Posts Tagged 'Birthright'

1 Chronicles Chapter 5

A Family Tree

A genealogy record of the children of Israel is given in this chapter of Chronicles. A record of the sons of Judah and Simeon were recorded already, and this chapter will list some of the line of Reuben. (Note: The wording of these genealogies is not always easily understood, but this is what I gather from these verses.) It begins as follows:

1 Now the sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel, (for he was the firstborn; but, forasmuch as he defiled his father’s bed, his birthright was given unto the sons of Joseph the son of Israel: and the genealogy is not to be reckoned after the birthright.
2 For Judah prevailed above his brethren, and of him came the chief ruler; but the birthright was Joseph’s:)
3 The sons, I say, of Reuben the firstborn of Israel were, Hanoch, and Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi.
4 The sons of Joel; Shemaiah his son, Gog his son, Shimei his son,
5 Micah his son, Reaia his son, Baal his son,
6 Beerah his son, whom Tilgath-pilneser king of Assyria carried away captive: he was prince of the Reubenites.
7 And his brethren by their families, when the genealogy of their generations was reckoned, were the chief, Jeiel, and Zechariah,
8 And Bela the son of Azaz, the son of Shema, the son of Joel, who dwelt in Aroer, even unto Nebo and Baal-meon:
9 And eastward he inhabited unto the entering in of the wilderness from the river Euphrates: because their cattle were multiplied in the land of Gilead.
10 And in the days of Saul they made war with the Hagarites, who fell by their hand: and they dwelt in their tents throughout all the east land of Gilead.

Reuben was the firstborn son of Israel (Jacob), by his first wife Leah, but his birthright was taken from him when he slept with his father’s concubine, Bilhah. The birthright, which as the firstborn was a double-portion, was given to the two sons of Joseph, Ephraim and Manasseh. Joseph was the firstborn of Jacob’s second wife. The genealogy is not continued with the birthright, because the tribe of Judah became the chief tribe. It is the tribe of the King of Kings, even Jesus the Christ. The sons of Reuben were Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron and Carmi. The sons of Joel were Shemaiah, Gog, Shimei, Micah, Reaia, Baal, and Beerah. Beerah, prince or leader of the Reubenites, was carried away captive by Tilgath-pilneser of Assyria. The genealogy continued with the leader, Jeilel, Zechariah, and Bela, the son of Azaz, who was the son of Shema, who was the son of Joel of Aroer. At the time of the rule of Saul, the Reubenites made war with the Hagarites, who were defeated. They lived in the eastern part of the land of Gilead, which was apart from the majority of the land belonging to the tribes of Israel and separated by the Jordan.

11 And the children of Gad dwelt over against them, in the land of Bashan unto Salchah:
12 Joel the chief, and Shapham the next, and Jaanai, and Shaphat in Bashan.
13 And their brethren of the house of their fathers were, Michael, and Meshullam, and Sheba, and Jorai, and Jachan, and Zia, and Heber, seven.
14 These are the children of Abihail the son of Huri, the son of Jaroah, the son of Gilead, the son of Michael, the son of Jeshishai, the son of Jahdo, the son of Buz;
15 Ahi the son of Abdiel, the son of Guni, chief of the house of their fathers.
16 And they dwelt in Gilead in Bashan, and in her towns, and in all the suburbs of Sharon, upon their borders.
17 All these were reckoned by genealogies in the days of Jotham king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam king of Israel.

The descendants of Gad lived near them, in he land of Bashan. Their leader were Joel, Shapham, Jaanai, and Shapha in Bashan. Their seven brothers were Michael, Meshullam, Sheba, Jorai, Jachan, Zia, and Heber. Abihail, son of Huri, was the patriarch of the son of Jaroah, the son of Gilead, the son of Michael, the son of Jehishai, the son of Jahdo, the son of Buz, Ahi the son of Abdiel, and the son of Guni who was the leader of their family. These people lived in Gilead. They were counted in the days of Jotham of Judah and Jeroboam of Israel.

