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David declares Solomon


his successor.

B. C. 1018.

A. M. 2986. the LORD your God; arise, therefore, | of the LORD, and the holy vessels of A. M. 2986.

B. C. 1018. and build ye the sanctuary of the God, into the house that is to be built LORD God, to bring the ark of the covenant to the name of the LORD.

*1 Kings viii. 6,21 ; 2 Chron. v. 7; vi. 11.

» Verse 7; 1 Kings v. 3.

thou shalt come to the throne. The sense of God's Verse 18. The land is subdued before the Lord, presence must not slacken our endeavours; be- || and before his people-It is brought under the comcause he is with us, we must rise and be doing. | mand of God, and of you his people, all the eneThen he will be with us even to the end. Work mies of God and of Israel, in it or near it, being out your salvation, and God will work in you. now perfectly subdued.

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CHAPTER XXIII. David declares Solomon his successor, 1. Numbers the Levites, and appoints them their several offices, 2–5. Takes an account of the families of the Levites, 6–23. Reckons them from twenty years old, and appoints them their work, 24–32.

So when David was old and full of || " to set forward the work of the house 4. M: 2989.

days, he made Solomon his son of the LORD; and six thousand were king over Israel.

c officers and judges : 2 And he gathered together all the princes 5 Moreover, four thousand were porters; and of Israel, with the priests and the Levites. four thousand praised the LORD with the in

3 Now the Levites were numbered struments which I made, said David, to praise

from the age of thirty years and up- therewith. ward : and their number by their polls, man by 6 And e David divided them into courses man, was thirty and eight thousand.

among the sons of Levi, namely, Gershon, Ko4 Of which twenty and four thousand were hath, and Merari.

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a 1 Kings i. 33–39 ; Chap. xxviii. 5. Numbers iv. 3, 47. d 2 Chronicles xxix. 25; Amos vi. 5.- Exodus vi. 16; Or, to oversee.- Deuteronomy xvi. 18; Chapter xxvi. 29 ; || Num. xxvi. 57; Chap. vi. 1, &c.; 2 Chron. viii. 14; xxix. 25. 2 Chronicles xix. 8.

Heb. divisions.



the building of the temple, their work being far Verse 1. He made Solomon king over Israel- || easier than it had been, and their service being Not that he resigned the kingdom to him, but only more a privilege than a burden, their time of serdeclared his mind concerning Solomon's succeeding || vice is justly prolonged. him in the throne after his death. Thus David him- Verse 4. To set forward the work of the house self is called king, 1 Sam. xvi. 1, because he was of the LordTo take care that all the work of the appointed and anointed to be king after Saul's | temple, about sacrifices, should be punctually perdeath, though till then he was only a subject. formed, either by themselves or others; which they

Verse 2. He gathered together all the princes, || were not to do all at once, but by courses, a thou&C.-Partly to declare God's will, and his own de- sand at a time. Six thousand were officers and sire, that Solomon should be his successor ; and so | judges-Not in the affairs of the temple, there the to cut off the claims and pretences which others of priests presided, but in several parts of the kinghis sons might have made to the crown; and partly dom, where they assisted the princes and elders of to acquaint them with those directions which he | every tribe, in the administration of justice. had received from God, by the Spirit, as appears Verse 5. Four thousand were porters-Whose from chap. xxviii. 11, &c., concerning the establish- || office it was to take the charge of all the gates of ment of a new order and method in the ministra- | the temple, and its courts, that no forbidden or untion of the priests and Levites in the temple. clean person might enter there, and of the courts

Verse 3. From the age of thirty years and up- themselves, and of the several chambers and buildwardNot only till fifty, as it was appointed | ings belonging to the temple and the service thereof. Num. iv. 2, 3, but even till their death: for that These also were to do their work by turns. Praised was but a temporary law grounded upon a special the Lord with instruments—Whereof two hundred reason, because the Levites were employed in car- and eighty-eight persons were of greater skill than rying the tabernacle and sacred vessels from place their brethren, and instructed them, and had some to place; and therefore God would have them freed authority over them. from those burdens when they came to feel the in

Verse 6. David divided them into courses firmities of age: which reason wholly ceasing upon / Which he did not by his own invention, but, as a

David takes an account of


the families of the Levites.

