Genesis 38-40

Chapter 38

We are going to talk about Judah and Tamar.  If you get nothing out of this read here is a free parent lesson.  There is a contraception method called Onanism.  You think I am kidding?? Google it!  The proper term is coitus interruptus.  I am a pretty real mom and bring it on their level, I call it “pull and pray” (my kids want to die when I have these conversations when their friends are over) Hashtag true story…the other day a bunch of high schoolers were at my house and I said “gather around, grab my pen and paper to draw this, we are going to talk about pre-ejaculation and the facts about it”.  Charlie said “mom…don’t”.  Fine…”gather around girls, we are going to talk about Onanism”.  Charlie still wanted to die! 😂😂😂😂😂


Chapter 38.  I know many of you are not interested in genealogies.  But it is important to at least get the ‘general’ idea of them.  Every once in a while review one you printed and if you are confused, PLEASE ask.  If you don’t want to ask on the site, text me at 615-418-9377.

tamar-judah-chart - Truth Snitch

To understand the background on this you need to know WHY Judah is giving the instructions to his son Onan. If you turn to Deuteronomy 25 you will read what is called the Levirate Marriage (levir meaning “a husband’s brother”):

If brothers are living together and one of them dies without a son, his widow must not marry outside the family. Her husband’s brother shall take her and marry her and fulfill the duty of a brother-in-law to her. The first son she bears shall carry on the name of the dead brother so that his name will not be blotted out from Israel.However, if a man does not want to marry his brother’s wife, she shall go to the elders at the town gate and say, “My husband’s brother refuses to carry on his brother’s name in Israel. He will not fulfill the duty of a brother-in-law to me.” Then the elders of his town shall summon him and talk to him. If he persists in saying, “I do not want to marry her,” his brother’s widow shall go up to him in the presence of the elders, take off one of his sandals, spit in his face and say, “This is what is done to the man who will not build up his brother’s family line.” 10 That man’s line shall be known in Israel as The Family of the Unsandaled.

(There is a deeper meaning…but I must move on)

The point of this commandment was to have the surviving brother produce an heir to continue the name of the dead brother’s family.  It would not be “blotted out of Israel”.  The child born would be named in the dead brother’s memory however, Tamar was the widow to the deceased OLDEST brother and there was a question in Onan’s head about “who would get the inheritance”.  So he ignored the commandment (well, not the fun part) to ensure that he himself would get the birthright.  That would leave Tamar without a husband nor a child to take care of her. (Put this in your pocket for later because JESUS will be tested on it by the Sadducees!!)  Back to Genesis:

But Er, Judah’s firstborn, was wicked in the Lord’s sight; so the Lord put him to death.

  • Er was greedy, thinking only of the money.  In the Lord’s eyes that was wicked.
  • Judah instructed Tamar to wait until the next brother was old enough to build her family line but in verse 12 it says “After a long time…”  JUDAH never fulfilled the commandment of the Levirate marriage by giving her the next son. This family line continually goes from deceiving to being deceived. Now Judah is deceived by Tamar.Pin on Bible JW

Tamar now holds:

  • the “rod”- a symbol of power,
  • the “seal”- maybe a signet ring showing family name
  • and the “Crimson Cord!” -a scarlet rope that holds things together.  Stop!! This is too Good!!  Let’s follow this to the pregnancy.

When a woman gives birth to twins it was so important not to mix them up because of birthright (firstborn) and blessings.  At first, Baby Zerah was about to be firstborn so the thread was tied to his wrist.  However,  Baby Perez said, “Heck no! I want that thread taken off him and put on my wrist, you can follow that thread to the Messiah, I am breaking out of this womb”.  And he does!  So the crimson cord…the scarlet thread…that holds things together…that identifies the family name….that will carry the rod…is passed to Perez.

Eden to Calvary: The Scarlet Thread of Redemption – Dr. Kevin Blackwell

We could follow the Scarlet Thread from the garden to the manger ❤️. Perez is listed 19 times in the Bible in genealogies.  If you want to circle them, click here for references.  The only two I circled were Matthew 1:3 and Like 3:3.

We have to move on or this post will be longer than the Bible!


Chapter 39-I think this story is clearer than most (or at least the chapter before it) so this was a great read.  Pay attention to Joseph’s Character (he is a Typology of Christ) and keep the word Providence in mind.  😁

Miklós Mihalovits: Joseph and Potiphar's wife - Pinter Auctions

This should have been a death sentence.  But he was put in the King’s Prison.

Pharaoh did not have anything to worry about except…in Chapter 39:6…..the food he ate!  It is evident that this Pharaoh lived in the Capitol, which would be very protected from an attack, so how does one overthrow an empire at such a high level such as Kings or Pharaohs?   Well, you can poison them?  So whether there was a plot or not, the highest workers in the kitchen are put in prison.  Clearly, the baker was guilty of something because chapter 40 it says:

16 When the chief baker saw that Joseph had given a favorable interpretation, he said to Joseph, “I too had a dream:

Free Christian Church of Connecticut: Joseph's Dream Interpretation Genesis 40

The chief baker did not get good news.  On Pharaoh’s birthday he does not blow out his birthday candles, but instead of “wishing something would happen”, they actually get to do one thing they wish for.  In this case, he hangs the baker.  (again, put this in your other pocket because party ritual will, unfortunately, come up again and the party entertainment that will put John the Baptist to death too.

23 The chief cupbearer, however, did not remember Joseph; he forgot him.


Have a great day!  I have a feeling some may have paused on the Typology comment so I will post a handout later for you.

3 thoughts on “Genesis 38-40

  1. Thank you for the genealogy chart and Typology. Great resources.

    God remained faithful to His promises to Abraham’s descendants regardless of their sins and human failures. The story of Judah brings this reminder home since Jesus came from his lineage.

    Liked by 1 person

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