1 CHRONICLES CHAPTER 26
The Other Levitical Offices.
DIVISION AND WORK OF THE PORTERS. — V. l. Concerning the divisions of the porters, the four thousand men in charge of the entrances and the overseeing of the work connected with the coming in and going out of the worshipers: Of the Korhites, the descendants of Korah, was Meshelemiah (or Shelemiah), the son of Kore, of the sons of Asaph (or Ebiasaph). V. 2. And the sons of Meshelemiah were: Zechariah, the firstborn; Jediael, the second; Zebadiah, the third; Jathniel, the fourth; v. 3. Elam, the fifth; Jehohanan, the sixth; Elioenai, the seventh. V. 4. Moreover, the sons of Obededom, the Levite in whose house the ark had been kept for several months, chap. 13, 13. 14, were: Shemaiah, the first-born; Jehozabad, the second; Joah, the third; and Sacar, the fourth; and Nethaneel, the fifth; v. 5. Ammiel, the sixth; Issachar, the seventh; Peulthai, the eighth; for God blessed him, namely, by giving Obededam many sons and, through them, many descendants, seventy-two being named in the historical accounts. V. 6. Also unto Shemaiah, his son, were sons born that ruled throughout the house of their father, leading men in their father-houses; for they were mighty men of valor, and physical strength and energy were very essential for their work. V. 7. The sons of Shemaiah: Othni, and Rephael, and Obed, Elzabad, whose brethren were strong men, also distinguished for their bodily strength, Elihu, and Semachiah. V. 8. All these of the sons of Obed-edom; they and their sons and their brethren, able men for strength for the service, intellectual ability being combined with physical strength, were threescore and two of Obededom. V. 9. And Meshelemiah had sons and brethren, strong men, eighteen. V. 10. Also Hosah, of the children of Merari, had sons: Simri, the chief; (for though he was not the first-born, yet his father made him the chief; none of the families springing from Hosah possessed the birthright, probably because the oldest son had died without male heirs;) v. 11. Hilkiah, the second; Tebaliah, the third; Zechariah, the fourth. All the sons and brethren of Hosah were thirteen. V. 12. Among these were the divisions of the porters, even among the chief men, having wards one against another to minister in the house of the Lord. These men were heads of the twenty-four courses of porters, in charge of the watches as they were changed regularly. V. 13. And they cast lots, as well the small as the great, according to the house of their fathers, for every gate, literally, "for gate by gate," their chiefs or captains being selected for them and the duties of the respective gates being assigned to them by lot, in the same way as those of the other Levitical bodies. V. 14. And the lot eastward, for the eastern gate, fell to Shelemiah. Then for Zechariah, his son, a wise counselor, they cast lots; and his lot came out northward, he was given charge of the gate on that side. V. 15. To Obed-edom southward; and to his sons the house of Asuppim, literally, "the house of collections," a place for the sacred stores and Temple treasures, for which they were held responsible. V. 16. To Shuppim and Hosah the lot came forth westward, with the gate Shallecheth, apparently the gate out of which the refuse was hauled, to be burned outside the city, as the Law required, by the causeway of the going up, ward against ward, since from it an inclined road led to the lower city, and one ward was like another. V. 17. Eastward, where most of the worshipers entered, were six Levites, northward four a day, these two stations being in charge of Meshelemiah and his son Zechariah, southward four a day, and toward Asuppim two and two, a total of eight guards under the command of Obed-edom. V. 18. At Parbar westward, four at the causeway, at the entrance of the road, and two at Parbar, cells for depositing stores and utensils for the use of the Temple. V. 19. These are the divisions of the porters among the sons of Kore, and among the sons of Merari. A proper distribution of these apparent minor details serves to keep the entire worship in good order, unmarred by disagreeable pauses and obstructions.
THE LEVITES IN CHARGE OF THE TREASURES AND THE OFFICERS. — V. 20. And of the Levites, Ahijah was over the treasures of the house of God and over the treasures of the dedicated things, such gifts as were consecrated to the Lord as special gifts of thanksgiving by David. This general statement is now specialized. V. 21. As concerning the sons of Laadan (or Libni), the sons of the Gershonite Laadan, chief fathers, even of Laadan the Gershonite, were Jehieli. V. 22. The sons of Jehieli: Zetham and Joel, his brother, which were over the treasures of the house of the Lord, the Temple treasures in the strictest sense. V. 23. Of the Amramites and the Izharites, the Hebronites and the Uzzielites; v. 24. and Shebuel. the son of Gershom, the son of Moses, was ruler of the treasures, the chief administrator or superintendent of all the Sanctuary treasures. V. 25. And his brethren by Eliezer, that is, springing from Moses by Eliezer: Rehabiah, his son; and Jeshaiah, his son; and Joram, his son; and Zichri, his son; and Shelomith, his son. V. 26. Which Shelomith and his brethren were over all the treasures of the dedicated things, booty and gifts consecrated to the Lord, which David the king and the chief fathers, the captains over thousands and hundreds, and the captains of the host, had dedicated. V. 27. Out of the spoils won in battles, literally, "out of the wars and the spoil," did they dedicate to maintain the house of the Lord, to build it of such a size and magnificence as David had planned. V. 28. And all that Samuel, the seer, and Saul, the son of Kish, and Abner, the son of Ner, and Joab, the son of Zeruiah, the various leaders and commanders of the army, had dedicated; and whosoever had dedicated anything, it was under the hand of Shelomith and of his brethren, they had the charge of, and the responsibility for, all this precious material. V. 29. Of the Izharites, Chenaniah and his sons were for the outward business over Israel, for officers, that is, scribes, and judges. In the hands of these officers and their assistants was the entire administration of the external business concerned with the Temple and its up-keep in Israel, the exaction of taxes, the payment of tithes, and all other similar business. V. 30. And of the Hebronites, Hashabiah and his brethren, men of valor, a thousand and seven hundred, were officers among them of Israel on this side Jordan westward in all the business of the Lord and in the service of the king, being spiritual overseers of the people with reference to their duty toward the established worship. V. 31. Among the Hebronites was Jerijah the chief, even among the Hebronites, according to the generations of his fathers. In the fortieth, that is, in the last, year of the reign of David they were sought for, and there were found among them mighty men of valor at Jazer of Gilead, which explains the fact that the oversight on the eastern side of Jordan was also in the hands of the Hebronites. V. 32. And his brethren, men of valor, were two thousand and seven hundred chief fathers, in this case family fathers, whom King David made rulers over the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh for every matter pertaining to God and affairs of the king, their position being that of magistrates, of officials exercising judicial functions, since the Law of God was also the law of the land, in a modified theocratic government.