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Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament, by Carl Friedrich Keil and Franz Delitzsh, [1857-78], at

1 Chronicles Chapter 29

1 Chronicles 29:1

ch1 29:1

Contributions of the collected princes for the building of the temple. - David then turns to the assembled princes to press upon them the furthering of the building of the temple. After referring to the youth of his son, and to the greatness of the work to be accomplished (Ch1 29:1), he mentions what materials he has prepared for the building of the temple (Ch1 29:2); then further states what he has resolved to give in addition from his private resources (Ch1 29:4); and finally, after this introduction, calls upon those present to make a voluntary collection for this great work (Ch1 29:5). The words, "as only one hath God chosen him," form a parenthesis, which is to be translated as a relative sentence for "my son, whom alone God hath chosen." ורך נער as in Ch1 22:5. The work is great, because not for man the palace, scil. is intended, i.e., shall be built, but for Jahve God. הבּירה, the citadel, the palace; a later word, generally used of the residence of the Persian king (Est 1:2, Est 1:5; Est 2:3; Neh 1:1), only in Neh 2:8 of the citadel by the temple; here transferred to the temple as the glorious palace of Jahve, the God-king of Israel. With Ch1 29:2, cf. Ch1 22:14. וגו לזּהב הזּהב, the gold for the golden, etc., i.e., for the vessels and ornaments of gold, cf. Ch1 28:14. וּמלּוּאים שׁהם אבני as in Exo 25:7; Exo 35:9, precious stones for the ephod and choshen. שׁהם, probably beryl. מּלּוּאים אבני, stones of filling, that is, precious stones which are put in settings. פּוּך אבני, stones of pigment, i.e., ornament, conjecturally precious stones which, from their black colour, were in appearance like פּוּך, stibium, a common eye pigment (see Kg2 9:30). רקמה אבני, stones of variegated colour, i.e., with veins of different colours. יקרה אבן, precious stones, according to Ch2 3:6, for ornamenting the walls. שׁישׁ אבני, white marble stones.

1 Chronicles 29:3

ch1 29:3

"And moreover, because I have pleasure in the house of my God, there is to me a treasure of gold and silver; it have I appointed for the house of my God over and above all that..." הכינותי with כּל without the relative, cf. Ch1 15:12.

1 Chronicles 29:4

ch1 29:4

Gold 3000 talents, i.e., about 13 1/2, or, reckoning according to the royal shekel, 6 3/4 millions of pounds; 7000 talents of silver, circa 2 1/2 or 1 1/4 millions of pounds: see on Ch1 22:14. Gold of Ophir, i.e., the finest, best gold, corresponding to the pure silver. לטוּח, to overlay the inner walls of the houses with gold and silver leaf. הבּתים as in Ch1 28:11, the different buildings of the temple. The walls of the holy place and of the most holy, of the porch and of the upper chambers, were overlaid with gold (cf. Ch2 3:4-6, Ch2 3:8-9), and probably only the inner walls of the side buildings.

1 Chronicles 29:5

ch1 29:5

לזּהב לזּהב, for every golden thing, etc., cf. Ch1 29:2. וּלכל־מלאכה, and in general for every work to be wrought by the hands of the artificer. וּמי, who then is willing (uw expressing it as the consequence). To fill one's hand to the Lord, means to provide oneself with something which one brings to the Lord; see on Exo 32:29. The infinitive מלּאות occurs also in Exo 31:5 and Dan 9:4, and along with מלּא, Ch2 13:9.

1 Chronicles 29:6

ch1 29:6

The princes follow the example, and willingly respond to David's call. האבות שׂרי = האבות ראשׁי, Ch1 24:31; Ch1 27:1, etc. הם מלאכת ולשׂרי, and as regards the princes of the work of the king. The למּלך וּמקנה רכוּשׁ שׂרי, Ch1 28:1, the officials enumerated in Ch1 27:25-31 are meant; on ל see on Ch1 28:21. They gave 5000 talents of gold (22 1/2 or 11 1/2 millions of pounds), and 1000 darics = 11 1/2 millions of pounds. אדרכּון, with א prosth. here and in Ezr 8:27, and דּרכּמון, Ezr 2:69; Neh 7:70., does not correspond to the Greek δραχμή, Arab. dirhem, but to the Greek δαρεικός, as the Syrian translation derîkônā', Ezr 8:27, shows; a Persian gold coin worth about 22s. 6d. See the description of these coins, of which several specimens still exist, in Cavedoni bibl. Numismatik, bers. von A. Werlhof, S. 84ff.; J. Brandis, das Mnz-Mass und Gewishtssystem in Vorderasien (1866), S. 244; and my bibl. Archol. 127, 3. "Our historian uses the words used in his time to designate the current gold coins, without intending to assume that there were darics in use in the time of David, to state in a way intelligible to his readers the amount of the sum contributed by the princes" (Bertheau). This perfectly correct remark does not, however, explain why the author of the Chronicle has stated the contribution in gold and that in silver in different values, in talents and in darics, since the second cannot be an explanation of the first, the two sums being different. Probably the sum in darics is the amount which they contributed in gold pieces received as coins; the talents, on the other hand, probably represent the weight of the vessels and other articles of gold which they brought as offerings for the building. The amount contributed in silver is not large when compared with that in gold: 10,000 talents = 3,500,000, or one half that amount. The contribution in copper also, 18,000 talents, is not very large. Besides these, those who had stones, i.e., precious stones, also brought them. אתּו הנּמצא, that was found with him, for: that which he (each one) had of stones they gave. The sing. אתּו is to be taken distributively, and is consequently carried on in the plural, נתנוּ; cf. Ew. 319, a. אבנים is accus. of subordination. יד על נתן, to give over for administration (Ew. 282, b). יחיאל, the Levite family of this name which had the oversight of the treasures of the house of God (Ch1 26:21.).

