1 Chronicles 23:5 MEANING

1 Chronicles 23:5
(5) Moreover four thousand were porters.--Literally, and four thousand (are to be) warders. (Comp. 1 Chronicles 9:21-27.) Reuss thinks 4,000 warders too many; but the different clans went on duty in turn.

And four thousand praised the Lord . . .--Rather, and four thousand (are to be) praising the Lord with the instruments that I have made for praising. (On "praising," see 1 Chronicles 16:4.) We have here an interesting reference to the fact that David was not only a minstrel and inspired psalmist, but also an inventor of stringed instruments. So the prophet Amos (1 Chronicles 6:5) speaks of the effeminate nobles of Israel, "who prattle on the mouth of the nebel, that invent themselves instruments of music, like David." The reference is repeated in Nehemiah 12:36.

Which I have made.--This expression proves that 1 Chronicles 23:4-5 should be within inverted commas, as representing a spoken decree of David. Ewald thinks that the narrative is interrupted in 1 Chronicles 23:5 by a fragmentary quotation from an ancient poet who speaks in the name of Jehovah, characterising the musicians as "those whom I have formed to sing my praise." (But see 2 Chronicles 7:6.)

Verse 5. - Porters (Hebrew שֹׁעְרִים); doorkeepers. The word is so translated in 1 Chronicles 15:23, 24. It was the duty of these to keep the entrances of the sanctuary, by day and night, in their courses (see also 2 Kings 7:10, 11). The Chaldaic equivalent of this word is תָּרָע (Ezra 7:24; Daniel 2:49). There is no connection between either the word or idea we have here, and those of Psalm 84:11, where the Hithp. conjugation of סָפפ is used, and the sense of residence probably intended to be conveyed. The instruments which I made... to praise. Possibly the quotation of a short sentence often on David's lips. Men given to music may have been very conscious of it, in ancient days, as well as in modern. The language, however, does not necessarily assert that David claimed the inventing or in any similar sense the making of these musical instruments, but that he appointed them for the service of praise. What some of them were may be seen in 2 Chronicles 5:12 - "cymbals, psalteries, harps, trumpets" (see also 2 Chronicles 29:25-27; Nehemiah 12:35, 36; Amos 6:5).

23:1-23 David, having given charge concerning the building of the temple, settles the method of the temple service, and orders the officers of it. When those of the same family were employed together, it would engage them to love and assist one another.Moreover four thousand were porters,.... At the east, north, and south gates of the temple, in their turns:

and four thousand praised the Lord with the instruments; were singers in the temple, which in all made up 38,000:

which I made, said David, to praise therewith; which instruments he devised and ordered to be made to praise the Lord with; see 2 Chronicles 29:26.

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