2 Chronicles 5:12-13
Also the Levites which were the singers, all of them of Asaph, of Heman, of Jeduthun, with their sons and their brothers…
I. "THEY LIFTED UP THEIR VOICE." Those whom nature has gifted with a voice ought to lift it up not only in making responses but also in singing the praises of their Creator and Redeemer. The choir should not be deputed by the congregation to praise God in their stead. Its office is rather to lead their united praises.
II. In acceptable worship the praise of THE HEART MUST ACCOMPANY THE PRAISE OF THE LIPS: "They were as one to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the Lord." Their hearts were all at one "with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music." Those who sing loudly the praises of God should let heart, lips, and life be a well-tuned instrument devoted to the service of the sanctuary. The man who sings beautiful words with an angel's tongue, and leads an unholy life, pronounces his own condemnation.
III. THOSE WHO ARE ANXIOUS THAT THE PRAISE OF THE HEART SHOULD ACCOMPANY THE PRAISE OF THE LIPS WILL FIND THEMSELVES GREATLY AIDED BY INSTRUMENTS OF MUSIC: "They lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music." Instrumental music unites voices which would otherwise be discordant, and removes the diffidence of those who might otherwise be silent in the service of the sanctuary. Instrumental music removes weariness from the mind, banishes wandering thoughts, and enables us to mount above the world and the things of the world, and to hold high converse with the adorable Trinity. It also conveys to us a lively image of the worship and services of the heavenly sanctuary. (Revelation 14:2, 8). We must learn to distinguish between the natural effect of music on the senses and the spiritual effect of Divine truths on the soul.
IV. THE SUBJECT-MATTER OF PRAISE: God's goodness in creation and redemption.
V. GOD'S TESTIMONY OF APPROBATION: the cloud filled the house. This was designed to impress their senses with an awful reverence of God.
VI. THE TIME WHEN GOD GAVE THEM THIS REMARKABLE TOKEN OF HIS APPROBATION: "When they lifted up their voice." Conclusion: "So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud." These show that, when Christ should come, the priests should not minister in their former manner. We are now called upon to renounce every altar but the Cross, and every sacrifice but the Victim which bled on Calvary. As s spiritual priesthood, we have "to present our bodies a living sacrifice."
(Canon Arthur R. Pennington.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Also the Levites which were the singers, all of 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 sounding with trumpets:)
WEB: also the Levites who were the singers, all of them, even Asaph, Heman, Jeduthun, and their sons and their brothers, arrayed in fine linen, with cymbals and stringed instruments and harps, stood at the east end of the altar, and with them one hundred twenty priests sounding with trumpets;)