1 Chronicles 29:18
O LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, keep this for ever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of your people, and prepare their heart to you:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(18) Israel.1Chronicles 29:10. (See Genesis 32:28, and Exodus 3:6.)

Keep this for ever in the imagination.—Rather, preserve this for ever: to wit, “the cast (1Chronicles 28:9) of the thoughts of the heart of thy people.” Give permanence to the frame of mind which has evinced itself in the freewill offerings of to-day.

Prepare their heart.—Or, direct (1Samuel 7:3). (Comp. Ezekiel 4:3; Ezekiel 4:7, “direct the face towards . . .” Proverbs 16:9, “direct his going.” Comp. also 2Chronicles 12:14; 2Chronicles 20:33.)

1 Chronicles 29:18. O Lord God of Abraham, &c. — A God in covenant with them, and with us for their sakes. Keep this for ever, &c. — Since it is from thy grace that thy people have such willing minds, continue that grace to them, that they may persist in the same generous disposition toward thee and thy worship. And grant that by our perseverance in this piety and charity, we may make good our part of the covenant, and so may not forfeit the benefit of it. And prepare their heart unto thee — Or rather, as it is in the margin, stablish or confirm their heart. Thou, who hast begun a good work, confirm and carry it on by thy grace, otherwise it will languish, and this very people will prove degenerate.29:10-19 We cannot form a right idea of the magnificence of the temple, and the buildings around it, about which such quantities of gold and silver were employed. But the unsearchable riches of Christ exceed the splendour of the temple, infinitely more than that surpassed the meanest cottage on earth. Instead of boasting of these large oblations, David gave solemn thanks to the Lord. All they gave for the Lord's temple was his own; if they attempted to keep it, death would soon have removed them from it. They only use they could make of it to their real advantage, was, to consecrate it to the service of Him who gave it.Keep this forever ... - i. e., "Preserve forever this spirit of liberal and spontaneous giving in the hearts of Thy people, and establish their hearts toward Thee." 16. all this store that we have prepared—It may be useful to exhibit a tabular view of the treasure laid up and contributions stated by the historian as already made towards the erection of the proposed temple. Omitting the brass and iron, and precious stones, which, though specified partly (1Ch 29:7), are represented in other portions as "without weight" (1Ch 22:3, 14), we shall give in this table only the amount of gold and silver; and taking the talent of gold as worth £5475 (the talent being 125 pounds in weight), the value of the gold will be about 73s. per ounce. The talent of silver is given at £342 3s. 9d., or 4s. 4½d. per ounce. The total amount of the contributions will be:

Sum accumulated, and in public treasury (1Ch 22:14): Gold £547,500,000 Silver 342,187,500 Contributed by David from his private resources [1Ch 29:4]: Gold 16,425,000 Silver 2,395,312 Contributed by the assembled rulers [1Ch 29:7]: Gold 28,000,000 Silver 3,421,875 A grand total of approximately £939,929,687

Though it has been the common practice of Eastern monarchs to hoard vast sums for the accomplishment of any contemplated project, this amount so far exceeds not only every Oriental collection on record, but even the bounds of probability, that it is very generally allowed that either there is a corruption of the text in 1Ch 22:14, or that the reckoning of the historian was by the Babylonian, which was only a half, or the Syrian, which was only a fifth part, of the Hebrew talent. This would bring the Scripture account more into accordance with the statements of Josephus, as well as within the range of credibility.

Keep this for ever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people; since it is from thy grace that thy people have such willing minds to thy service, as was before acknowledged, I beg the continuance of that grace to them, that they may persist in the same generous and pious disposition towards thee and thy worship.

Prepare their heart unto thee, or rather, as it is in the margin, stablish or confirm, &c. Thou who hast begun a good work, confirm and carry it on by thy grace, otherwise it will languish, and this very people will prove degenerate. O Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, The ancestors of the Jewish nation, whose covenant God the Lord was, and who had ever been mindful of his promise to them, with respect to them their seed:

keep this for ever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people; let the same disposition of mind always continue in them to serve the Lord their God:

and prepare their heart unto thee; incline and dispose their minds always to fear the Lord, and obey his will.

O LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, keep this for ever in the {k} imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people, and prepare their heart unto thee:

(k) Continue then in his good mind, that they may serve you willingly.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
18. in the imagination] Render, as the imagination. Imagination here means not the faculty, but the result of the exercise of the faculty, a mental image or impression.

prepare] Better R.V. mg., establish. David prays that the people may continue in their present mind.Verse 18. - In the imagination of the thoughts of the heart. We have here again a reminiscence of the early language of Genesis (Genesis 6:5; Genesis 8:21. See also our book, 1 Chronicles 28:9; Deuteronomy 31:21). This same word for "imagination" (יֵצֶר) is found in the Authorized Version in Isaiah 26:3, "Whose mind is stayed," etc.; and in Psalm 103:14; Isaiah 29:16; Habakkuk 2:18; in the last three passages translated as "frame," "framed," and "work." "From Thee came the riches and the glory ..., and in Thy hand is it (it lies) to make all things great and strong."
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