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Barnes' Notes on the Bible
1Concerning the divisions of the porters: Of the Korhites was Meshelemiah the son of Kore, of the sons of Asaph.
The porters - See 1 Chronicles 9:17-27; 1 Chronicles 23:5.
2And the sons of Meshelemiah were, Zechariah the firstborn, Jediael the second, Zebadiah the third, Jathniel the fourth,
3Elam the fifth, Jehohanan the sixth, Elioenai the seventh.
4Moreover the sons of Obededom were, Shemaiah the firstborn, Jehozabad the second, Joah the third, and Sacar the fourth, and Nethaneel the fifth,
Obed-edom and Hosah 1 Chronicles 26:10 had been "porters," or door - keepers, from the time of the bringing up of the ark into Jerusalem 1 Chronicles 15:24; 1 Chronicles 16:38.
5Ammiel the sixth, Issachar the seventh, Peulthai the eighth: for God blessed him.
6Also unto Shemaiah his son were sons born, that ruled throughout the house of their father: for they were mighty men of valour.
7The sons of Shemaiah; Othni, and Rephael, and Obed, Elzabad, whose brethren were strong men, Elihu, and Semachiah.
8All these of the sons of Obededom: they and their sons and their brethren, able men for strength for the service, were threescore and two of Obededom.
9And Meshelemiah had sons and brethren, strong men, eighteen.
10Also Hosah, of the children of Merari, had sons; Simri the chief, (for though he was not the firstborn, yet his father made him the chief;)
11Hilkiah the second, Tebaliah the third, Zechariah the fourth: all the sons and brethren of Hosah were thirteen.
12Among 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.
This verse is obscure, but its probable meaning is the following: "To these divisions of the porters, principal men, (were assigned) the watches, together with their brethren, for service in the house of the Lord;" i. e., the "chief men" 1 Chronicles 26:1-11, amounting to no more than 93, kept the watch and ward of the house, together with a further number of their brethren (4,000, 1 Chronicles 23:5), who assisted them from time to time.
13And they cast lots, as well the small as the great, according to the house of their fathers, for every gate.
14And the lot eastward fell to Shelemiah. Then for Zechariah his son, a wise counseller, they cast lots; and his lot came out northward.
15To Obededom southward; and to his sons the house of Asuppim.
The house of Asuppim - literally, "the house of collections" (see the margin and compare Nehemiah 12:25 margin). A treasure-house of some kind or other is probably intended.
16To Shuppim and Hosah the lot came forth westward, with the gate Shallecheth, by the causeway of the going up, ward against ward.
All recent commentators seem to be agreed that the words "to Shuppim" ought to be cancelled, the name having arisen from an accidental repetition of the preceding word, "Asuppim."
The gate Shallecheth - literally, "the gate of projection" - the gate, i. e., through which were "thrown out" the sweepings of the temple, the ashes, the offal of the victims, and the like.
The causeway of the going up - Compare the marginal reference note.
Ward against ward - Or, "watch opposite to watch." Hosah had in charge both the western gate of the temple, and also the gate Shallecheth, which was in the outer wall, opposite. Hence, he had to keep two watches, one over against the other.
17Eastward were six Levites, northward four a day, southward four a day, and toward Asuppim two and two.
Toward Asuppim two and two - It is conjectured that the "store-house" in question (1 Chronicles 26:15 note) had two doors, to each of which two porters were appointed.
18At Parbar westward, four at the causeway, and two at Parbar.
"Parbar" must designate here the space between the western wall of the temple building and the wall of the court, which would be a sort of "precinct" or "purlieu" of the temple (2 Kings 23:11 note). Here were two gates, at one of which two guards were stationed; while at the Shallecheth, which gave upon the causeway, there were four. In this whole account, the temple is spoken of as if it were existing, when it was not as yet built. We must suppose that David formed the whole plan of the temple, and fixed the stations and numbers of the porters, though it was left for Solomon to carry out his instructions.
19These are the divisions of the porters among the sons of Kore, and among the sons of Merari.
The divisions of the porters - The account of the porters here given makes them only twenty-four in number at any one time; 1 Chronicles 23:5 states that the duty was discharged by 4,000 persons. Perhaps of the 93 chief porters here spoken of 1 Chronicles 26:8-9, 1 Chronicles 26:11, 1 Chronicles 26:24 were always on guard as officers, while of the remaining 3,907, a certain proportion were each day on duty as their subordinates.
20And of the Levites, Ahijah was over the treasures of the house of God, and over the treasures of the dedicated things.
21As concerning the sons of Laadan; the sons of the Gershonite Laadan, chief fathers, even of Laadan the Gershonite, were Jehieli.
22The sons of Jehieli; Zetham, and Joel his brother, which were over the treasures of the house of the LORD.
23Of the Amramites, and the Izharites, the Hebronites, and the Uzzielites:
24And Shebuel the son of Gershom, the son of Moses, was ruler of the treasures.
25And his brethren by Eliezer; Rehabiah his son, and Jeshaiah his son, and Joram his son, and Zichri his son, and Shelomith his son.
26Which Shelomith and his brethren were over all the treasures of the dedicated things, which David the king, and the chief fathers, the captains over thousands and hundreds, and the captains of the host, had dedicated.
27Out of the spoils won in battles did they dedicate to maintain the house of the LORD.
28And all that Samuel the seer, and Saul the son of Kish, and Abner the son of Ner, and Joab the son of Zeruiah, had dedicated; and whosoever had dedicated any thing, it was under the hand of Shelomith, and of his brethren.
The foundations of a sacred treasury had therefore been laid as far back as the time of Samuel, when the Israelites began to recover from their last servitude. Such a treasury had been once before established, namely, under Joshua Jos 6:24; but it appears to have been soon exhausted, and we hear nothing of it under any of the later judges until Samuel.
29Of the Izharites, Chenaniah and his sons were for the outward business over Israel, for officers and judges.
30And of the Hebronites, Hashabiah and his brethren, men of valour, 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.
The "business of the Lord" in the provinces would consist especially in the collection of the tithes, the redemption-money, and the free-will offerings of the people. It may perhaps have included some religious teaching. Compare 2 Chronicles 17:7-9.
31Among the Hebronites was Jerijah the chief, even among the Hebronites, according to the generations of his fathers. In the fortieth year of the reign of David they were sought for, and there were found among them mighty men of valour at Jazer of Gilead.
32And his brethren, men of valour, were two thousand and seven hundred chief 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.
Rulers - This term is somewhat too strong. The same kind of office was assigned to Jerijah and his brethren in the trans-Jordanic region as to Hashabiah and his brethren in western Palestine 1 Chronicles 26:30, namely, a superintendence over religious matters and over the interests of the king.