Today you should read: Genesis 11:10-12:9
Ah, genealogies… my favorite (please enjoy my sarcasm).
“What do these names mean? How do I pronounce them? Why do they matter?” These are the questions I wrestle with whenever I come across a long line of begats, births, lineages, etc. These lists can seem pointless.
But they are definitely not pointless in chapter 11.
The previous Jumpstart post by Chad Wiles set the scene for the genealogy we read today. Ham was the son of Noah who sinned almost immediately after evacuating the ark. His line would be cursed because of his foolishness. He became the father of Canaan.
Shem, on the other hand, was the godly son who covered his father Noah in a moment of shame. He was upright. Noah, in his comparison of the boys, said in Genesis 9:26, “May the Lord, the God of Shem, be blessed, and may Canaan be his servant!”
When we arrive at the genealogy found in chapter 11, the blessing of Shem is becomes effectual. It’s realized in the birth of his great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandson Abram.
It’s an understatement to say that this is a solid legacy. Abram would be named Abraham, the father of nations. He would become the foremost example of faith and righteousness in the Old Testament. Matthew 1 traces the birth of the Messiah to Abraham. Even today, Jews and Christians consider Abraham a hero.
All that said, here’s some food for thought:
1) What kind of legacy are you leaving?
2) What kind of godly investment do you have in the lives of your kids (if you have kids)?
3) What will it take for your lineage to look more like Shem’s rather than Ham’s?
Continuing on to chapter 12, Abram answers the call of God to leave where he was so that he might lead his people into the promised land. At this moment of great difficulty, there was no delayed obedience. He immediately followed the voice of the Lord, regardless of the cost.
His obedience here is one of the most important moments in history. Not only was it crucial for the foundation of the nation of Israel, it was paramount to the redemption God would provide in Christ.
As verse 3 tells us, “All the families of the earth would be blessed through you (Abram).” No doubt that the realization of this is found in Revelation 5:8b: “For you were slaughtered, and your blood has ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation.”
Today, I hope you have a renewed desire to seek Christ and His righteousness like never before. We’ve seen two great characters to emulate: Shem and Abraham.
More than that, though, I hope you delight in the story of the gospel all over again. How incredible is it that even from Genesis 12, God’s relentless pursuit of us is so clearly evident?
Posted by: Todd Thomas