1David became an old man, so he made his son Solomon the new king of Israel. 2David gathered all the leaders of Israel. He also gathered the priests and Levites. 3David counted the Levites that were 30 years old and older. All together there were 38,000 Levites. 4David said, “24,000 Levites will supervise the work of building the Lord’s temple. 6,000 Levites will be policemen and judges. 54,000 Levites will be gatekeepers. And 4,000 Levites will be musicians. I made special musical instruments for them. They will use those instruments to praise the Lord.” 6David separated the Levites into three groups. They were the family groups of Levi’s three sons, Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. 7From the family group of Gershon there were Ladan and Shimei. 8Ladan had three sons. His oldest son was Jehiel. His other sons were Zethan and Joel. 9Shimei’s sons were Shelomoth, Haziel, and Haran. These three sons were leaders in Ladan’s families. 10Shimei had four sons. They were Jahath, Ziza, Jeush, and Beriah. 11Jahath was the oldest son and Ziza was the second son. But Jeush and Beriah did not have many children. So Jeush and Beriah were counted like one family. 12Kohath had four sons. They were Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel. 13Amram’s sons were Aaron and Moses. Aaron was chosen to be very special. Aaron and his descendants were chosen to be special forever and ever. They were chosen to prepare the holy things for the Lord’s service. Aaron and his descendants were chosen to burn the incense before the Lord. They were chosen to serve the Lord as priests. They were chosen to use the Lord’s name and give blessings to the people forever. 14Moses was the man of God. Moses’s sons were part of the family group of Levi. 15Moses’ sons were Gershom and Eliezer. 16Gershom’s oldest son was Shubael. 17Eliezer’s oldest son was Rehabiah. Eliezer had no other sons. But Rehabiah had very many sons. 18Izhar’s oldest son was Shelomith. 19Hebron’s oldest son was Jeriah. Hebron’s second son was Amariah. Jahaziel was the third son, and Jekameam was the fourth son. 20Uzziel’s oldest son was Micah, and Isshiah was his second son. 21Merari’s sons were Mahli and Mushi. Mahli’s sons were Eleazar and Kish. 22Eleazar died without having sons. He only had daughters. Eleazar’s daughters married their own relatives. Their relatives were Kish’s sons. 23Mushi’s sons were Mahli, Eder, and Jeremoth. There were three sons in all. 24These were Levi’s descendants. They were listed by their families. They were the leaders of families. Each person’s name was listed. The people that were listed were 20 years old or older. They served in the Lord’s temple. 25David had said, “The Lord God of Israel has given peace to his people. The Lord has come to Jerusalem to live there forever. 26So the Levites don’t need to carry the Holy Tent or any of the things used in its services any more.” 27David’s last instructions for the people of Israel was to count the descendants from the family group of Levi. They counted the Levite men that were 20 years old and older. 28The Levites had the job of helping Aaron’s descendants in the service of the Lord’s temple. The Levites also cared for the temple yard and the side rooms in the temple. They had the job of making all holy things pure. It was their job to serve in God’s temple. 29They were responsible for putting the special bread on the table in the temple. They also were responsible for the flour, the grain offerings, and the bread made without yeast. They were also responsible for the baking pans and the mixed offerings. They did all the measuring. 30The Levites stood every morning and gave thanks and praise to the Lord. They also did this every evening. 31The Levites prepared all the burnt offerings to the Lord on the special days of rest, at the New Moon celebrations, and at all the special holidays. They served before the Lord every day. There were special rules for how many Levites should serve each time. 32So the Levites did all the things they were supposed to do. They took care of the Holy Tent. They took care of the Holy Place. And they helped their relatives, ˻the priests,˼ Aaron’s descendants. The Levites helped the priests with the services at the Lord’s temple.
1 Chronicles 23