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Bible Dictionaries

Morrish Bible Dictionary

Genealogies

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These were the records of generations: 'the genealogy of their generations ' was reckoned. 1 Chronicles 5:7; 1 Chronicles 7:9 . Though 'generations' are given from the beginning, we do not read of 'genealogies' until Israel was in the land. It was important then that the genealogies should be preserved, because it was a part of the law that the children of Israel should enjoy every man the inheritance of his fathers. The inheritance must not remove from tribe to tribe. Numbers 36:8,9 . As the priesthood was restricted to the sons of Aaron, it was essential that they should preserve their genealogy. On the return from the exile some were unable to show their descent from Aaron, and they were put out of the priesthood. Ezra 2:62 .

A knowledge of the priestly genealogies extended to the N.T. Zacharias was of the 'course of Abia,' and Elizabeth was 'of the daughters of Aaron.' So also of the tribes and families generally. At the census Joseph and Mary went to Bethlehem, for they were of the lineage of David; Anna was of the tribe of Asher, and Paul of the tribe of Benjamin.

The prophecies, which reveal that in the seed of Abraham should all the nations of the earth be blessed, and that the Messiah was to be of the royal line of David, made it needful that the genealogies of both these lines should be preserved, as we find them given in the N.T. In the future possession of the land there will be the twelve tribes, and some of each of the twelve will be sealed for blessing. Ezekiel 48; Revelation 7:3-8 . God, who is guarding them for future events, can also preserve their genealogies.

It is probable that in 1 Timothy 1:4 and Titus 3:9 reference is not made to Jewish genealogies, which could not be called 'endless,' nor were they fabulous; but that reference is made to the aeons of the Gnostics which reach back to eternity, three of which were represented to be Christ, the Holy Spirit, and Jesus. Tertullian quoted the above passage in Timothy when confuting the Gnostics.

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Bibliography Information
Morrish, George. Entry for 'Genealogies'. Morrish Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/mbd/g/genealogies.html. 1897.

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