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Bible Commentaries
1 Chronicles 7

Garner-Howes Baptist CommentaryGarner-Howes

Verses 1-5

First Chronicles - Chapter 7

Tribe of Issacher, Verses 1-5

The record of the tribe of Issachar begins with the naming of Issachar’s four sons, each of whom headed a family in the later tribal organization. Several prominent sons of Tola’s family are named. Those of the family of Tola are singled out for their valor in the time of King David. They are called "valiant men of might," and they numbered 22,600. Another group called "bands of soldiers for war" numbered 36, 000.

Verses 6-12

for comments on vs 6-12 1 Chronicles 8:1

Verse 12

Tribe of Naphtali, Verse 13

Only this verse is given to the tribe of Naphtali, although it was of rather more prominence in Israel than some of the others. All that is found here is the name of the families who were prominent in Israel’s early history.

Verses 14-19

Western Half-Manasseh, Verses 14-19

The Manassite families enumerated in these verses were those who peopled the half tribe which continued into Canaan with the other tribes, except Reuben and Gad. Verse 14 is confusing, but by examination with Numbers 26:26-34 the meaning seems to be that Manasseh’s concubine bore Ashriel and also Machir, the father of Gilead. In verse 15 the meaning is that Zelophehad was the grandson of Gilead (cf. Numbers account).

Zelophehad is to be remembered as the man who had daughters only, and whose five daughters requested of Moses the inheritance of their father in the division of the land. It was granted them in understanding they must marry their cousins of the tribe of Manasseh. The case became the grounds for the law of inheritance in Israel (Numbers 27:1-11; Numbers 36:1-13).

The family of Abiezer (verse 18) is that from whom Gideon, the judge of Israel, sprang. They were given their allotment around the town of Ophrah, in western Manasseh (Judges 6:11).

Verses 20-29

Tribe of Ephraim, Verses 20-29

Included with the genealogy of Ephraim is an incident of ancient cattle rustling and the tragic result. It appears to have occurred seven generations after the father, Ephraim. However, verse 22 speaks of the great grief of the father Ephraim over the loss of his sons. This incident is not found elsewhere in the Scriptures, nor are the murdered sons included in the listing of Numbers 26:35-37. The probable explanation seems to be (as based on the Numbers account), these are not generations, but actual sons of Ephraim. Ezer and Elead, the rustlers, had gone into the area of Gath to steal cattle, and the inhabitants had killed them. Ephraim mourned greatly for them. Later another son was born to him, who was named Beriah, meaning "tragedy."

The descendants of Ephraim’s daughter, Sherah, were the inhabitants and builders of upper and nether Beth-horon, as well as Uzzen-sherah. From verse 25 the lineage descends to Joshua, the leader of Israel.

Verses 30-40

Tribe of Asher, Verses 30-40

Asher had four sons, who became heads of family in the nation of Israel. From the very first listing of Asher’s family (Genesis 46:17) his daughter Serah has been named. This woman must have been a very prominent one in Israel, but the student’s curiosity about her is not appeased anywhere. One can only wonder why she was always mentioned.

The passage closes with a commendation of the tribe’s brave men, "choice and mighty men of valour, chief of the princes." Their men of war numbered some twenty-six thousand men.

A few lessons may be gleaned: 1) Brave men and their deeds are not soon forgotten; 2) all the tribes of Israel contained some honorable men; 3) sorrow for the death of wicked sons must be infinitely worse than for righteous ones; 4) women of prominence were not omitted in God’s word.

Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on 1 Chronicles 7". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/1-chronicles-7.html. 1985.
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