1 Chronicles 6:28
And the sons of Samuel; the firstborn Vashni, and Abiah.
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(28) And the sons of Samuel.—Heb., Shemuel The third break in the Kohathite list.

We see from 1Chronicles 6:33-34 that Samuel (Shemuel, name of God) is son of Elkanah, son of Jeroham; hence we might suppose that the clause “Samuel his son” has been accidentally omitted at the end of 1Chronicles 6:27. But it is quite possible that the writer assumed the connection to be too well known to require specification, or that he has here thrown together three independent genealogical fragments. Comp. with 1Chronicles 6:27-28 the pedigree of Elkanah, 1Samuel 1:1 : “Elkanah son of Jeroham son of Elihu son of Tohu son of Zuph.” Here again the names vary, yet not so as to obliterate their identity. Elihu (“El is He”) = Eliab, Eliel; Tohu, a fuller form of Toah = Nahath.

The firstborn Vashni, and Abiah.—Vashni is not a proper name, but a corrupt form of the Hebrew phrase “and the second” (shēnî, secundus). The sons of the prophet Samuel were Joel, the firstborn, and Abiah, 1Samuel 8:2 (see also 1Chronicles 6:33 below). Joel has fallen out of the text here; it should run, “Joel the firstborn, and the second Abiah.”

Reviewing the Kohathite list (22-28) we conclude that it represents three statistical fragments which have been put in juxtaposition by the chronicler or the author whom he has followed, and that in accordance with the real connection between the members, as appears on comparison with the continuous list which immediately follows in 1Chronicles 6:33-38. The fact that “Samuel his son” is the missing link between 1Chronicles 6:27-28, makes it likely that “Elkanah his son” is the true connection between 1Chronicles 6:24-25.

From Levi to the sons of Samuel about twenty generations are reckoned. Usher’s chronology dates the descent of Jacob and his sons into Egypt at 1706 B.C. Twenty generations are six hundred years. The sons of Samuel would, according to this, be living about 1106 B.C. and later. Ruth 4:18-22 reckons only ten generations from Judah to Jesse, the father of David. This again shows that in their genealogical tables the Hebrews did not uniformly supply every link, but were often content with a statement of the principal names.

6:1-81 Genealogies. - We have an account of Levi in this chapter. The priests and Levites were more concerned than any other Israelites, to preserve their descent clear, and to be able to prove it; because all the honours and privileges of their office depended upon their descent. Now, the Spirit of God calls ministers to their work, without any limit as to the families they came from; and then, as now, though believers and ministers may be very useful to the church, none but our great High Priest can make atonement for sin, nor can any be accepted but through his atonement.Vashni - The true name of Samuel's first-born, which was "Joel" (see the margin and references), has here dropped out; and the word properly meaning "and his second (son)" has been taken as the name of the first. 28. the sons of Samuel—The sons of Samuel are here named Vashni and Abiah. The first-born is called Joel (1Sa 8:2); and this name is given to him in 1Ch 6:33. It is now generally thought by the best critics that, through an error of the copyists, an omission has been made of the oldest son's name, and that Vashni, which is not the name of a person, merely signifies "and the second." This critical emendation of the text makes all clear, as well as consistent with other passages relating to the family of Samuel. No text from Poole on this verse. The sons of Kohath, Amminadab,.... The same with Izhar, 1 Chronicles 6:2 the posterity of his brethren, Amram, Hebron, and Uzziel, are omitted; and his genealogy is carried to a considerable length, for the sake of Samuel the prophet, who sprang from him: it stands thus, Korah, Assir, Elkanah, Ebiasaph, Assir, Tahath, Uriel, called Zephaniah, 1 Chronicles 6:36 Uzziah, the same with Azariah, 1 Chronicles 6:36. Shaul, whose name is Joel, 1 Chronicles 6:36 then through the sons of Elkanah, before mentioned, Amasai, Ahimoth, called Mahath, 1 Chronicles 6:35 another Elkanah, Zophai, or Zuph, 1 Chronicles 6:35. Nahath, the same with Toah, 1 Chronicles 6:34 and Tohu, 1 Samuel 1:1, Eliab, called Eliel, 1 Chronicles 6:34, and Elihu, 1 Samuel 1:1, Jeroham, another Elkanah, the father of Samuel the prophet, whose firstborn was Vashni, and whose name also was Joel, 1 Chronicles 6:33 and so here it is read in the Syriac and Arabic versions:

and his second son Abiah.

