1 Chronicles 29
Keil and Delitzsch OT Commentary
Furthermore David the king said unto all the congregation, Solomon my son, whom alone God hath chosen, is yet young and tender, and the work is great: for the palace is not for man, but for the LORD God.
Contributions of the collected princes for the building of the temple. - David then turns to the assembled princes to press upon them the furthering of the building of the temple. After referring to the youth of his son, and to the greatness of the work to be accomplished (1 Chronicles 29:1), he mentions what materials he has prepared for the building of the temple (1 Chronicles 29:2); then further states what he has resolved to give in addition from his private resources (1 Chronicles 29:4); and finally, after this introduction, calls upon those present to make a voluntary collection for this great work (1 Chronicles 29:5). The words, "as only one hath God chosen him," form a parenthesis, which is to be translated as a relative sentence for "my son, whom alone God hath chosen." ורך נער as in 1 Chronicles 22:5. The work is great, because not for man the palace, scil. is intended, i.e., shall be built, but for Jahve God. הבּירה, the citadel, the palace; a later word, generally used of the residence of the Persian king (Esther 1:2, Esther 1:5; Esther 2:3; Nehemiah 1:1), only in Nehemiah 2:8 of the citadel by the temple; here transferred to the temple as the glorious palace of Jahve, the God-king of Israel. With 1 Chronicles 29:2, cf. 1 Chronicles 22:14. וגו לזּהב הזּהב, the gold for the golden, etc., i.e., for the vessels and ornaments of gold, cf. 1 Chronicles 28:14. וּמלּוּאים שׁהם אבני as in Exodus 25:7; Exodus 35:9, precious stones for the ephod and choshen. שׁהם, probably beryl. מּלּוּאים אבני, stones of filling, that is, precious stones which are put in settings. פּוּך אבני, stones of pigment, i.e., ornament, conjecturally precious stones which, from their black colour, were in appearance like פּוּך, stibium, a common eye pigment (see 2 Kings 9:30). רקמה אבני, stones of variegated colour, i.e., with veins of different colours. יקרה אבן, precious stones, according to 2 Chronicles 3:6, for ornamenting the walls. שׁישׁ אבני, white marble stones.

Now I have prepared with all my might for the house of my God the gold for things to be made of gold, and the silver for things of silver, and the brass for things of brass, the iron for things of iron, and wood for things of wood; onyx stones, and stones to be set, glistering stones, and of divers colours, and all manner of precious stones, and marble stones in abundance.
Moreover, because I have set my affection to the house of my God, I have of mine own proper good, of gold and silver, which I have given to the house of my God, over and above all that I have prepared for the holy house,
"And moreover, because I have pleasure in the house of my God, there is to me a treasure of gold and silver; it have I appointed for the house of my God over and above all that..." הכינותי with כּל without the relative, cf. 1 Chronicles 15:12.

Even three thousand talents of gold, of the gold of Ophir, and seven thousand talents of refined silver, to overlay the walls of the houses withal:
Gold 3000 talents, i.e., about 13 1/2, or, reckoning according to the royal shekel, 6 3/4 millions of pounds; 7000 talents of silver, circa 2 1/2 or 1 1/4 millions of pounds: see on 1 Chronicles 22:14. Gold of Ophir, i.e., the finest, best gold, corresponding to the pure silver. לטוּח, to overlay the inner walls of the houses with gold and silver leaf. הבּתים as in 1 Chronicles 28:11, the different buildings of the temple. The walls of the holy place and of the most holy, of the porch and of the upper chambers, were overlaid with gold (cf. 2 Chronicles 3:4-6, 2 Chronicles 3:8-9), and probably only the inner walls of the side buildings.

The gold for things of gold, and the silver for things of silver, and for all manner of work to be made by the hands of artificers. And who then is willing to consecrate his service this day unto the LORD?
לזּהב לזּהב, for every golden thing, etc., cf. 1 Chronicles 29:2. וּלכל־מלאכה, and in general for every work to be wrought by the hands of the artificer. וּמי, who then is willing (uw expressing it as the consequence). To fill one's hand to the Lord, means to provide oneself with something which one brings to the Lord; see on Exodus 32:29. The infinitive מלּאות occurs also in Exodus 31:5 and Daniel 9:4, and along with מלּא, 2 Chronicles 13:9.

