Friday, December 5, 2014

Journal Through the Bible: Week 89 Wednesday

I Chronicles 9:35-10:14

These verses review the lineage and life of Saul, the first king of Israel. Saul was from the family of the man that settled Gibeon. The verses at the end of chapter 9 are a repeat of chapter 8:29-38 but they contain additional information. For instance, in chapter 8 we are told that the "father of Gibeon" (most likely meaning "the founder of Gibeon") lived in Gibeon but it is not until chapter 9 that we are told that this man was named Jehiel. We are told in both places that his wife was Maachah.

We also now see how Mikloth and his son, Shimeam fit into the genealogy. There was not enough information in chapter 8 to determine his placement. See 8:32 and 9:37-38 plus the genealogy and description of the deeds of these men in Journal Through the Bible: Week 89 Monday (click link) to compare.

If you look back in Judges chapters 19-21 you will see that there was a town named Gibeah that was a very wicked place. We are told in I Samuel 10:26 that Gibeah was Saul's home so it might be that Gibeon and Gibeah are synonymous or at the very least villages close together on the same hill. By comparing these three passages (Judges 19-21, I Samuel 10:26, and I Chronicles 9:35-44) we can assume that someone in Saul's lineage captured a damsel from either Jabesh-gilead or Shiloh and made her his wife. Perhaps the woman was Maachah who was captured and taken as a wife by the Benjamite man named Jehiel who would have been a survivor of the civil war and one of the men hidden in the rock Rimmon.

That could be why these passages consistently record the woman's name. She must have had quite a story and she was King Saul's great grandmother! I suspect she was one of the female children that survived the ambush on the village of Jabesh-gilead since many years later the men of that village made a daring raid after Saul's death to retrieve his body and those of his sons from the Philistines in order to give them a proper burial. (See  I Chronicles 10:11-12 and I Samuel 31:11-13 for that report.) I Chronicles chapter 10 succinctly tells of Saul's death.

Does God issue any commands?

  • God does not speak in this passage.

Does God make any promises?

  • God does not speak; however, we see the promises of God displayed in the lives of both Saul and David. God promised Saul would die because of his disobedience and God promised that David, the son of Jesse, would be the next ruler of Israel.

Does this passage teach anything about Jesus?

  • Saul's lineage demonstrated the works of men. His family came from one of the most despicable events to happen in all of Israel and was the cause of a civil war. In contrast, the lineage of the next king, David, showed the grace of God through whom Jesus descended. Contrast the last chapters of Judges with the book of Ruth to see how works compare to grace. Saul's great grandmother was Maacah, a woman who most likely was vilely captured after a civil war and forced into marriage. David's great grandmother was Ruth, a foreign woman who was offered a marriage of love by her kinsman redeemer. Jesus is our kinsman redeemer.

Does this passage teach anything about yet-future events?

  • Not that I identified.

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Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.
Psalms 19:14 (KJV)