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May 17

1 Chronicles 1, Luke 9:37-56

Thought from Today’s Old Testament Passage:

Why are there so many genealogies in 1 & 2 Chronicles? The Chronicles were apparently compiled by Ezra in the middle of the fifth century B.C., or at least by a contemporary of his. After the long ordeal of the Babylonian captivity,… a group of Jewish colonists was led back by Zerubbabel and Jeshua to establish a new commonwealth of Israel in their ruined homeland. The Israelites had lost every material possession—every building, every home—as a result of the Chaldean devastation. All that was left were the people, their memories, their traditions, and their Bible—and, of course, the God who had given it to them and who had kept His promise by restoring them to their land after the Exile was over. It was therefore of utmost importance to establish their lines of descent, from Abraham and the twelve sons of Jacob, and from the later ancestors to whom specific territories, cities, and towns had been assigned back in the days of Joshua.

This emphasis on genealogies continues even until New Testament times, for early in Matthew and Luke we find the lines of descent recorded for our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ—the son of David, the son of Abraham, the son of Adam. Jesus’ human ancestry was very important for His status as the Son of Man, the Messiah, the Savior of all true believers, both from Israel and from the Gentile.

(Gleason L. Archer, Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1982), p. 216)

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