This Chapter is a digression from the subject of Joseph's history, but it becomes a very interesting one, because it records the race of Judah, another of Jacob's sons. And as our LORD sprang out of Judah, according to the flesh, (Hebrews 7:14.) it is indeed highly important to trace the descent of Judah, until we find it terminate in CHRIST. The contents of this Chapter are, Judah's marriage and issue: the death of his two eldest sons for rebellion against GOD Judah's incestuous commerce with his daughter-in-law, and the effects of it.
See 1 Chronicles 2:3; Numbers 26:19-20. Reader! observe here the general feature of last since the fall. See Genesis 6:2; Gen_6:4.
Chezib means a lie, deceit. It was a little village. Joshua 15:44; Micah 1:14-15.
Reader! pause over this history. Who shall take upon him to say, to what extent this unnatural sin hath been prevalent in all ages! Though hidden from human observation, with what malignity must the vast mass of such works of darkness come up before GOD! Oh! how precious, increasingly precious, is JESUS, in every renewed consideration to the mind conscious of sin, whose blood alone cleanseth from all sin.
Timnath, a place remarkable for intrigue. See Judges 14:1-2.
Judges 14:1. It is worthy remark, that though there are, I believe, but four women named in the list of the ancestors of CHRIST, after the flesh, in Matthew's relation of the pedigree, this is one of them, Matthew 1:3.
Peter describes this lust, in strong expressions, 2 Peter 2:14.
I wish the same answer could be made of many a place now.
Leviticus 21:9. As Tamar was by right betrothed to Judah's third son, no doubt it was adultery in her.
How strikingly true is that scripture to this conduct! Romans 2:1.
Is not this a type of the Jewish and Gentile churches?
Is not this typical also, like that of Esau and Jacob, of the struggle of the churches?
Pharez means a breach. Matthew 1:3.
Zarah means a Riser, or Returner. And so we trust will be the return of our elder brother the Jew, to the redemption of the LORD, when that blessed scripture comes to be fulfilled; Romans 11:25-26. Ge 38
What hath sin wrought in all ages! What a dreadful bias to evil is naturally in the mind of every man! What awful examples doth the LORD sometimes proclaim, in punishments, of his utter displeasure of sin! But, my soul! while thou art seeking grace from GOD, to avoid every appearance of sin, let that state of humbleness, that astonishing and unequalled state of humbleness, to which JESUS submitted, when he came to do away sin by the sacrifice of himself, endear the Redeemer yet more and more to thy heart, and form him there the only hope of glory. Was it not enough, dearest LORD, when thou condescendest to take flesh and blood for the purposes of salvation, that thou didst not abhor the virgin's womb, but didst even appoint thine ancestors, after the flesh, to be such as were more particularly marked with unworthiness? Gracious Redeemer! may it serve to teach my heart those sweet lessons, that thou wert pleased to be made in all things like as we are, yet without sin: and although thou wert made in the likeness of sinful flesh, yet thou didst partake of none of the corruptions of flesh; and that in thy tender alliance with our nature, thou dost not refuse that alliance even with the vilest of our nature; but where sin aboundeth, grace doth much more abound: that as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness, unto eternal life, by JESUS CHRIST our LORD. Romans 5:20-21.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Genesis 38". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week after Epiphany