman of God. Father, please by Thy Spirit (2Co 3:18) and Thy Word (2Ti 3:17) do that deep, supernatural work in all who read these words. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Man of God - 78x in 73v - Deut. 33:1; Jos. 14:6; Jdg. 13:6; Jdg. 13:8; 1 Sam. 2:27; 1 Sam. 9:6; 1 Sam. 9:7; 1 Sam. 9:8; 1 Sam. 9:10; 1 Ki. 12:22; 1 Ki. 13:1; 1 Ki. 13:4; 1 Ki. 13:5; 1 Ki. 13:6; 1 Ki. 13:7; 1 Ki. 13:8; 1 Ki. 13:11; 1 Ki. 13:12; 1 Ki. 13:14; 1 Ki. 13:21; 1 Ki. 13:26; 1 Ki. 13:29; 1 Ki. 13:31; 1 Ki. 17:18; 1 Ki. 17:24; 1 Ki. 20:28; 2 Ki. 1:9; 2 Ki. 1:10; 2 Ki. 1:11; 2 Ki. 1:12; 2 Ki. 1:13; 2 Ki. 4:7; 2 Ki. 4:9; 2 Ki. 4:16; 2 Ki. 4:21; 2 Ki. 4:22; 2 Ki. 4:25; 2 Ki. 4:27; 2 Ki. 4:40; 2 Ki. 4:42; 2 Ki. 5:8; 2 Ki. 5:14; 2 Ki. 5:15; 2 Ki. 5:20; 2 Ki. 6:6; 2 Ki. 6:9; 2 Ki. 6:10; 2 Ki. 6:15; 2 Ki. 7:2; 2 Ki. 7:17; 2 Ki. 7:18; 2 Ki. 7:19; 2 Ki. 8:2; 2 Ki. 8:4; 2 Ki. 8:7; 2 Ki. 8:8; 2 Ki. 8:11; 2 Ki. 13:19; 2 Ki. 23:16; 2 Ki. 23:17; 1 Chr. 23:14; 2 Chr. 8:14; 2 Chr. 11:2; 2 Chr. 25:7; 2 Chr. 25:9; 2 Chr. 30:16; Ezr. 3:2; Neh. 12:24; Neh. 12:36; Ps. 90:1; Jer. 35:4; 1 Tim. 6:11; 2 Tim. 3:17
1 Chronicles 23:15 The sons of Moses were Gershom and Eliezer.
- Gershom: Ex 2:22 4:20 18:3,4
The sons of Moses were Gershom and Eliezer
Eliezer One of the two sons of Moses, born during his sojourn in Midian (Ex. 18:4; 1 Chr. 23:15, 17). He remained with his mother and brother Gershom with Jethro when Moses returned to Egypt. (Ex. 18:4). They were restored to Moses when Jethro heard of his departure out of Egypt.
1 Chronicles 23:16 The son of Gershom was Shebuel the chief.
- Shebuel: 1Ch 24:20 25:20, Shubael, 1Ch 26:24
The son of Gershom was Shebuel the chief.
1 Chronicles 23:17 The son of Eliezer was Rehabiah the chief; and Eliezer had no other sons, but the sons of Rehabiah were very many.
- the chief: or, the first, 1Ch 26:25
The son of Eliezer ("God is his help") was Rehabiah ("Jehovah has enlarged") the chief; and Eliezer had no other sons, but the sons of Rehabiah were very many.
1 Chronicles 23:18 The son of Izhar was Shelomith the chief.
- Shelomith: 1Ch 24:22, Shelomoth, 1Ch 26:26
The son of Izhar ("shining oil") was Shelomith ("peaceful") the chief.
1 Chronicles 23:19 The sons of Hebron were Jeriah the first, Amariah the second, Jahaziel the third and Jekameam the fourth.
- Hebron: 1Ch 23:12 15:9 24:23
The sons of Hebron were Jeriah (" taught by Jehovah") the first, Amariah ("Jehovah speaks") the second, Jahaziel ("beheld of God") the third and Jekameam ("let the people rise") the fourth.
