1 Chronicles 9:33
And these are the singers, chief of the fathers of the Levites, who remaining in the chambers were free: for they were employed in that work day and night.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(33, 34) A general subscription, or concluding statement, with reference to the preceding account of the Levites (1Chronicles 9:14-32).

(33) Refers to the singers treated of in 1Chronicles 9:14-16 : And these (above mentioned) are the minstrels, heads of Levitical families; in the Temple cells (they lived), exempt from all other charge; for day and night they were over them in the work. The Hebrew is, harsh, and perhaps corrupt, but the meaning seems to be clear. It is hardly meant that the service of song in the Temple was uninterrupted (comp. Revelation 4:8), but only that the choristers were under obligation to perpetually recurring service.

They were employed in that work.—Rather, They were over them in the work. They—that is, the leaders for the time being—lived, like the chief warders, in the Temple cells, presiding continually over the guilds of singers.

1 Chronicles 9:33. And these — Others of the Levites; of whose several offices he had spoken before. Are — Or rather, were; which is understood all along in the foregoing and following verses. Remaining in the chambers — That they might be ready to come whensoever they were called to the service of God in the tabernacle. Were free — From all trouble and employment, that they might wholly attend upon their proper work; which was either composing or ordering sacred songs, or actually singing, or teaching others to sing them. Day and night — Continually, and particularly in the morning and evening, the two times appointed for solemn service. Thus was God continually praised, as it is fit he should be, who is continually doing us good.9:1-44 Genealogies. - This chapter expresses that one end of recording all these genealogies was, to direct the Jews, when they returned out of captivity, with whom to unite, and where to reside. Here is an account of the good state into which the affairs of religion were put, on the return from Babylon. Every one knew his charge. Work is likely to be done well when every one knows the duty of his place, and makes a business of it. God is the God of order. Thus was the temple a figure of the heavenly one, where they rest not day nor night from praising God, Re 4:8. Blessed be His name, believers there shall, not in turn, but all together, without interruption, praise him night and day: may the Lord make each of us fit for the inheritance of the saints in light.The singers - No names follow, and it is thought that they have fallen out.

Were free - "Free," i. e. from any special duties besides those of supervision, which was so arranged among the overseers that someone exercised it during every part of both day and night.

18. the king's gate—The king had a gate from his palace into the temple (2Ki 16:18), which doubtless was kept constantly closed except for the monarch's use; and although there was no king in Israel on the return from the captivity, yet the old ceremonial was kept up, probably in the hope that the scepter would, ere long, be restored to the house of David. It is an honor by which Eastern kings are distinguished, to have a gate exclusively devoted to their own special use, and which is kept constantly closed, except when he goes out or returns (Eze 44:2). There being no king then in Israel, this gate would be always shut. These, i.e. others of the Levites; of whose several offices he had spoken before.

Are the singers; or rather, were, which is understood, and all along in the foregoing and following verses, and again in this very verse.

In the chambers; where they waited, that they might be ready to come whensoever they were called to the service of God in the tabernacle.

Were free from all trouble and employment, that they might wholly attend upon the proper work.

Employed in that work; either composing or ordering sacred songs; or actually singing; or teaching others to sing them.

Day and night, i.e. continually, and particularly in the morning and evening, the two times appointed for solemn service and offerings. And these are the singers, chief of the fathers of the Levites,.... Others of them were employed in singing, and were masters of the song, and presided in that service, see 1 Chronicles 6:31 who remaining

in the chambers were free; from all other work and service; and there they abode, even in the chambers of the temple, that they might be near to perform their work, and not be defiled, and made unfit for it:

for they were employed in that work day and night; some or other of them, either in composing or singing psalms and hymns, or teaching others how to sing them.

And these are the singers, chief of the fathers of the Levites, who remaining in the chambers {i} were free: for they were employed in that work day and night.

(i) But were continually occupied in singing praises to God.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
33. And these are] This verse may be intended as a colophon to 1 Chronicles 9:15-16, for the names there given are those of singers; cp. Nehemiah 11:17. On the other hand it may have been intended as the heading of such a list as appears in 1 Chronicles 6:33-47 (= 18–32, Heb.), the list itself on second thoughts being omitted.

chief of the fathers of the Levites who remaining in the chambers were free] R.V. heads of fathers’ houses of the Levites, who dwelt in the chambers and were free from other service.

in that work] R.V. in their work.

day and night] Cp. Psalm 134:1; Revelation 4:8.Verse 33. - Translate, And these singers, chief of the fathers of the Levites, in the chambers were free. The word "free" is surely sufficiently explained by the following sentence, in connection with Ezra 7:24; Nehemiah 11:23. It is more doubtful whether the expression, "these singers," refers to names, which now should have been inserted but are lost, or possibly to ver. 16, ante; the idiom would prefer the former. They were employed in that work day and night; literally, for by day and by night on them, in the work. If we were to suppose the cheth before the "work" an error for he, the translation would be easy and free from all doubt, for by day and by night, the work devolved upon them. Anyway, the substance of the sense is obvious. 1 Chronicles 9:27 refers again to the doorkeepers. They passed the night around the house of God, because the care of or watch over it was committed to them, and "they were over the key, and that every morning," i.e., they had to open the door every morning. מפתּח occurs again in Judges 3:25 and Isaiah 22:22, in the signification key, which is suitable here also.
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