“Of the priests: Jedaiah, Jehoiarib, Jachin, and Azariah the son of Hilkiah, son of Meshullam, son of Zadok, son of Meraioth, son of Ahitub, the chief officer of the house of God; and Adaiah the son of Jeroham, son of Pashhur, son of Malchijah, and Maasai the son of Adiel, son of Jahzerah, son of Meshullam, son of Meshillemith, son of Immer; besides their kinsmen, heads of their fathers’ houses, 1,760, mighty men for the work of the service of the house of God…
“The gatekeepers were Shallum, Akkub, Talmon, Ahiman, and their kinsmen (Shallum was the chief)… So they and their sons were in charge of the gates of the house of the Lord, that is, the house of the tent, as guards. The gatekeepers were on the four sides, east, west, north, and south…
“Some of them had charge of the utensils of service, for they were required to count them when they were brought in and taken out. Others of them were appointed over the furniture and over all the holy utensils, also over the fine flour, the wine, the oil, the incense, and the spices. Others, of the sons of the priests, prepared the mixing of the spices, and Mattithiah, one of the Levites, the firstborn of Shallum the Korahite, was entrusted with making the flat cakes. Also some of their kinsmen of the Kohathites had charge of the showbread, to prepare it every Sabbath.
“Now these, the singers, the heads of fathers’ houses of the Levites, were in the chambers of the temple free from other service, for they were on duty day and night.” 1 Chronicles 9:10-13,17,23-24,28-33
It took a lot of hands to keep the house of the Lord, and He was precise to make every provision for its smooth running. He ordained decor and objects and pieces and processes to their worship so all priests could have a part of the ongoing holy service. Each has something to offer, every one is necessary. The God of order and beauty is also the God who uses His people to serve His purposes today.
Our churches require many hands to be effective for worship of the Lord and His ministries. Guardians hold a special role: Gatekeepers of the immutable Word, those who present it, and the long-term mission. Gatekeepers watch for intruders, assess threats, defend and protect, stand in the gap. They keep clear the mission and set boundaries against detours. How are we gatekeeping our ministries, teaching, and conversations against error, slander, distraction, or gossip? How vigilant are we to watch and pray for the spiritual health of God’s people, that none would sin?
God also assigns us as stewards of His means of grace, those disciplines that gather the flock, hone our discipleship, further our sanctification, and magnify His renown. Whether it is ours to keep order, prepare for sacrifice, or serve practical needs of others, we are each priests in the Body that all may declare His praise. Are we obeying in a manner that enhances worship and honors Him? (1 Peter 2:5,9)
Father, instill in me the will not to be served, but mightily to serve Your holy purposes. Build up Your church to boldly bring You praise in the world. (Mark 10:45)