1 Chronicles 23

David divides and counts the Levites before he dies.
 1 ¶ So when David was old and full of days, he made Solomon his son king over Israel.
 2 And he gathered together all the princes of Israel, with the priests and the Levites.
.3 Now the Levites were numbered from the age of thirty years and upward: and their number by their polls, man by man, was thirty and eight thousand.
.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: 
.5 Moreover four thousand were porters; and four thousand praised the LORD with the instruments which I made, said David, to praise therewith.
  1 - Made Solomon ... king The story begins at 1ki0132. "This brief statement, which comprises the substance of 1Ki 1:32-48, is made here solely to introduce an account of the preparations carried on by David during the latter years of his life for providing a national place of worship." (JFB Commentary)
  2 - Gathered The gathering was likely after David's death 1ch2631.
  3 - Levites This chapter explains the duties and summarizes the numbering. They had not been numbered at the last census 1ch2106.
  3 - Thirty years Explained at nu0447.
  5 - Four thousand praised For more on music, see on Psalm 150, note.
  5 - Which I made David also made instruments. It's likely that he designed them and made a few since 4000 would keep him busy for a long time. This was remembered in am0605. Compare ne1236.
.6 And David divided them into courses among the sons of Levi, namely, Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. 
 7 Of the Gershonites were, Laadan, and Shimei. 
 8 The sons of Laadan; the chief was Jehiel, and Zetham, and Joel, three.
 9 The sons of Shimei; Shelomith, and Haziel, and Haran, three. These were the chief of the fathers of Laadan.
 10 And the sons of Shimei were, Jahath, Zina, and Jeush, and Beriah. These four were the sons of Shimei.
  6 - Divided them This was an orderly assembly of musicians, not the people-pleasing "music" of today. For more on the topic see ps150.
 11 And Jahath was the chief, and Zizah the second: but Jeush and Beriah had not many sons; therefore they were in one reckoning, according to their father's house. 
 12 The sons of Kohath; Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel, four.
 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.
  13 - Aaron was separated As high priest.
 14 Now concerning Moses the man of God, his sons were named of the tribe of Levi.
 15 The sons of Moses were, Gershom, and Eliezer.
 16 Of the sons of Gershom, Shebuel was the chief. 
 17 And the sons of Eliezer were, Rehabiah the chief. And Eliezer had none other sons; but the sons of Rehabiah were very many. 
 18 Of the sons of Izhar; Shelomith the chief. 
.19 Of the sons of Hebron; Jeriah the first, Amariah the second, Jahaziel the third, and Jekameam the fourth.
 20 Of the sons of Uzziel; Michah the first, and Jesiah the second.
 21 The sons of Merari; Mahli, and Mushi. The sons of Mahli; Eleazar, and Kish.
.22 And Eleazar died, and had no sons, but daughters: and their brethren the sons of Kish took them. 
 23 The sons of Mushi; Mahli, and Eder, and Jeremoth, three.
  14 - Concerning Moses "His sons were ranked with the Levites generally, but not introduced into the distinctive portion of the descendants of Levi, who were appointed to the special functions of the priesthood." (JFB).
 24 ¶ These were the sons of Levi after the house of their fathers; even the chief of the fathers, as they were counted by number of names by their polls, that did the work for the service of the house of the LORD, from the age of twenty years and upward.
.25 For David said, The LORD God of Israel hath given rest unto his people, that they may dwell in Jerusalem for ever: 
 26 And also unto the Levites; they shall no more carry the tabernacle, nor any vessels of it for the service thereof.
  24 - Twenty years Various beginning ages are given depending, perhaps on circumstances and responsibility. See nu04, nu0824, v27, 2ch3117, nu0103.
  25 - Rest This was the goal but soon the people were oppressed again he0408.
 27 For by the last words of David the Levites were numbered from twenty years old and above: 
 28 Because their office was to wait on the sons of Aaron for the service of the house of the LORD, in the courts, and in the chambers, and in the purifying of all holy things, and the work of the service of the house of God; 
 29 Both for the shewbread, and for the fine flour for meat offering, and for the unleavened cakes, and for that which is baked in the pan, and for that which is fried, and for all manner of measure and size;
  28 - To wait They were not needed for carrying the tabernacle and are here given more humble work. The task of the Levites was humble in the first place. We can be sure that God will remember these faithful men and their families mr1031.
  28 - Purifying Apparently for keeping the temple cups and other things clean.
 30 And to stand every morning to thank and praise the LORD, and likewise at even;
.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:
 32 And that they should keep the charge of the tabernacle of the congregation, and the charge of the holy place, and the charge of the sons of Aaron their brethren, in the service of the house of the LORD.
  30 - Seand every morning ... thank "At the offering of the morning and evening sacrifice, they sounded their musical instruments, and sang praises to God.." (Clarke)
  32 - Keep charge ... tabernacle "It was the priests' business to kill, flay, and dress, as well as to offer, the victims, but being few, they were obliged to employ the Levites to flay those animals. The Levites were, properly speaking, servants to the priests, and were employed about the more servile part of Divine worship." (Clarke).
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