Ezra 2:41
The singers: the children of Asaph, an hundred twenty and eight.
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2:36-63 Those who undervalue their relation to the Lord in times of reproach, persecution, or distress, will have no benefit from it when it becomes honourable or profitable. Those who have no evidence that they are, by the new birth, spiritual priests unto God, through Jesus Christ, have no right to the comforts and privileges of Christians.The province - Judaea was no longer a kingdom, but a mere "province" of Persia. "The children of the province" are the Israelites who returned to Palestine, as distinct from those who remained in Babylonia and Persia.

Every one unto his city - That is, to the city whereto his forefathers had belonged. Of course, in the few cases where this was not known Ezra 2:59-62, the plan could not be carried out.

Two other copies of the following list have come down to us - one in Nehemiah 7:7-69, and the other in 1 Esdras 5:8-43. All seem to have been taken from the same original document, and to have suffered more or less from corruption. Where two out of the three agree, the reading should prevail over that of the third.

36-39. The priests—Each of their families was ranged under its prince or head, like those of the other tribes. It will be remembered that the whole body was divided into twenty-four courses, one of which, in rotation, discharged the sacerdotal duties every week, and each division was called after the name of its first prince or chief. It appears from this passage that only four of the courses of the priests returned from the Babylonish captivity; but these four courses were afterwards, as the families increased, divided into twenty-four, which were distinguished by the names of the original courses appointed by David [1Ch 23:6-13]. Hence we find the course of Abijah or Abia (1Ch 24:10) subsisting at the commencement of the Christian era (Lu 1:5). No text from Poole on this verse.

The Levites,.... Singers and porters, who are reckoned in this, and the two following verses, whose numbers were no more than three hundred and forty one; whereas, in the times of David, they were 38,000, 1 Chronicles 23:3. The singers: the children of Asaph, an hundred twenty and eight.
41. The singers] The Levitical order of singers was instituted in David’s time (1 Chronicles 15:17-24). There seem to have been 24 classes of singers (1 Chronicles 25:9-31). But the three great guilds of singers were called after the names of Heman the Kohathite, Asaph the Gershomite, and Jeduthun the Merarite (1 Chronicles 6:33-47; 1 Chronicles 25:1-7).

Asaph] No members of the Heman and Jeduthun guilds seem to have returned. Four of the 24 classes of singers were called after the sons of Asaph, i.e. the first, Joseph: the third, Zaccur: the fifth, Nethaniah: the seventh, Jesharelah (1 Chronicles 25:2; 1 Chronicles 25:9-10; 1 Chronicles 25:12; 1 Chronicles 25:14). Asaph himself enjoyed a great reputation as a Psalmist (cf. 2 Chronicles 29:30, Nehemiah 12:46). The inscriptions of certain Psalms attribute their composition to Asaph (Psalms 50, 73-83).

Verse 41. - The singers, the children of Asaph. See 2 Chronicles 25:1. It is remarkable that no descendants of either Heman or Jeduthun (ibid.) took part in the return. Ezra 2:41Of singers, only the sons of Asaph, i.e., members of the choir of Asaph, returned. In Nehemiah 11:17 three orders are named, Bakbukiah evidently representing the order of Heman.
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