1 Chronicles 29:9

ch1 29:9

The people and the king rejoiced over this willingness to give. שׁלם בּלב, as in Ch1 28:9.

1 Chronicles 29:10

ch1 29:10

David's thanksgiving prayer. - David gives fitting expression to his joy on the success of the deepest wish of his heart, in a prayer with which he closes the last parliament of his reign. Since according to the divine decree, not he, the man of war, but his son, the peace-king Solomon, was to build a temple to the Lord, David had taken it upon himself to prepare as far as possible for the carrying out of the work. He had also found the princes and chiefs of the people willing to further it, and to assist his son Solomon in it. In this the pious and grey-haired servant of the Lord saw a special proof of the divine favour, for which he must thank God the Lord before the whole congregation. He praises Jahve, "the God of Israel our father," Ch1 29:10, or, as it is in Ch1 29:18, "the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, our fathers." Jahve had clearly revealed himself to David and his people as the God of Israel and of the patriarchs, by fulfilling in so glorious a manner to the people of Israel, by David, the promises made to the patriarchs. God the Lord had not only by David made His people great and powerful, and secured to them the peaceful possession of the good land, by humbling all their enemies round about, but He had also awakened in the heart of the people such love to and trust in their God, that the assembled dignitaries of the kingdom showed themselves perfectly willing to assist in furthering the building of the house of God. In this God had revealed His greatness, power, glory, etc., as David (in Ch1 29:11, Ch1 29:12) acknowledges with praise: "Thine, Jahve, is the greatness," etc. הנּצח, according to the Aramaic usage, gloria, splendour, honour. כל כּי, yea all, still dependent on לך at the commencement of the sentence, so that we do not need to supply לך after כּי. "Thine is the dominion, and the raising of oneself to be head over all." In His ממלכה God reveals His greatness, might, glory, etc. ממנשּׂא is not a participle requiring אתּה, "thou art," to be supplied (Berth.), but an appellative, an Aramaic infinitive, - the raising oneself (Ew. 160, e).

1 Chronicles 29:12

ch1 29:12

"From Thee came the riches and the glory ..., and in Thy hand is it (it lies) to make all things great and strong."

1 Chronicles 29:13

ch1 29:13

For this we must thank God, and sing praise to His holy name. By the partic. מודים, from הודה, confess, praise, the praising of God is characterized as an enduring praise, always rising anew.

1 Chronicles 29:14

ch1 29:14

For man of himself can give nothing: "What am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to show ourselves so liberal?" כּוח עצר כּוח, to hold strength together; both to have power to do anything (here and Ch2 2:5; Ch2 22:9), and also to retain strength (Ch2 13:20; Dan 10:8, Dan 10:16; Dan 11:6), only found in Daniel and in the Chronicle. התנדּב, to show oneself willing, especially in giving. כּזאת refers to the contribution to the building of the temple (Ch1 29:3-8). From Thy hand, i.e., that which is received from Thee, have we given.

1 Chronicles 29:15

ch1 29:15

For we are strangers (as Psa 39:13), i.e., in this connection we have no property, no enduring possession, since God had only given them the usufruct of the land; and as of the land, so also of all the property of man, it is only a gift committed to us by God in usufruct. The truth that our life is a pilgrimage (Heb 11:12-14), is presented to us by the brevity of life. As a shadow, so swiftly passing away, are our days upon the earth (cf. Job 8:9; Psa 90:9., Psa 102:12; Psa 144:4). מקוה ואין, and there is no trust, scil. in the continuance of life (cf. Jer 14:8).

1 Chronicles 29:16

ch1 29:16

All the riches which we have prepared for the building of the temple come from the hand of God. The Keth. הוּא is neuter, the Keri הוּא corresponds to ההמון.

1 Chronicles 29:17

ch1 29:17

Before God, who searches the heart and loves uprightness, David can declare that he has willingly given in uprightness of heart, and that the people also have, to his joy, shown equal willingness. כּל־אלּה, all the treasures enumerated (Ch1 29:3-8). The plural הנּמצאוּ refers to עמּך, and the demonstrative ה stands for אשׁר as in Ch1 26:28.

