Who was Asaph?

What Asaph is it who wrote the Psalms bearing such a name?
There seems no reasonable room for doubt that the Psalmist is Asaph —son of Berachiah, a Levite of the family of Gershon, one of the leaders of David’s choir (see 1 Chronicles 6:39). The only other Asaph is generally known as “the Recorder,” but this seems to be based on a mistake, owing to a certain ambiguity in the English version—it seems more correct to understand Joah as the recorder, of whom Asaph (quite possibly the one mentioned above) was the father or progenitor. In any case, if they are distinct persons, the role of psalmist fits in better with the first named. He was then the author of Psalm 50: , and of the first eleven Psalms of Book Three. There are passages which must be understood prophetically whether the author lived in the days of David or of Hezekiah (e.g., Psalm 74:6; Psalm 80:16). There is a didactic, historic character about Asaph’s Psalms. He was, like Apollos, “mighty in the Scriptures,” and he applied them to the present need.

W.H.