1 Chronicles 23:20 The sons of Uzziel were Micah the first and Isshiah the second.
The sons of Uzziel ("my strength is God") were Micah ("who is like God") the first and Isshiah ("Jehovah will lend") the second
1 Chronicles 23:21 The sons of Merari were Mahli and Mushi. The sons of Mahli were Eleazar and Kish.
- Merari: 1Ch 23:6 6:20,30 24:26-30
- Mahli: Ex 6:19, Mahali
The sons of Merari ("bitter") were Mahli ("sick") and Mushi. The sons of Mahli were Eleazar and Kish
Three major groups of Levites
- Gershonites (1Ch 23:7–11)
- Kohathites (1Ch 23:12–20)
- Merarites (1Ch 23:21–23).
1 Chronicles 23:22 Eleazar died and had no sons, but daughters only, so their brothers, the sons of Kish, took them as wives.
- had no sons: 1Ch 24:28
- took them: Nu 36:6-8
Numbers 36:6-8+ “This is what the LORD has commanded concerning the daughters of Zelophehad, saying, ‘Let them marry whom they wish; only they must marry within the family of the tribe of their father.’ 7“Thus no inheritance of the sons of Israel shall be transferred from tribe to tribe, for the sons of Israel shall each hold to the inheritance of the tribe of his fathers. 8“Every daughter who comes into possession of an inheritance of any tribe of the sons of Israel shall be wife to one of the family of the tribe of her father, so that the sons of Israel each may possess the inheritance of his fathers.
Eleazar died and had no sons, but daughters only, so their brothers, the sons of Kish ("a snare"), took them as wives
1 Chronicles 23:23 The sons of Mushi were three: Mahli, Eder and Jeremoth.
- Jeremoth: 1Ch 24:30, Jerimoth
The sons of Mushi ("yielding") were three: Mahli ("sick"), Eder ("tower of the flock") and Jerimoth ("He is Most High").
1 Chronicles 23:24 These were the sons of Levi according to their fathers' households, even the heads of the fathers' households of those of them who were counted, in the number of names by their census, doing the work for the service of the house of the LORD, from twenty years old and upward.
NET 1 Chronicles 23:24 These were the descendants of Levi according to their families, that is, the leaders of families as counted and individually listed who carried out assigned tasks in the LORD's temple and were twenty years old and up.
CSB 1 Chronicles 23:24 These were the sons of Levi by their ancestral houses-- the heads of families, according to their registration by name in the headcount-- 20 years old or more, who worked in the service of the LORD's temple.
ESV 1 Chronicles 23:24 These were the sons of Levi by their fathers' houses, the heads of fathers' houses as they were listed according to the number of the names of the individuals from twenty years old and upward who were to do the work for the service of the house of the LORD.
NIV 1 Chronicles 23:24 These were the descendants of Levi by their families--the heads of families as they were registered under their names and counted individually, that is, the workers twenty years old or more who served in the temple of the LORD.
NLT 1 Chronicles 23:24 These were the descendants of Levi by clans, the leaders of their family groups, registered carefully by name. Each had to be twenty years old or older to qualify for service in the house of the LORD.
- the sons of Levi: Nu 10:17,21
- after the house: Nu 1:4 2:32 3:15,20 4:34-49
- by their polls: Nu 1:2,18,22 3:47
- from twenty years and upwards. In the time of Moses, the age was from thirty years to fifty: here this latter period is not mentioned, probably because the service was not so laborious now; for the ark being fixed, they had no longer any burdens to carry; and therefore even an old man might continue to serve. Nu 8:24.
- twenty: 1Ch 23:3,27 Nu 1:3 4:3 8:24 Ezra 3:8
LOWER AGE FOR
ESV Study Bible (borrow) points out that "David appears as the successor to Moses (see Numbers 4) in redefining the Levites’ duties for the new age of the temple."
These were the sons of Levi according to their fathers' households, even the heads of the fathers' households of those of them who were counted, in the number of names by their census, doing the work for the service of the house of the LORD, from twenty years old and upward - This lowering of the age requirement is mentioned again in the days of Hezekiah (2 Chr 31:17) and in the post-exilic community (Ezra 3:8).
Wiersbe - The phrase "for the service of the house of the Lord" (or its equivalent) is used several times in these chapters to remind us that ministry is the major responsibility of God's servants in God's house. (See 1Ch 23:24, 26, 28, 32; 25:1, 6, 8, 30; 28:13, 14, 20, 21; 29:5,7; 2Ch 31:16, 17.) It's one thing to fill an office, but quite something else to use that office to serve the Lord and His people. (Borrow Be restored : trusting God to see us through : OT commentary, 2 Samuel & 1 Chronicles)
1 Chronicles 23:25 For David said, "The LORD God of Israel has given rest to His people, and He dwells in Jerusalem forever.
