The New Bible – Genesis 38

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In this chapter we have people murdered for no good reason and a hypocrite by the name of Judah.

  1. Shortly after Jacob’s sons had demonstrated family values and sold their brother into slavery, one of them, named Judah, left his brothers and went to stay with a random guy by the name of Hirah.

2. He married a caananite named Shua and had four children. Surprise surprise, they were all boys.

3. The four of them grew up fast, and nothing much happened for a while. One day Judah ‘found’ his eldest son, Er, a wife. But God didn’t like him, so he claimed that he was wicked and put him to death.

4. Then Judah told Onan, one of his other sons, to sleep with his eldest son’s wife and fulfill his ‘duties’ to her as a brother-in-law.

5. But Onan knew that the child would not be his – how he came to this reasoning I have no idea.

6. He still slept with his brother’s wife, but he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from providing offspring for his brother.

7. Well, there goes the PG rating on this book…

8. What Onan did was wicked in the Lord’s sight, so he killed him.

9. Judah was not having much luck with keeping his sons alive, so he told Tamar to live as a widow in her father’s household until his son Shelah grew up.

10. After a long time Judah’s wife died, and after he had finished grieving he went up to Timnah and visited the men who were shearing his sheep.

11. Tamar, meanwhile, wondered whether she would ever have a child, what with both Onan and Er being put to death.

12. She disguised herself as a prostitute and sat near the entrance of Enaim, which was on the way to Timnah.

13. Judah found her, and immediately wanted to sleep with her, clearly forgetting that the whole thing was a sin.

14. He offered to pay her a goat, and she agreed. She asked for a pledge until he sent it, and Judah gave him his seal and staff.

15. Tamar became pregnant, and Judah sent a goat with his friend  Adullamite to get hid pledge back from her, but he as unable to find her.

16. “Have you seen the prostitute that was at the entrance to Enaim?” Adullamite asked the people that lived there.

17. But he had no luck, and he returned to Judah unsuccessful.

18. At the same time he heard that his daughter-in-law Tamar was guilty of prostitution and pregnant.

19. “Bring her out and have her burned to death!” Judah exclaimed.

20. As she was brought out, she handed the staff and seal to him, showing him that he was the one who slept with her.

21. “Uh, never mind, let’s just forget the whole thing ever happened” Judah said, keeping an eye out for God.

22.  So Tamar survived, and gave birth to twins, named Perez and Zerah.

The New Bible homepage can be found here.

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