Then the chief of the fathers and princes of the tribes of Israel, and the captains of thousands and of hundreds, with the rulers of the king's work, offered willingly,
The princes follow the example, and willingly respond to David's call. האבות שׂרי equals האבות ראשׁי, 1 Chronicles 24:31; 1 Chronicles 27:1, etc. הם מלאכת ולשׂרי, and as regards the princes of the work of the king. The למּלך וּמקנה רכוּשׁ שׂרי, 1 Chronicles 28:1, the officials enumerated in 1 Chronicles 27:25-31 are meant; on ל see on 1 Chronicles 28:21. They gave 5000 talents of gold (22 1/2 or 11 1/2 millions of pounds), and 1000 darics equals 11 1/2 millions of pounds. אדרכּון, with א prosth. here and in Ezra 8:27, and דּרכּמון, Ezra 2:69; Nehemiah 7:70., does not correspond to the Greek δραχμή, Arab. dirhem, but to the Greek δαρεικός, as the Syrian translation derîkônā', Ezra 8:27, shows; a Persian gold coin worth about 22s. 6d. See the description of these coins, of which several specimens still exist, in Cavedoni bibl. Numismatik, bers. von A. Werlhof, S. 84ff.; J. Brandis, das Mnz-Mass und Gewishtssystem in Vorderasien (1866), S. 244; and my bibl. Archol. 127, 3. "Our historian uses the words used in his time to designate the current gold coins, without intending to assume that there were darics in use in the time of David, to state in a way intelligible to his readers the amount of the sum contributed by the princes" (Bertheau). This perfectly correct remark does not, however, explain why the author of the Chronicle has stated the contribution in gold and that in silver in different values, in talents and in darics, since the second cannot be an explanation of the first, the two sums being different. Probably the sum in darics is the amount which they contributed in gold pieces received as coins; the talents, on the other hand, probably represent the weight of the vessels and other articles of gold which they brought as offerings for the building. The amount contributed in silver is not large when compared with that in gold: 10,000 talents equals 3,500,000, or one half that amount. The contribution in copper also, 18,000 talents, is not very large. Besides these, those who had stones, i.e., precious stones, also brought them. אתּו הנּמצא, that was found with him, for: that which he (each one) had of stones they gave. The sing. אתּו is to be taken distributively, and is consequently carried on in the plural, נתנוּ; cf. Ew. 319, a. אבנים is accus. of subordination. יד על נתן, to give over for administration (Ew. 282, b). יחיאל, the Levite family of this name which had the oversight of the treasures of the house of God (1 Chronicles 26:21.).

And gave for the service of the house of God of gold five thousand talents and ten thousand drams, and of silver ten thousand talents, and of brass eighteen thousand talents, and one hundred thousand talents of iron.
And they with whom precious stones were found gave them to the treasure of the house of the LORD, by the hand of Jehiel the Gershonite.
Then the people rejoiced, for that they offered willingly, because with perfect heart they offered willingly to the LORD: and David the king also rejoiced with great joy.
The people and the king rejoiced over this willingness to give. שׁלם בּלב, as in 1 Chronicles 28:9.

Wherefore David blessed the LORD before all the congregation: and David said, Blessed be thou, LORD God of Israel our father, for ever and ever.
David's thanksgiving prayer. - David gives fitting expression to his joy on the success of the deepest wish of his heart, in a prayer with which he closes the last parliament of his reign. Since according to the divine decree, not he, the man of war, but his son, the peace-king Solomon, was to build a temple to the Lord, David had taken it upon himself to prepare as far as possible for the carrying out of the work. He had also found the princes and chiefs of the people willing to further it, and to assist his son Solomon in it. In this the pious and grey-haired servant of the Lord saw a special proof of the divine favour, for which he must thank God the Lord before the whole congregation. He praises Jahve, "the God of Israel our father," 1 Chronicles 29:10, or, as it is in 1 Chronicles 29:18, "the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, our fathers." Jahve had clearly revealed himself to David and his people as the God of Israel and of the patriarchs, by fulfilling in so glorious a manner to the people of Israel, by David, the promises made to the patriarchs. God the Lord had not only by David made His people great and powerful, and secured to them the peaceful possession of the good land, by humbling all their enemies round about, but He had also awakened in the heart of the people such love to and trust in their God, that the assembled dignitaries of the kingdom showed themselves perfectly willing to assist in furthering the building of the house of God. In this God had revealed His greatness, power, glory, etc., as David (in 1 Chronicles 29:11, 1 Chronicles 29:12) acknowledges with praise: "Thine, Jahve, is the greatness," etc. הנּצח, according to the Aramaic usage, gloria, splendour, honour. כל כּי, yea all, still dependent on לך at the commencement of the sentence, so that we do not need to supply לך after כּי. "Thine is the dominion, and the raising of oneself to be head over all." In His ממלכה God reveals His greatness, might, glory, etc. ממנשּׂא is not a participle requiring אתּה, "thou art," to be supplied (Berth.), but an appellative, an Aramaic infinitive, - the raising oneself (Ew. 160, e).

Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all.
Both riches and honour come of thee, and thou reignest over all; and in thine hand is power and might; and in thine hand it is to make great, and to give strength unto all.
"From Thee came the riches and the glory ..., and in Thy hand is it (it lies) to make all things great and strong."

Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name.
For this we must thank God, and sing praise to His holy name. By the partic. מודים, from הודה, confess, praise, the praising of God is characterized as an enduring praise, always rising anew.

But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? for all things come of thee, and of thine own have we given thee.
For man of himself can give nothing: "What am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to show ourselves so liberal?" כּוח עצר כּוח, to hold strength together; both to have power to do anything (here and 2 Chronicles 2:5; 2 Chronicles 22:9), and also to retain strength (2 Chronicles 13:20; Daniel 10:8, Daniel 10:16; Daniel 11:6), only found in Daniel and in the Chronicle. התנדּב, to show oneself willing, especially in giving. כּזאת refers to the contribution to the building of the temple (1 Chronicles 29:3-8). From Thy hand, i.e., that which is received from Thee, have we given.

For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners, as were all our fathers: our days on the earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding.
For we are strangers (as Psalm 39:13), i.e., in this connection we have no property, no enduring possession, since God had only given them the usufruct of the land; and as of the land, so also of all the property of man, it is only a gift committed to us by God in usufruct. The truth that our life is a pilgrimage (Hebrews 11:12-14), is presented to us by the brevity of life. As a shadow, so swiftly passing away, are our days upon the earth (cf. Job 8:9; Psalm 90:9., Psalm 102:12; Psalm 144:4). מקוה ואין, and there is no trust, scil. in the continuance of life (cf. Jeremiah 14:8).

O LORD our God, all this store that we have prepared to build thee an house for thine holy name cometh of thine hand, and is all thine own.
All the riches which we have prepared for the building of the temple come from the hand of God. The Keth. הוּא is neuter, the Keri הוּא corresponds to ההמון.

I know also, my God, that thou triest the heart, and hast pleasure in uprightness. As for me, in the uprightness of mine heart I have willingly offered all these things: and now have I seen with joy thy people, which are present here, to offer willingly unto thee.
Before God, who searches the heart and loves uprightness, David can declare that he has willingly given in uprightness of heart, and that the people also have, to his joy, shown equal willingness. כּל־אלּה, all the treasures enumerated (1 Chronicles 29:3-8). The plural הנּמצאוּ refers to עמּך, and the demonstrative ה stands for אשׁר as in 1 Chronicles 26:28.

O LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, keep this for ever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people, and prepare their heart unto thee:
He prays that God may enable the people ever to retain this frame of heart. זאת is more closely defined by מח ליצר, viz., the frame of the thoughts of the heart of Thy people. "And direct their heart (the people's heart) to Thee," cf. 1 Samuel 7:3.

And give unto Solomon my son a perfect heart, to keep thy commandments, thy testimonies, and thy statutes, and to do all these things, and to build the palace, for the which I have made provision.
And to Solomon may God give a whole (undivided) heart, that he may keep all the divine commands and do them, and build the temple. שׁלם לב as in 1 Chronicles 29:9. הכּל לעשׂות, that he may do all, scil. that the commands, testimonies, and statutes require. For הבּירה, see 1 Chronicles 29:1.

And David said to all the congregation, Now bless the LORD your God. And all the congregation blessed the LORD God of their fathers, and bowed down their heads, and worshipped the LORD, and the king.
Close of the public assembly. - 1 Chronicles 29:20. At the conclusion of the prayer, David calls upon the whole assembly to praise God; which they do, bowing before God and the king, and worshipping. וישׁתּחווּ יקּדוּ, connected as in Exodus 4:31; Genesis 43:28, etc.

And they sacrificed sacrifices unto the LORD, and offered burnt offerings unto the LORD, on the morrow after that day, even a thousand bullocks, a thousand rams, and a thousand lambs, with their drink offerings, and sacrifices in abundance for all Israel:
To seal their confession, thus made in word and deed, the assembled dignitaries prepared a great sacrificial feast to the Lord on the following day. They sacrificed to the Lord sacrifices, viz., 1000 bullocks, 1000 rams, and 1000 lambs as burnt-offering, with drink-offerings to correspond, and sacrifices, i.e., thank-offerings (שׁלמים), in multitude for all Israel, i.e., so that all those present could take part in the sacrificial meal prepared from these sacrifices. While זבהים in the first clause is the general designation of the bloody offerings as distinguished from the meat-offerings, in the last clause it is restricted by the contrast with עלות and the שׁלמים, from which joyous sacrificial meals were prepared.