KJV 1 Chronicles 23:25 For David said, The LORD God of Israel hath given rest unto his people, that they may dwell in Jerusalem for ever:
NET 1 Chronicles 23:25 For David said, "The LORD God of Israel has given his people rest and has permanently settled in Jerusalem.
CSB 1 Chronicles 23:25 For David said, "The LORD God of Israel has given rest to His people, and He has come to stay in Jerusalem forever.
ESV 1 Chronicles 23:25 For David said, "The LORD, the God of Israel, has given rest to his people, and he dwells in Jerusalem forever.
NIV 1 Chronicles 23:25 For David had said, "Since the LORD, the God of Israel, has granted rest to his people and has come to dwell in Jerusalem forever,
NLT 1 Chronicles 23:25 For David said, "The LORD, the God of Israel, has given us peace, and he will always live in Jerusalem.
- The Lord: 1Ch 22:18 2Sa 7:1,11
- He dwells in Jerusalem, 1Ki 8:13,27 Ps 9:11 Ps 68:16,18 Ps 132:13,14 Ps 135:21 Isa 8:18 Joel 3:21 Zec 8:3 2Co 6:16 Col 2:9
Psalm 9:11 Sing praises to the LORD, who dwells in Zion; Declare among the peoples His deeds.
Psalm 68:16 Why do you look with envy, O mountains with many peaks, At the mountain which God has desired for His abode? Surely the LORD will dwell there forever.
FOR HIS PEOPLE
For - This is a term of explanation. What might the writer be explaining? What had he just described in the previous passage? David had lowered the age requirement for Levitical helpers to 20 years. Since the Levites would no longer be required to transport the tabernacle, a task necessitating strength and maturity, it would be reasonable to lower the age and this would also provide more helpers for the temple service. The idea of rest meant they no longer had to wander in the wilderness (and carry the tabernacle) and this is linked with the fact that God had now made Jerusalem His permanent residence, so there would be no need to move the tabernacle.
David said, "The LORD God of Israel has given rest to His people - This is a repeat of 1Ch 22:18 where David declared “Is not the LORD your God with you? And has He not given you rest on every side? For He has given the inhabitants of the land into my hand, and the land is subdued before the LORD and before His people."
Wiersbe - The Israelites were at rest in their land and no longer a nomadic people, so the Levites didn't have to carry the various parts of the tabernacle from place to place (see Num. 4). The construction of the temple meant that the Levites would need new assignments. One of their tasks would be to keep the temple clean and in good repair and make sure that the temple precincts were ceremonially pure. They also saw to it that the supply of meal was available for the offerings. Whenever the daily, monthly, and annual sacrifices were offered, the Levite choir would provide praise to the Lord. (Borrow Be restored : trusting God to see us through : OT commentary, 2 Samuel & 1 Chronicles)
and He dwells in Jerusalem forever - God's dwelling was to be permanently in Jerusalem.
1 Chronicles 23:26 "Also, the Levites will no longer need to carry the tabernacle and all its utensils for its service."
- carry: Nu 4:5,49 7:9
THE FIXED TEMPLE REPLACES
THE PORTABLE TABERNACLE
Also, the Levites will no longer need to carry the tabernacle and all its utensils for its service - One can imagine the exhilaration this gave the Levites. No more heavy lifting (it must have been very heavy). Recall the Levites were the assistants of the priests and they did the background work to care for the Temple.
1 Chronicles 23:27 For by the last words of David the sons of Levi were numbered from twenty years old and upward.
- the last: 1Ch 23:3,24 2Sa 23:1 Ps 72:20
2 Chronicles 29:25 He then stationed the Levites in the house of the LORD with cymbals, with harps and with lyres, according to the command of David and of Gad the king’s seer, and of Nathan the prophet; for the command was from the LORD through His prophets.
DAVID'S LAST WORDS
FOR THE LEVITES
G Campbell Morgan - “Never was the true kingliness of David more manifest, than when he sought to make these arrangements for the consolidation around the Throne of God of that kingdom which he was so soon to leave.”
