2 Chronicles 31:16
Beside their genealogy of males, from three years old and upward, even unto every one that entereth into the house of the LORD, his daily portion for their service in their charges according to their courses;
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(16) Beside their genealogy.—The verse is a parenthesis stating an exception, and should rather be rendered, “apart from their register of males from three years old and upward (to wit, the register) of all that came into the house of Jehovah for the daily portion (literally, for a day’s matter in its day; 2Chronicles 8:13; Nehemiah 11:23) for their service in their offices according to their divisions.” The meaning is that the Levites who were on duty in the Temple, and whose names were registered as such, along with their male children of three years old and upwards, were not provided for by Cononiah and his associates, as they received their daily portion in the sanctuary itself. Children, it appears, were allowed to accompany their fathers to the Temple, and to eat with them of the sacrifices.

2 Chronicles 31:16. From three years old and upward — To whom a portion of these things was allotted, as is here implied. Unto every one that entereth into the house of the Lord — That were capable of entering thither and doing service there, which they were at twenty years old, as is expressed here, 2 Chronicles 31:17, and 1 Chronicles 23:24, through the whole company of the priests and Levites.

31:1-21 Hezekiah destroys idolatry. - After the passover, the people of Israel applied with vigour to destroy the monuments of idolatry. Public ordinances should stir us up to cleanse our hearts, our houses, and shops, from the filth of sin, and the idolatry of covetousness, and to excite others to do the same. The after-improvement of solemn ordinances, is of the greatest importance to personal, family, and public religion. When they had tasted the sweetness of God's ordinance in the late passover, they were free in maintaining the temple service. Those who enjoy the benefit of a settled ministry, will not grudge the expense of it. In all that Hezekiah attempted in God's service, he was earnest and single in his aim and dependence, and was prospered accordingly. Whether we have few or many talents intrusted to us, may we thus seek to improve them, and encourage others to do the same. What is undertaken with a sincere regard to the glory of God, will succeed to our own honour and comfort at last.Beside their genealogy of males ... - Some translate it: "Excepting the list of males," etc. i. e. they distributed to all the members of the priestly families, excepting to those who at the time were performing the duties of their office at Jerusalem. These persons no doubt obtained their share at the temple itself. 2Ch 31:11-19. Hezekiah Appoints Officers to Dispose of the Tithes.

11-18. Hezekiah commanded to prepare chambers in the house of the Lord—storehouses, granaries, or cellars; either the old ones, which had been allowed through neglect to fall into decay, were to be repaired, or additional ones built. Private individuals brought their own first-fruits to the temple; but the tithes were levied by the Levites, who kept a faithful account of them in their several places of abode and transmitted the allotted proportion to the priests. Officers were appointed to distribute equal rations to all in the cities of the priests who, from age or other reasons, could not repair to the temple. With the exception of children under three years of age—an exception made probably from their being considered too young to receive solid food—lists were kept of the number and age of every male; of priests according to their fathers' house, and Levites from twenty years (see Nu 4:3; 28:24; 1Ch 23:24). But, besides, provision was also made for their wives, daughters, and servants.

From three years old and upward; to whom a portion of these things was allotted, as is here implied.

Unto every one that entereth into the house of the Lord; that were capable of entering thither and doing service there, which they were at twenty years old, as is expressed here, 2 Chronicles 31:17, and 1 Chronicles 23:24, through the whole company of the priests and Levites.

Beside their genealogy of males, from three years old and upwards,.... Their office was not only to give to the priests, but to those of their males in their genealogy, who were three years old and upwards; for under that age, according to Kimchi, they were not fit to come into the temple; nor have they knowledge to keep what is put into their hands; nor fit to handle offerings, lest they should defile them; but at that age they might be taught how to hold them, and be used to it; but as for females, he says, they were not admitted at any age:

even unto everyone that entereth into the house of the Lord; of the said age, and in the genealogy and register of the priests:

his daily portion for their service in their charges, according to their courses; food for every day, in consideration of their service in their several wards, according to their courses in turn.

Beside their genealogy of males, {k} from three years old and upward, even unto every one that entereth into the house of the LORD, his daily portion for their service in their charges according to their courses;

(k) Who had also a portion and allowance in this distribution.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
16. beside their genealogy of males] R.V. beside them that were reckoned by genealogy of males.

even unto every one that entereth] R.V. even every one that entered.

his daily portion] R.V. as the duty of every day required.

Verse 16. - Beside their genealogy of males; i.e. except (מִלְבַד) the family count of males, etc., the remainder of the verse describing those who are meant by the excepted. They were excepted because for themselves and their little ones, their daily present temple service brought their daily maintenance as of course. The "unto every one" of our version is misleading. Keil translates perspicuously, "of all those who entered the house of the Lord, to the daily portion for their service," etc. The glimpse of the picture of the little children fed for the sake of their fathers' sanctuary service, so true to the true religion even of nature, is a pleasant glimpse to catch. 2 Chronicles 31:16At his hand (ידו על equals מיּד, 2 Chronicles 31:13), i.e., under his superintendence, there were six Levites, enumerated by name, in the priests' cities, with fidelity, "to give to their brethren in their courses, as well to the great as to the small" (i.e., to the older and to the younger), sc. the portion of the gifts received which fell to each. By the brethren in their courses we are to understand not merely the Levites dwelling in the priests' cities, who on account of their youth or old age could not come into the temple, but also those who at the time were not on duty, since the Levites' courses performed it by turns, only some courses being on duty in the temple, while the others were at home in the priests' cities. The object to לתת, 2 Chronicles 31:15, is not to be taken straightway from the objects mentioned with לתת in 2 Chronicles 31:14. For the most holy gifts could not be sent to the priests' cities, but were consumed in the holy place, i.e., in the temple. Nor can we confine לתת to the האלהים נדבות; for since the gifts of the people, laid up in the cells, consisted in first-fruits, tithes, and consecrated gifts (2 Chronicles 31:11), and special officers were appointed for the storing and distribution of them, the business of distribution could not consist merely in the giving out of freewill offerings, but must have extended to all the offerings of the people. When, therefore, it is said of the Levite Kore, in 2 Chronicles 31:14, that he was appointed over the freewill offerings, to distribute the heave-offerings and the most holy, only his chief function is there mentioned, and the functions of the officials associated with and subordinated to him in the priests' cities are not to be confined to that. The object to לתת, 2 Chronicles 31:15, is consequently to be determined by the whole context, and the arrangements which are assumed as known from the law; i.e., we must embrace under that word the distribution of the first-fruits, tithes, and consecrated gifts, of which the Levites in the priests' cities were to receive their portion according to the law. - In 2 Chronicles 31:16, the bמחלקות אחיהם of 2 Chronicles 31:15 is more closely defined by an exception: "Besides their catalogue of the men (i.e., exclusive of those of the male sex catalogued by them) from three years old and upward, namely, of all those who came into the house of Jahve to the daily portion, for their service in their offices according to their courses." בּיומו דּבר־יום signifies, in this connection, the portion of the holy gifts coming to them for every day; cf. Nehemiah 11:23. The meaning of the verse is: From those dwelling in the priests' cities were excluded those who had come to perform service in the temple; and, indeed, not merely those performing the service, but also their male children, who were catalogued along with them if they were three years old and upward. Thence it is clear that those entering upon their service took their sons with them when they were three years old. These children ate in the place of the sanctuary of the portion coming to their parents.
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