J. G. Bellett.
Christian Friend vol. 20, p. 191.
There is something peculiarly sweet in the songs of the sons of Korah, and few more precious than Ps. 84. But who are these sons of Korah? Many of our readers will say, "Sons of Korah; why, did not the sons of Korah go down alive into the pit when the earth opened her mouth and swallowed those wicked men Korah, Dathan, and Abiram, and all their wives and children?" Let us turn to the Scriptures and read Numbers 16. How terrible is sin in the sight of the Lord! "Depart, I pray you, from the tents of these wicked men, and touch nothing of theirs, lest ye be consumed in all their sins. So they gat up from the tabernacle of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram, on every side." Now mark in the next clause Korah is omitted. In verse 25 there is no statement that the sons of Korah went down with their father; but in Num. 26:11 we read, "Notwithstanding the children of Korah died not." Yes, in the riches of sovereign grace they were saved from going down alive into the pit. And this was not all. As part of the family of Kohath they had given to them the cities of refuge, of which Hebron is named first. (1 Chr. 6:54-67.) Oh, how our God delights in mercy! Grace spares them from the pit, and gives them the place of Abraham; for Abraham dwelt in Hebron. (Gen. 13:18; Gen. 18:1.) Have we been saved from the pit, children of wrath, even as others, brought in sovereign grace to dwell in the heavenlies, not with Abraham, but in Christ? Oh, blest city of eternal refuge, Jerusalem on high! Saved from the lowest depths of the pit, these very sons of Korah "were over the work of the service, keepers of the gates of the tabernacle . . . had the oversight of the gates of the house of the Lord . . . and were over the chambers and treasuries of the house of God." What a stewardship! "All the instruments of the sanctuary, and the fine flour, and the wine, and the oil, and the frankincense, and the spices." (1 Chr. 9:19-32.) What types of instruction to us! Saved from the lowest depths of hell, and brought to dwell in the eternal refuge of the presence of God by the blood of Jesus. And now what a stewardship — all the riches of the glories of Christ committed to us, who were children of the pit.
Is Christ thus precious to us? And does not all this tell out the varied ministries of the redeemed children of God? All these precious treasures of Christ are committed to us. How great the responsibility! how rich the privilege! Strength was given to these sons of Korah. They were "mighty men of valour," "strong men," "able men for strength for the service," and each had his appointed service. (1 Chr. 26:1-20.) The royal guards of the hidden king, guards of the house, and guards of the foundation. (2 Chr. 23:3, 4, 5-19.) Saved from the pit, we are called to be the royal guards of the hidden but coming King of glory — guards of the house of God, guards of foundation truth. One more privilege of these sons of Korah with their brethren — sanctified in holiness, they had the happy service of distributing the oblations of the Lord, and the most holy things. Oh for more whole-hearted devotedness to Him whom we shall soon meet in the air! J. G. B.