For - Term of explanation. What is the writer explaining? Observe the age in 1Ch 23:3 (thirty years) and then in 1Ch 23:24 (twenty years).So what is being explained?
by the last words of David the sons of Levi were numbered from twenty years old and upward - The writer is explaining that the change is age is because David made that change and he made that change because the Levites would no longer have to carry the tabernacle and all its utensils which was a labor intensive task requiring strength, but it was also a spiritual task, for transportation of the holy things had to be done reverentially and presumably thirty year old Levites were more spiritually mature than twenty year old Levites. Now with the Temple stationary, while spiritual maturity was important, it was not as critical as when handling the holy things of the tabernacle.
Jack Hay explains that "because of the rest that the people enjoyed (REST IN THE LAND FROM ENEMIES), and the fact that God had chosen to place His name in Jerusalem permanently, there was no further need for the (PORTABLE) tabernacle, and hence no need for the backbreaking task of transporting it. With all that in the past, men of a lesser age and physique could now be helpers in temple service. This shift of policy was among the last things that David decreed (v. 27), but as was stated in the introduction to the chapter, never forget that it was all by divine command. (What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles)
Guzik - 2 Chronicles 29:25 tells us that David commanded these arrangements as he worked together with Gad the king’s seer and Nathan the prophet. It also tells us that these arrangements were the commandment of the LORD by his prophets. This was Holy Spirit guided organization and administration.
Payne - “Guided by the prophets (2 Chronicles 29:25), the king exercised his administrative genius to establish a system of procedures that helped maintain legitimate worship under his successors.”
1 Chronicles 23:28 For their office is to assist the sons of Aaron with the service of the house of the LORD, in the courts and in the chambers and in the purifying of all holy things, even the work of the service of the house of God,
- office 1Ch 18:17 Ne 11:24
- the service: 1Ch 23:4 1Ch 28:13 Nu 3:6-9 1Ki 6:5 2Ch 31:11 Ezr 8:29 Ne 13:4,5,9 Jer 35:4 Eze 41:6-11,26 42:3,13
- purifying: 1Ch 9:28-29 2Ch 29:5,18,19 2Ch 35:3-6,11-14
Numbers 3:6-9+ (LEVITICAL SERVICE RELATED TO THE PORTABLE TABERNACLE) “Bring the tribe of Levi near and set them before Aaron the priest, that they may serve him. 7“They shall perform the duties for him and for the whole congregation before the tent of meeting, to do the service of the tabernacle. 8“They shall also keep all the furnishings of the tent of meeting, along with the duties of the sons of Israel, to do the service of the tabernacle. 9“You shall thus give the Levites to Aaron and to his sons; they are wholly given to him from among the sons of Israel.
1 Chronicles 23:4+ (LEVITICAL SERVICE RELATED TO THE TEMPLE IS GIVEN IN A MORE GENERAL DESCRIPTION) Of these (LEVITES), 24,000 were to oversee the work of the house of the LORD; and 6,000 were officers and judges,
LEVITES CALLED TO
For their office is to assist (yad = hand; Lxx - leitourgeo - minister in present tense = continually) the sons of Aaron with the service of the house of the LORD, in the courts and in the chambers and in the purifying (tahorah; Lxx - katharismos - cleansing literally & ritually) of all holy (qodesh; Lxx - hagios - set apart) things, even the work of the service (Lxx - leitourgia) of the house of God - In vv 28-32 there is now a more detailed description of the activities of the Levites (cf general description in 1Ch 23:4). The sons of Aaron were the only ones qualified to be the priests. Stated another way, all priests were Levites, but not all Levites were priests. The non-priestly Levites who had previously cared for transporting and caring for the portable Tabernacle, would now "oversee the work of the house (Temple) of the LORD." (1Ch 23:4). Purification (and cleanliness) for the Israelites was more than an abstract idea but was divine instruction which had to be followed in order to carry out the various religious ceremonies and rituals.
THOUGHT - The holy, hagios - set apart, things had to be clean in order to useful and used in the daily sacrificial and worship activities. How much more do we as His set apart "instruments" need to be purified! Are you (I) frequently cleansed by the washing of the water with the Word of God (Eph 5:26+) and with confession and repentance (Pr 28:13+), that we might be useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. One wonders if we will even see that "good work" (cf Eph 2:10+) during the day if we fail to begin our day "in the purifying of the holy things" (i.e., our temples, 1Co 6:19+)? Just wondering.
Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself (herself) from these things,
he (she) will be a vessel for honor,
Sanctified (set apart),
Useful to the Master,
Prepared for every good work.
-- 2 Timothy 2:21+
Jack Hay has an interesting historical note that "For the more part the Levites were content to function in their subsidiary role, but a sad situation arose when Korah and others underestimated their privilege, and aspired to the priesthood (read Nu 16:8-10+). They came under the judgment of God—a salutary lesson for us all, lest we too should cast a greedy eye on someone else's work for God instead of being satisfied to labour at what has been assigned to us. "As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another" (1 Pet 4:10). Exercise the gift that God has given you without attempting to displace someone else!. (What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles)
1 Chronicles 23:29 and with the showbread, and the fine flour for a grain offering, and unleavened wafers, or what is baked in the pan or what is well-mixed, and all measures of volume and size.
- for the showbread: 1Ch 9:31,32 Ex 25:30 Lev 24:5-9 1Ki 7:48 2Ch 13:11 2Ch 29:18 Ne 10:33 Mt 12:4 Heb 9:2
- the fine flour: 1Ch 9:29-34 Lev 6:20-23
- unleavened: Lev 2:4-7 Lev 7:9
- for all manner of measure: Lev 19:35,36 Nu 3:50
Exodus 25:30 “You shall set the bread of the Presence on the table before Me at all times.
Leviticus 24:5-9 “Then you shall take fine flour and bake twelve cakes with it; two-tenths of an ephah shall be in each cake. 6 “You shall set them in two rows, six to a row, on the pure gold table before the LORD. 7 “You shall put pure frankincense on each row that it may be a memorial portion for the bread, even an offering by fire to the LORD. 8 “Every sabbath day he shall set it in order before the LORD continually; it is an everlasting covenant for the sons of Israel. 9 “It shall be for Aaron and his sons, and they shall eat it in a holy place; for it is most holy to him from the LORD’S offerings by fire, his portion forever.”
1 Kings 7:48 Solomon made all the furniture which was in the house of the LORD: the golden altar and the golden table on which was the bread of the Presence;
BREAD OF THE PRESENCE
and with the showbread (bread of the Presence), It was the priests' office to place this bread before the Lord ("bread of the Presence") and it was their privilege to feed on the old loaves when they were replaced by the new.
Showbread - Ex. 25:30 (R.V. marg., "presence bread"); 1 Chr. 9:32 (marg., "bread of ordering"); Num. 4:7: called "hallowed bread" (R.V., "holy bread") in 1 Sam. 21:1-6. This bread consisted of twelve loaves made of the finest flour. They were flat and thin, and were placed in two rows of six each on a table in the holy place before the Lord. They were renewed every Sabbath (Lev. 24:5-9), and those that were removed to give place to the new ones were to be eaten by the priests only in the holy place (see 1 Sam. 21:3-6; comp. Matt. 12:3, 4). The number of the loaves represented the twelve tribes of Israel, and also the entire spiritual Israel, "the true Israel;" and the placing of them on the table symbolized the entire consecration of Israel to the Lord, and their acceptance of God as their God. The table for the bread was made of acacia wood, 3 feet long, 18 inches broad, and 2 feet 3 inches high. It was plated with pure gold. Two staves, plated with gold, passed through golden rings, were used for carrying it. BREAD OF THE PRESENCE
and the fine flour for a grain offering (minchah), and unleavened (massa/matsah; Lxx - azumos - unleavened) wafers, or what is baked in the pan or what is well-mixed - Even the baking "recipes" were part of the work of the Levites.
Grain offering - Ordinances concerning, Ex. 29:40, 41; 30:9; 40:29; Lev. 2; 5:11, 12; 6:14-23; 7:9-13, 37; 9:17; 23:13, 16, 17; Num. 4:16; 5:15, 18, 25, 26; 8:8; 15:1-16, 24; 18:9; 28:5, 9, 12, 13, 20, 21, 26-31; 29:3, 4, 14. To be eaten in the holy place, Lev. 10:13; Num. 18:9, 10. Offered with the sacrifices, Num. 15:3-16. Not mixed with leaven, Lev. 2:4, 11; 6:14-18; 10:12, 13; Num. 6:15, 17. Storerooms for, in the temple reconstructed by Ezra, Neh. 12:44; 13:5, 6; provided for in the vision of Ezekiel, Ezek. 42:13.
