Scripture reading – Psalm 145; 1 Chronicles 26

1 Chronicles 26 – Porters, Guards, and Administrators


David’s census of the Levites continues in 1 Chronicles 26, assigning men and families who would serve as “the porters” of the Temple (1 Chronicles 26:1-19; note 1 Chronicles 9:17-27). The “porters” were gatekeepers, the ancient equivalent of what churches today would describe as a security team.

How necessary were the porters? They were of the tribe of Levi and chosen by the LORD to serve Him on behalf of Israel. Their task was to guard the entrances to the Temple and be alert to thieves and enemies. They were extraordinary men and were as serious about their tasks as the priests were. The porters were described as “mighty men of valour” (1 Chronicles 26:6), “strong men” (1 Chronicles 26:7), and “able men” (1 Chronicles 26:8). They were assigned by families to gates (1 Chronicles 26:13-19), and there were twenty-four companies in all.

In addition to guarding the Temple, some Levite households were keepers of the Temple treasuries (26:20-28). Those families were entrusted with securing the “treasures of the house of God, and [watched] over the dedicated things” (1 Chronicles 26:20). It was their task to secure the gifts offered by the people and the “spoils won in battles” (1 Chronicles 26:20). The treasuries of the Temple were dedicated to the maintenance of “the house of the LORD” (1 Chronicles 26:27).

A third group of Levite families oversaw “the outward business over Israel, and were officers and judges” (1 Chronicles 26:29). By “outward business,” we are to understand it was the governing of the land outside the Temple. They were the counselors of the law to the king and his officers. They were “men of valour…in the service of the king” (26:30). Some were assigned to the tribes west of the Jordan River (1 Chronicles 26:30), while others were assigned to the tribes on the east of the Jordan (1 Chronicles 26:32). Theirs was a sacred trust, “for every matter pertaining to God, and affairs of the king” (1 Chronicles 26:32).

Psalm 145 – A Psalm of Praise

Unlike many psalms attributed to David, Psalm 145 was a triumphant psalm of praise, and its central focus was God’s character and attributes. The psalm began with David promising to praise the LORD every day and forever (Psalm 145:1-2). Notice the balance of the Psalm answers the question:

Why Should We Praise the LORD?(Psalm 145:3-20)

We should praise the LORD because He is great (Psalm 145:3) and strong (Psalm 145:4). He is gracious, compassionate, patient, and merciful (Psalm 145:8). He is “good to all” and tender (145:9). He supports the weak (Psalm 145:14), sustains all who look to Him for help (Psalm 145:15). He provides and satisfies “the desire of every living thing” (Psalm 145:15-16).

“The LORD is righteous in all His ways, and holy in all his works” (Psalm 145:17). When His children call upon Him, He is near (Psalm 145:18). He answers the prayers of “all them that call upon Him” (145:19), and preserves “all them that love Him” (Psalm 145:20a). The LORD is just, and “all the wicked will He destroy” (145:20b).

David ended the Psalm, saying, “My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord: And let all flesh bless his holy name for ever and ever” (Psalm 145:21).

Closing thoughts –

David modeled for believers how we should worship and pray to the LORD. We should not mindlessly “go through the motions” and give little thought to the words of our prayers or the songs of our praise. Instead, we should consciously meditate upon the great truths God has revealed about His character and attributes. Who He is should prompt passionate, energetic praise of His name.

The LORD is great and worthy of our praise!

Copyright © 2023 – Travis D. Smith

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