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Bible Commentaries
1 Chronicles 25

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - UnabridgedCommentary Critical Unabridged

Verse 1

Moreover David and the captains of the host separated to the service of the sons of Asaph, and of Heman, and of Jeduthun, who should prophesy with harps, with psalteries, and with cymbals: and the number of the workmen according to their service was:

David and the captains of the host - i:e., the princes (1 Chronicles 23:2; 1 Chronicles 24:6). It is probable that the king was attended on the occasion of arranging the singers by the same parties that are mentioned as having assisted him in regulating the order of the priests and Levites.

Who should prophesy with harps ... [ hanib'iym (H5012), chanting, praising God with sacred songs (cf. 1 Samuel 10:5; 1 Samuel 10:11; 1 Samuel 19:20; Luke 1:67); Septuagint, tous apofthengomenous, uttering sounds.]

Verse 2

Of the sons of Asaph; Zaccur, and Joseph, and Nethaniah, and Asarelah, the sons of Asaph under the hands of Asaph, which prophesied according to the order of the king.

Which prophesied - i:e., in this connection, played with instruments. This metaphorical application of the term "prophesy" most probably originated in the practice of the prophets, who endeavoured to rouse their prophetic spirit by the animating influence of music (see the note at 2 Kings 3:15). It is said that Asaph did this 'according to David's order,' because by royal appointment he officiated in the tabernacle on Zion (1 Chronicles 16:37-41), while other leaders of the sacred music were stationed at Gibeon.

According to the order of the King, [ `al (H5921) yªdeey (H3027) hamelek (H4428)] - by the hands of the king; i:e., according to the king's order, under the personal superintendence of Asaph and his colleagues.

Verses 3-4

Of Jeduthun: the sons of Jeduthun; Gedaliah, and Zeri, and Jeshaiah, Hashabiah, and Mattithiah, six, under the hands of their father Jeduthun, who prophesied with a harp, to give thanks and to praise the LORD.

No JFB commentary on these verses.

Verse 5

All these were the sons of Heman the king's seer in the words of God, to lift up the horn. And God gave to Heman fourteen sons and three daughters.

Heman the king's seer. The title of seer or prophet of David is also given to Gad (1 Chronicles 21:9), and to Jeduthun (2 Chronicles 29:15), in the words (margin, matters) of God.

To lift up the horn - i:e., to blow loudly in the worship of God; or perhaps it means nothing more than that he presided over the wind instruments, as Jeduthun over the harp. Heman had been appointed at first to serve at Gibeon (1 Chronicles 16:41); but his destination seems to have been changed at a subsequent period.

God gave to Heman ... sons and ... daughters. The daughters are mentioned solely because, from their musical taste and talents, they formed part of the choir (Ezra 2:65; Nehemiah 7:67; Psalms 68:25).

Verse 6

All these were under the hands of their father for song in the house of the LORD, with cymbals, psalteries, and harps, for the service of the house of God, according to the king's order to Asaph, Jeduthun, and Heman.

All these were under the hands of their father. Asaph had four sons, Jeduthun six, and Heman fourteen, equal to twenty-four -making the musicians, with their brethren the singers, an amount of 288; for, like the priests and Levites, they were divided into twenty-four courses of twelve men each, equal to 288, who served a week in rotation; and these, half of whom officiated every week with a proportionate number of assistants, verse skillful and experienced musicians, capable of leading and instructing the general musical corps, which comprised no less than 4,000 (1 Chronicles 23:5).

Verse 7

So the number of them, with their brethren that were instructed in the songs of the LORD, even all that were cunning, was two hundred fourscore and eight.

No JFB commentary on this verse.

Verse 8

And they cast lots, ward against ward, as well the small as the great, the teacher as the scholar.

They cast lots, ward against ward. "Ward" is an old English word for division or company. The lot was cast to determine the precedence of the classes or divisions over which the musical leaders presided; and, in order to secure an impartial arrangement of their order, the master and his assistants, the teacher and his scholars, in each class or company, took part in this solemn casting of lots. In the first catalogue given in this chapter the courses are classed according to their employment as musicians; in the second, they are arranged in the order of their service.

Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 Chronicles 25". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jfu/1-chronicles-25.html. 1871-8.
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