What was the gatekeeper's job in the Old Testament?


2 Kings 7:11

ESV - 11 Then the gatekeepers called out, and it was told within the king's household.

Clarify Share Report Asked May 28 2018 Stringio Robert Stewart

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
To my knowledge, the main functions of gatekeepers were:

to control ingress and egress for the area over which they were given charge (that is, to assure that only authorized individuals were allowed in or out)(In the case of the Temple, this included not allowing those who were seen or known to be ceremonially unclean to enter);

to be the first means of dissemination of news that came to their attention that the people who lived within -- and especially who ruled or were in charge of -- the area that was accessible by the gate that they were guarding needed to know (as shown by the verse cited in the question);

to be a line of armed defense against those who might attempt to breach the gate by force; and

to note and call out the passage of time for the benefit of the residents of the area over which they were keeping watch.

Jesus also used the term in general reference to an individual who guarded or controlled access to a restricted area (not necessarily a city), such as an enclosed area where animals (such as sheep) were kept (John 10:3), so that thieves would not steal them.

May 28 2018 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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