A. M. 2989. 7 Of the f Gershonites were 3 Laa- 1 7 the chief. And Eliezer had none A. M. 2989. B. C. 1015.

B. C. 1015. dan and Shimei.

other sons; but the sons of Rehabiah 8 The sons of Laadan; the chief was Jehiel, were very many. and Zetham, and Joel, three.

18 Of the sons of Izhar; 'Shelomith the chief. 9 The sons of Shimei ; Shelomith, and Ha- 19 Of the sons of Hebron ; Jeriah the first, ziel, and Haran, three. These were the chief | Amariah the second, Jahaziel the third, and of the fathers of Laadan.

Jekameam the fourth. 10 And the sons of Shimei were, Jahath, || 20 Of the sons of Uzziel ; Micah the first, and *Zina, and Jeush, and Beriah. These four Jesiah the second. uere the sons of Shimei.

21 The sons of Merari; Mahli, and Mu11 And Jahath was the chief, and Zizah the shi. The sons of Mahli; Eleazar, and Kish. second: but Jeush and Beriah had not many 22 And Eleazar died, and u had no sons, but sons; therefore they were in one reckoning, daughters: and their 10 brethren the sons of according to their father's house.

Kish * took them. 12 9 5 The sons of Kohath ; Amram, Izhar, || 23 The sons of Mushi; Mahli, and Eder, Hebron, and Uzziel, four.

and Jeremoth, three. 13 The sons of h Amram; Aaron and Mo- 24 | These were the sons of ? Levi after ses: and i Aaron was separated, that he the house of their fathers; even the chief of should sanctify the most holy things, he and the fathers, as they were counted by number of his sons for ever, kto burn incense before the names by their polls, that did the work for the LORD, 'to minister unto him, and mto bless in service of the house of the LORD, from the age his name for ever.

of a twenty years and upward. 14 Now concerning Moses the man of God, 25 For David said, The LORD God of Israel bis sons were named of the tribe of Levi.

bhath given rest unto his people, "I that they 15 The sons of Moses were, Gershom, and may dwell in Jerusalem for ever ; Eliezer.

26 And also unto the Levites: they shall no 16 Of the sons of Gershom, PShebuel was more carry the tabernacle, nor any vessels of the chief.

it for the service thereof. 17 And the sons of Eliezer were, 9 Rehabiah 27 For by the last words of David the Le

Chap. xxvi. 21. - Or, Libni, Chap. vi. 17. *Or, Zizah, & Heb. were highly multiplied. - Shelomoth, Chapter xxiv. Terse I. - - Heb. did not multiply sons.- Exodus vi. 18. 22.- Chapter xxiv. 23. - Chapter xxiv. 26. Chapter Eurd. vi. 20.- Exod. xxviii. 1; Heb. v. 4.- Exod. xxx. xxiv, 29.

-u Chapter xxiv. 28.— 10 Or, kinsmen.

1 Num. 7; Num. xvi. 40; 1 Sam. ii. 28. Deut. xxi. 5.—m Num. xxxvi. 6, 8. -y Chapter xxiv. 30.-z Numbers x. 17, 2). 1:23. —- Chapter xxvi. 23, 25.—Exodus ii. 22; xviii. 3. a Verse 27; Num. i. 3; iv. 3; viii. 24 ; Ezra ii. 8. - Chap. Chap. xxvi. 24. - Shubael, Chap. xxiv. 20.- 4 Chap. xxvi. xxii. 18. 11 Or, and he dwelleth in Jerusalem, &c.-Num. 25. — Or, the first.

iv. 5, &c.

man of God, by his command, and with the advice | from two several times, from the twenty-fifth year and concurrence of Gad and Nathan the prophets, of their age, and from the thirtieth, (Num. iv. 3; as is manifest from 2 Chron. viii. 14, and xxix. 25. viii. 24,) in like manner they are here numbered,

Verse 13. That he should sanctify the most holy both from their twentieth year, when they were things—That he might keep them from pollution : solemnly prepared for, and instructed, and by defor these most holy things were polluted when they | grees exercised, in some parts of their work; and were touched by any other person. He and his from their thirtieth year, when they were admitted 8ons for erer- Not only his eldest sons the high- to the full exercise of their office. And the reason priests successively, but all his posterity, or all the why they were now sooner admitted to service than priests : for the works here following were not pecu- | they had been formerly, is given in the next verses, liar to the high-priest, but common to all the priests. because now their work was more easy, being wholly