And did eat and drink before the LORD on that day with great gladness. And they made Solomon the son of David king the second time, and anointed him unto the LORD to be the chief governor, and Zadok to be priest.
On this day they made Solomon king a second time, anointing him king to the Lord, and Zadok to be priest, i.e., high priest. The שׁנית refers back to 1 Chronicles 23:1, and the first anointing of Solomon narrated in 1 Kings 1:32. ליהיה, not: before Jahve, which ל cannot signify, but: "to Jahve," in accordance with His will expressed in His choice of Solomon (1 Chronicles 28:4). The ל before צדוק is nota accus., as in לשׁלמה. From the last words we learn that Zadok received the high-priesthood with the consent of the estates of the kingdom.

Then Solomon sat on the throne of the LORD as king instead of David his father, and prospered; and all Israel obeyed him.
Solomon's accession and David's death, with a statement as to the length of his reign and the sources of the history. - 1 Chronicles 29:23-25. The remarks on Solomon's accession and reign contained in these verses are necessary to the complete conclusion of a history of David's reign, for they show how David's wishes for his son Solomon, whom Jahve chose to be his successor, were fulfilled. On יהוה על־כּסּא see the commentary on 1 Chronicles 28:5. ויּצלח, he was prosperous, corresponds to the hope expressed by David (1 Chronicles 22:13), which was also fulfilled by the submission of all princes and heroes, and also of all the king's sons, to King Solomon (1 Chronicles 29:24). There can hardly, however, be in these last words a reference to the frustrating of Adonijah's attempted usurpation of the throne (cf. 1 Kings 1:15.). תּחת יד נתן equals to submit. But this meaning is not derived (Rashi) from the custom of taking oaths of fidelity by clasping of hands, for this custom cannot be certainly proved to have existed among the Israelites; still less can it have arisen from the ancient custom mentioned in Genesis 24:2, Genesis 24:9; Genesis 47:29, of laying the hand under the thigh of the person to whom one swore in making promises with oath. The hand, as the instrument of all activity, is here simply a symbol of power.

And all the princes, and the mighty men, and all the sons likewise of king David, submitted themselves unto Solomon the king.
And the LORD magnified Solomon exceedingly in the sight of all Israel, and bestowed upon him such royal majesty as had not been on any king before him in Israel.
Jahve made Solomon very great, by giving him the glory of the kingdom, as no king before him had had it. כּל is to be taken along with לא, nullus, and does not presuppose a number of kings before Solomon; it involves only more than one. Before him, Saul, Ishbosheth, and David had been kings, and the kingship of the latter had been covered with glory.

Thus David the son of Jesse reigned over all Israel.
כּל־ישׂראל על (as in 1 Chronicles 11:1; 1 Chronicles 12:38), referring to the fact that David had been for a time king only over Judah, but had been recognised at a later time by all the tribes of Israel as king. The length of his reign as in 1 Kings 2:11. In Hebron seven years; according to 2 Samuel 5:5, more exactly seven years and six months.

And the time that he reigned over Israel was forty years; seven years reigned he in Hebron, and thirty and three years reigned he in Jerusalem.
And he died in a good old age, full of days, riches, and honour: and Solomon his son reigned in his stead.
On וכבוד עשׁר cf. 1 Kings 3:13; 2 Chronicles 17:5.

Now the acts of David the king, first and last, behold, they are written in the book of Samuel the seer, and in the book of Nathan the prophet, and in the book of Gad the seer,
On the authorities cited see the Introduction. וגו כּל־מלכוּתו עם goes with כּתוּבים הנּם: the acts of David ... are written ... together with his whole reign and his power, and the times which went over him. העתּים, the times, with their joys and sorrows, as in Psalm 31:16; Job 24:1. The kingdoms of the lands (cf. 2 Chronicles 12:8; 2 Chronicles 17:10; 2 Chronicles 20:29) are the kingdoms with which the Israelites under David came into contact-Philistia, Edom, Moab, Ammon, Aram.

With all his reign and his might, and the times that went over him, and over Israel, and over all the kingdoms of the countries.
Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament, by Carl Friedrich Keil and Franz Delitzsch [1857-78].
Text Courtesy of Internet Sacred Texts Archive.

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