18 The sons of Reuben, and the Gadites, and half the tribe of Manasseh, of valiant men, men able to bear buckler and sword, and to shoot with bow, and skilful in war, were four and forty thousand seven hundred and threescore, that went out to the war.
19 And they made war with the Hagarites, with Jetur, and Nephish, and Nodab.
20 And they were helped against them, and the Hagarites were delivered into their hand, and all that were with them: for they cried to God in the battle, and he was entreated of them; because they put their trust in him.
21 And they took away their cattle; of their camels fifty thousand, and of sheep two hundred and fifty thousand, and of asses two thousand, and of men an hundred thousand.
22 For there fell down many slain, because the war was of God. And they dwelt in their steads until the captivity.

A war was made with the Hagarites, Jetur, Nephish and Nodab. 44,760 valiant and able fighters from the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and half the tribe of Manasseh, gathered together to fight this war. They cried to God and were helped for putting their trust in Him. The Hagarites were delivered into their hands. They also took their cattle, 50,000 camels, 250,000 sheep, 2,000 donkeys and 100,000 men. Many of their enemy died because God fought for them. They lived in their homes, until captivity.

23 And the children of the half tribe of Manasseh dwelt in the land: they increased from Bashan unto Baal-hermon and Senir, and unto mount Hermon.
24 And these were the heads of the house of their fathers, even Epher, and Ishi, and Eliel, and Azriel, and Jeremiah, and Hodaviah, and Jahdiel, mighty men of valour, famous men, and heads of the house of their fathers.

The children of the half tribe of Manasseh lived in the land and increased in number. Their leaders were Epher, Ishi, Eliel, Azriel, Jeremiah, Hodaviah, and Jahdiel. There were famous and mighty men.

25 And they transgressed against the God of their fathers, and went a whoring after the gods of the people of the land, whom God destroyed before them.
26 And the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of Assyria, and the spirit of Tilgath-pilneser king of Assyria, and he carried them away, even the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half tribe of Manasseh, and brought them unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and to the river Gozan, unto this day.

Eventually, the Reubenites, Gadites and half of Massaeh, transgressed against God. They turned to idolatry, as did so many of the children of Israel. The spirit of Pul, king of Assyria, was stirred up against these tribes, and he carried them away captive to Assyria, to Halah, Habor, Hara, and the river Gozan.

It is important that every tribe of the children of Israel recorded a genealogy of their family, however the reason why there is little in this record of the Reubenites, is because the tribe of Judah became the leaders of the land. King David was from Bethlehem and his kingdom was established in Jerusalem. A king reigned in Judah until the time of capture when Zedekiah reigned. Most ancient records that we have of genealogy, contain records of kings and leaders. As for the tribe of Reuben, I think that this chapter includes those who were leaders of the tribe as well. Not much can be learned of these individuals of the children of Reuben, from the Bible, but this chapter teaches me the importance of keeping these records for all people, even if all we have is a name. A single name can connect us to the generations of the past, all the way back to Adam and Eve. I may not become anything great in the grand picture of mankind, but I hope that my name is at least known to my family in the generations to come.

Advertisements

Genesis Chapter 27

Up to this point, Isaac and Rebekah have been promised the blessings of Abraham. They were blessed with two sons, Esau and Jacob. Jacob is a righteous son and is the favored son of his mother, Rebekah. Esau is a good provider for his family as a skilled hunter. Esau is the favored son of Jacob, and is the eldest son, but he does not seem to care for the things of the spirit. Esau sold his birthright to Jacob because it did not mean as much to him. The book of Genesis continues with the following:

1 And it came to pass, that when Isaac was old, and his eyes were dim, so that he could not see, he called Esau his eldest son, and said unto him, My son: and he said unto him, Behold, here am I.
2 And he said, Behold now, I am old, I know not the day of my death:
3 Now therefore take, I pray thee, thy weapons, thy quiver and thy bow, and go out to the field, and take me some venison;
4 And make me savoury meat, such as I love, and bring it to me, that I may eat; that my soul may bless thee before I die.
5 And Rebekah heard when Isaac spake to Esau his son. And Esau went to the field to hunt for venison, and to bring it.

Isaac has become blind with age and asks Esau to bring him the food he loves so that he can bless him before he dies. Rebekah, who wants Jacob to receive his father’s blessings, heard the request. Esau followed his father’s will and left to hunt.

