1 Chronicles 6:39
And his brother Asaph, who stood on his right hand, even Asaph the son of Berachiah, the son of Shimea,
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(39-43) The pedigree of Asaph the Gershonite, traced back through thirteen names to Levi. That of Heman names twenty ancestors for the same period of time. This is one more illustration of the common usage of overleaping names in these genealogies.

(39) His brother Asaph.—Asaph was Heman’s brother (1) as a Levite; (2) as a choir-master.

The striking agreement of the line of Heman with that of the Kohathites, detailed in 1Chronicles 6:22-28 above, has led critics to look for a like coincidence between the line of Asaph as given here, and that of the Gershonites in 1Chronicles 6:20-21. There, however, we have only seven names, here there are thirteen. Still we observe that in the former passage the three names, Jahath, Zimmah, and Zerah appear in the same order of lineal descent from Gershon as in the present list; while the Adaiah of 1Chronicles 6:41 obviously answers to the Iddo of 1Chronicles 6:21, and Ethni (1Chronicles 6:41) is in Hebrew writing not unlike Jeaterai; and we are already familiar with the fact that genealogies sometimes recur in abbreviated forms. (Comp. Ezra 7:1-5, with the line of Aaron in the present chapter.) Upon the whole, therefore, if the suggested identifications be correct, it appears that Asaph’s pedigree has really been partially anticipated in 1Chronicles 6:20-21.

1 Chronicles 6:39. His brother Asaph — Asaph is here called Heman’s brother, according to the Hebrew phraseology, by which all near relations are brothers; and because he was of the same office and employment.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.His brother Asaph - Not "brother" in the ordinary sense of the term, since Asaph was the son of Berachiah, and a Gershonite, not a Kohathite. "Brother" here may mean "fellow-craftsman" (compare 1 Chronicles 25:7).39. his brother Asaph—They were brothers naturally, both being descended from Levi, as well as officially, both being of the Levitical order. Asaph is here called Heman’s brother, both by birth, being of the same tribe and father, Levi; and by his office and employment, which was thee same with his. And his brother Asaph,.... That is, Heman's brother; so Asaph was, as he was a descendant from the same original ancestor Levi, yet in the line of Gershon; and as being of the same office, a precentor, or chief singer:

who stood on his right hand; he was next to Heman; Heman stood in the middle, which was the most honourable (h), and Asaph on his right hand, and Ethan, after mentioned, on his left; even Asaph, whose name is often met with in the book of Psalms; and his genealogy here stands thus, as traced up to Levi, viz. Berechiah, Shimea, Michael, Baaseiah, Malchiah, Ethni, Zerah, Adaiah, Ethan, Zimmah, Shimei, Jahath, Gershon, Levi.

(h) "Alecto stetit in mediis----", Claudian in Rufin. l. 1. ver. 41. Vid. Barthii Animadv. in ib.

And his brother {h} Asaph, who stood on his right hand, even Asaph the son of Berachiah, the son of Shimea,

(h) Meaning, the son of Heman, 1Ch 6:33.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
39–43 (= 24–28 according to the Heb. division). The descent of Asaph, David’s singer, through Gershom from Levi

39. his brother] i.e. his kinsman.Verse 39. - Asaph is called brother of Heman, either as brother in office or generally as relative in the degree of cousin by many removes. He stands fourteenth in line of descent after Levi, while Ethan (ver. 44) stands thirteenth. If the line of Heman (as given in vers. 33-38) were correct. it would force on us the conviction that there are several omissions in these two lines; but if these are correct, we must conclude that there are unwarranted additions in the other. On the names of Asaph's ancestors, see notes on vers. 20, 21. From 2 Chronicles 29:30 it seems plain that Asaph was himself a composer of psalms, and not simply either the musician or rehearser of those of David. (1 Chronicles 6:18-23). "These (following three men, Heman, Asaph, and Ethan) are they who stood (in service) with their sons." The three were the heads of the three Levitic families, to whom the execution of the liturgic singing was entrusted. The names of their sons, vide 1 Chronicles 25:1-6. The object of the following genealogies is to show their descent from Levi. "Of the sons of the Kohathite family (is) Heman the singer." המשׁורר, ὁ ψαλτῳδός lxx. Heman is named first as being the head of the choir of singers who stood in the centre, while Asaph and his choir stood on his right hand, and on the left Ethan and his choir, so that when they sang in concert the conducting of the whole fell to Heman. His family is traced back in 1 Chronicles 6:33-38 through twenty members to "Kohath the son of Levi, then son of Israel" (Jacob).
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