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writing of David king of Israel, and accòrding to the writing of Solomon bis fon, and stand in the holy place, according to the diwifrons of the families of the fathers of your brethren the people, and after the division off the families of the Levites; for kill the paffover, &c.
* And, by what follows, we find, that; upon such oceasions, the Duty of the Le vites, among other Things, was to skiri the facrifices. So the service was prepared, and the Priests food in their place, and the Levices in their courses, according to the king's commandment. And they killed the paflover 3 and the Priests sprinkled the blood from their hands, and the Levites flayed Them... of And, by what Ezekiel (whom we must allow to have been well vers'd in these Matters, being one of the Tribe of Levi) fays, in relation to the Service of his vifionary Temple, these laborious and fordid Offices were perform'd by such of the Priests, whose Behaviour' requir'd that they should be degraded or punish'd. Thus, speaking of those that had apostatiz'd to Idolatry, and afterward defir'd to be reada *** U
mitted to the Worship of the
qe true God. Thus faith the LORD God, the Levites (in xliv. 10, a large acceptation) that are gone away far &c.
from me, wben Israel went aftray, which, went astray from me, after their idols, they Mall ever bear their iniquity. Yet Mall they be ministers in my sanctuary, baving charge at the gates of the boufe, and ministring ta the house : they Ball pay the burnt-offering: and the facrifice, for the people ; and they shall stand before them to minister unto them. And they Mall not come near unto mezi: to do the office of a Priest unto me, nor to come near to any of my holy Things, in the most holy place: But they shall bear their Mame, and their abominations, which they bave committed.
The SI N G E R S.
The Order of Singers was instituted by.. David, to perform Services of Thanktgiving, and to fing. Praises unto the LORD, in the highest Perfection that human skill, either by Voice or Instrument, was capable of. The whole Book of
Hårp, without Doubt,
Psalms appears to have been compos’d for this kind of Devotion. And David him self, who had the greatest Hand in them, and was moreover a Skilful Player upon the Services in the House of God. As the Titles of many of them, directed to some one of the Chief Musicians, do sufficiently
declare. And we have an Instance; where E: it is faid; David delivered this Psalm, to Chron.
thank the LORD, into the band of Afaph
and bis brethren. 1 The Principal Persons of this Order, 1 and who had the Superintendency over all the Rest, were Heman and Afaph of the 1. Chron. Line of Gershon; and Ethan or Jedu- 44. Xiv. thun,' of the Line of Merari. These, with 1, &c. their Sons, made Four and Twenty Courses, Twelve in a Course; who were all under the hands of their fathers, for Jong, in the house of the Lord, with cymbals, psalteries, and harps, for the service of
the bouse of God, according to the king's oroder, to Asaph, Jeduthun, and Heman.
For these Courses they cast lots over
lech, and the chief of the fathers of the Priests and Levites.
We find the Performances of this kind mention'd in several Places. At the Dedication of the Temple by Solomon, among
other pompous Preparations, we are told; 2 Chron. The Levices which were fingers, all them of
Asaph, of Heman, of Jeduthun, with their Sons and their brethren, being arrayed in white linen, having cymbals, and psalteries, and harps, stood at the east end of the altar; and with them, an hundred and twenty Priests, founding with trumpets, were as one; to make one found to be beard, in praisng and thanking the LORD; and they lift up their voice, with the trumpets, and cymbals, and instruments of music, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever.
And when Jebofhaphat King of fudab went out to Baccle against the Children of
Animon and Moab and Mount Seir, he 2 Chron.
consulted with the people, and appointed fingers unto the LORD, that should praise the beauty of boliness, as they went out be
army, and say, Praise the LORD, for his mercy endureth for ever. And when
they began to fing, and to praise, the LORD fet ambushments against the children of Ammion, Moab, and mount Seir, and they wera fmitten.
So at the Building of the second Temple, When the builders laid the foundation Ezra. ji, of the temple of the LORD, they set the Priests, " in their apparel, with trumpets, and the Levices, the fons of Afaph, with cymbals, to praise the LORD, after the ordinance of David king of Ifrael. And they fung together, by course, in praising and giving thanks unto the LORD; because he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever; &c. Again, it is said ; In the days of David and Neh. xļi. Afaph, of old, there were chief of the 46. fingers, and songs of praise and thanksgiving unto God.
Encourag'd by these Examples, therefore, and because the Worship of God ought to be folemniz'd, in the best manner we are able to devise,' (not because God wants any of our Services, but because it behoves us to exert our felves upon all such Occasions, to the uçmoft and best of our Skill; however when we have done our best, vře may be Bue' unprofitable Servants) The