6 And Rebekah spake unto Jacob her son, saying, Behold, I heard thy father speak unto Esau thy brother, saying,
7 Bring me venison, and make me savoury meat, that I may eat, and bless thee before the Lord before my death.
8 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice according to that which I command thee.
9 Go now to the flock, and fetch me from thence two good kids of the goats; and I will make them savoury meat for thy father, such as he loveth:
10 And thou shalt bring it to thy father, that he may eat, and that he may bless thee before his death.
11 And Jacob said to Rebekah his mother, Behold, Esau my brother is a hairy man, and I am a smooth man:
12 My father peradventure will feel me, and I shall seem to him as a deceiver; and I shall bring a curse upon me, and not a blessing.
13 And his mother said unto him, Upon me be thy curse, my son: only obey my voice, and go fetch me them.
14 And he went, and fetched, and brought them to his mother: and his mother made savoury meat, such as his father loved.
15 And Rebekah took goodly raiment of her eldest son Esau, which were with her in the house, and put them upon Jacob her younger son:
16 And she put the skins of the kids of the goats upon his hands, and upon the smooth of his neck:
17 And she gave the savoury meat and the bread, which she had prepared, into the hand of her son Jacob.

Rebekah tells Jacob what his father wants and tells him to bring her meat to prepare for his father. She wanted Jacob to be the one who received the blessing. Jacob pointed out that Isaac would know it was not him, so Rebekah came up with a plan to use the hair of the goats to make hairy like Esau. Jacob did as he was told and Rebekah made the meat and put the hair on Jacob.

18 And he came unto his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I; who art thou, my son?
19 And Jacob said unto his father, I am Esau thy firstborn; I have done according as thou badest me: arise, I pray thee, sit and eat of my venison, that thy soul may bless me.
20 And Isaac said unto his son, How is it that thou hast found it so quickly, my son? And he said, Because the Lord thy God brought it to me.
21 And Isaac said unto Jacob, Come near, I pray thee, that I may feel thee, my son, whether thou be my very son Esau or not.
22 And Jacob went near unto Isaac his father; and he felt him, and said, The voice is Jacob’s voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.
23 And he discerned him not, because his hands were hairy, as his brother Esau’s hands: so he blessed him.
24 And he said, Art thou my very son Esau? And he said, I am.
25 And he said, Bring it near to me, and I will eat of my son’s venison, that my soul may bless thee. And he brought it near to him, and he did eat: and he brought him wine, and he drank.
26 And his father Isaac said unto him, Come near now, and kiss me, my son.
27 And he came near, and kissed him: and he smelled the smell of his raiment, and blessed him, and said, See, the smell of my son is as the smell of a field which the Lord hath blessed:
28 Therefore God give thee of the dew of heaven, and the fatness of the earth, and plenty of corn and wine:
29 Let people serve thee, and nations bow down to thee: be lord over thy brethren, and let thy mother’s sons bow down to thee: cursed be every one that curseth thee, and blessed be he that blesseth thee.

Jacob told Isaac that he was Esau and that the Lord had provided the meat for him. Isaac did not trust that it was Esau because he sounded like Jacob, so he told him to come to him so that he could feel him. He recognized his hairy skin as the skin of Esau. Isaac did not know that it was Jacob, so he blessed him and ate the meat. Isaac gave Jacob a blessing that the earth would be plentiful for him and that he would be a ruler of a nation. He blessed him that he would rule over his brother.

30 And it came to pass, as soon as Isaac had made an end of blessing Jacob, and Jacob was yet scarce gone out from the presence of Isaac his father, that Esau his brother came in from his hunting.
31 And he also had made savoury meat, and brought it unto his father, and said unto his father, Let my father arise, and eat of his son’s venison, that thy soul may bless me.
32 And Isaac his father said unto him, Who art thou? And he said, I am thy son, thy firstborn Esau.
33 And Isaac trembled very exceedingly, and said, Who? where is he that hath taken venison, and brought it me, and I have eaten of all before thou camest, and have blessed him? yea, and he shall be blessed.
34 And when Esau heard the words of his father, he cried with a great and exceeding bitter cry, and said unto his father, Bless me, even me also, O my father.
35 And he said, Thy brother came with subtilty, and hath taken away thy blessing.
36 And he said, Is not he rightly named Jacob? for he hath supplanted me these two times: he took away my birthright; and, behold, now he hath taken away my blessing. And he said, Hast thou not reserved a blessing for me?
37 And Isaac answered and said unto Esau, Behold, I have made him thy lord, and all his brethren have I given to him for servants; and with corn and wine have I sustained him: and what shall I do now unto thee, my son?
38 And Esau said unto his father, Hast thou but one blessing, my father? bless me, even me also, O my father. And Esau lifted up his voice, and wept.
39 And Isaac his father answered and said unto him, Behold, thy dwelling shall be the fatness of the earth, and of the dew of heaven from above;
40 And by thy sword shalt thou live, and shalt serve thy brother; and it shall come to pass when thou shalt have the dominion, that thou shalt break his yoke from off thy neck.