Verse 14. His sons were named of the tribe of discharged from that burdensome work of carrying Leri-They were accounted only as common Le- the tabernacle. Besides, the people of Israel were vites, and were not priests : which is mentioned for multiplied, therefore more hands were necessary ; the honour of Moses, and the demonstration of his that every Israelite who brought an offering, might eminent piety and self-denial, who willingly left the find a Levite ready to assist him. government to Joshua, and the priesthood to Aaron, Verse 27. By the last words of David-By his and was content 10 have his posterity reduced to a last order and constitution, made by God's direction, private and mean condition.

and by the Holy Spirit. This is here added to sigVerse 24. From the age of twenty years and up-nify, that this great affair was thus settled by David, wari-As the Levites were anciently numbered || not in his younger years, when it might have been The divisions of the


80ns of Aaron


31 And to offer all burnt-sacrifices unto the

A. M. 2989. vites were numbered from twenty 30 And to stand every morning to A. M. 2989. B. C. 1015.

B. C. 1015. years old and above:

thank and praise the Lord, and like28 Because 13 their office was to wait on the || wise at even; sons of Aaron for the service of the house of the LORD, in the courts, and in the cham- LORD ' in the sabbaths, in the new-moons, and bers, and in the purifying of all holy things, on the k set feasts, by number, according to the and the work of the service of the house of order commanded unto them, continually beGod;

fore the LORD: 29 Both for d the show-bread, and for • the 32 And that they should · keep the charge fine flour for meat-offering, and for the un- of the tabernacle of the congregation, and the leavened cakes, and for that which is baked charge of the holy place, and m the charge of in the 14 pan, and for that which is fried, and the sons of Aaron their brethren, in the service for all manner of " measure and size;

of the house of the Lord.

13 Heb. numbers.- 13 Heb. their station was al the hand of i Lev. ii. 4. - Lev. ii. 5, 7.- 14 Or, flat plate.

-Ler. the sons of Aaron, Neh. xi. 24.-d Exod. xxv. 30.-e Levit. || xix. 35.-i Numbers x. 10; Psa. lxxxi. 3.- k Lev. xxiii. 4. vi. 20; Chap. ix. 29, &c.

Num. i. 53.-m Num. iii. 6-9.

thought to have been the effect of youthful heat, pre- therefore the care of keeping them inviolable, and sumption, and rashness, but when he was come to producing them upon occasion, must needs belong the greatest maturity, when he was old and near his to the priests, and under them to the Levites, who death, and going to give up his account to his Lord were to examine other measures, and all things by and Maker of all his actions, and particularly of the them, as occasion required, that so the priests might alterations which he made in the service of God, be at leisure for their higher and greater employwhich he declared was done by the Spirit of God. ments. These were, in a manner, his dying words, which Verses 30–32. To stand every morning, fc., and usually make the deepest impression.

at evening—The two solemn times of offering sacriVerse 28. In the purifying of holy thingsHoly fices: which work was attended with public prayer places, and garments, and vessels, and sacrifices, and thanksgiving.' According to the order comwhich were to be washed and cleansed from any manded unto them continuallyThat is, unto those filthiness that might cleave to them.

persons, the Levites, of whom he speaks. The Verse 29. For all manner of measure-All mea- | charge of the sons of Aaron—That is, what the sures used either in sacred or civil things, the public priests should commit to their charge, or command standards whereof were kept in the temple; and I them to do.

B. C. 1015.

CHAPTER XXIV. The priests are divided by lot into twenty-four orders, 1–19. Ministers are allotted them from the Levites, out of the tribes

of the Kohathites and the Merarites, 20–31. 6. M: 2009. NOW these are the divisions of || and Ithamar executed the priest's A. M. 2989.

the sons of Aaron. a The sons | office. of Aaron ; Nadab, and Abihu, Eleazar, and 3 And David distributed them, both Zadok of Ithamar.

the sons of Eleazar, and Ahimelech of the sons 2 But Nadab and Abihu died before their of Ithamar, according to their offices in their father, and had no children: therefore Eleazar service.

a Lev. A. 1,6; Num. xxvi. 80.

b Num. iii. 4; xxvi. 61.


sons were the only persons to whom the execution Verses 1, 2. These are the divisions of the sons of that office could be committed according to the law. of Aaron—The several branches into which that Verse 3. And David distributed them, &c.—To family was divided. Therefore Eleazar and Itha- avoid all confusion, now that they were much inmar executed the priest's office Their brethrencreased, he distributed the priests, as he had done being dead, and leaving no issue, they and their II the Levites, into several courses, allotting to each

The sons of Aaron


are divided by lot.

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4 And there were more chief men 10 The seventh to Hakkoz, the A. M. 2989.

found of the sons of Eleazar than of eighth to • Abijah, the sons of Ithamar; and thus were they di- 11 The ninth to Jeshuah, the tenth to Shevided. Among the sons of Eleazar there were caniah, sixteen chief men of the house of their fathers, 12 The eleventh to Eliashib, the twelfth to and eight among the sons of Ithamar according Jakim, to the house of their fathers.

13 The thirteenth to Huppah, the fourteenth 5 Thus were they divided by lot, one sort to Jeshebeab, with another; for the governors of the sanc- 14 The fifteenth to Bilgah, the sixteenth to tuary, and governors of the house of God, were Immer, of the sons of Eleazar, and of the sons of 15 The seventeenth to Hezer, the eighteenth Ithamar.

to Aphses, 6 And Shemaiah the son of Nethaneel the 16 The nineteenth to Pethahiah, the twentieth scribe, one of the Levites, wrote them before to Jehezekel, the king, and the princes, and Zadok the priest, 17 The one and twentieth to Jachin, the two and Ahimelech the son of Abiathar, and before and twentieth to Gamul, the chief of the fathers of the priests and Levites : 18 The three and twentieth to Delaiah, the one principal household being taken for Elea- || four and twentieth to Maaziah. zar, and one taken for Ithamar.

19 These were the orderings of them in their 7 Now the first lot came forth to Jehoiarib, service to come into the house of the LORD, the second to Jedaiah,

according to their manner, under Aaron their S The third to Harim, the fourth to Seorim, father, as the LORD God of Israel had com9 The fifth to Malchijah, the sixth to Mijamin, manded him.

1 Heb. house of the father.

• Neh. xii. 4, 17; Luke i. 5.— Chap. ix. 25.

of them the times wherein they should by turns to God, but governors in the commonwealth, chiefs, hare the government of holy ministrations.

or judges. Were of the sons of Eleazar and the Verse 4. Among the sons of Eleazar were sixteen sons of Ithamar- These two families had obtained chief men, &c.—He appointed, therefore, sixteen the chief functions, both in the temple and in the courses of the sons of Eleazar, under as many heads magistracy; which could not be distributed so well of their families, and half as many of the posterity any way as by lot, without danger of envy among of Ithamar.

themselves. Verse 5. Thus were they divided by lot—That Verse 6. Shemaiah, the scribe, wrote them before the business being committed, in this way, to the the kingTheir names were written and put into Divine disposal, there might be no occasion for com- an urn, out of which the lots were to be drawn: plaint, and so all contentions might be prevented, as which, that there might be no suspicion of fraud, no man could be charged with partiality, nor could were drawn before the king, the princes, the highany say they had wrong done them. Solomon priest and his assistant, and before the several famisays, the lot causes contention to cease. It is evi- lies of priests and Levites. One principal housedeat from the Scriptures, that it was a very ancient hold being taken for Eleazar, &c.—That is, one of custom to refer matters of a doubtful nature to the the principal families of Eleazar was first taken, and decision of the lot; and, in particular, persons were then one of Ithamar's, and thus alternately, till all often chosen in this way to sacred offices. But, as the families of Ithamar had received their lot. And it is an appeal to God, it ought to be managed with afterward all the lots came forth to the rest of Elea proper reverence and sincerity. Thus Matthias | azar's families, which were double in number to was chosen to the apostleship by lot with solemn those of Ithamar. prayer. “And I know not,” says Henry, “but it Verse 19. These were the orderings of them-In might still be used, in faith, in parallel cases, as an this order and method they were to come to perinstituted ordinance.” One sort with another-Both form the offices of the temple. To come into the the sons of Eleazar and those of Ithamar were thus house-To come into the temple every sabbath day, chosen, who should wait together. Governors of and to continue there till the next sabbath, when the house of God-Hebrew, governors of God; that they were relieved by others. Under Aaron-Unis. the judges, says Houbigant. The ministers of der the direction of the high-priest, whom he calls religion are expressed in the foregoing words, the | Aaron, because he represented Aaron's person, and governors of the sanctuary. It is very justly ob- executed his office; and their father—Because of served by Grotius, that governors of God never the authority which, by God's appointment, he had signify, in the sacred writings, those that minister || over them.

