Today's Manna

January 28, 2017
The Lion of the Tribe of Jose...I mean Judah
by Eric Doucet
Scripture Reading: Genesis 38

Today’s truth may be a little too much for some, but it’s in the Bible so we have to learn it. Here it is: Genesis 38 follows Genesis 37. That’s your lesson for today. Thanks for reading.

That’s what I would like to write today, given the sordid account found in Genesis 38. This chapter contains subject matter not usually discussed in public, in mixed company, or with anyone under 18 around. Yet, God records the details on the pages of Scripture in order to reveal just how crude, shameful, and sinful fallen humanity can be.

When I mentioned Genesis 37 was followed by Genesis 38 it was to help us understand the purpose of this chapter. God’s purpose for recording these events was to provide a stark contrast between the indecent character of Judah and the impeccable character of Joseph in the previous and subsequent chapters.

After reading this shameful account, it is shocking to read the following words in the first chapter of Matthew’s Gospel:

“(1) The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ…(2) Abraham begot Isaac, Isaac begot Jacob, and Jacob begot Judah and his brothers. (3) Judah begot Perez and Zerah by Tamar, Perez begot Hezron… (15) …begot Matthan, and Matthan begot Jacob. (16) And Jacob begot Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus who is called Christ.” (emphasis added)

The answer to your question is yes, indeed! Your question was, “Did God really choose Judah over Joseph to be the progenitor of Jesus Christ?” God didn’t just pick Judah to continue the line of the promised Deliverer (Gen 3:15), He also did so using the events recorded in Genesis 38! Judah, followed by Perez, one of the twin sons born to Judah and Tamar, became the line through which the Deliverer would pass.

How can we explain God choosing Judah over Joseph? I can explain God’s choice of Judah in the same way I can explain God choosing me, or any other sinner-made-a-saint with one word - grace! God’s amazing, wonderful, transforming, shocking, glorious grace!

The raw truth is that none of us, not one, because of our sin, deserve the love of God, or the death of Christ for our sin, or the free pardon of our sins through Christ, or the privilege of being children of God, or the hope of being heirs of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ…

(4) But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, (5) even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), (6) and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, (7) that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. (8) For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, (9) not of works, lest anyone should boast. (Eph 2:4-9)

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