1 Chronicles 16:37-43 Worship
After David finishes his song the group begins to wind down. But not everyone goes home. David has appointed people for continual worship before the Ark.
We saw David appoint these men earlier in our study. Here our author gives us another look at who served where. David wasn’t just concerned with the services around the Ark but at the Tabernacle too. Two separate groups were established for this split purpose. They would be reunited under Solomon because the Tabernacle would be replaced by the Temple.
Why didn’t David bring the Tabernacle to Jerusalem? Why didn’t he return the Ark of the Lord to the Tabernacle? Was he told by God to do as he did or was it out of a desire for God’s presence near him that he acted so? If the Ark had been returned to the Tabernacle David would lose access to it because only the high priest could stand before it and that only once a year. With the Ark in Jerusalem in the Tend David made there was more access to it. NOT that anyone could go into the Tent and stand before it but that it was the centerpiece of everything while in the Tent. Daily activity revolved around it. This was the closest the people would ever come to experiencing the presence of God personally until after Jesus’ work on the cross.
David wasn’t disrespectful of the Ark of the Lord but his actions removed some of the separation imposed by the Tabernacle and the Law. He seems to have found a ‘balance’ he and God could live with. God could have struck him down for being so presumptuous as to make his OWN Tent for the Ark. But He didn’t. He allowed this familiarity and change of regulations. We know that God said that David was a man after His own heart. Is it possible that God used David’s desire to be closer to Him to get closer to man Himself? That was after all the reason He sent Jesus; to repair the breach between man and Himself.
I suppose I should probably get back on track with our reading.
I was curious about the four main men mentioned in our reading today. How they were connected to one another. The men I’m referring to are Asaph, Obed-edom and Zadok and Hosah. I was curious if these four men were brothers. My research says that they did not share a father. Obed-edom was one of SIXTY NINE sons of Jeduthun. (I wonder how many wives Jeduthun had!) Asaph was a talented singer and poet whose father was Berachiah. Many of the Psalms were written by him. Zadok was the high priest while David reigned. He shared this position with Abiathar for a while. Ahitub was Zadok’s father. I have been unable to discover the name of Hosah’s father. He served with Obed-Edom on the gates but he is not named as one of Obed-edom’s brother’s.
This created at least three ‘family businesses’ with these men. Asaph and his brothers ministered before the Ark on a regular basis. They were the musicians and singers. Obed-edom and his sixty-eight brothers and Hosah were gatekeepers. I believe that Hosah’s sons continued in this post but his brothers are not listed as doing so. Zadok and his brothers were to serve at the Tabernacle. They made the morning and evening offerings and any other requirements outlined in the Law. David also assigned Heman and Jeduthun to bring music to the Tabernacle on a continual basis. I don’t know if it was going on before but it would now. David made sure that praise was part of ALL Israel and these appointed families would carry out his command.
I wonder how many generation continued in these roles of their ‘family business.’ I figure it would have continued at least through Solomon but what about after the kingdom of Israel split in two. Did praise continue to be part of at least Judah’s worship? Did it wax and wane with the people’s dedication to God? I have heard many times Jewish prayers being recited musically as if they were the lyrics to a song. Is this a remnant of David’s influence? For myself, many of my favorite songs are the ones that are taken directly from the word of God. They help me remember God’s promises in His own words.
God made music and it seems fitting that we should use it when worshiping Him. Talk about the “Leader of the band.” I can’t imagine life without music. I’m sitting here now listening to several parts of it in nature. I hear the crickets chirping and the breeze whistling through the trees. I also hear the sound of my husband snoring and the ringing in my ears. Even these are sounds of life; the life God made.
I was just thinking about the ‘music’ of a deaf person. Their music doesn’t come in the same form as those who can hear. Theirs takes place visually and tactilely. The strong thumping felt with the beat of a drum. The vibrant colors as they dance around the room from a prism. The soft vibrations of the larynx as it produces sounds. The motions of the hands, arms and body of a person signing the words to a song. The motion of bodies as they move to the rhythm of the dance.
Music. God made it ALL to nourish our soul. It might not have been essential to the fabric of man but it was important enough for God to weave it into the very fabric of our universe. And since He made it, I choose to praise Him with it and for it.
Father God, thank You for making music. Thank You for making it such an important part of my life. Thank You for opening my soul to rediscover what I had shut out during the dark times in my life. You squeezed it through the cracks and shoved it under the doors until I couldn’t hide from it any more. In that prison of my own making, YOU broke it open with music. You sent me Your promises in musical form and You helped me weave my life together with Yours MUCH better than it was before. Words fail me in expressing how You healed me through music. So in moments like these I sing a love song instead.