And the sons of Samuel; the firstborn {e} Vashni, and Abiah.

(e) Who is also called Joel, 1Sa 8:2, 1Ch 6:33.

(1 Chronicles 6:7-13). The genealogy of the descendants of Kohath consists of three lists of names, each of which commences afresh with בּני, 1 Chronicles 6:22, 1 Chronicles 6:35, and 1 Chronicles 6:38; yet we learn nothing from it as to the genealogical connection of these three lines. The very beginning, "The sons of Kohath, Amminidab his son, Korah his son, Assir his son," is somewhat strange. For, according to Exodus 6:18, Exodus 6:21, and Exodus 6:24, Kohath's second son is called Izhar, whose son was Korah, whose sons were Assir, Elkanah, and Abiasaph. Amminidab is nowhere met with as a son of Kohath; but among the descendants of Uzziel, a prince of a father's-house is met with in the time of David who bore this name. The name Amminidab occurs also in the time of Moses, in the genealogies of the tribe of Judah, 1 Chronicles 2:10; Numbers 1:7; Ruth 1:19, as that of the father of the prince Nahshon, and of Elisheba, whom Aaron took to wife, Exodus 6:23. But since the names Korah and Assir point to the family of Izhar, the older commentators supposed the Amminidab of our verse to be only another name for Izhar; while Bertheau, on the contrary, conjectures "that as an Amminidab occurs in the lists of the descendants of Kohath as father-in-law of Aaron, Amminidab has been substituted for Izhar by an ancient error, which might very easily slip into an abridgment of more detailed lists." But we have here no trace of an abridgment of more detailed lists. According to Exodus 6:21 and Exodus 6:24, Korah was a son of Izhar, and Assir a son of Korah; and consequently in our genealogies only the name Izhar is wanting between Korah and Kohath, while instead of him we have Amminidab. An exchange or confusion of the names of Izhar and Amminidab the father-in-law of Aaron, is as improbable as the supposition that Amminidab is another name for Izhar, since the genealogies of the Pentateuch give only the name Izhar. Yet no third course is open, and we must decide to accept either one or the other of these suppositions. For that our verses contain a genealogy, or fragments of genealogies, of the Kohathite line of Izhar there can be no doubt, when we compare them with the genealogy (1 Chronicles 6:33) of the musician Heman, a descendant of Kohath, which also gives us the means of explaining the other obscurities in our register. In 1 Chronicles 6:22 and 1 Chronicles 6:23 the names of Assir, Elkanah, and Abiasaph, and again Assir, follow that of Korah, with בּנו after each. This בּנו cannot be taken otherwise than as denoting that the names designate so many consecutive generations; and the only peculiarity in the list is, that the conjunction w is found before Abiasaph and the second Assir, while the other names do not have it. But if we compare the genealogy in Exodus 6 with this enumeration, we find that there, in 1 Chronicles 6:39, the same three names, Assir, Elkanah, and Abiasaph, which are here enumerated as those of the son, grandson, and great-grandson of Korah, were said to be the names of the sons of the Izharite Korah. Further, from Heman's genealogy in 1 Chronicles 6:37, we learn that the second Assir of our list is a son of Abiasaph, and, according to 1 Chronicles 6:37 and 1 Chronicles 6:23, had a son Tahath. Assir, Elkanah, and Abiasaph must consequently be held to have been brothers, and the following Assir a son of the last-named Abiasaph, whose family is in 1 Chronicles 6:9 further traced through four generations (Tahath, Uriel, Uzziah, and Shaul). Instead of these four, we find in 1 Chronicles 6:37 and 1 Chronicles 6:36 the names Tahath, Zephaniah, Azariah, and Joel. Now although the occurrence of Uzziah and Azariah as names of the same king immediately suggests that in our register also Uzziah and Azariah are two names of the same person, yet the divergence in the other names, on the one hand Zephaniah for Joel, and on the other Uriel for Shaul, is strongly opposed to this conjecture. The discrepancy can scarcely be naturally explained in any other way, than by supposing that after Tahath the two genealogies diverge-ours introducing his son Uriel and his descendants; the other, in 1 Chronicles 6:36, mentioning a second son of Tohath, Zephaniah, of whose race Heman came.
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