Minchah: "meal offering" (the Revised Version), "meat offering" (the King James Version), a gift or presentation, at first applied to both bloody and unbloody offerings (Gen 4:5), but in Moses' time confined to cereals, whether raw or roast, ground to flour or baked and mixed with oil and frankincense. These cereals were the produce of man's labor with the soil, not fruits, etc., and thus represented the necessities and results of life, if not life itself. They were the invariable accompaniment of animal sacrifices, and in one instance could be substituted for them (see SIN OFFERING). The term minchah describes a gift or token of friendship (Isa 39:1), an act of homage (1 Sam 10:27; 1 Ki 10:25), tribute (Jdg 3:15,17 f), propitiation to a friend wronged (Gen 32:13,18 (Hebrew 14:19)), to procure favor or assistance (Gen 43:11 ff; Hos 10:6).
Jack Hay "Priority had to be given to maintaining the cleanliness of vessels (1Ch 23:28) that were in use for preparing the shewbread and the meat offering with its various recipes. Details of the first are found in Leviticus 24:5-9, while the second is the subject matter of Leviticus 2. (What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles)
and all measures of volume and size The standards of all weights and measures were in the sanctuary and therefore the Levites had the inspection of weights and measures of every kind, so that no fraud might be committed (cf Lev 19:-35-36). Honesty is inseparably connected with piety and hence the Levites, being sufficiently numerous, were employed to superintend the former, as well as the latter.
Jack Hay From God's standpoint, cheating the customer was intolerable. How much more necessary to avoid depriving Him in what was being offered to Him! Levites were under orders then to ensure the precision of temple weights and measures. They were the maintenance men who diligently tested the accuracy of scales, and the measures for liquids. (What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles)
1 Chronicles 23:30 They are to stand every morning to thank and to praise the LORD, and likewise at evening,
BGT 1 Chronicles 23:30 καὶ τοῦ στῆναι πρωὶ τοῦ αἰνεῖν ἐξομολογεῖσθαι τῷ κυρίῳ καὶ οὕτως τὸ ἑσπέρας
LXE 1 Chronicles 23:30 and to stand in the morning to praise and give thanks to the Lord, and so in the evening;
KJV 1 Chronicles 23:30 And to stand every morning to thank and praise the LORD, and likewise at even;
NET 1 Chronicles 23:30 They also stood in a designated place every morning and offered thanks and praise to the LORD. They also did this in the evening
CSB 1 Chronicles 23:30 They are also to stand every morning to give thanks and praise to the LORD, and likewise in the evening.
ESV 1 Chronicles 23:30 And they were to stand every morning, thanking and praising the LORD, and likewise at evening,
NIV 1 Chronicles 23:30 They were also to stand every morning to thank and praise the LORD. They were to do the same in the evening
NLT 1 Chronicles 23:30 And each morning and evening they stood before the LORD to sing songs of thanks and praise to him.
NRS 1 Chronicles 23:30 And they shall stand every morning, thanking and praising the LORD, and likewise at evening,
NJB 1 Chronicles 23:30 Furthermore, they have to be present every morning to give thanks and praise to Yahweh, and also in the evening,
- stand: 1Ch 6:31-33 9:33 16:37-42 25:1-7 2Ch 29:25-28 31:2 Ezr 3:10,11 Ps 135:1-3,19,20 137:2-4 Rev 5:8-14 14:3
- every morning: Ex 29:39-42 Ps 92:1-3 134:1,2
Exodus 29:38-41+ (MORNING AND EVENING) “Now this is what you shall offer on the altar: two one year old lambs each day, continuously. 39 “The one lamb you shall offer in the morning and the other lamb you shall offer at twilight; 40 and there shall be one-tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with one-fourth of a hin of beaten oil, and one-fourth of a hin of wine for a drink offering with one lamb. 41 “The other lamb you shall offer at twilight, and shall offer with it the same grain offering and the same drink offering as in the morning, for a soothing aroma, an offering by fire to the LORD.
1 Chronicles 16:40 to offer burnt offerings to the LORD on the altar of burnt offering continually morning and evening, even according to all that is written in the law of the LORD, which He commanded Israel.
