The Bible Story You Were Never Told

Posted on November 7, 2010


The genealogy of Christ is tough. Its not spiritual milk; its hardly spiritual meat. It’s more like bones. You have to really work to get something out of these verses.

The Old Testament contains the stories about some of these people. From their stories, we can extract principles that can govern our relationship with Christ and the way to be associated with Him.

Let’s take Matthew 1:3. And Judah begot Pharez and Zarah of Tamar, and Pharez begot Hezron, and Hezron begot Aram.

Tamar’s story is crazy; you didn’t get this in Sunday school. She married one of Judah’s sons, but that son died and left Tamar a widow. Then Judah gave her to the next son, as the custom was, but he died too. Tamar was widowed again, but Judah forgot to give her to the next son. Tamar still wanted the birthright, so she made a plan: She would disguise herself as a prostitute, stand beside the road, and wait for Judah to come by. Then she would sleep with him, conceive, and bear a son. That way she could inherit the birthright. Judah fell for the trick, and Tamar had twins, Pharez and Zarah. That’s how Tamar kept the birthright.

Is that a crazy story or what? But there is Tamar’s name, right in Christ’s genealogy! If you think have bad family history, so did Jesus.

What is the principle here? It seems that what Tamar did was wrong. However, Judah vindicated her when he said in Genesis 38:26 “She is more righteous than I, because I did not give her to my son Shelah.” What she did seemed to be wrong, but she was desperate to obtain the birthright and not be cut off. We also should be desperate to get the brithright, and not worry about being religious or right and wrong. Just be desperate to gain Christ; get the birthright. What an awesome principle.

There are more of these kinds of stories. I wish I had time to go through them all. They’re awesome.

But, the more that we get into these verses, the more that we will realize that each of us needs to be a person who has a heart for God, who seeks after Him and His people.