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.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)All these were the sons of Heman.—Literally, Were sons to Heman.
The king’s seer in the words of God.—Or, in the things of God, in Divine (that is, liturgical) matters. Heman was a prophet as well as a minstrel. (For the connection between music and prophecy, comp. 1Samuel 10:5-6; 2Kings 3:15; Exodus 15:20.) Comp. also Note on 1Chronicles 25:1, above.
Seer.—Heb., hōzèh. Literally, gazer. The word rendered “seer” in 1Chronicles 26:28 and 1Samuel 9:9 is different (rō’èh). Gad was called “David’s seer” (1Chronicles 21:9); so also Jeduthun is “the king’s seer” (2Chronicles 35:15).
To lift up the horn.—That is, according to Bertheau, “to blow the horns loudly.” With this he connects the preceding phrase, which he renders “by God’s commands.” (Comp. 2Chronicles 29:15.) But the horn does not appear elsewhere among the instruments of the Temple musicians, and the phrase “to lift up the horn” of a person is a well-known Hebrew metaphor. (Comp. 1Samuel 2:10 : “May he give strength to his king, and lift up the horn of his anointed.”) Thus it seems that the meaning is that God gave all these “sons”—i.e., proficient disciples—to Heman in order to strengthen him for his work by providing him with a strong body of able assistants.
And three daughters.—The mention of “three daughters” is interesting, as an indication that women sustained a part in the service of song. (Comp. Exodus 15:20; Judges 11:34; 1Samuel 18:6.) The Syriac omits the whole verse.1 Chronicles 25:5. The king’s seer — Or prophet. Either he was a prophet as well as a singer; or he is thus called because he prophesied, or praised God, in the sense designed 1 Chronicles 25:1. And he is called the king’s seer, because the king took special delight in him; or because he frequently attended the king in his palace, executing his sacred office there, while the rest were employed in the tabernacle. In the words of God — To sing such divine songs as were inspired by God to the prophets or holy men of God. To lift up the horn — To praise God with the sound of a trumpet, or some other musical instrument made of horn, which, being a martial kind of music, might be most grateful to David’s martial spirit: though he was also skilled in other instruments of music which he used in the house of God.
to lift up the horn—that is, 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 (1Ch 16:41). But his destination seems to have been changed at a subsequent period.
God gave to Heman fourteen sons and three daughters—The daughters are mentioned, solely because from their musical taste and talents they formed part of the choir (Ps 68:25).The king’s seer, or prophet, which is the same thing, 1 Samuel 9:9. Either he was a prophet as well as a singer; or he is thus called because he prophesied in the sense designed, 1 Chronicles 25:1. And he is called the king’s seer, either because the king took special delight in him, or because he frequently attended upon the king in his palace, executing his sacred office there, while the rest were constantly employed in the tabernacle. In the words of God, i.e. to sing such Divine songs as were inspired by God to the prophets or holy men of God. To lift up the horn; either,
1. Metaphorically, to extol and praise God for exalting
the horn (i.e. the power and kingdom) of David; of which phrase see Psalm 92:10 Psalm 132:17. Or rather,
2. Properly, to praise God with the sound of a trumpet, (as was usual, as 2 Chronicles 5:12 13:12) or some other musical instrument made of horn, which being a martial kind of music, might be most grateful to David’s martial spirit; though he was also skilled in other instruments of music, which he used in the house of God, as is expressed in the next verse.
in the words of God: in divine things:
to lift up the horn; to blow with the hornpipe or trumpet, and to magnify and set forth the greatness of the kingdom of Israel, and especially of the King Messiah, the horn of salvation, that would be raised up in the house of David:
and God gave to Heman fourteen sons; whose names are before mentioned:
and three daughters; of whom we have no more account, only may observe, that both are the gifts of God, and an heritage from him, Psalm 127:3.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.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)5. the king’s seer] This title is given to Gad in 1 Chronicles 21:9, and to Asaph, Heman and Jeduthun, all three in 2 Chronicles 35:15 (LXX. not Heb.).
in the words of God] The exact meaning of this is uncertain; it may either mean “in divine things” (i.e. arrangements for worship), or “by divine appointment” (cp. 2 Chronicles 29:15 “by the words of the Lord”).
to lift up the horn] i.e. to make loud blasts upon the horn.
fourteen sons] Corresponding with the fourteen names given in 1 Chronicles 25:4.Verse 5. - For the expression, the king's seer, and as other instances of the office, see 1 Chronicles 21:9; 2 Chronicles 35:15, in neither of which places, however, have we the attendant phrase, in the words of God. Yet we have the same sense strictly implied in 1 Chronicles 21:9, 19. The expression needs not to be generalized into "in the matters of God," but evidently describes the seer (Heman, Gad, or Jeduthun) as the authorized medium of verbal communication between God and the king. There is difficulty in assigning the right place of the clause, to lift up the horn. There can be no doubt at all that it contains no allusion whatever to the horn as an instrument of sound (the almost solitary approach to which use of the word is found in Joshua 6:5), but that it falls in with the very frequent figurative use of the phrase as it occurs in the very same words (Psalm 75:5, 6; Psalm 89:18, 25; Psalm 92:12; Psalm 112:9; 1 Samuel 2:1, 10, etc.), and which means "to add to the strength" or "honour" of any one. The allusion is to the number of Heman's children being a mark of the honour God set on him. The words cannot go with the latter part of the verse, while the conjunction (vav) in וַיִּתֵּן opens it. The possible order may be, All these sons were to Heman, the king's seer, by the words of God, to lift up the horn. The absence of the third personal pronoun suffix to קֶרֶן is noticeable, place the clause where we will The statement of the fourteen sons and three daughters belonging to Heman, in this verse, shows that up to this point the word "sons" is used in its stricter sense, however true it may be that the sense is amplified in vers. 10-31. 1 Chronicles 23:31. As Mahli's son Eleazar had no sons, only Jerahmeel from his second son Kish, as head of the class formed by Mahli's sons, is named. Of Mushi's sons only the names of the four fathers'-houses into which they fell are mentioned, the chiefs of the classes not being noticed. The heads mentioned in our section are fifteen in all; and supposing that in the cases of the fathers'-houses of the Hebronites and of the Merarite branch of the Mushes, where the heads of the classes are not named, each father's-house formed only one class, we would have only fifteen classes. It is, however, quite conceivable that many of the fathers'-houses of the Hebronites and Mushes were so numerous as to form more than one class; and so out of the Levite families mentioned in 1 Chronicles 24:20-29 twenty-four classes could be formed. The subscription, that they cast the lot like their brethren, makes this probable; and the analogy of the division of the musicians into twenty-four classes (1 Chronicles 25) turns the probability that the Levites who were appointed to perform service for the priests, were divided into the same number of classes, into a certainty, although we have no express statement to that effect, and in the whole Old Testament no information as to the order of succession of the Levites is anywhere to be found.
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