MORNING AND EVENING
THANKS AND PRAISE
They are to stand every morning to thank and to praise the LORD, and likewise at evening - NET = "They also stood in a designated place every morning and offered thanks and praise to the LORD. They also did this in the evening." They still refers to the Levites enumerating their duties in the Temple service. David, the sweet psalmist of Israel, introduces music to the temple service. Thanksgiving and praise are used together to denote singing (1Ch 16:4; 23:30; 25:3; Ezra 3:11; Neh. 12:24,46). Their prescribed posture to stand speaks of the reverence with which they were to hold Yahweh the One Whom they worshipped.
THOUGHT - Do we (I) exercise the same reverential awe and worship to the Most High God, doing so in the morning and the evening? How many times to I go to bed at night without offering thanksgiving and praise to the One Who has enabled me throughout the day? Forgive me Lord for my frequent failure to "Through Him (Jesus) then, continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name." (Heb 13:15+) Lamentations 3:22-23 gives us a good reason to offer Him thanks and praise every morning for "The LORD’S lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail. (SO SHOULD BE OUR THANKSGIVING AND PRAISE!) They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness." See related resources Thoughts on the Quiet Time and Quiet Time: 7 Minutes With God. Take a moment even now to praise the only One worthy of your praises (click following link)...
I sing praises to Your Name O LORD
For Your Name is great and greatly to be praised
-- Psalm 99:3+
Utley - "The morning and evening sacrifice of a lamb is called "the Continual" (cf. Ex 29:38-41; Nu 28:3-8; 1Ch 16:40)."
Jack Hay - When Abraham's servant experienced divine leading throughout the day, in the evening he "bowed down his head, and worshipped the Lord" (Gen 24:11, 26-27). Let us be just as grateful to our God as we kneel before Him at the close of the day to reflect on His gracious dealings with us. Of course, men like David and Daniel incorporated another devotional time into their day (Dan 6:10). "Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud" (Ps 55:17). It is always appropriate to express our thanks to a beneficent God, and those who are filled with the Spirit will be "Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Eph 5:20). (What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles)
1 Chronicles 23:31 and to offer all burnt offerings to the LORD, on the sabbaths, the new moons and the fixed festivals in the number set by the ordinance concerning them, continually before the LORD.
BGT 1 Chronicles 23:31 καὶ ἐπὶ πάντων τῶν ἀναφερομένων ὁλοκαυτωμάτων τῷ κυρίῳ ἐν τοῖς σαββάτοις καὶ ἐν ταῖς νεομηνίαις καὶ ἐν ταῖς ἑορταῖς κατὰ ἀριθμὸν κατὰ τὴν κρίσιν ἐπ᾽ αὐτοῖς διὰ παντὸς τῷ κυρίῳ
LXE 1 Chronicles 23:31 and to be over all the whole-burnt-offerings that were offered up to the Lord on the sabbaths, and at the new moons, and at the feasts, by number, according to the order given to them, continually before the Lord.
KJV 1 Chronicles 23:31 And to offer all burnt sacrifices unto the LORD in the sabbaths, in the new moons, and on the set feasts, by number, according to the order commanded unto them, continually before the LORD:
NET 1 Chronicles 23:31 and whenever burnt sacrifices were offered to the LORD on the Sabbath and at new moon festivals and assemblies. A designated number were to serve before the LORD regularly in accordance with regulations.
CSB 1 Chronicles 23:31 Whenever burnt offerings are offered to the LORD on the Sabbaths, New Moons, and appointed festivals, they are to do so regularly in the LORD's presence according to the number prescribed for them.
ESV 1 Chronicles 23:31 and whenever burnt offerings were offered to the LORD on Sabbaths, new moons, and feast days, according to the number required of them, regularly before the LORD.
NIV 1 Chronicles 23:31 and whenever burnt offerings were presented to the LORD on Sabbaths and at New Moon festivals and at appointed feasts. They were to serve before the LORD regularly in the proper number and in the way prescribed for them.
NLT 1 Chronicles 23:31 They assisted with the burnt offerings that were presented to the LORD on Sabbath days, at new moon celebrations, and at all the appointed festivals. The required number of Levites served in the LORD's presence at all times, following all the procedures they had been given.
NRS 1 Chronicles 23:31 and whenever burnt offerings are offered to the LORD on sabbaths, new moons, and appointed festivals, according to the number required of them, regularly before the LORD.