The persons that were to be


employed in singing.

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A. M. 2989. 20. And the rest of the sons of Levi 27 The sons of Merari by Jaaziah ; A. M. 2989. B. C. 1015.

were these : Of the sons of Amram; Beno, and Shoham, and Zaccur, and • Shubael: of the sons of Shubael; Jehdeiah. Ibri.

21 Concerning Rehabiah : of the sons of Re- 28 Of Mahli came Eleazar, “who had no habiah, the first was Isshiah.

22 Of the Izharites ; & Shelomoth : of the sons 29 Concerning Kish: the son of Kish was of Shelomoth ; Jahath.

Jerahmeel. 23 And the sons of bHebron; Jeriah the first, 30 ?The sons also of Mushi; Mahli, and Eder, Amariah the second, Jahaziel the third, Jeka- | and Jerimoth. These were the sons of the Lemeam the fourth.

vites after the house of their fathers. 24 Of the sons of Uzziel; Michah: of the 31 These likewise cast lots over against their sons of Michah ; Shamir.

brethren the sons of Aaron in the presence of 25 The brother of Michah was Isshiah: of David the king, and Zadok, and Ahimelech, the sons of Isshiah ; Zechariah.

and the chief of the fathers of the priests and 26 The sons of Merari were Mahli, and Levites, even the principal fathers over against Mushi: the sons of Saaziah; Beno.

their younger brethren.

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Chap. xxiii. 16, Shebuel. - Chap. xxi. 17.

18, Shelomith.

5 Chap. xxiii.

h Chap. xxiii. 19; xxvi. 31.

Chap. xxiii. 22.

i Exod. vi, 19; Chap. xxiii. 21.

Chap. xxiii. 23.

Verse 20. The rest of the sons of Levi-Either was in that of the priests, by casting lots; whereby such as were only Levites, and not priests, or such they knew what Levites should wait in every course as were not named or numbered before, in this or with the sons of Aaron. Even the principal fathers the former chapter. The sons of Shubael, Jehdeiuh over against their younger brethren—These words - Who being, as it seems, an eminent person, or are somewhat obscure, but the meaning, says Bishop having a very numerous family, was not reckoned Patrick, is, that both elder and younger had their with or under his father's family, but was accounted places by lot, not by seniority of houses: they who as a distinct head of another family.

were of greater dignity drew lots against those who Verse 31. These likewise cast lotsThere was were of less: and they were to take their courses as the like solemnity used in their distribution as there ll they fell either to the elder or the younger family.

CHAPTER XXV. The persons that were to be employed in singing, 1-7. The order in which they were to attend, determined by lot, &_31. A: M: 2989: MOREOVER David and the cap- || harps, with psalteries, and with cym- 4. M. 2989.

tains of the host separated to the bals: and the number of the workservice of the sons of a Asaph, and of Heman, men according to their service was: and of Jeduthun, who should prophesy with 2 Of the sons of Asaph ; Zaccur, and Joseph,

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because it was done with their concurrence and apVerse 1. And captains-All the princes of Israel, | probation. The service-To the service of God, with the priests and the Levites, whom David gathered under the conduct of these persons. Who should together (chap. xxiii. 2) for this very end, that, with prophesy-Praise God by singing the psalms of their approbation and consent, all these things might David, and other sacred songs made by themselves, be established, who are here fitly called the captains who were prophets, or by other prophets or holy men of the host ; for the princes were, under David, the of God. The number of the workmen according to chief captains of the militia of the kingdom; and as their service-Although this sacred work of praising the Levites are called a host, and the Lord's host, | God is here termed service, and the persons embecause of their number and order in holy ministra- ployed in it workmen, yet it is the greatest liberty tions, so these priests and Levites were the captains and pleasure to be engaged in it. But the expresand governors of the rest. Separated-Distributed sions intimate that it is our duty to make a business them into their several ranks: which, though chiefly of it, and stir up all that is within us to it; and that done by David as a prophet, and by divine direction, in our present state of corruption and infirmity, it yet is imputed in part to the captains of the host, |, will not be done, as it should be done, without labour

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