Matthew Poole's Commentary
Now these are the divisions of the sons of Aaron. The sons of Aaron; Nadab, and Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar.The priests are divided by lot into twenty-four orders, 1 Chronicles 24:1-19. Ministers allotted them out of the Levites, out of the tribe of the Kohathites and Merarites, 1 Chronicles 24:20-31.
The divisions, i.e. the several branches into which that family was divided or distributed.
But Nadab and Abihu died before their father, and had no children: therefore Eleazar and Ithamar executed the priest's office.i.e. Were the only persons to whom and to whose families the execution of that office was committed.
And David distributed them, both Zadok of the sons of Eleazar, and Ahimelech of the sons of Ithamar, according to their offices in their service.According to their offices, or courses, or prefectures, i.e. allotting to each of them several times wherein they or theirs should by turns have the government of holy ministrations in the temple service.
And there were more chief men found of the sons of Eleazar than of the sons of Ithamar; and thus were they divided. Among the sons of Eleazar there were sixteen chief men of the house of their fathers, and eight among the sons of Ithamar according to the house of their fathers.No text from Poole on this verse.
Thus were they divided by lot, one sort with another; for the governors of the sanctuary, and governors of the house of God, were of the sons of Eleazar, and of the sons of Ithamar.Thus were they divided by lot; partly to prevent that envy or emulation which otherwise might arise among them; and partly that all men’s minds and consciences might be fully satisfied in the order now established by this Divine way of decision.
Governors of the house of God; but that is no other than the sanctuary; and so it may seem to make this division improper and irregular, the several members of it being altogether the same. Or rather, of the things of God, i.e. of all persons ministering in the sanctuary, and of all holy ministrations done in it, and of all other matters of the Lord, as they are called by way of distinction from the king’s matters, 2 Chronicles 19:11.
And Shemaiah the son of Nethaneel the scribe, one of the Levites, wrote them before the king, and the princes, and Zadok the priest, and Ahimelech the son of Abiathar, and before the chief of the fathers of the priests and Levites: one principal household being taken for Eleazar, and one taken for Ithamar.Or, the chief (which word is easily supplied out of the context) of one house of the fathers was taken (to wit, by lot)
for Eleazar, ( i.e. out of his family,) and that which was taken after it was
taken for Ithamar, i.e. out of his family. The meaning is, that the first lot fell to Eleazar, and the second to Ithamar, and the third to Eleazar, and the fourth to Ithamar; and so successively, until all the families of Ithamar had received their lots; and afterwards all the lots came forth to the rest of Eleazar’s families, which were double in number to those of Ithamar, as was said, 1 Chronicles 24:4.
Now the first lot came forth to Jehoiarib, the second to Jedaiah,The first lot came forth, to wit, out of the vessel, in which all the lots were promiscuously put together, and out of which they were severally taken.
The third to Harim, the fourth to Seorim,No text from Poole on this verse.
The fifth to Malchijah, the sixth to Mijamin,No text from Poole on this verse.
The seventh to Hakkoz, the eighth to Abijah,No text from Poole on this verse.
The ninth to Jeshua, the tenth to Shecaniah,No text from Poole on this verse.
The eleventh to Eliashib, the twelfth to Jakim,No text from Poole on this verse.
The thirteenth to Huppah, the fourteenth to Jeshebeab,No text from Poole on this verse.
The fifteenth to Bilgah, the sixteenth to Immer,No text from Poole on this verse.
The seventeenth to Hezir, the eighteenth to Aphses,No text from Poole on this verse.
The nineteenth to Pethahiah, the twentieth to Jehezekel,No text from Poole on this verse.
The one and twentieth to Jachin, the two and twentieth to Gamul,No text from Poole on this verse.
The three and twentieth to Delaiah, the four and twentieth to Maaziah.No text from Poole on this verse.
These were the orderings of them in their service to come into the house of the LORD, according to their manner, under Aaron their father, as the LORD God of Israel had commanded him.These were the orderings of them in their service; in this order and method they were to come to perform the offices of the temple. To come into the house of the Lord, according to their manner, i.e. to come into the temple every sabbath day, and to continue there all the week long until the next sabbath, when they were relieved by others, as the manner was: see 2 Kings 11:5 1 Chronicles 9:25.
Under Aaron their father, i.e. under the inspection and direction of the high priest, whom he calls Aaron, because he represented his person, and executed his office, and also came out of his loins, and
their father, because of the authority which by God’s appointment he had over them, and that love, reverence, and obedience which they owed to him.
And the rest of the sons of Levi were these: Of the sons of Amram; Shubael: of the sons of Shubael; Jehdeiah.The rest of the sons of Levi; either such as were only Levites, and not priests; or rather, such as were not named or numbered before in this or the former chapter.
Jehdeiah; who being, as it seems, an eminent person, or having a very numerous family, was not reckoned with or under his father’s family, but was accounted as a distinct head of another family.
Concerning Rehabiah: of the sons of Rehabiah, the first was Isshiah.Rehabiah, the son of Eliezer, 1 Chronicles 23:17. The first was Jeshiah, by birth or place.
Of the Izharites; Shelomoth: of the sons of Shelomoth; Jahath.Shelomoth, called also Shelomith, 1 Chronicles 23:18
And the sons of Hebron; Jeriah the first, Amariah the second, Jahaziel the third, Jekameam the fourth.The first; which word is fitly supplied both out of the rest of this verse, the second, third, and fourth having a manifest reference to the first, and out of 1 Chronicles 23:19 26:31, where it is expressed.
Of the sons of Uzziel; Michah: of the sons of Michah; Shamir.No text from Poole on this verse.
The brother of Michah was Isshiah: of the sons of Isshiah; Zechariah.No text from Poole on this verse.
The sons of Merari were Mahli and Mushi: the sons of Jaaziah; Beno.Jaaziah; the son either of Mahli; or rather, of Mushi last named; for Mahli’s posterity comes 1 Chronicles 23:28.
The sons of Merari by Jaaziah; Beno, and Shoham, and Zaccur, and Ibri.Beno; whose name is here repeated with his brethren, because he was the first-born and head of the rest, who were all reckoned with and under his family, as if they had been branches of it.
Of Mahli came Eleazar, who had no sons.No text from Poole on this verse.
Concerning Kish: the son of Kish was Jerahmeel.Kish; another of Mahli’s sons, as appears from 1 Chronicles 23:21.
The sons also of Mushi; Mahli, and Eder, and Jerimoth. These were the sons of the Levites after the house of their fathers.No text from Poole on this verse.
These likewise cast lots over against their brethren the sons of Aaron in the presence of David the king, and Zadok, and Ahimelech, and the chief of the fathers of the priests and Levites, even the principal fathers over against their younger brethren.Over against their brethren the sons of Aaron, i.e. answerable for number and order to those of the priests, so as there should be a several course of the Levites for each course of the priests. This is expressed concerning the singers, 1 Chronicles 25, and the like is implied concerning the porters, 1 Chronicles 26, and is here sufficiently intimated concerning those Levites which were employed in other sacred ministrations.
The principal fathers over against their younger brethren; the lots of the elder and younger brethren were promiscuously put together, and the order was settled as the lots came forth, without any regard to the age, or dignity, or number of the persons or families, the youngest family having thee first course if they had the first lot, &c.