NJB 1 Chronicles 23:31 and at the bringing of every burnt offering to Yahweh on Sabbath, New Moon or solemn feast, appearing regularly before Yahweh in accordance with the numbers required of them.
- the sabbaths: Lev 23:24,39 Nu 10:10 Ps 81:1-4 Isa 1:13-14
- festivals: Lev 23:1-17 Nu 28:1-29:40
Numbers 10:10 “Also in the day of your gladness and in your appointed feasts, and on the first days of your months, you shall blow the trumpets over your burnt offerings, and over the sacrifices of your peace offerings; and they shall be as a reminder of you before your God. I am the LORD your God.”
Psalm 81:1-4 For the choir director; on the Gittith. A Psalm of Asaph. Sing for joy to God our strength; Shout joyfully to the God of Jacob. 2 Raise a song, strike the timbrel, The sweet sounding lyre with the harp. 3 Blow the trumpet at the new moon, At the full moon, on our feast day. 4 For it is a statute for Israel, An ordinance of the God of Jacob.
Isaiah 1:13-14 “Bring your worthless offerings no longer, Incense is an abomination to Me. New moon and sabbath, the calling of assemblies– I cannot endure iniquity and the solemn assembly. 14“I hate your new moon festivals and your appointed feasts, They have become a burden to Me; I am weary of bearing them.
BURNT OFFERINGS, SABBATHS,
NEW MOONS AND FESTIVALS
and to offer all burnt offerings ('olah) to the LORD, on the sabbaths (sabbat), the new moons and the fixed festivals in the number set by the ordinance concerning them, continually before the LORD - For the fixed festivals see comments on Leviticus 23:1-17.
in the number set by the ordinance concerning them, continually before the LORD - NET = "A designated number were to serve before the LORD regularly in accordance with regulations."
Jack Hay (What the Bible Teaches – 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles) - The Levites would also assist with the "burnt offerings" (RV). The reference here is not so much to an individual coming with his offering as in Leviticus 1, but rather to the ritual connected to special days in Israel's calendar. Some were weekly, "the sabbaths". Some were monthly, "the new moons". Some were annually, "the set feasts", and then the word "continually" is used. It is all a reminder of the inadequacy of the Old Testament sacerdotal system in contrast to the sufficiency of the work of Christ. "Every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God" (Heb 10:11-12). We are indebted to Isaac Watts for expressing in poetic form the teaching of these great chapters of the Epistle to the Hebrews. He does so in his delightful hymn, "Jesus in thee our eyes behold ..." One verse encapsulates our present consideration.
Fresh blood as constant as the day
Was on their altar spilt;
But Thy one offering takes away
For ever all our guilt.
- What is the Sabbath day? | GotQuestions.org
- What was the significance of the new moon in Bible times? | GotQuestions.org
- What are the different Jewish festivals in the Bible? | GotQuestions.org
- THE FEASTS OF ISRAEL.
- CHART OF THE TABERNACLE.
- What are the Lord’s appointed times (Leviticus 23)? | GotQuestions.org
Utley summarizes - The Levites are to assist the priests
- by working in the courts and chambers
- in purifying all holy things
- in making showbread
- in producing the fine flour of the grain offering
- in making unleavened wafers
- in making all baked goods
- by being involved daily in blessing rituals
- by being involved in the sacrifices (both at festivals and each day [i.e., washing the animals; clearing the ashes; etc.])
- in helping administer the temple and the priests
- later they became local teachers (cf. 2 Chr. 17:8; 35:3; Neh. 8:7-8)
This would develop into rabbinical Judaism's position of "rabbi" (i.e., "teacher"). Ezra was the first of this category.
1 Chronicles 23:32 Thus they are to keep charge of the tent of meeting, and charge of the holy place, and charge of the sons of Aaron their relatives, for the service of the house of the LORD.
- keep: 1Ch 9:27 Nu 1:53 1Ki 8:4
- the charge of the sons: Nu 3:6-9,38
THREE GENERAL TASKS
FOR THE LEVITES
Thus they are to keep charge of the tent of meeting, and charge of the holy place, and charge of the sons of Aaron their relatives, for the service of the house of the LORD - This passage functions as a summary of the responsibilities allocated to the Levites. Mention of the tent of meeting is interesting as clearly there would no longer be a tent when the Temple was finished. Therefore this instruction could refer to the maintenance of the tabernacle in the interim while the Temple was being built.