1 Chronicles 7-8
What does it say?
Chapter 7 lists the genealogies of Issachar, Benjamin, Naphtali, Manasseh, Ephraim, and Asher. Chapter 8 returns to the genealogy of Benjamin, then becomes more specific as it lists the genealogy of Saul. In chapter 7 the lists of Issachar and Benjamin are composed from military censuses. It is noted that the genealogies of Dan and Zebulun are missing and I do not no the reason, perhaps there were no records to draw from. (ESV Global SB Notes) The tribe of Manasseh lists the genealogies of the half tribe that lived west of the Jordan. (ESV Global SB Notes) When the chronicler gets to Ephraim he focuses Joshua, the most famous leader from that tribe whom God used to bring Israel across the Jordan into the promised land. Like many of the other tribes of Israel that occupied the north, Asher’s genealogy is comprised from a military register. It should be noted that “there are about 25 genealogical lists in the Bible.” (ESV Global SB Notes)
What does it mean?
It seems at first glance that there is no theological purpose to listing these genealogies but when I think about it there must be because this is Scripture. “These genealogies show how God protected his covenant people through the centuries.” (ESV Global SB Notes) 1 Chronicles 7:20-29 lists the ancestors of Joshua. Moses brought the Israelites as far as the Jordan but he could not bring them into the promised land. It was Joshua who took over from Moses and brought them into the promised land. Joshua is a type of Christ and Moses represents the Law. The law can bring us to Calvary but no further. Paul said, “Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith.” (Galatians 3:24) The name Joshua literally means ”Jehovah is salvation or Yhwh-saved.” (Olive Tree Enhanced Strong's Dictionary) “For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.” (John 1:17) Joshua is a type of Christ and the other genealogical lists are the people chosen by God to enter the promised land. Christians are people from every tribe, every tongue and nation on the earth chosen by God to enter the new heaven and new earth, lead by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is the Law that drives us to the foot of the cross but it is Jesus Christ who brings us into the Kingdom of God.
What shall I do?
The answer is so simple and yet it is difficult. Repent and follow the true Joshua, Christ, the Son of God. He will take me into the promised land, a new heaven and new earth were righteousness reigns. Where there is no more sorrow and no more death. On this side of the Jordan our bodies are weak and wearing out. On the other side, we will be given a resurrected body that does not wear out. It is a land that we do not deserve. It is a land fit only for the righteous but God is just to forgive us of our sins because He (God the Father) made Him (God the Son) who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. (2 Corinthians 5:21)