Esau returned from hunting, to receive the blessing that his father had promised him. Isaac told him that he had already been given meat to eat and had blessed the one who brought it to him. Esau was upset by this and felt wronged by Jacob. First, Jacob had gained his birthright, which is the right of the firstborn son to have the inheritance of his father and to preside over the family. Then, he took this final blessing from his father. Esau asked for a blessing from his father as well. Isaac told him that his blessing had been given to Jacob, which I think included all that Isaac had to give. Isaac blessed him to be strong with the sword. He blessed him that even though he would serve his brother, he would become great enough to break free from him.

Although this seems so wrong to me at first, that Jacob would deceive his father into giving him the blessings, it was a fulfillment of the promise that the Lord had given to Rebekah. She had been told that the elder son, Esau, would serve the younger son, Jacob. The rights of the firstborn were more then a physical blessing for the things in this life. It was also the duty to be devoted to God, which had been the life that Jacob had chosen, not Esau. Esau was not righteous and worthy to continue to have the birthright, and so it was made available to Jacob and I believe it was acceptable to God.

41 And Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing wherewith his father blessed him: and Esau said in his heart, The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then will I slay my brother Jacob.
42 And these words of Esau her elder son were told to Rebekah: and she sent and called Jacob her younger son, and said unto him, Behold, thy brother Esau, as touching thee, doth comfort himself, purposing to kill thee.
43 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice; and arise, flee thou to Laban my brother to Haran;
44 And tarry with him a few days, until thy brother’s fury turn away;
45 Until thy brother’s anger turn away from thee, and he forget that which thou hast done to him: then I will send, and fetch thee from thence: why should I be deprived also of you both in one day?
46 And Rebekah said to Isaac, I am weary of my life because of the daughters of Heth: if Jacob take a wife of the daughters of Heth, such as these which are of the daughters of the land, what good shall my life do me?

Esau hated Jacob for what he had done and decided he would kill him. His plans were told to Rebekah, who told Jacob to flee to his uncle until Esau was no longer planning on killing him. I think that she felt that it was not something Esau would pursue for life, but that he was particularly angry at that time and would kill Jacob. Rebekah was also worried that Jacob would marry a daughter of Heth, which would be out of the covenant. If he married outside of the covenant, Jacob would no longer be worthy to receive the promised blessings of Abraham and Isaac.

This story can seem to be strange, in the way things were done to ensure that Jacob received the blessings. I don’t think that I can fully understand it all, but I do know that the way it turned out was according to the blessing and promise that Rebekah was given when she was allowed to have these children after being unable to have children for so long. I know that being righteous and living a live of service to God is more important that receiving land and servants. I know that this is why the blessings were given to Jacob and not Esau. Jacob was the righteous son and was blessed for keeping his duty to God sacred and important in his life. I know that we can be blessed if we are faithful to our own covenants and if we make the Lord a priority in our lives.


About My Scripture Study Buddy

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I love the scriptures, but I am not a scriptorian. I've been told that I'm too "deep" for some, but if you are willing, I'd love to have others join me in my quest for a greater understanding of the gospel. Please feel free to leave me comments and hopefully we can help each other to learn.
Testimony

Testimony

I made an album with my dad in 2011. Check it out!

Testimony

NEW!!! Digital Downloads (mp3) available directly from the site.

Current Study

Currently I am studying the The Old Testament. I will be studying from the LDS - King James Version of the Bible (see link below). I am studying along with the book, Scripture Study for Latter-day Saint Families: The Old Testament by Dennis H. Leavitt and Richard O. Christensen.

Learn More:

I'm a Mormon

The Book of Mormon

You can order a free copy of the Book of Mormon here:

Book of Mormon Request

Archives

Follow me on Facebook:

My Wonderful Husband and Artist

Advertisements

%d bloggers like this: