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GOOD MORNING, SIBLINGS!
Today’s readings are Genesis 38-40
Judah is taking a starring role in our reading now and it is very important to understand his significance – both for his own role and for that of his brother, Joseph.
From Judah will come the Jewish people and from them the Messiah. This is, of course, the continuation of the covenant promise that began with his great grandfather, Abraham.
His brother, Joseph, is going to be the one who brings us the tribe of Ephraim and together Judah and Ephraim will become the two dominant tribes of Israel – a status that still carries over to our time.
Not only will these two tribes play key roles throughout our history as God’s people, but Ezekiel 37 contains a prophesy wherein these two tribes join together for eternity in the promised land and are ruled over forever by a king who is a descendant of King David.
Who is Ephraim? That is a significant question in more ways than either of us can understand. A lot is happening with this tribe right now so no matter what you do, remember that name. It will likely grow in significance for you as you continue to read and as current events continue to unfold in our own time.
Genesis 38:1 we see that Judah “turned aside” from his brothers to an Adullamite, whose name was Hirah. We don’t get a lot of information on this guy but he is mentioned three times in this chapter. The feeling is that by Judah having to turn aside from his brothers to a “certain Adullamite” (as ESV states it) combined with the implication of this Adullamite being with Judah at some key moments in his story, this is one of those friends who is the kind of bad influence we’d all be better off not having in our lives. I imagine him as the “fun” friend when Judah felt his wiser friends were stick in the muds.
Genesis 39:1 When you see mention of a group of people by name, pause to ask your self what that name is telling you about their ancestry. For example, the Ishmaelites in this verse. This is telling us that these people are the descendants of Ishmael, and thereby actually cousins to Israel. It is just good practice to pause and think over the names and connect the dots in your head. This will help it all make more sense as we move along. Ishmaelites = Ishmael. Edomites = Esau, etc.
Judah and his sons – Today’s story has heart wrenching twists and turns. There are rabbit trails galore for you to take on your own. One particularly interesting one is to look into the meanings of the names of each of Judah’s sons.
But YHWH was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love and gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. Genesis 39:21
This is important to remember, y’all. When we go through dark times, difficult situations, the Father remains with us if we remain in Him. He shows us steadfast love. Think about that. A love that is determined, firmly fixed in place, not subject to change: steadfast. That is who our Father is: A steadfast Father of loving kindness to His children. We should consider that today. Deepen our connection to that reality. And then, we need to determine to be steadfast with Him as well.
With all the Father does, He still never fails to take time for us each day. In loving response, what a terribly small thing it is for us to also make time for him each day by reading His Word.
DIVE INTO THE WORD TODAY!
I want to encourage you, if you are behind or if you are hesitating to start because you feel you are so far behind and must catch up first, PLEASE DON’T DO THAT. Just start where we are. It is a dangerous trap to tell yourself you have to catch up and this is a wonderful tool that the enemy uses to keep us out of the Word. We will read the entire Bible again so just dive in where we are, right now, and we will come back around the bend next year and you can read what you missed.
Please don’t try to play catch up – Start today, where we are, and join us on this amazing journey!
For additional thought, you might enjoy this Sidebar:
The Seal of Judah
Test everything, hold tight to what is good. ~ 1 Thess 5:21
And May YHWH Bless the reading of His word!