Daily Reading: 1 Chronicles 8, 9; John 16
All these who were chosen to be gatekeepers at the thresholds were 212. These were enrolled by genealogy in their villages, whom David and Samuel the seer appointed in their office of trust. (1 Chronicles 9:22, NASB95)
1 Chronicles 9:17-34 list the details of those who were chosen as gatekeepers of the temple. The writer details their authority and tasks.
- The authority of the gatekeepers rests in their appointment by God. This was symbolized by their genealogical descent through the Levitical branch of Korah (1 Chron. 9:18-19).
- The position goes back to Phinehas (1 Chron. 9:20), who acted as a gatekeeper to the holiness of God (Num. 25:1-13). The note that “the Lord was with him” demonstrates God’s empowerment of this position.
- David and Samuel worked together on organizing the temple and priests, including the gatekeepers (1 Chron. 9:22).
- The gatekeepers had various duties.
- The most important task was providing access to the temple (1 Chron. 9:27). God’s holiness and man’s sinfulness mandated that the place of His presence be carefully controlled. In the garden of Eden, God stationed cherubim and the flaming sword to guard the way to the tree of life (Gen. 3:24).
- They also supported the temple ministries by maintaining the furniture, implements, and offering supplies needed in the worship of the Lord (1 Chron. 9:29-30).
- Others baked the showbread that was placed in God’s presence (1 Chron. 9:32; Lev. 24:5-8).
- Some gatekeepers were singers, who were engaged in their work day and night.
In the NT, all are priests, called and anointed by God for His work (Eph. 4:1; 1 Pet. 2:9), and each one is to serve according to the grace given to Him (1 Pet. 4:10). We are all members of one body, but not all have the same function (Rom. 12:4-8). There are different leadership gifts (Eph. 4:11), and different spiritual gifts (1 Cor. 12:7-11), but all must be devoted to maintaining God’s holiness. We are all gatekeepers of God’s presence and holy name. What gifts has God given you? To what roles has God appointed you? Are you devoted to holiness, demonstrating a lifestyle of purity?