We get to move into clan designations today for the tribe of Judah. I’m going to tell you right now that I’m already drowning in this stuff!
You already know my feelings on genealogy. Now we are moving into an even more confusing area for me. One reason is because names are thrown out there that I can’t trace back to their origins. Verse three is the first example of that. Who is Etam and where dose he fit???
Another question I have is where did the names of the clans come from? When looking at the list of names before the clan name I don’t see a comparable name listed. I tried looking after the clan name is given and I don’t find anything directly correlating there either.
Could I be reading it wrong? Does the language syntax it was originally written follow the syntax of the language I’m reading it in? I feel like I need a ‘secret decoder ring’ to figure this out. I tried using Excel and tracing it out that way and I wound up with so many stops and starts that it is all a jumble. I can’t connect the pieces. Worst ‘jigsaw puzzle’ EVER!
All I can say about this portion of scripture is that it made sense to the author at the time of writing and to the people who knew how to follow it. I’m PRAYING the future chapters on genealogy aren’t as convoluted as this one.
The only ‘story’ this whole section tells is of Jabez. He called on God and asked for an increase and protection from pain. It sounds like his birth was extremely painful for his mother and she named him for it. It sounds like he wanted God to remove the stain of pain from his life. And God granted his prayer. Where he came from and where he fits in Judah’s genealogy/clan structure is beyond me. We aren’t told and I’m too confused to even hazard a guess.
The accountant in me (and the OCD) want to scream about this chapter! It wants a clear line from point A-Z. It doesn’t like all these stops, starts, and leaps of non-logic. But the person of faith in me is telling it to ‘sit down and shut up’! I don’t need to know everything to trust that God followed His plan in creating His people’s structure. I can’t tell you how every diode, cathode, relay, and resister work but when I press the button my television comes to life. Those who need to know, know. Those of us to whom it really doesn’t matter, don’t. I (We) simply trust in the One who does know and is the Author of it all.
Father God, thank You for calming me back down after I tried to work through the lines. I honestly don’t know how this all fits together. But I also know that I don’t have to know for me to trust Your hand and Your plan. I can rest assured that YOU followed the trails ALL THE WAY to the end. If You can keep up with number of hairs on my head You can certainly keep up with who begat who.