And they drew out the staves of the ark, that the ends of the staves were seen from the ark before the oracle; but they were not seen without. And there it is to this day.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)And they drew out . . . were seen.—Rather, And the staves were so long that the tips of the staves were seen. &c.
From the ark.—1Kings 8:8, “from the Holy Place.” So the LXX. and four Hebrew MSS. The priests in the great hall could see the tips of the staves projecting within the Holy of Holies; but persons outside (“without”) of the great hall could not see them.
And there it is unto this day.—And it (the ark) remained there unto this day. So Vulg., “fuit itaque arca ibi.” LXX., Syr., Targ., Arab., They—i.e., the poles were there; and so some Heb. MSS., and 1Kings 8:8. This is no doubt right. A letter has fallen out of the Hebrew text. That the chronicler has preserved this remark without modification to suit altered circumstances, and indeed that the compiler of Kings did the same long before him, is a striking instance of the way in which Oriental historiographers are content to borrow with literal exactitude from the works of predecessors, even in cases where such borrowing appears to the modern mind infelicitous.1 Kings 8:8, some read, "the ends of the staves were seen from the Holy place."And they drew out the staves of the ark, that the ends of the staves were seen from the ark before the oracle; but they were not seen without. And there it is unto this day.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)9. And they drew out the staves of the ark] R.V. And the staves were so long.
from the ark] Read (with LXX. and 1 Kings 8:8) from the holy place. One standing in the holy place and looking towards the Holy of Holies could see the heads of the staves.
And there it is unto this day] These words are taken over with the loss of one letter (which here makes the difference between singular and plural) from 1 Kings 8:8, but they are out of place in Chron., for when the Chronicler wrote the ark had long ago disappeared. The vessels which were brought back from the Babylonian captivity are specified in Ezra 1:9-10, but the ark of the covenant is not reckoned among them.Verse 9. - They drew out; i.e. the staves projected. A similar intransitive occurs in Exodus 20:12. Were seen from the ark. The words, "from the ark," are here probably by misposition, and should follow the words, the staves projected; while the parallel tells us what should be in their place here, namely, "from the holy place" (1 Kings 8:8). The confusion and omission will merely lie with some copyists, for five manuscripts show the words "from the holy place." There it is unto this day. The parallel (1 Kings 8:8)reads, "there they are unto this day," i.e. the staves. In either case, whether the ark or the staves were spoken of, the memorandum is exceedingly interesting and noteworthy, as a patent bare copy of an old record dating before the destruction of the temple, on the part of whether the writer of Kings or Chronicles. Plainly the historian touches ground, and shows us that we do also; for it is evident that, far from cunningly devised fable, he has before him in either case an original document. 2 Chronicles 5:2-14), and in connection with this we have the words in which Solomon celebrates the entry of the Lord into the new temple (2 Chronicles 6:1-11). This section has been already commented on in the remarks on 1 Kings 8:1-21, and we have here, consequently, only to set down briefly those discrepancies between our account and that other, which have any influence upon the meaning. - In 2 Chronicles 5:3 the name of the month, האתנים בּירח (1 Kings 8:2), with which the supplementary clause, "that is the seventh month," is there connected, is omitted, so that we must either change החדשׁ into בּחרשׁ, or supply the name of the month; for the festival is not the seventh month, but was held in that month.
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