1 Chronicles 29:18

ch1 29:18

He prays that God may enable the people ever to retain this frame of heart. זאת is more closely defined by מח ליצר, viz., the frame of the thoughts of the heart of Thy people. "And direct their heart (the people's heart) to Thee," cf. Sa1 7:3.

1 Chronicles 29:19

ch1 29:19

And to Solomon may God give a whole (undivided) heart, that he may keep all the divine commands and do them, and build the temple. שׁלם לב as in Ch1 29:9. הכּל לעשׂות, that he may do all, scil. that the commands, testimonies, and statutes require. For הבּירה, see Ch1 29:1.

1 Chronicles 29:20

ch1 29:20

Close of the public assembly. - Ch1 29:20. At the conclusion of the prayer, David calls upon the whole assembly to praise God; which they do, bowing before God and the king, and worshipping. וישׁתּחווּ יקּדוּ, connected as in Exo 4:31; Gen 43:28, etc.

Ch1 29:21

To seal their confession, thus made in word and deed, the assembled dignitaries prepared a great sacrificial feast to the Lord on the following day. They sacrificed to the Lord sacrifices, viz., 1000 bullocks, 1000 rams, and 1000 lambs as burnt-offering, with drink-offerings to correspond, and sacrifices, i.e., thank-offerings (שׁלמים), in multitude for all Israel, i.e., so that all those present could take part in the sacrificial meal prepared from these sacrifices. While זבהים in the first clause is the general designation of the bloody offerings as distinguished from the meat-offerings, in the last clause it is restricted by the contrast with עלות and the שׁלמים, from which joyous sacrificial meals were prepared.

Ch1 29:22

On this day they made Solomon king a second time, anointing him king to the Lord, and Zadok to be priest, i.e., high priest. The שׁנית refers back to Ch1 23:1, and the first anointing of Solomon narrated in Kg1 1:32. ליהיה, not: before Jahve, which ל cannot signify, but: "to Jahve," in accordance with His will expressed in His choice of Solomon (Ch1 28:4). The ל before צדוק is nota accus., as in לשׁלמה. From the last words we learn that Zadok received the high-priesthood with the consent of the estates of the kingdom.

1 Chronicles 29:23

ch1 29:23

Solomon's accession and David's death, with a statement as to the length of his reign and the sources of the history. - Ch1 29:23-25. The remarks on Solomon's accession and reign contained in these verses are necessary to the complete conclusion of a history of David's reign, for they show how David's wishes for his son Solomon, whom Jahve chose to be his successor, were fulfilled. On יהוה על־כּסּא see the commentary on Ch1 28:5. ויּצלח, he was prosperous, corresponds to the hope expressed by David (Ch1 22:13), which was also fulfilled by the submission of all princes and heroes, and also of all the king's sons, to King Solomon (Ch1 29:24). There can hardly, however, be in these last words a reference to the frustrating of Adonijah's attempted usurpation of the throne (cf. Kg1 1:15.). תּחת יד נתן = to submit. But this meaning is not derived (Rashi) from the custom of taking oaths of fidelity by clasping of hands, for this custom cannot be certainly proved to have existed among the Israelites; still less can it have arisen from the ancient custom mentioned in Gen 24:2, Gen 24:9; Gen 47:29, of laying the hand under the thigh of the person to whom one swore in making promises with oath. The hand, as the instrument of all activity, is here simply a symbol of power.

1 Chronicles 29:25

ch1 29:25

Jahve made Solomon very great, by giving him the glory of the kingdom, as no king before him had had it. כּל is to be taken along with לא, nullus, and does not presuppose a number of kings before Solomon; it involves only more than one. Before him, Saul, Ishbosheth, and David had been kings, and the kingship of the latter had been covered with glory.

1 Chronicles 29:26

ch1 29:26

כּל־ישׂראל על (as in Ch1 11:1; Ch1 12:38), referring to the fact that David had been for a time king only over Judah, but had been recognised at a later time by all the tribes of Israel as king. The length of his reign as in Kg1 2:11. In Hebron seven years; according to Sa2 5:5, more exactly seven years and six months.

1 Chronicles 29:28

ch1 29:28

On וכבוד עשׁר cf. Kg1 3:13; Ch2 17:5.

1 Chronicles 29:29

ch1 29:29

On the authorities cited see the Introduction. וגו כּל־מלכוּתו עם goes with כּתוּבים הנּם: the acts of David ... are written ... together with his whole reign and his power, and the times which went over him. העתּים, the times, with their joys and sorrows, as in Psa 31:16; Job 24:1. The kingdoms of the lands (cf. Ch2 12:8; Ch2 17:10; Ch2 20:29) are the kingdoms with which the Israelites under David came into contact-Philistia, Edom, Moab, Ammon, Aram.

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