Monday, July 19, 2010

The Records of the First Kings Before Israel’s - Genesis 36:31-39

Now these are the kings who reigned in the land of Edom before any king reigned over the sons of Israel. . . .Then Bela died, and Jobab the son Zerah of Bozrah became king in his place. . . . Then Baalhanan the son of Achbor died, . . .

What we have here is two groups, the newcomer Edomites and the resident Horites, now living in the same area, but having their own separate governments. The kings listed here ruled prior to the kings that reigned over the children of Israel. You will remember back in Genesis 35:11, God promised Jacob that kings would come from his descendants, yet here is his brother Esau seeing royalty first. Does it not seem odd that often those not in the very center of God’s will, seem to get the better deal first or in a bigger way? Evil does have its way of succeeding first or quickly, but its impact is relatively short-lived. What those who walk with God and rely on Him are blessed with gifts that are everlasting.

Finally, here it may be important to note that some have supposed that Jobab is the same as Job, the main character of the book of Job. And that the Eliphaz referred to earlier in this chapter (vs. 4,10,11,12,15,16) was the same person as the one who was Job’s friend in that book. There is no conclusive proof to these assertions. If the assertions are true, it means that there is some connection timewise between the book of Job and what is going on here in this chapter. Eliphaz could have been one of his uncles that had come to visit him during his afflictions. These assumptions would also imply that Job was living at the same time as Jacob and Esau and these events. All things are possible, and some even probable. However, we cannot make any definitive statements about things that are not clearly ‘definitive’ in scripture.

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